Inflammation is a recognized antecedent and coincident factor when examining the biology of anxiety. Little is known, however, about how reductions in endogenous anti-inflammatory mediators impact anxiety. Therefore, mood- cognition- and anxiety-associated/like behaviors were examined in IL-4 knock out (KO) mice and wild-type (WT) mice. In comparison to WT mice, IL-4 KO mice demonstrated decreased burrowing and increased social exploration. No differences were seen in forced swim or saccharine preference testing. IL-4 KO mice had similar performance to WT mice in the Morris water maze and during object location and novel object recognition. In the elevated zero-maze, IL-4 KO mice, in comparison to WT mice, demonstrated anxiety-like behavior. Anxiety-like behavior in IL-4 KO mice was not observed, however, during open-field testing. Taken together, these data indicate that IL-4 KO mice display state, but not trait, anxiety suggesting that reductions in endogenous anti-inflammatory bioactives can engender subtypes of anxiety.
- Immune skew
- State anxiety
- Trait anxiety
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics