Objectives: We measured the serum concentration of a panel of inflammatory cytokines and evaluated their association with circulating proangiogenic biomarkers and with outcome in patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC).
Methods: We collected serum samples from 36 patients with PDAC, 9 patients with chronic pancreatitis, and 22 healthy volunteers as a control. Inflammatory cytokines and proangiogenic biomarkers were measured using the multianalyte xMAP array and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) and carbohydrate 19-9 by immunoassay.
Results: Patients with PDAC had higher circulating levels of interleukin 6 (IL-6) than those of patients with pancreatitis or healthy individuals and higher levels of IL-10 and tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) compared with those of healthy individuals. In patients with PDAC, circulating IL-6, TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-10 correlated with serum concentrations of vascular endothelial growth factor and basic fibroblast growth factor; circulating IL-6, IL-1β, and TNF-α correlated with carbohydrate 19-9; and IL-8, IL-10, and TNF-α correlated with CEA levels. Circulating IL-8, TNF-α, and CEA; tumor stage; and lymph node metastases were associated with a poor outcome.
Conclusions: The results of this exploratory study indicate that inflammatory cytokines should be pursued as potential prognostic biomarkers as well as targets for therapy in larger studies in PDAC.