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J Biomed Mater Res B Appl Biomater. 2009 Aug;90(2):510-20. doi: 10.1002/jbm.b.31312.

Medical-grade silicone induces release of proinflammatory cytokines in peripheral blood mononuclear cells without activating T cells.

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Aging Basic Research Group, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Research Center for Nanomedicine, CIBBIM-Nanomedicine, Vall Hebron University Hospital, Barcelona, Spain.


For more than 40 years, silicone implants had been employed in aesthetic, cosmetic medicine, and plastic surgery. Although adverse reactions produced by these products are rare, cases of immuno-mediated reactions have been reported. To evaluate the aspects of immuno-reactivity to medical-grade silicone dermal filler, peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) of 39 individuals were studied. PBMC used include individuals with silicone injection-related delayed adverse reactions, with silicone injections, and healthy control. Silicone induced production of TNF-alpha and IL-6 in all three groups. Notably, elevated production of IL-6 was observed in nonstimulated PBMC and also the percentage of CD4(+)CD69(+) T cells was higher in PHA-stimulated PBMC from individuals with silicone injection-related adverse reactions when compared with other two groups. However, IFN-gamma was not released in silicone-stimulated or silicone+LPS-stimulated PBMC from any group and no production of IL-2 was measured indicating no proliferative response of PBMC. Subsequently, no CD4(+)CD69(+) T cells were observed in these conditions. Finally, the inflammatory response in silicone-stimulated cultures of monocyte-derived macrophages with autologous lymphocytes is lesser than that observed in PBMC. In conclusion, silicone induces a release of proinflammatory cytokines but does not act as a polyclonal activator of CD4(+) T cells. Thus, silicone is mounting an immune response in individuals with silicone-related adverse effects but is not silicone antigen-dependent.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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