Preventive and therapeutic effects of tacrolimus in an interleukin-10-deficient mouse model of colitis
To investigate the preventive and therapeutic effects of tacrolimus on colonic inflammation in interleukin-10-deficient (IL-10−/−) mice, which spontaneously develop T-cell-mediated colitis.
Tacrolimus or prednisolone, an anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid, was administered to IL-10−/− mice with pre- or post-symptomatic colitis. Effects on colonic inflammation were examined by measuring indices of colitis such as colonic weight/length ratio, cell infiltration, and goblet cell depletion. Effects on cytokine production in colonic lamina propria mononuclear cells (LPMCs) isolated from IL-10−/− mice were also examined.
Tacrolimus prevented development of colitis and improved already-developed colitis. Prednisolone prevented the development of colitis, but had no effect on already-developed colitis. Tacrolimus completely inhibited IFN-γ and TNF-α production of activated T-cells in LPMCs, but only partially inhibited IFN-γ, TNF-α, and IL-12 production of activated monocytes/macrophages in LPMCs. Prednisolone inhibited cytokine production in both cell types but exhibited greater potency on monocytes/macrophages than on T-cells.
These results suggest that the preventive and therapeutic effect of tacrolimus in IL-10−/− mice colitis might be attributed to the inhibition of colonic T-cell activation rather than monocyte/macrophage activation. T-cell immunosuppression may thus be a promising strategy for treating colonic inflammation.
KeywordsInflammatory bowel disease Tacrolimus Interferon-γ Tumour necrosis factor-α Interleukin-10