Atorvastatin does not alter serum levels of sCD95 and sCD95L in multiple sclerosis.
Elimination of autoreactive T cells by apoptosis is critical for restricting immune responses to self-antigens. An errant lytic interaction between the CD95 death receptor and its ligand CD95L is presumed to be involved in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS). Statins are promising agents for the treatment of MS and were shown to modulate levels of soluble death receptors. Here, we evaluated the in vivo effects by interferon (IFN)-beta and atorvastatin on soluble CD95 (sCD95) and sCD95L in serum of patients with MS. Concentrations of sCD95 and sCD95L did not show any differences between MS and healthy control subjects. In patients with MS, treatment with IFN-beta increased serum levels of sCD95 and sCD95L significantly (P < 0.01 and P < 0.05 respectively). Addition of atorvastatin to IFN-beta did not alter serum levels of sCD95 and sCD95L significantly. Our study suggests that atorvastatin does not affect IFN-beta-induced increases of the soluble death receptors in the serum of patients with MS.