J Immunol. 2003 Oct 1;171(7):3451-3458
Bedoui S, Miyake S, Lin Y, Miyamoto K, Oki S, Kawamura N, Beck-Sickinger A, Von Horsten S, Yamamura T.
Department of Immunology, National Institute of Neuroscience, NCNP, Ogawahigashi, Kodaira, Tokyo, Japan. Department of Biochemistry, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany. Department of Functional and Applied Anatomy, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.
Prior studies have revealed that the sympathetic nervous system regulates the clinical and pathological manifestations of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an autoimmune disease model mediated by Th1 T cells.
Although the regulatory role of catecholamines has been indicated in the previous works, it remained possible that other sympathetic neurotransmitters like neuropeptide Y (NPY) may also be involved in the regulation of EAE.
Here we examined the effect of NPY and NPY receptor subtype-specific compounds on EAE, actively induced with myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein 35-55 in C57BL/6 mice.
Our results revealed that exogenous NPY as well as NPY Y(1) receptor agonists significantly inhibited the induction of EAE, whereas a Y(5) receptor agonist or a combined treatment of NPY with a Y(1) receptor antagonist did not inhibit signs of EAE.
These results indicate that the suppression of EAE by NPY is mediated via Y(1) receptors.
Furthermore, treatment with the Y(1) receptor antagonist induced a significantly earlier onset of EAE, indicating a protective role of endogenous NPY in the induction phase of EAE.
We also revealed a significant inhibition of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein 35-55-specific Th1 response as well as a Th2 bias of the autoimmune T cells in mice treated with the Y(1) receptor agonist.
Ex vivo analysis further demonstrated that autoimmune T cells are directly affected by NPY via Y(1) receptors.
Taken together, we conclude that NPY is a potent immunomodulator involved in the regulation of the Th1-mediated autoimmune disease EAE.