Lack of increased serum interleukin-6 and soluble IL-6 receptor concentrations in patients with thyroid diseases following recombinant human interferon alpha; therapy

Roberta Minelli, Giuseppe Girasole, Mario Pedrazzoni, Nicola Giuliani, Claudia Schianchi, Tiziana Giuberti, Lewis E. Braverman, Mario Salvi, Elio Roti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) concentrations are frequently elevated in inflammatory thyroid diseases, such as subacute thyroiditis and amiodarone induced thyroiditis. We and others have recently observed that recombinant interferon-alpha (rIFN-α) therapy for chronic, active viral hepatitis and malignant disorders may induce thyroid dysfunction, including thyrotoxicosis secondary to thyroiditis. Serum IL-6 and its soluble receptor (sIL-6R) have been measured for the first time in patients with chronic active hepatitis receiving rIFN-α therapy. Methods: Studies were carried out in 37 patients treated with rIFN-α for chronic, active viral hepatitis. Thyroid function tests and serum IL-6 and sIL-6R were measured before and during rIFN-α therapy. Results: Six patients developed inflammatory or destruc-tive thyrotoxicosis confirmed by elevated serum free T4 or free T3 concentrations, suppressed serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) values, and a low thyroid radioactive iodine uptake. Serum IL-6 and sIL-6R concentrations were not elevated in these patients with rIFN-α-induced thyroiditis. Conclusions: These results suggest that serum IL-6 concentrations are not useful in differentiating between inflammatory thyrotoxicosis and hyperthyroidism induced by rIFN-α therapy as is the case in amiodarone-induced thyrotoxicosis. It is possible that rIFN-α therapy could be associated with an inhibitory effect of rIFN-α on the release of IL-6 from damaged thyroid cells and not on the basal secretion of IL-6.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)370-374
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Investigative Medicine
Volume44
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1996

Keywords

  • IL-6
  • rIFN-α
  • sIL-6R
  • Thyroiditis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Lack of increased serum interleukin-6 and soluble IL-6 receptor concentrations in patients with thyroid diseases following recombinant human interferon alpha; therapy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this