Objective: To determine whether serum interleukin 4 (IL-4), IL-10, and IL-13 levels in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) are elevated and whether they correlate with the clinical or serologic features of this disease.
Methods: Serum samples from patients with limited cutaneous SSc (ISSc) (n = 45), diffuse cutaneous SSc (dSSc) (n = 28), and control subjects (n = 30) were examined by ELISA.
Results: Serum IL-4 and IL-13 levels were significantly higher in patients with ISSc and dSSc than in the controls. Serum IL-10 levels were significantly higher in the patients with dSSc compared with controls. Elevated IL-10 levels were detected frequently in patients with arthralgia. Serum IL-13 levels correlated with erythrocyte sedimentation rates and C-reactive protein levels in patients.
Conclusion: We suggest that IL-4, IL-10, and IL-13 may be some of the cytokines that contribute to the disease process, and that IL-13 may be a serologic indicator of systemic inflammation in patients with SSc.