AGE

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 209–217

Systemic inflammation (Interleukin 6) predicts all-cause mortality in men: results from a 9-year follow-up of the MEMO Study

  • Bernhard T. Baune
  • Matthias Rothermundt
  • Karl H. Ladwig
  • Christine Meisinger
  • Klaus Berger
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11357-010-9165-5

Cite this article as:
Baune, B.T., Rothermundt, M., Ladwig, K.H. et al. AGE (2011) 33: 209. doi:10.1007/s11357-010-9165-5

Abstract

This study aimed to investigate the association of biomarkers among circulating pro-inflammatory cytokines with all-cause mortality in elderly community dwellings of the MEMO study, Germany. All-cause mortality (cancer, cardiovascular diseases (CVD), and other causes of death) was assessed in a general population sample (N = 385) of the elderly (age 65–83 years) 9 years after baseline assessment in 1998. As markers of inflammation, a variety of cytokines (IL-1beta, IL-4sR, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12, TNF-alpha) were assessed in serum. Cox proportional Hazard model was used to estimate the association of cytokines with all-cause mortality over 9 years. In total, 110 deaths had occurred during follow-up (cancer N = 36; CVD N = 56; other = 18). Deaths were more frequent in male (N = 76, 37.4%) as compared to females (N = 40, 21.9%; p = 0.001). Among individual cytokines, IL-1 beta, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, and TNF-alpha were associated with all-cause mortality, of which IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10 remained significant after adjusting for confounders. When the upper tertiles of these cytokines were compared to the lower tertiles, only IL-6 was consistently related to all-cause mortality independently of the level of adjustment and showing a dose–response relationship between IL-6 tertiles and risk of death. This effect originated in the male population. The study shows that IL-6 is a powerful predictor of all-cause mortality in male elderly community dwellings. Higher levels of IL-6 may reflect a chronic low-level systemic inflammation prospectively increasing the risk of death in the elderly.

Keywords

AgingInflammationMortalityGender

Copyright information

© American Aging Association, Media, PA, USA 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bernhard T. Baune
    • 1
  • Matthias Rothermundt
    • 2
  • Karl H. Ladwig
    • 3
  • Christine Meisinger
    • 3
  • Klaus Berger
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Psychiatric Neuroscience, School of Medicine and DentistryJames Cook UniversityTownsvilleAustralia
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of MuensterMuensterGermany
  3. 3.Institute of EpidemiologyHelmholtz Zentrum MünchenMunichGermany
  4. 4.Institute of Epidemiology and Social MedicineUniversity of MuensterMuensterGermany