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J Neurosci Res. 2002 Jul 1;69(1):94-103.

Cytokines, chemokines, and cytokine receptors in human microglia.

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Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.


Enriched populations of human microglial cells were isolated from mixed cell cultures prepared from embryonic human telencephalon tissues. Human microglial cells exhibited cell type-specific antigens for macrophage-microglia lineage cells including CD11b (Mac-1), CD68, B7-2 (CD86), HLA-ABC, HLA-DR and ricinus communis aggulutinin lectin-1 (RCA-1), and actively phagocytosed latex beads. Gene expression and protein production of cytokines, chemokines and cytokine/chemokine receptors were investigated in the purified populations of human microglia. Normal unstimulated human microglia expressed constitutively mRNA transcripts for interleukin- 1beta (IL-1beta) -6, -8, -10, -12, -15, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), macrophage inflammatory protein-1alpha (MIP-1alpha), MIP-1beta, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), while treatment with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or amyloid beta peptides (Abeta) led to increased expression of mRNA levels of IL-8, IL-10, IL-12, TNF-alpha, MIP-1alpha, MIP-1beta, and MCP-1. Human microglia, in addition, expressed mRNA transcripts for IL-1RI, IL-1RII, IL-5R, IL-6R, IL-8R, IL-9R, IL-10R, IL-12R, IL-13R, and IL-15R. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) showed increased protein levels in culture media of IL-1beta, IL-8, TNF-alpha, and MIP-1alpha in human microglia following treatment with LPS or Abeta. Increased TNF-alpha release from human microglia following LPS treatment was completely inhibited with IL-10 pretreatment, but not with IL-6, IL-9, IL-12, IL-13, or transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta). Present results should help in understanding the basic microglial biology, but also the pathophysiology of activated microglia in neurological diseases such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, Huntington disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, stroke, and neurotrauma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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