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Autoimmunity. 1999 Oct;31(2):117-24.

Reduced in vitro production of interferon-gamma, interleukin-4 and interleukin-12 and increased production of interleukin-6, interleukin-10 and tumour necrosis factor-alpha in systemic lupus erythematosus. Weak correlations of cytokine production with disease activity.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Hong Kong, Queen Mary Hospital, Hong Kong.


Production of cytokines in unstimulated and mitogen-stimulated cultures were evaluated by ELISPOT in 34 SLE patients with low to moderate disease activity and 23 healthy controls. Significantly reduced production of IFN gamma, IL4 and IL12 and significantly increased production of IL6, IL10 and TNF alpha were found in patients with SLE. Regression analysis revealed that production of all six cytokines tended to decrease with increasing disease activity, but negative correlation with SLEDAI was significant (p < 0.05) only for PHA-stimulated IL4, unstimulated and PHA-stimulated IL10 and SAC-stimulated IL6. Negative correlation of stimulated and unstimulated IL6 and TNF alpha production with anti-DNA antibody levels were also significant.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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