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Arthritis Rheum. 1990 Mar;33(3):398-402.

Constitutive production of interleukin-6 and immunologic features in cardiac myxomas.

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INSERM U291, Immunopathologie des Maladies Tumorales et Autoimmunes, Monpellier, France.


The constitutive production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), a potent hepatocyte-stimulating factor and B cell-differentiating factor, was demonstrated in 3 patients with cardiac myxomas. Tumor cells from the only patient who presented with immunologic features produced 14-23-fold higher levels of IL-6 than those from the 2 patients who lacked such features. A significant serum IL-6 level (56 pg/ml), greater than that observed in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis, was also observed only in this patient, with a subsequent return to an undetectable level after surgical removal of the tumor. This was associated with a regression of the immunologic features. This same patient was observed to have an IL-6-dependent, proliferative polyclonal plasmacytosis of the bone marrow. These observations demonstrate that an overproduction of IL-6 by cardiac myxoma cells, in association with a systemic passage of this IL-6, may be responsible for the immunologic features similar to those observed in true autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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