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Minocycline reduces reactive gliosis in the rat model of hydrocephalus

Hao Xu13, Guowei Tan12, Shaolin Zhang13, Hongwei Zhu1, Feng Liu1, Caiquan Huang1, Feifei Zhang1 and Zhanxiang Wang1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Neurosurgery, First Affiliate Hospital of Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian Province, 361003, China

2 School of Life Science, Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian Province, 361003, China

3 Medical College of Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian Province, 361003, China

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BMC Neuroscience 2012, 13:148  doi:10.1186/1471-2202-13-148

Published: 5 December 2012



Reactive gliosis had been implicated in injury and recovery patterns associated with hydrocephalus. Our aim is to determine the efficacy of minocycline, an antibiotic known for its anti-inflammatory properties, to reduce reactive gliosis and inhibit the development of hydrocephalus.


The ventricular dilatation were evaluated by MRI at 1-week post drugs treated, while GFAP and Iba-1were detected by RT-PCR, Immunohistochemistry and Western blot. The expression of GFAP and Iba-1 was significantly higher in hydrocephalic group compared with saline control group (p < 0.05). Minocycline treatment of hydrocephalic animals reduced the expression of GFAP and Iba-1 significantly (p < 0.05). Likewise, the severity of ventricular dilatation is lower in minocycline treated hydrocephalic animals compared with the no minocycline group (p < 0.05).


Minocycline treatment is effective in reducing the gliosis and delaying the development of hydrocephalus with prospective to be the auxiliary therapeutic method of hydrocephalus.

Hydrocephalus; Gliosis; Astrocytosis; Microgliosis; Minocycline