Hypergammaglobulinaemia and enhanced serum IgA levels are common in alcoholic liver cirrhosis. Interleukin-6 (IL-6), which is identical to B cell differentiation factor BSF2 and is implicated in various autoimmune diseases, has been studied in patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis. Increased serum levels and spontaneous or induced production of IL-6 by peripheral blood monoclonal cells have been found. IL-6 production correlates closely with IgA serum levels and negatively with impaired interleukin-2 and interferon gamma production. This abnormality could be related to overproduction of immunoglobulins and immune disturbances observed in this disease.