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Interleukin-6 and related proteins as biomarkers in systemic sclerosis

Denton, CP; Ong, VH; (2017) Interleukin-6 and related proteins as biomarkers in systemic sclerosis. [Review]. Journal of Scleroderma and Related Disorders , 2 (2) S13-S19. 10.5301/jsrd.5000266. Green open access

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Abstract

The search for biomarkers in systemic sclerosis (SSc) is driven by a goal to stratify patients, identify potential subgroups for treatment, and help assess response to therapy. Emerging evidence indicates that interleukin-6 (IL-6) and some family members are key biomarkers involved in SSc pathogenesis and therefore suitable targets for therapy. Recent studies evaluating IL-6 and its canonical Janus kinase/signal transducers and activators of transcription downstream pathways in modulating fibrotic response and immune cell function suggest a pivotal role for IL-6 in SSc pathogenesis. Although the significance and effect of local tissue expression of IL-6 and its family members are less well established, high levels of circulating IL-6 may identify subgroups of patients with earlystage disease, particularly those at risk for progressive lung fibrosis. In addition, higher disease activity may portend poor prognostic outcome in terms of survival and skin disease. Longitudinal assessment of serum levels of IL-6 and its signaling associates may prove valuable in monitoring response to treatment. As an IL-6–dependent surrogate marker, C-reactive protein may assist cohort enrichment if targeted treatment for IL-6 demonstrates efficacy, especially in subgroups with high IL-6 levels. Although IL-6 appears to be a key factor in the hierarchy of the complex network of disease-associated molecules, the systemic or autocrine/paracrine manner in which IL-6 asserts its profibrotic effects—particularly its interaction with other key pathogenic factors in SSc—is unknown. Ongoing clinical trials will help to delineate the mechanisms of IL-6 in SSc pathogenesis and inform on the role of these biomarkers.

Type: Article
Title: Interleukin-6 and related proteins as biomarkers in systemic sclerosis
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.5301/jsrd.5000266
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.5301/jsrd.5000266
Language: English
Additional information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 License (http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work as published without adaptation or alteration, without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
Keywords: Biomarkers, Interleukin-6, Scleroderma systemic
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine > Inflammation
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10072257
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