Interleukin-6 (IL-6) plays an important role in the regulation of the inflammatory response in multiple sclerosis (MS) and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). Previous reports indicated that a variable number tandem repeat (vntr) polymorphism in the 3'flanking region of the IL-6 gene (C allele) is associated with altered activity of IL-6 in vivo. Therefore, we analyzed the frequency distribution of IL-6 gene C allele vntr poymorphism in 96 MS patients and 106 ethnically matched healthy controls. Moreover, possible correlations between genotypic differences of IL-6 gene and serum levels of IL-6, soluble IL-6 receptor (sIL6-R), soluble gp130 (sgp130), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1) and soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1) were investigated. There were no differences in the allelic distribution of the IL-6 gene C allele between MS patients and healthy controls, and no association of the IL-6 gene C allele with serum levels of IL-6, sIL-6R, spg130, sICAM and sVCAM-1 was found.