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J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 1998 Jul;57(7):653-63.

Expression of interleukin-1beta mRNA and protein in human gliomas assessed by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry.

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Department of Pathology, Gunma University School of Medicine, Maebashi, Japan.


To characterize the expression and localization of interleukin (IL)-1beta in human gliomas, both reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry were used on surgically excised human gliomas, human malignant glioma xenografts, and human glioblastoma cell lines. The RT-PCR products for IL-1beta mRNA were quantified by computerized image analysis. IL-1beta mRNA was detectable in 30 out of 35 (86%) surgically resected gliomas. An abundant expression of IL-1beta mRNA was often found in the glioblastomas, anaplastic astrocytomas, and pilocytic astrocytomas, but not in other types of gliomas. Quantitatively, in both the grade 2 astrocytomas and the oligodendrogliomas, the IL-1beta mRNA levels were significantly (p < 0.05) lower than those of the grade 3/4 astrocytomas. Immunohistochemically, IL-1beta was localized in the pleomorphic tumor cells of the astrocytic tumors and in macrophages. In contrast to the astrocytic tumors, low and high grade oligodendrogliomas showed no or little expression of IL-1beta antigen. IL-1beta was present less frequently than IL-1alpha and IL-1 receptor type 1 in 4 malignant gliomas transplanted into nude mice by RT-PCR. All 2 cell lines showed IL-1beta expression at both the mRNA and protein levels. It is concluded that in human gliomas, both high-grade astrocytomas and pilocytic astrocytomas often express high IL-1beta production, and that IL-1beta is mainly localized in astrocytic tumor cells and macrophages.

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