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Raised monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1)/CCL2 in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with neuropsychiatric lupus
  1. N Iikuni1,
  2. H Okamoto1,
  3. T Yoshio2,
  4. E Sato1,
  5. S Kamitsuji1,
  6. T Iwamoto1,
  7. S Momohara1,
  8. A Taniguchi1,
  9. H Yamanaka1,
  10. S Minota2,
  11. N Kamatani1
  1. 1Institute of Rheumatology, Tokyo Women’s Medical University, Tokyo, Japan
  2. 2Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology, Jichi Medical School, Tochigi, Japan
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr H Okamoto
    Institute of Rheumatology, Tokyo Women’s Medical University, 10–22 Kawada-cho, Shinjuku, Tokyo 162-0054, Japan; hokamoto{at}


Background: An imbalance in cytokine homoeostasis is thought to have a key role in the neuropsychiatric syndromes of systemic lupus erythematosus (NPSLE), and recently, a role for chemokines has been noted.

Objective: To compare concentrations of monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1)/CCL2 in cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) of patients with SLE, and with and without neuropsychiatric symptoms.

Methods: CSF was obtained from 185 patients with SLE: 96 with NPSLE and 89 patients with SLE without neuropsychiatric symptoms (non-NPSLE patients). MCP-1/CCL2 concentrations were measured with an ELISA.

Results: The average concentration of CSF MCP-1/CCL2 in patients with NPSLE was 1959 pg/ml, and in non-NPSLE patients 712 pg/ml. The average MCP-1/CCL2 concentration was significantly higher in the NPSLE group than in the non-NPSLE group (p<0.001). In one representative patient with NPSLE, MCP-1/CCL2 levels in the CSF decreased in parallel with a decline in neuropsychiatric symptoms.

Conclusions: CSF MCP-1/CCL2 levels are higher in patients with NPSLE than in non-NPSLE patients. MCP-1/CCL2 may have an important role in the expression of NPSLE. These results indicate that CSF MCP-1/CCL2 reflects an inflammatory activity in the brain, suggesting that it might be used as a diagnostic tool and a monitor for therapeutic responses in patients with NPSLE.

  • CNS, central nervous system
  • CSF, cerebrospinal fluid
  • EEG, electroencephalography
  • IFN, interferon
  • IL, interleukin
  • MCP, monocyte chemotactic protein
  • MRI, magnetic resonance imaging
  • NPSLE, neuropsychiatric syndromes of systemic lupus erythematosus
  • RA, rheumatoid arthritis
  • SLE, systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Th, T helper
  • TNF, tumour necrosis factor
  • lupus
  • neuropsychiatric lupus
  • central nervous system
  • monocyte chemotactic protein-1

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