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J Neurol Sci. 2013 Feb 15;325(1-2):79-85. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2012.12.001. Epub 2012 Dec 27.

Longitudinal interferon-β effects in multiple sclerosis: differential regulation of IL-10 and IL-17A, while no sustained effects on IFN-γ, IL-4 or IL-13.

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  • 1Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Clinical Immunology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, S-58185 Linköping, Sweden.



Recent studies in experimental models and in vitro indicate lowering of IL-17/Th17 as an important mechanism of interferon-beta (IFN-β) treatment in multiple sclerosis (MS).


In this longitudinal study of MS patients (n=25), spontaneous and myelin antigen-induced secretion of IL-4, IFN-γ and IL-10 (ELISPOT), mitogen stimulated secretion of IL-13 and IL-17A (ELISA) and circulating cytokine levels (Luminex) were recorded at inclusion and after 1.5, 3, 6 and 12months of IFN-β treatment.


Early changes were noted for IL-4, while after one year of treatment the only recorded significant effects were a decrease in secreted IL-17A levels and an increase in IL-10 secreting cells. While IL-17A levels tended to be higher in non-responders (n=8), the decrease in IL-17A levels seemed to be more pronounced in responders (n=17) showing significantly lower IL-17A levels after one year as compared with non-responders.


IFN-β treatment seems to mainly affect IL-17/IL-10-associated pathways rather than the IFN-γ/IL-4 axis.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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