Behavioral aspects of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

Yehuda Pollak, Haim Ovadia, Inbal Goshen, Ronnie Gurevich, Keren Monsa, Ronit Avitsur, Raz Yirmiya*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Acute inflammation is known to induce a depressive-like sickness behavior syndrome in humans and in experimental animals. In the present study, we sought to determine whether a chronic neuroautoimmune inflammation is also associated with a similar behavioral syndrome. Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) was induced in SJL/J female mice by adoptive transfer of lymph node cells, and sickness behavior symptoms, including anorexia, loss of body weight, reduced social exploration, and decreased preference for sucrose solution were measured. We report that these components of sickness behavior were induced during the acute phase of the disease, and recovered in later phases. Moreover, the onset and recovery of the behavioral symptoms preceded the onset and recovery of the neurological signs, respectively. Since EAE is considered a model for multiple sclerosis (MS), it is suggested that EAF-induced behavioral changes may serve as a model for the depressive symptomatology that characterizes most MS patients. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)31-36
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 3 Apr 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thanks Boaz Horev, Rinat Koren, Shin Lavy, Einav Orion, YacI Perets and Gili Wolf for their excellent help in running the experiments. The research was supported by Grant 94-204 from the United States–Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF), Jerusalem Israel.


  • Depression
  • EAE
  • Mice
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Sickness behavior


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