Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease characterised by the demyelination of mature oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system. Recently, several studies have indicated the vital roles of fatty acid-binding proteins (FABPs) 5 and 7 in regulating the immune response.
We assessed a novel FABP5/FABP7 inhibitor, FABP ligand 6 (MF 6), as a potential therapeutic for MS therapy. In vivo, we established MOG35-55-administered experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) mice as an MS mouse model, followed by prophylactic and symptomatic treatment with MF 6. The therapeutic effect of MF 6 was determined using behavioural and biochemical analyses. In vitro, MF 6 effects on astrocytes and oligodendrocytes were examined using both astrocyte primary culture and KG-1C cell lines.
Prophylactic and symptomatic MF 6 therapy reduced myelin loss and clinical EAE symptoms. Furthermore, oxidative stress levels and GFAP-positive and ionised calcium-binding adaptor protein-1-positive cells were reduced in the spinal cord of MF 6-treated mice. In addition, MF 6 attenuated lipopolysaccharide-stimulated interleukin-1β and tumour necrosis factor-α accumulation in primary astrocyte culture. Moreover, MF 6 indicated a powerful protective function for the mitochondria in the oligodendrocytes of EAE mice via FABP5 inhibition.
MF 6 is a potent inhibitor of FABP5 and FABP7; targeted inhibition of the two proteins may confer potential therapeutic effects in MS via immune inhibition and oligodendrocyte protection.
This work was supported by the Strategic Research Program for Brain Sciences from the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (JP17dm0107071, JP18dm0107071, JP19dm0107071, and JP20dm0107071).