The hydroxyl radical (OH.) scavenger dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) was found to dose-dependently inhibit interleukin 8 (IL-8) production in LPS-stimulated human whole blood. At a concentration of 1% (vol/vol), DMSO blocked IL-8 release by approximately 90% in the presence of 1 microgram/ml LPS at a 24-h time point, but did not affect cell viability or reduce the production of tumor necrosis factor (TNF), interleukin 6, or interleukin-1 beta (IL-1 beta). DMSO was found to directly inhibit IL-8 expression at the level of transcription. Furthermore, this effect was not LPS-specific, in that IL-8 production was reduced by DMSO to a similar extent upon stimulation of blood with phytohemagglutinin, aggregated immune complexes, TNF, or IL-1 beta. Other oxygen radical scavengers that have been shown to inhibit OH.-dependent reactions (dimethyl thiourea, thiourea, mannitol, and ethanol) also inhibited IL-8 production. Conversely, addition of H2O2 caused a dose-dependent stimulation of IL-8 release. These results provide evidence that reactive oxygen metabolites play an important role in the regulation of IL-8 production and suggest that reduction of IL-8 release may contribute to the beneficial effects of antioxidants in experimental models of inflammation and ischemia/reperfusion injury.


L E DeForge, J C Fantone, J S Kenney, D G Remick


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