Interleukin-6 does not mediate endotoxin-induced uveitis in mice: Studies in gene deletion animals

James T. Rosenbaum, Paul Kievit, Young Bok Han, Jong Moon Park, Stephen R. Planck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


PURPOSE. Interleukin-6 (IL-6) has been strongly implicated in anterior uveitis based on its presence in aqueous humor from infected eyes and its inflammatory effects when injected intravitreally into rats. We used IL-6- deficient mice to test further the hypothesis that IL-6 contributes to the development of endotoxin-induced uveitis. METHODS. Uveitis was scored by histologic analysis of C3H/HeN mice 24 hours after intravitreal injections of up to 200 ng of recombinant murine IL-6. Uveitis was similarly measured in IL-6-deficient mice and congenic controls 24 hours after intravitreal injection of 250 ng of Escherichia coli endotoxin. Reverse transcription- polymerase chain reaction was used to detect mRNAs for several cytokines at 3 hours postinjection. The IL-6 concentration in aqueous humor samples was determined with a bioassay using the murine B9 plasmacytoma cell line. RESULTS. Direct injection of IL-6 did not induce uveitis. Mice genetically deficient in IL-6 developed endotoxin-induced uveitis that was comparable or more severe than congenic control mice. Compensatory changes in the expression of mRNA for other cytokines were not detected in irises from the IL-6-deficient mice. In IL-6-competent mice that received bilateral endotoxin injections, no correlation was found between the number of infiltrating cells in one eye and the IL-6 concentration in the aqueous humor of the contralateral eye. CONCLUSIONS. In marked contrast to previous conclusions with rats, IL-6 was not sufficient for inducing uveitis in mice. Additionally, IL-6 was not necessary for the development of uveitis subsequent to intravitreal injection of endotoxin in mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)64-69
Number of pages6
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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