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Papers of the Week

Papers: 18 Jun 2022 - 24 Jun 2022

Animal Studies


2022 Aug-Dec

Neurobiol Pain


Low-dose interleukin-2 reverses chronic migraine-related sensitizations through peripheral interleukin-10 and transforming growth factor beta-1 signaling.



Low-dose interleukin-2 (LD-IL-2) treatment has been shown to effectively reverse chronic migraine-related behaviors and the sensitization of trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons through expansion and activation of peripheral regulatory T cells (Tregs) in mice. In this study, we investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of LD-IL-2 and Treg cells. LD-IL-2 treatment increases the production of cytokines interleukin-10 (IL-10) and transforming growth factor beta-1 (TGFβ1) in T cells, especially Treg cells, suggesting that they may mediate the therapeutic effect of LD-IL-2. Indeed, neutralizing antibodies against either IL-10 or TGFβ completely blocked the effects of LD-IL-2 on the facial mechanical hypersensitivity as well as the sensitization of TG neurons resulting from repeated nitroglycerin (NTG, a reliable trigger of migraine in patients) administration in mice, indicating that LD-IL-2 and Treg cells engage both peripheral IL-10 and TGFβ signaling pathways to reverse chronic-migraine related sensitizations. In an assay, incubation of TG culture with exogenous IL-10 or TGFβ1 fully reversed NTG-induced sensitization of TG neurons, suggesting that the IL-10 and TGFβ1 signaling in TG neurons contribute to LD-IL-2's therapeutic effects. Collectively, these results not only elucidate the molecular mechanisms through which LD-IL-2 and Treg cells reverse chronic-migraine related sensitizations, but also suggest that the IL-10 and TGFβ1 signaling pathways in TG neurons are potential targets for chronic migraine therapy.