Serum interleukin 1 in ovarian cancer patients

Eur J Cancer. 1998 May;34(6):931-3. doi: 10.1016/s0959-8049(97)10107-1.


Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is a multifunctional cytokine playing a central role in the immune response and displaying direct cytotoxic activity in vitro. Serum IL-1 alpha and beta levels were measured by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in 75 ovarian cancer patients, 30 patients with benign ovarian cysts and 50 healthy controls. Both serum IL-1 alpha and IL-1 beta levels were more often elevated in ovarian cancer patients compared with healthy controls (chi-square test, P < 0.001 and P < 0.001, respectively). Mean serum IL-1 alpha and beta levels decreased significantly after surgical intervention (paired t-test, P = 0.0001 and P = 0.0002, respectively). No correlation with histopathological parameters and overall and disease-free survival was found. These preliminary results indicate that serum levels of IL-1 alpha and beta represent a host defence reaction rather than an autonomous tumour cell production.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1 / blood*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / blood
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / blood*
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Interleukin-1