Purpose: To evaluate the presence and relative concentrations of cytokines, known to be involved in the inflammatory cascade, in acute anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury.
Methods: We evaluated an extensive cytokine profile in synovial fluid from 12 patients with acute ACL injury undergoing arthroscopy compared with 15 control subjects using a BioPlex assay (Bio-Rad Laboratories, Hercules, CA) to measure the concentration of 17 inflammatory cytokines.
Results: In patients with acute ACL injury compared with asymptomatic control subjects, the following cytokines were identified at significantly increased concentrations (P < .001, Mann-Whitney U test) compared with control samples: interleukin 6 (105 ± 72 v 0 ± 0 pg/ml), interferon γ (1,544 ± 608 v 9 ± 7.5 pg/ml), macrophage inflammatory protein 1β (16 ± 3.8 v 0.3 ± 0.2 pg/ml), and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (35 ± 13 v 0.5 ± 0.4 pg/ml). There was no case of a cytokine exhibiting increased levels in asymptomatic compared with symptomatic knee samples.
Conclusions: This investigation identified 4 specific cytokines (interleukin 6, interferon γ, monocyte chemotactic protein 1, and macrophage inflammatory protein 1β) out of a panel of 17 inflammatory molecules for which the levels were consistently elevated in the context of ACL injury compared with non-painful, non-acutely injured knees in a volunteer population.
Level of evidence: Level IV, prognostic case series.
Copyright © 2010 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.