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J Neurochem. 2000 Jan;74(1):143-50.

S100beta induction of the proinflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 in neurons.

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Department of Geriatrics, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, USA.


Levels of the neurotrophic cytokine S100beta and the proinflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) are both elevated in Alzheimer's brain, and both have been implicated in beta-amyloid plaque formation and progression. We used RT-PCR and electrophoretic mobility shift assay to assess S100beta induction of IL-6 expression and the role of kappaB-dependent transcription in this induction in neuron-enriched cultures and in neuron-glia mixed cultures from fetal rat cortex. S100beta (10 or 100 ng/ml x 24 h) increased IL-6 mRNA levels two- and fivefold, respectively (p<0.05 in each case), and S100beta (100-1,000 ng/ml) induced increases in medium levels of biologically active IL-6 (30-80%). Combined in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry preparations localized IL-6 mRNA to neurons in these cultures. S100beta induction of IL-6 expression correlated with an increase in DNA binding activity specific for a KB element and was inhibited (75%) by suppression of kappaB binding with double-stranded "decoy" oligonucleotides. The low levels of S100beta required to induce IL-6 overexpression in neurons, shown here, suggest that overexpression of S100beta induces neuronal expression of IL-6 and of IL-6-induced neurodegenerative cascades in Alzheimer's disease.

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