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Elevated serum interleukin-6 levels in patients with acute hepatitis

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Abstract

To study the mechanisms of hepatocyte injury, we examined serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) level in acute hepatitis patients. Based on their clinical features, these patients were divided into three groups, acute hepatitis (AH), severe acute hepatitis, and fulminant hepatic failure (FHF). The present study demonstrated that, in association with their clinical status, their serum IL-6 levels were gradually increased (16.5±14.5 pg/ml in AH, 26.3±19.0 pg/ml in severe AH, and 470.2±261.4 pg/ml in FHF; control level, 5.2±0.6 pg/ml). Furthermore, we found that a significant correlation between serum IL-6 level and prothrombin time existed in these patients and that the elevated serum IL-6 returned to a normal range after recovery from their hepatocyte injury. Thus, our study demonstrates that the serum IL-6 level is a possible marker for identifying the clinical status in acute hepatitis and that this cytokine may have some roles in hepatocyte injury.

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Correspondence to Katsumi Yamauchi.

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Sun, Y., Tokushige, K., Isono, E. et al. Elevated serum interleukin-6 levels in patients with acute hepatitis. J Clin Immunol 12, 197–200 (1992). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00918089

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Key words

  • Interleukin-6
  • acute hepatitis
  • hepatocyte injury
  • fulminant hepatic failure
  • prothrombin time