Vol 46, No 4 (2008)
Original paper
Published online: 2009-01-15

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Immunohistochemical analysis of MMP-9, MMP-2 and TIMP-1, TIMP-2 expression in the central nervous system following infection with viral and bacterial meningitis.

Artur Sulik, Lech Chyczewski
DOI: 10.2478/v10042-008-0058-8
Folia Histochem Cytobiol 2008;46(4):437-442.


Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are capable of degrading components of the basal lamina of cerebral vessels, thereby disrupting the blood-brain barrier and inducing leukocyte recruitment. This study provides comprehensive information regarding the cell specificity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMP-2, MMP-9) and their binding tissue inhibitors (TIMP-1, TIMP-2) in the central nervous system during viral and bacterial meningitis. Specifically, we evaluated the immunoreactivity of MMPs and TIMPs in various cell types in brain parenchyma and meninges obtained from autopsy tissues. We found that a higher proportion of endothelial cells were positive for MMP-9 during meningitis when compared to controls. In addition, the immunoreactivity of MMP-9 decreased and the immunoreactivity of TIMP-1 increased in astrocytes upon infection. Furthermore, the results of this study revealed that mononuclear cells were highly immunoreactive for TIMP-1, TIMP-2 and MMP-9 during viral meningitis and that the expression of TIMPs in polymorphonuclear cells was even higher during bacterial meningitis. Taken together the results of this study indicated that the central nervous system resident cells and inflammatory infiltrates contribute to MMPs activity and that the expression patterns vary between cell types and in response to viral and bacterial meningitis.

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