Differential effects of transforming growth factor-β1 on interleukin-1-induced cellular inflammation and vascular permeability in the rabbit retina

Carolyn A. Cuff, James A. Martiney, Joan W. Berman, Celia F. Brosnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations


Intra-vitreal injection of 300 U of interleukin (IL)-1β into the rabbit eye induces an inflammation of the retina characterized by hemorrhage, monocyte and neutrophil infiltration, and an increase in vascular permeability that peaks 24 h post-injection. Since the epiretinal vessels involved in this inflammation form part of the blood-retina barrier, we used this model to investigate the effects of the immunosuppressive cytokine TGFβ1 on inflammation within the context of the central nervous system. We found that intra-vitreal injection of 1 μg rh TGFβ administered concomitantly with rh IL-1β significantly reduced IL-1β-induced hemorrhage by 78%, and monocyte and neutrophil infiltration by 53% and 62%, respectively. In contrast, TGFβ did not reduce the IL-1β-induced increase in vascular permeability. However, TGFβ by itself caused a statistically significant increase in serum proteins in perfused tissues of the eye, to give it 3.1 ± 0.4 fold increase in protein content over control values. No cellular inflammation accompanied this alteration in vascular permeability. These data indicate that whereas the local administration of TGFβ may be an effective inhibitor of cellular inflammation in the CNS, the effects on alterations in vascular permeability and accumulation of serum proteins may be more complex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-28
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 1996



  • Blood-retina barrier
  • Inflammation
  • Interleukin-1
  • Rabbit
  • Transforming growth factor β
  • Vascular permeability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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