Characterization of Patients With Advanced Pancreatic Cancer and High Serum Interleukin-6 Levels

Tomofumi Miura, Shuichi Mitsunaga, Masafumi Ikeda, Satoshi Shimizu, Izumi Ohno, Hideaki Takahashi, Junji Furuse, Masatoshi Inagaki, Sayumi Higashi, Hiroyuki Kato, Kimio Terao, Atsushi Ochiai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: High serum level of interleukin 6 (IL-6) is associated with high degree of tumor progression and systemic weakness. Anti-IL-6 therapy possibly improves the deterioration of clinical characteristics in patients with high IL-6 level. However, IL-6-related factors in patients with treatment-naive advanced pancreatic cancer (PC) have not been established. The goal of this study was to identify IL-6-related factors in patients with advanced PC who were scheduled to undergo first-line chemotherapy. Methods: Patients with treatment-naive advanced PC were eligible for inclusion in this study. Patients who did not receive first-line chemotherapy were excluded. Serum IL-6 levels and clinical parameters were prospectively recorded. Analyses were performed to identify risk factors for high IL-6 levels. Results: Eighty patients were analyzed. IL-6-related factors were advanced age (P < 0.01), the presence of liver metastasis (P < 0.01), the large volume of liver metastasis (P < 0.01), severe fatigue (P = 0.02), high carcinoembryonic antigen levels (P = 0.02), anemia (P < 0.01), and high C-reactive protein levels (P = 0.02) in multivariate analyses. Decreased skeletal muscle mass tended to be associated with high IL-6 levels. Conclusions: High serum IL-6 was related to advanced age, the presence of hepatic metastasis, large tumor burden in liver, severe fatigue, high carcinoembryonic antigen, high C-reactive protein, and anemia in patients with treatment-naive advanced PC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)756-763
Number of pages8
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 25 2015


  • anti-IL-6 therapy
  • cancer cachexia
  • interleukin 6
  • pancreatic cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology


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