Interleukin-1 stimulation of astroglial proliferation after brain injury

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Science  26 Apr 1985:
Vol. 228, Issue 4698, pp. 497-499
DOI: 10.1126/science.3872478


The interleukins, which have a regulatory role in immune function, may also mediate inflammation associated with injury to the brain. In experiments to determine the effect of these peptide hormones on glial cell proliferation in culture, interleukin-1 was a potent mitogen for astroglia but had no effect on oligodendroglia. Interleukin-2 did not alter the growth of either type of glial cell. Activity similar to that of interleukin-1 was detected in brains of adult rats 10 days after the brains had been injured. These findings suggest that interleukin-1, released by inflammatory cells, may promote the formation of scars by astroglia in the damaged mammalian brain.