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Am J Physiol. 1996 Jul;271(1 Pt 2):R101-8.

An interleukin-1 receptor fragment inhibits spontaneous sleep and muramyl dipeptide-induced sleep in rabbits.

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1
Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Tennessee, Memphis 38163, USA.

Abstract

Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is hypothesized to be involved in physiological sleep regulation and in sleep responses occurring during infectious disease. If this hypothesis is correct, then inhibition of endogenous IL-1 should reduce both normal sleep and N-acetylmuramyl-L-alanyl-D-isoglutamine (MDP)-induced sleep. MDP is a somnogenic substance derived from bacterial cell walls. We report here the effects of a synthetic IL-1 receptor fragment corresponding to amino acid residues 86-95 of the human type I IL-1 receptor (IL-1RF) on spontaneous sleep and IL-1 beta- and MDP-induced sleep and fever in rabbits. Two doses of the IL-1RF (25 and 50 micrograms) were injected into normal rabbits intracerebroventricularly (icv). Both doses significantly decreased spontaneous non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREMS) across a 22-h recording period. Pretreatment of rabbits with 25 micrograms of IL-1RF blocked the somnogenic actions of 10 ng icv IL-1. Similarly, central pretreatment of animals with 25 micrograms IL-1RF significantly attenuated the NREMS-promoting and REMS-suppressive actions of 150 pmol MDP injected centrally. The increase in NREMS and decrease in REMS induced by systemic injection of 12.5 micrograms/kg MDP were also significantly suppressed by central administration of 50 micrograms IL-1RF. In contrast, the febrile response induced by either intracerebroventricularly or intravenously injected MDP were not significantly affected by IL-1RF. These results support the hypothesis that endogenous, brain-derived IL-1 contributes to the maintenance of normal sleep and may mediate sleep responses to systemic as well as central bacterial infections.

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