Purpose: To investigate the role of TNF-alpha in endotoxin-induced uveitis (EIU) in mice.
Methods: To neutralize TNF-alpha activity, mice were pretreated with either repeated injections of this cytokine or a single injection of antibody against it. The mice were then injected intraperitoneally with 500 micrograms endotoxin, to induce lethal septic shock, or into the footpad with 200 micrograms to induce EIU.
Results: Although both pretreatments conferred protection against the systemic toxic effects of LPS, TNF-resistant mice and mice treated with anti-TNF-alpha antibody demonstrated an exacerbation of EIU when compared to control animals.
Conclusions: Unlike its apparent participation in the systemic effect of endotoxin, TNF-alpha is not directly involved in the pathogenesis of EIU and may even protect against the inflammatory processes of this disease.