Surgical stress quickly affects the numbers of circulating B-cells and neutrophils in murine septic and aseptic models through a β2 adrenergic receptor.
Sepsis is a pathology accompanied by increases in myeloid cells and decreases in lymphoid cells in circulation. In a murine sepsis model induced by cecum ligation and puncture (CLP), increasing numbers of neutrophils and decreasing levels of B-cells in circulation are among the earliest changes in the immune system. However, to date, the mechanisms for these changes remain to be elucidated. The study here sought to elucidate mechanisms underlying the changes in the leukocyte levels after CLP and also to determine what, if any, role for an involvement of the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). Here, male C57/BL6 mice were subjected to CLP or sham-CLP (abdominal wall incised, but cecum was not punctured). The changes in the number of circulating leukocytes over time were then investigated using flow cytometry. The results showed that a sham-CLP led to increased polymorphonuclear cells (PMN; most of which are neutrophils) and decreased B-cells in the circulation to an extent similar to that induced by CLP. Effects of adrenergic agonists and antagonists, as well as of adrenalectomy, were also examined in mice that underwent CLP or sham-CLP. Administering adrenaline or a β2 adrenergic receptor agonist (clenbuterol) to mice 3 h before sacrifice produced almost identical changes to as what was seen 2 h after performing a sham-CLP. In contrast, giving a β2 adrenergic receptor antagonist ICI118,551 1 h before a CLP or sham-CLP suppressed the expected changes 2 h after the operations. Noradrenaline and an α1 adrenergic receptor agonist phenylephrine did not exert significant effects. Adrenalectomy 24 h before a sham-CLP significantly abolished the expected sham-CLP-induced changes seen earlier. Clenbuterol increased splenocyte expression of Cxcr4 (a chemokine receptor gene); adrenalectomy abolished sham-CLP-induced Cxcr4 expression. A CXCR4 antagonist AMD3100 repressed the sham-CLP-induced changes. From these results, it may be concluded that sepsis-induced activation of the SNS may be one cause for immune dysfunction in sepsis - regardless of the pathogenetic processes.