Interleukin-6 polymorphism is associated with more aggressive prostate cancer

J Urol. 2005 Aug;174(2):753-6. doi: 10.1097/01.ju.0000168723.42824.40.


Purpose: : Interleukin-6 (IL-6) has an important role during prostate cancer progression and IL-6 levels in the serum of patients with hormone refractory and metastatic prostate cancer are significantly increased compared with those in patients with hormone sensitive and localized prostate cancer. The G>C polymorphism at position -174 in the promoter of the IL-6 gene has been associated with differences in IL-6 transcription in vitro and IL-6 protein levels in vivo. We determined the association of IL-6 polymorphism with prostate cancer progression.

Materials and methods: : We examined the association of IL-6 polymorphism with the risk of advanced disease in 95 patients with different stages of prostate cancer using the tetra-primer polymerase chain reaction genotyping method.

Results: : We found that the -174G>C genotype of IL-6 gene was associated with an overall increased risk of advanced prostate cancer. A strong association between this genotype and Gleason score was observed at the -174G>C locus of the IL-6 gene (p <0.001). The distribution of this genotype was also significantly different between stages T3-T4 and T1-T2 tumors (p <0.001). In addition, the IL-6 genotype was linked with vascular invasion (p = 0.024), seminal vesicle involvement (p = 0.006) and capsular invasion (p <0.001). Furthermore, the -174G>C genotype of the IL-6 gene was significantly associated with increased serum prostate specific antigen (p = 0.004) and with recurrent prostate cancer compared with GG homozygotes (p = 0.027).

Conclusions: : These data demonstrate a strong association of the -174G>C polymorphism of the IL-6 gene with the aggressiveness and recurrence of prostate cancer, suggesting that genetic predisposition of genetic differences in the human IL-6 gene could be linked to the risk of recurrent prostate cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / pathology
  • Blood Vessels / pathology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease / genetics
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics*
  • Male
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Seminal Vesicles / pathology


  • Interleukin-6