Objective. To elucidate the influence that interferon-α exerts on the cytokine network in active ocular Behçet's disease (BD). Methods. Fifty patients with active ocular BD were treated with human recombinant interferon-α2a (rhIFN-α2a). Serum was analysed for the presence of IL-10, TNF-α, IL-8, IL-6, sIL-2R, IFN-γ, IFN-α, IL-12, IL-4, sTNFRI (p55), sTNFRII (p75), IL-1RA, G-CSF, sE-selectin, sVCAM-1, sICAM-1 and neopterin before initiation of and at several time points during IFN treatment and compared to 21 healthy controls. Results. The levels of IFN-α, IL1-RA and sTNFRH were significantly increased in the patients at baseline in comparison to healthy controls. During treatment with rhIFN-α2a, when remission was achieved as defined by the scoring system used a significant increase in levels of IFN-α, IL-2R, TNF-α, sTNF-RII, sICAM-1, sVCAM-1, neopterin in the serum was observed, with a tendency towards increased IL-1RA as well. In contrast, leuko- and thrombocyte counts and sE-selectin serum levels significantly decreased. Positive correlations were found between IFN dosage or serum levels and sVCAM-I, neopterin, sTNF-RII and sIL-2R, between sVCAM-1, sIL-2R, TNFα, sTNF-RII and neopterin, sICAM-1 and sVCAM-1, sIL2-R and sTNF-RII, and finally, between sIL2-R and sICAM-1. Conclusions. IFN-α exerts diverse influences mainly on cytokine antagonists and soluble adhesion molecules. Because sTNF-RII and IL-1RA were increased by IFN-α treatment, these might be interesting alternative treatment options in refractory BD. Some of the side-effects of IFN-α may be caused by activation of monocytes, which is reflected by an increase in neopterin serum levels.
|Journal||Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology|
|Issue number||4 SUPPL 38|
|Publication status||Published - 2005|