Objective: PM and DM are often complicated by interstitial lung disease (ILD). In this study we aimed to evaluate various serum cytokines in patients with PM/DM with ILD so as to clarify the differences in pathophysiology between anti-melanoma differentiation-associated gene 5 antibody-associated ILD (anti-MDA5-ILD) and anti-aminoacyl tRNA synthetase antibody-associated ILD (anti-ARS-ILD).
Methods: We evaluated the serum cytokine profiles of 38 patients with PM/DM and compared the cytokine profiles of the non-ILD and ILD subsets as well as the anti-MDA5-ILD and anti-ARS-ILD subsets.
Results: The myositis intention-to-treat activity index score, which indicates whole disease activity, significantly correlated with serum IL-6, IL-8, TNF-α and IP-10. These cytokine levels were significantly higher in the ILD subset than the non-ILD subset and were lower in the ILD subset following treatment. By multivariate analysis, TNF-α was the most significant cytokine [P = 0.0006, odds ratio (OR) 1.4, CI 1.1, 2.2] associated with PM/DM with ILD. IL-8 levels were significantly higher in anti-MDA5-ILD than in anti-ARS-ILD, although IL-6, TNF-α and IP-10 levels were high in both subsets. IL-8 was the most significant cytokine (P = 0.0006, OR 1.5, CI 1.1, 3.0) associated with anti-MDA5-ILD by multivariate analysis. Moreover, the ratio of IL-4 to IFN-γ was lower in anti-MDA5-ILD than in anti-ARS-ILD.
Conclusion: IL-6, IL-8, TNF-α and IP-10 are associated with global disease activity in PM/DM. These cytokine levels were high, especially in the ILD subset. Serum IL-8 levels and the balance between IL-4 and IFN-γ may contribute to the differences in pathophysiology between anti-ARS-ILD and anti-MDA5-ILD.
Keywords: IL-6; IL-8; TNF-α; dermatomyositis; interstitial lung disease; polymyositis.
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