Magone and colleagues applied such a model to evaluate the role of various cytokines, including IL-4, IFN-γ, and IL-12, in the early and late phases of ocular allergy using knockout (KO) mice and neutralizing antibodies. In this model, multiple mice experimental groups, including:
- ragweed-sensitized wild type
- IL-4KO type
- IL-12KO type
- IFN-γKO type
- anti-IFN-γ m-Ab-treated mice were challenged with ragweed allergen ten days after immunization.
An additional group received recombinant murine IL-12. They found the anti IL-12 antibody-treated and IL-12KO type mice failed to show allergic cellular infiltration into the conjunctiva. IFN-γKO type mice, however, had a significantly stronger immediate-type hypersensitivity reactions and prolonged allergic cellular infiltration after ragweed exposure. Overall, their data provided evidence of IL-12 as an inducer of the late phase of ocular allergy. Additionally, the data suggest IFN-γ as a limiting factor of the late phase and a potential therapeutic cytokine in the prevention of chronic allergic disease. Further research is aimed at preventing initial sensitization to allergens.