Interleukin-6 increases thrombopoietin production in human hepatoma cells HepG2 and Hep3B

Eva Maria Wolber*, Wolfgang Jelkmann

*Corresponding author for this work
61 Citations (Scopus)


The concentration of circulating thrombopoietin (TPO) is relatively high in patients with thrombocytosis reactive to inflammatory diseases. We investigated whether immunomodulatory cytokines stimulate TPO synthesis in cultured human hepatoma cells (lines HepG2 and Hep3B), renal proximal tubular cells, and bone marrow fibroblasts. The effects of interleukins (IL) IL-lβ, IL-6, and IL-11 and of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) on the rate of TPO secretion were measured by ELISA. TPO mRNA levels were quantitated by competitive reverse transcription PCR. HepG2 and Hep3B cells produced significant amounts of TPO mRNA and TPO protein. Renal tubular cells synthesized less TPO, and in bone marrow fibroblasts, neither TPO mRNA nor TPO protein was detected. Only IL-6 affected TPO protein secretion, causing a 1.5-fold stimulation in HepG2 and Hep3B cells in 24-h incubation periods. The TPO mRNA content in these cells was doubled by IL-6 after 2, 6, or 24 h of stimulation. Thus, IL-6 could cause thrombocytosis in inflammatory disease partly by increasing hepatic TPO production.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Interferon and Cytokine Research
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)499-506
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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