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Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2015 Feb 1;8(2):1594-603. eCollection 2015.

Expression of IL-4 and IL-13 predicts recurrence and survival in localized clear-cell renal cell carcinoma.

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Department of Urology, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University Shanghai, China.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Fudan University Shanghai, China.
Department of Pathology, Children's Hospital, Fudan University Shanghai, China.


Interleukin-4 (IL-4) and IL-13 are anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory cytokines that can influence cancer-directed immunosurveillance. However, they are not evaluated as biomarkers for ccRCC outcomes. The aim of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of tumor-derived IL-4 and IL-13 in patients with localized ccRCC after surgery. Our study comprised 194 consecutive patients with localized ccRCC undergoing nephrectomy in a single center. Clinical characteristics, recurrence-free survival (RFS) and overall survival (OS) were recorded. We assessed IL-4 and IL-13 expression as continuous variables and dichotomized as low versus high by immunohistochemistry. For associations with RFS and OS, we used the Kaplan-Meier method and Cox regression models. Concordance index was calculated for predictive accuracy. We found that high expression levels of IL-4 and IL-13 were associated with increased recurrence (P < 0.001 and P = 0.006, respectively) and reduced survival (P = 0.001 and P = 0.016, respectively). Furthermore, multivariate analyses confirmed that combination of IL-4 and IL-13 expression (IL-4/IL-13 signature) was an independent prognostic factor for RFS and OS (P = 0.009 and P = 0.016, respectively). When applied to UISS score, IL-4/IL-13 signature improved the predictive accuracy. Notably, this improvement in prediction was mainly observed in patients with low-risk disease. To conclude, IL-4/IL-13 signature is an independent predictor of outcomes in patients with localized ccRCC, and the prognostic value is more prominent among patients with low-risk disease. Evaluation of IL-4 and IL-13 expression provides the opportunity to optimize postsurgical management and develop novel targeted therapies for ccRCC patients.


Renal cell carcinoma; biomarker; interleukin-13; interleukin-4; prognosis

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