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Serum cytokine and chemokine levels in patients with eosinophilic granulomatosis with polyangiitis, hypereosinophilic syndrome, or eosinophilic asthma

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Pagnoux C1, Nair P2, Xi Y3, Khalidi NA4, Carette S5, Cuthbertson D6, Grayson PC7, Koening CL8, Langford CA9, McAlear CA10, Moreland LW11, Monach PA12, Seo P13, Specks U14, Sreih AG10, Ytterberg SR15, Tyrrell PN3, Merkel PA16; Vasculitis Clinical Research Consortium. Clin Exp Rheumatol. 2019 Jan 14. [Epub ahead of print]

Abstract

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Abstract

OBJECTIVES: The pathogenesis of eosinophilic granulomatosis with polyangiitis (EGPA) remains poorly understood, and may overlap with eosinophilic asthma and primary hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES). The aim of this study was to analyse a panel of serum cytokines and chemokines as markers of disease activity in patients with these conditions.

METHODS: The levels of 54 cytokines and chemokines were measured in the sera of 40 patients with active EGPA, 10 of these patients during inactive disease, 6 patients with HES, 8 with asthma, and 10 healthy controls. Serum cytokine/chemokines measured included interleukin (IL)-1α, 1β, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 13, 15, 17A, 17E(25), 18, 23 and 33, soluble IL-2 receptor alpha, eotaxin-1 (CCL11), -2 (CCL24) and -3 (CCL26), macrophage-derived chemokine (MDC/CCL22), macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-1a and -1b, and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α. Results were compared between disease and control groups using regression analysis, with Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons (significant p value ≤0.00093).

RESULTS: Significant differences were observed only in serum levels of MDC, IL-8, MIP-1a and -1b, TNF-α, each of which were lower in patients with active EGPA than in healthy controls (p<0.0001). Differences between patients with active disease and other disease groups did not reach significance. Paired comparisons between sera from patients with active or inactive EGPA showed no significant difference for any of the studied cytokines or chemokines.

CONCLUSIONS: No clear difference in the serum levels of measured cytokines and chemokines helped distinguish between active EGPA or inactive EGPA, or other disease or control groups.