Seasonal variation of interferon-gamma production in progressive multiple sclerosis

Ann Neurol. 1998 Nov;44(5):824-8. doi: 10.1002/ana.410440519.


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the central nervous system. There is increased interferon (IFN)-gamma secretion in MS patients in vitro, and IFN-gamma administration induces exacerbations of disease suggesting a link between IFN-gamma and disease activity. We observed significantly increased IFN-gamma production in the autumn and winter months compared with the spring and summer months in chronic progressive MS, and this increase was linked to endogenous interleukin (IL)-12 production. Increased seasonal IFN-gamma was not observed in normal control subjects, and there were no seasonal changes in IL-10 in progressive MS. These results suggest a potential environmental link between dysregulated IFN-gamma production and MS disease progression and pathogenesis.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cells, Cultured
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / biosynthesis*
  • Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Sclerosis / immunology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / physiopathology
  • Reference Values
  • Seasons*


  • Interferon-gamma