Induction of interleukin-6 in dorsal root ganglion neurons after gradual elongation of rat sciatic nerve.Exp Neurol. 2005 Sep; 195(1):61-70.EN
In the reconstruction of a segmental defect in injured peripheral nerves, gradual nerve elongation has become an important alternative to nerve grafting. To clarify biochemical responses in peripheral sensory neurons after nerve elongation, we examined the expression of cytokines and neurotrophins related to nerve regeneration. We first established rat elongation models by lengthening left femurs up to 20.0 mm at the rate of 1.0, 2.0, or 20.0 mm/day. In toluidine blue staining, the acutely elongated, 20-mm/day group showed nuclear eccentricity in the nerve cell body in L5 dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and axonal degeneration in the sciatic nerves; in contrast, the gradually elongated, 1- and 2-mm/day groups remained intact, indicating adaptation. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis revealed that interleukin-6 (IL-6) mRNA was induced in ipsilateral L4-6 DRG in an elongation rate-dependent manner. In contrast, none of the elongated groups exhibited a significant change in mRNA levels for interleukin-1beta, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, nerve growth factor, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, neurotropnin-3, and neurotrophin-4/5. Levels of IL-6 mRNA in all the elongated groups reached the maximum level at day 4 after 20-mm lengthening, while the axotomized group showed a decrease from the maximum level at day 1. Induction of IL-6 mRNA was also detected in the contralateral L4-6 DRG of all the elongated groups, but not detected in the axotomized group. In histochemical analysis, IL-6-immunoreactivity was predominant in neurofilament-positive, medium to large DRG neurons. Application of IL-6 to cultured Schwann cells increased mRNA for peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22), a major myelin component. These results suggest that IL-6 plays a key role in biochemical responses in peripheral sensory neurons after gradual nerve elongation.