Hide menu

Anders Blomqvist

Laboratory of Functional and Molecular Neuroanatomy

Work in this laboratory is focussed on how immune signals are transmitted to and processed by the brain.

We have shown that peripherally released cytokines as well as bacterial wall endotoxin induce the expression of prostaglandin (PG) E2-synthesizing enzymes along the blood-brain barrier, and we have demonstrated that this induction, which is associated with increased intracerebral levels of PGE2, is critical for the febrile response to peripheral inflammation, and that it contributes to inflammation-induced anorexia and stress hormone release.

We are now further penetrating these questions using a broad methodological arsenal, including ultrastructural studies of the subcellular localization of cytokine receptors and PGE2 synthesizing enzymes in blood-brain barrier cells; molecular biological approaches for determining the role of specific blood-brain barrier elements in the induced immune-response; genome-wide analysis of PGE2-induced transcriptional events in laser capture microdissected PGE2 receptor expressing neurons; and targeted deletion of PGE2 receptors in select nerve cell groups to determine their involvement in specific brain elicited illness responses.

Previous contributions include the organization of somatosensory and nociceptive projections to brain stem targets and the involvement of gonadal hormones in nociceptive processing

Key referenses:

  • Wiberg M & Blomqvist A. 1984. The spinomesencephalic tract in the cat: its cells of origin and termination pattern as demonstrated by the intraaxonal transport method. Brain Res 291:1-18
  • Craig AD, Bushnell MC, Zhang E-T & Blomqvist A. 1994. A specific thalamic nucleus for pain and temperature sensation in macaques and humans. Nature 372:770-773
  • Blomqvist A, Zhang E-T & Craig AD. 2000. Cytoarchitectonic and immunohistochemical characterization of a specific pain and temperature relay, the posterior portion of the ventral medial nucleus, in the human thalamus. Brain 123:601-619
  • Ek M, Engblom D, Saha S, Blomqvist A, Jakobsson PJ & Ericsson-Dahlstrand A. 2001. Inflammatory response: pathway across the blood-brain barrier. Nature 410:430-431
  • Engblom D, Ek M, Saha S, Ericsson-Dahlstrand A, Jakobsson P-J & Blomqvist A. 2002. Prostaglandins as inflammatory messengers across the blood-brain barrier. J Mol Med 80:5-15
  • Engblom D, Saha S, Engström L, Westman M, Audoly LP, Jakobsson P-J & Blomqvist A. 2003. Microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1 is the central switch during immune-induced pyresis. Nat Neurosci 6:1137-1138
  • Konsman JP, Vigues S, Mackerlova L, Bristow A & Blomqvist A. 2004. Rat brain vascular distribution of interleukin-1 type-1 receptor immunoreactivity: Relationship to patterns of inducible cyclooxygenase expression by peripheral inflammatory stimuli. J Comp Neurol 472: 113-129
  • Saha S, Engström L, Mackerlova L, Jakobsson P-J & Blomqvist A. 2005. Impaired febrile responses to immune challenge in mice deficient in microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 288:R1100-1107
  • Konsman JP & Blomqvist A. 2005. Forebrain patterns of c-fos and FosB induction during cancer-associated anorexia-cachexia in rat. Eur J Neurosci 21:2752-2766
  • Engström L, Rosén K, Angel A, Fyrberg A, Mackerlova L, Konsman JP, Engblom D & Blomqvist A. 2008. Systemic immune challenge activates an intrinsically regulated local inflammatory circuit in the adrenal gland. Endocrinology 149:1436-1450
  • Elander L, Engström L, Ruud J, Mackerlova L, Jakobsson PJ, Engblom D, Nilsberth C & Blomqvist A. 2009. Inducible prostaglandin E2 synthesis interacts in a temporally supplementary sequence with constitutive prostaglandin-synthesizing enzymes in creating the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis response to immune challenge. J Neurosci 29:1404-1413
  • Engström L, Ruud J, Eskilsson A, Larsson A, Mackerlova L, Kugelberg U, Qian H, Vasilache AM, Larsson P, Engblom D, Sigvardsson M, Jönsson JI & Blomqvist A. 2012. Lipopolysaccharide-induced fever depends on prostaglandin E2 production specifically in brain endothelial cells. Endocrinology 153:4849-4861
  • Ruud J, Wilhelms DB, Nilsson A, Eskilsson A, Tang YJ, Ströhle P, Caesar R, Schwaninger M, Wunderlich T, Bäckhed F, Engblom D & Blomqvist A. 2013. Inflammation- and tumor-induced anorexia and weight loss require MyD88 in hematopoietic/myeloid
    cells but not in brain endothelial or neural cells. FASEB J 27:1973-1980
  • Amandusson A & Blomqvist A. 2013. Estrogenic influences in pain processing.  Front Neuroendocrinol 34:329-349
  • Ihnatko R, Post C & Blomqvist A. 2013. Proteomic profiling of the hypothalamus in a mouse model of cancer-induced anorexia-cachexia. Br J Cancer 109:1867-1875
  • Eskilsson A, Mirrasekhian E, Dufour S, Schwaninger M, Engblom D & Blomqvist A. 2014. Immune-induced fever is mediated by IL-6 receptors on brain endothelial cells coupled to STAT3-dependent induction of brain endothelial prostaglandin synthesis. J Neurosci 34:15957-15961

For popular science reviews of some our work, please see:


The Swedish Research Council grant # 7879; Swedish Cancer Foundation grant 12 0553



Anders Blomqvist

Name: Anders Blomqvist
Position: Professor
Department: IKE


Phone: +46-10-103 31 93
E-mail: anders.blomqvist@liu.se

Linköping University
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine
Division of Cell Biology
SE-581 85 Linköping



Molecular and Cell Biology

Page manager: eva.m.danielsson@liu.se
Last updated: 2014-12-01