Comparative methods for multiplex analysis of cytokine protein expression in plasma of lipopolysaccharide-treated mice

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Changes in circulating cytokines might serve as predictors of compound-evoked inflammatory responses. CD-1 mice were treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 0.2 ml of 0.25 mg/ml, intraperitoneal) for subsequent expression measurement of plasma cytokine protein expression at 24-h post-treatment using multiple antibody Western blot, and at both 2-h and 24-h post-treatment using antibody array and suspension bead array. Antibody array provided a semi-qualitative assessment and suggested significantly increased expression of GCSF at 2-h post-treatment and GCSF, IL-6, IL-12, MCP-1, MCP-5, RANTES and sTNFR1 at 24-h post-treatment. Densitometric analysis of multiple antibody Western blots provided a semi-quantitative assessment and indicated significantly increased expression of IL-6, IL-12, IL-17, GCSF, eotaxin, and MCP-2 at 24-h post-treatment. The suspension bead array yielded statistically significant cytokine protein expression increases for IL-6, IL-10, IFNγ and TNFα at both 2-h and 24-h post-treatments, while significant expression at 24-h post-treatment only was noted for IL-1β, IL-5, IL-12 and GM-CSF. Suspension bead array provided the greatest range of detection, revealing subtle increased expression of GM-CSF, IL-1β, IL-5, IL-10, TNFα and IFNγ at 24-h post-treatment, not detected by antibody array or multiple antibody Western blot. Suspension bead array proved to be the best method for detection of LPS-evoked changes in plasma cytokine levels.

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