Cytokine Response in an Endotoxin-Mediated Sepsis Model




Martinez, Richard
Aguirre, David Salinas
Warne, Cooper
Dick, Gregory
Tune, Johnathan
Hodge, Lisa


0000-0001-6579-0478 (Martinez, Richard)

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Purpose: Sepsis is a life-threatening condition that develops secondary to infection and can manifest acute organ dysfunction due to the body's overactive systemic response. Sepsis affects approximately 1.7 million US adults and claims 270,000 lives as a result. The long-term goal of our project is to gain a better understanding of the roles of the lymphatic and immune systems in the progression of sepsis. The purpose of this study is to collect pilot data using a translational swine model of endotoxin-mediated sepsis. We chose a swine model because it closely mimics how sepsis progresses in humans. Sepsis was induced by infusion of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from Escherichia coli. LPS was chosen because it is a key mediator in the activation of the immune system and the development of sepsis. We hypothesized that the administration of LPS would increase the concertation of the proinflammatory cytokines interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-?) in a dose-dependent manner over time. Methods: Yorkshire pigs (61 � 4 kg, n = 4, 2 male) were sedated, intubated, and ventilated. Thoracotomy was performed under anesthesia to record flow data and sample cardiac blood for use in another study. Femoral artery and venous lines were placed to allow measurement of blood pressure and infusion of LPS. Specifically, LPS was prepared at 1, 5, 25, or 50 ?g/kg (pig body weight) in sterile saline. LPS was infused into anesthetized pigs over a 2-hour period. Blood samples were collected immediately prior to LPS administration and at 30 min intervals during 2 hours of LPS infusion up to 4 hours following LPS infusion. The plasma was analyzed via enzyme-linked immunosorbent immunoassay (ELISA) for the concentrations of IL-6 and TNF-? using commercially available kits. Results: As hypothesized, the infusion of LPS increased the concentration of the inflammatory mediators IL-6 and TNF-? over time compared to pre-LPS infusion. Specifically, the greatest increase in IL-6 was seen at 180 minutes in both the 50 and 25 ?g/kg LPS infused pigs. TNF-? concentration peaked between 30 to 90 minutes during LPS infusion in both the 50 and 25 ?g/kg LPS infused pigs. The lower doses of 1 and 5 ?g/kg LPS produced little to no IL-6 or TNF-?. Furthermore, we discovered that the pigs who received 50 or 25 ?g/kg of LPS died from septic shock within 180 minutes of LPS infusion, whereas the pigs that received 1or 5 ?g/kg of LPS survived longer. Conclusion: In this study, we identified the impact of increasing the doses of LPS on the production of IL-6 and TNF-? in swine. Our preliminary results suggest a dose range of 10-20 ?g/kg of LPS may be ideal to study the inflammatory response in this model. The acquisition of these data are essential to pursue our long-term research objective, which is to identify the role of the lymphatic and immune systems during sepsis.