JOURNAL ARTICLE

Maternally administered melatonin differentially regulates lipopolysaccharide-induced proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines in maternal serum, amniotic fluid, fetal liver, and fetal brain

De-Xiang Xu, Hua Wang, Huan Ning, Lei Zhao, Yuan-Hua Chen
Journal of Pineal Research 2007, 43 (1): 74-9
17614838
Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) has been associated with adverse developmental outcome, including intra-uterine fetal death and intra-uterine growth retardation. In the LPS model, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) is the major mediator leading to intra-uterine fetal death and intra-uterine growth retardation. Interleukin (IL)-10 protects rodents against LPS-induced intra-uterine fetal death and intra-uterine growth retardation. Melatonin is an immunomodulator. In the present study, we investigated the effect of maternally administered melatonin on LPS-induced proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines in maternal serum, amniotic fluid, fetal liver and fetal brain. The time pregnant mice were injected with melatonin [5.0 mg/kg, intraperitoneal (i.p.)] 30 min before LPS (500 microg/kg, i.p.) on gestational day 17. As expected, TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, IL-6 and IL-10 were obviously increased in maternal serum and amniotic fluid in response to LPS. In addition, maternal LPS exposure significantly increased the levels of TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, IL-6 and IL-10 in fetal liver, and TNF-alpha and IL-10 in fetal brain. Melatonin pretreatment significantly attenuated LPS-evoked elevation of TNF-alpha in maternal serum. On the contrary, melatonin aggravated LPS-induced increase in IL-10 in maternal serum. Melatonin had no effect on LPS-evoked IL-1beta and IL-6 in maternal serum and amniotic fluid. Interestingly, maternally administered melatonin also significantly attenuated LPS-evoked elevation of TNF-alpha in fetal brain, whereas the indole aggravated LPS-induced increase in IL-10 in fetal liver. Taken together, these results indicate that maternally administered melatonin differentially regulates LPS-induced proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines in maternal serum, amniotic fluid, fetal liver, and fetal brain.

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