Interleukin-6 blood level is associated with circulating carcinoembryonic antigen and prognosis in patients with colorectal cancer

Claudio Belluco, Donato Nitti, Marylin Frantz, Paola Toppan, Daniela Basso, Mario Plebani, Mario Lise, J. Milburn Jessup

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is an important proinflammatory cytokine that has multiple effects on stimulating inflammation and cell growth. Experimental data suggest that carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) induces the systemic production of IL-6 and that IL-6 may stimulate tumor cell growth at metastatic sites. We tested the hypothesis that blood concentrations of IL-6 are associated with the amount of circulating CEA and with prognosis in patients with colorectal cancer. Methods: CEA and IL-6 concentrations were measured by using enzyme immunoassay in preoperative serum samples from 208 patients with stages I through IV colorectal cancer. Results: Linear regression analysis showed a significant association between serum values of CEA and IL-6 (r = .544; R2 = .296; P <.001). Patients with stage III and stage IV disease had a significantly higher IL-6 serum concentration than those with stage I and stage II disease. In patients with stages I through III, 5-year survival was 83% in cases with concentrations of IL-6 at 10 pg/ml or less (n = 94) and 56% in cases with IL-6 concentrations of more than 10 pg/ml (n = 54; P = .001; median follow-up time, 46 months). By using multivariate analysis, an IL-6 concentration of more than 10 pg/ml was an independent prognostic factor of survival (relative risk = 1.820; P = .020). Conclusions: In patients with colorectal cancer, blood concentration of IL-6 is associated with high circulating CEA and advanced stage. Furthermore, an IL-6 concentration of more than 10 pg/ml is an independent negative prognostic marker of survival.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-138
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Surgical Oncology
Volume7
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2000

Keywords

  • CEA
  • Colorectal carcinoma
  • Interleukin-6
  • Metastasis
  • Prognostic markers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology

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    Belluco, C., Nitti, D., Frantz, M., Toppan, P., Basso, D., Plebani, M., Lise, M., & Jessup, J. M. (2000). Interleukin-6 blood level is associated with circulating carcinoembryonic antigen and prognosis in patients with colorectal cancer. Annals of Surgical Oncology, 7(2), 133-138.