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Curcumin and Its Semisynthetic Derivative F-Curcumin Ameliorate the Expression of Cytokines in Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Mouse Models of Multiple Sclerosis

Khosropour, S;Shahvarooghi, E;Rezaeizadeh, H;Esmaeelzadeh, M;

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory disorder impacting the central nervous system, with cytokines significantly influencing its pathogenesis. This study investigates the effect of curcumin and its semisynthetic derivative F-curcumin on cytokine gene expression in autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) mouse models of MS.
We assessed the expression levels of specific cytokines including interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-4, IL-10, IL-17, interferon-γ (IFN-γ), and transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β), alongside key transcription factors for helper T cells (T-bet, GATA-3, RORγt, and FoxP3) in both the spinal cord and spleen.
Treatment with curcumin and F-curcumin significantly ameliorated the severity and onset of EAE. Notably, mice administered with either compound showed a substantial decrease in the expression of genes encoding IL-1 (2 folds), IFN-γ (2 and 4 folds), and IL-17 (2.5 and 3.5 folds), alongside a marked increase in TGF-β (7 folds) and IL-10 (4 and 6 folds) levels. Additionally, the gene expression of T cell-derived transcription factors nearly mirrored the changes observed in pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines across the groups. The F-curcumin-treated group exhibited more pronounced results.
In conclusion, curcumin and F-curcumin significantly modulate cytokine gene expression during EAE induction, potentially alleviating inflammation in MS, with F-curcumin showing a more substantial effect.