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J Immunol. 1995 Feb 1;154(3):1432-9.

Balance of IL-1 receptor antagonist/IL-1 beta in rheumatoid synovium and its regulation by IL-4 and IL-10.

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  • 1Laboratory for Immunologic Research, Schering-Plough, Dardilly, France.


The spontaneous production of IL-1 beta (IL-1 beta) and IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) by rheumatoid arthritis (RA) synovium, and the regulation of their production by IL-4 and IL-10, were studied. Supernatants from cultured synovium pieces from 19 RA patients were assayed for IL-1 beta and IL-1Ra production using ELISA and RIA, respectively. After 10 days of culture, spontaneous production of IL-1Ra was 1.42 +/- 0.43 ng/ml/100 mg of synovium whereas spontaneous production of IL-1 beta was 4.03 +/- 0.90 ng/ml/100 mg of synovium (n = 19). The addition of IL-4 reduced IL-1 beta production by 2.3-fold (p = 0.001) and increased that of IL-1Ra by 2.8-fold (p = 0.003). IL-10 had no significant effect on IL-1Ra production and suppressed IL-1 beta production (primarily in samples producing high levels of IL-1 beta). However, IL-10 was less potent than IL-4 in suppressing IL-1 beta production. IL-1Ra was mainly produced by rheumatoid synovial monocytes/macrophages. IL-4 was more potent than IL-10 in inducing IL-1Ra production by monocytes/macrophages purified from RA synovium, as well as from RA blood. Thus, RA synovium is characterized by an imbalance between IL-1Ra and IL-1 beta production, in favor of the latter. IL-4, and to a lesser extent IL-10, shift this balance in favor of an anti-inflammatory situation.

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