Cigarette smoke-induced cerebral cortical interleukin-6 elevation is not mediated through oxidative stress

Kwok Wai LAU, Judith Choi-Wo MAK, Ka-Ho CHAN, Andrew Chi-Kin LAW

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4 Citations (Scopus)


The author group has previously established an in vivo subchronic cigarette smoke (CS) exposure rat model, in which the systemic oxidative burden as well as the modulation of local anti-oxidative enzymes in the lung has been demonstrated. Oxidative stress has been shown to induce pro-inflammatory cytokine release, including interleukin (IL)-6 in the airways. In this study, we aimed to investigate the changes in IL-6 production, as well as the oxidative/anti-oxidative responses in the cerebral cortex using the same in vivo model. IL-6 was determined by RT-PCR and western-blot analysis. Local oxidative and anti-oxidative responses were determined by measuring cerebral cortical malondialdehyde (MDA) and advanced oxidation protein product (AOPP) levels, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase activities, and the reduced to oxidized glutathione (GSH/GSSG) ratio. Nitrite level was measured by fluorescent spectrophotometry. Our results demonstrated a significant increase in both IL-6 mRNA and protein levels. Reductions of SOD activity and manganese (Mn)SOD protein level were observed together with the increased level of superoxide measured by chemiluminescent signal, after 56 days of CS exposure. There were no significant changes in the cerebral cortical levels of MDA, AOPP, catalase activity, and the GSH/GSSG ratio. Nitrite level was significantly reduced, together with the decreased protein level of nNOS in the cerebral cortex, after 56 days of CS exposure. Our results suggest that exposure to CS induces IL-6 expression in the cerebral cortex, which is not mediated by the oxidative/anti-oxidative imbalance. Copyright © 2011 The Author(s).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-176
JournalNeurotoxicity Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2012


Oxidative stress
Tobacco Products
Oxidative Stress
Glutathione Disulfide
Advanced Oxidation Protein Products
Cerebral Cortex
Superoxide Dismutase
Western Blotting
Polymerase Chain Reaction


Lau, W. K.-W., Mak, J. C.-W., Chan, K.-H., & Law, A. C.-K. (2012). Cigarette smoke-induced cerebral cortical interleukin-6 elevation is not mediated through oxidative stress. Neurotoxicity Research, 22(2), 170–176. doi: 10.1007/s12640-011-9301-8


  • Neuroinflammation
  • Nitric oxide
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Smoking