IL-10 fails to abrogate experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

J Neurosci Res. 1996 Sep 15;45(6):735-46. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-4547(19960915)45:6<735::AID-JNR10>3.0.CO;2-V.


Mice adoptively-sensitized to develop chronic relapsing experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a model for the human demyelinating condition, multiple sclerosis (MS), were given injections of recombinant human IL-10 at various timepoints post-sensitization in an attempt to abrogate disease development. IL-10 is a Th2 immunomodulatory cytokine with known down-regulatory effects upon Th1 responses and macrophages. Contrary to a previous report on EAE and the predicted outcome, after repeated experiments, IL-10 was found to elicit a worsening or no effect upon EAE in the mouse. Animals were studied clinically, histopathologically and immunocytochemically. On no occasion was disease ameliorated by IL-10. Pretreatment with IL-10 of lymph node cells used to transfer EAE had no effect upon disease outcome, indicating that the cells were already committed effectors. Administration of anti-IL-10 monoclonal antibody before onset of signs had no effect when given early post-sensitization and caused marked worsening when given immediately before onset of signs. In the context of this autoimmune demyelinating model, these results suggest that IL-10 alone is insufficient to reverse the effector response and indeed may serve to enhance the cascade of events in EAE.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adoptive Transfer*
  • Animals
  • Central Nervous System / drug effects
  • Central Nervous System / pathology
  • Encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune, Experimental / drug therapy*
  • Encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune, Experimental / immunology
  • Encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune, Experimental / pathology
  • Female
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interleukin-10 / therapeutic use*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Recombinant Proteins / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Interleukin-10