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This article has been peer reviewed. It is the author’s final published version in Journal of Neuroinflammation, Volume 16, Issue 1, July 2019, Article number 149.

The published version is available at Copyright © Li et al.


BACKGROUND: Unrestrained activation of Th1 and Th17 cells is associated with the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). While inactivation of dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1), a GTPase that regulates mitochondrial fission, can reduce EAE severity by protecting myelin from demyelination, its effect on immune responses in EAE has not yet been studied.

METHODS: We investigated the effect of Mdivi-1, a small molecule inhibitor of Drp1, on EAE. Clinical scores, inflammation, demyelination and Drp1 activation in the central nervous system (CNS), and T cell responses in both CNS and periphery were determined.

RESULTS: Mdivi-1 effectively suppressed EAE severity by reducing demyelination and cellular infiltration in the CNS. Mdivi-1 treatment decreased the phosphorylation of Drp1 (ser616) on CD4+ T cells, reduced the numbers of Th1 and Th17 cells, and increased Foxp3+ regulatory T cells in the CNS. Moreover, Mdivi-1 treatment effectively inhibited IFN-γ+, IL-17+, and GM-CSF+ CD4+ T cells, while it induced CD4+ Foxp3+ regulatory T cells in splenocytes by flow cytometry.

CONCLUSIONS: Together, our results demonstrate that Mdivi-1 has therapeutic potential in EAE by modulating the balance between Th1/Th17 and regulatory T cells.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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