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Cytokine. 2012 May;58(2):169-77. doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2011.12.023. Epub 2012 Jan 25.

Response patterns of cytokines/chemokines in two murine strains after irradiation.

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  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Shands Cancer Center, University of Florida, Gainesville, Gainesville, FL 32610-0385, USA.



To determine the plasma concentrations of acute responding cytokines/chemokines following 9-Gy ionizing radiation in C57BL/6 (radiation tolerant) and C3H/HeN (radiation sensitive) murine strains.


Mice (5/group) received 9-Gy total body irradiation (TBI), and the plasma from each mouse was collected at 6h or 1, 2, 4, or 10 days after TBI. A multiplex bead array was used to assess the levels of 32 cytokines/chemokines in plasma to determine their common and strain-specific temporal responses.


The plasma levels of five cytokines/chemokines (Axl, FasL, ICAM-1, TARC, and TSLP) were beyond the detectable level. Five (VEGF, IL-2, IL-5, IL-17, and CD30) were unaffected by irradiation in either strain. Temporal patterns were similar in both murine strains for 10 of the cytokines tested, including G-CSF, IL-6, TCA-3, MCP-1, MIP-1γ, KC, CXCL 13, CXCL 16, MDC, and TIMP-1; the other 12 molecules (GM-CSF, IL-3, SCF, IL-1β, IL-4, IL-10, IL-12p70, MIP-1α, Eotaxin, TNF-α, sTNF-R1, and CD40) showed strain-specific response patterns. While a number of cytokines had temporal response patterns following TBI, the strains exhibited quantitatively different results.


The levels of 27 of the 32 plasma cytokines measured indicate the following: (1) different cytokine concentrations and temporal patterns in the two strains may partly explain different radiation sensitivities and sequelae following irradiation; (2) many of the cytokines/chemokines exhibit similar temporal responses in the two strains. These responses suggest the potential value of using a panel of cytokine/chemokine temporal patterns for radiation dosimetry. Although radiation doses will be difficult to quantitate due to the large variation in levels and temporal responses exhibited in the two murine strains, serial measurements of cytokines might help identify subjects exposed to radiation.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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