Aberrant cytokine gene expression in the hippocampus in murine systemic lupus erythematosus

Michiyo Tomita, Brita J. Holman, Thomas J. Santoro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Cytokines are important mediators of immune regulation and have been implicated in the pathogenesis of the neurological disturbances, which occur in up to sixty percent of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). SLE is an autoimmune disease characterized by the presence of autoantibodies against nuclear antigens, including native DNA. Cytokines are thought to drive autoantibody production in lupus. Certain of the derangements in memory and learning described in human and experimental SLE map to the hippocampus. The current study examines the expression of cytokine genes in the hippocampus in lupus, using MRL-lpr/lpr mice as the experimental model. These mice spontaneously develop a SLE-like illness accompanied by disturbances in spatial learning. Our results suggest a potential role for proinflammatory cytokines in the cognitive aberrations observed in lupus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-132
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Apr 20 2001


  • Cytokines
  • Gene expression
  • Hippocampus
  • MRL-lpr/lpr mice
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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