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Diabetes. 1997 Jun;46(6):937-40.

Treatment with neutralizing antibodies specific for IL-1beta prevents cyclophosphamide-induced diabetes in nonobese diabetic mice.

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INSERM U25, Hôpital Necker, Paris, France.


Interleukin-1 (IL-1) has been shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of IDDM, but it is not clear which form, IL-1alpha or IL-1beta, is predominantly implicated. In this study, we have evaluated the contribution of IL-1beta by treating diabetes-prone nonobese diabetic (NOD) mice with specific neutralizing antibodies. First, we assessed the neutralizing potential of these antibodies in C57BL/6 mice under acute septic shock by measuring IL-1beta in sera 4 h after lipopolysaccharide injection. One milligram and 0.1 mg of anti-IL-1beta antibodies (Abs) were capable of neutralizing the IL-1beta produced, and the effect persisted for at least 5 days. Second, we evaluated the role of IL-1beta in the cyclophosphamide (CY)-accelerated model of diabetes. Nondiabetic male NOD mice were injected with 200 mg/kg CY and treated twice weekly with anti-IL-1beta Ab. The incidence of diabetes reached 76 and 100% in the control groups treated with 0.25 and 0.1 mg rabbit IgG, respectively. In contrast, only 34% of mice treated with 0.25 mg of anti-IL-1beta Ab became diabetic. In the group treated with 0.1 mg of anti-IL-1beta Ab, 89% of the mice became diabetic in the same period of time, demonstrating that the protective effect was dose dependent. Our results show that IL-1beta is a critical effector molecule in this model of IDDM and that its specific inhibition could be an attractive target for therapeutic intervention.

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