Abstract

The present study was aimed to test the hypothesis that paracetamol (PCM) can precipitate autistic like features when used to counteract vaccine-induced fever using experimental rat pups. The pups were treated with measles mumps rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria tetanus and pertussis (DPT) vaccines and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) with subsequent PCM treatment. The pups were evaluated for postnatal growth (weight gain, eye opening) and behavior alterations (swimming performance, olfactory discrimination, negative geotaxis, nociception, and locomotor activity) by performing battery of neurobehavioral test. Significant correlation was observed between social behavioral domains (nociception, anxiety and motor coordination) and pro-inflammatory load in the pups when treated with MMR/LPS along with PCM. A significant change in pro and anti-inflammatory (IL-4, IL-6, IL-10) markers were observed in rats treated with PCM, MMR, LPS, DPS alone or in combination with MMR, LPS and DPT (5128.6 ± 0.000, 15,488 ± 0.000***, 9661.1 ± 157.29***a, 15,312 ± 249.29 *** , 10,471 ± 0.00***a, 16,789 ± 273.34 *** and 12,882 ± 0.00***a). Pups were also scrutinized for the markers of oxidative stress, inflammation and histopathologically. All the treatment groups showed significant alteration in the behavioral changes, oxidative markers (TBARS-in control-4.33 ± 0.02, PCM-9.42 ± 0.18***, MMR-5.27 ± 0.15***, MMR + PCM-8.57 ± 0.18*** a, LPS-6.84 ± 0.10***, LPS + PCM-4.51 ± 0.30***a, DPT-5.68 ± 0.12***, DPT + PCM-7.26 ± 0.18***a) and inflammatory markers without following any specific treatment. These observation could be accorded to variable phenotypes of autistic spectrum disorders (ASDs).

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