Clinical Rheumatology

, Volume 28, Issue 10, pp 1179–1185

High interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor-alpha serum levels in hepatitis C infection associated or not with mixed cryoglobulinemia

  • Alessandro Antonelli
  • Clodoveo Ferri
  • Silvia Martina Ferrari
  • Emiliano Ghiri
  • Santino Marchi
  • Michele Colaci
  • Fabrizio Bruschi
  • Poupak Fallahi
Original Article


The objective of this study is to evaluate serum levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-a) in a series of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related mixed cryoglobulinemia (HCV-MC) and to correlate these parameters with the clinical features of the disease. Serum IL-6 and TNF-a were assayed in 61 patients with HCV-MC, in 61 sex- and age-matched patients with HCV chronic hepatitis without cryoglobulinemia (HCV+), and in 61 sex- and age-matched healthy controls. HCV-MC patients showed significantly higher mean IL-6 levels than controls (p=0.005) or HCV+ patients (p = 0.02). Moreover, IL-6 was increased in cryoglobulinemic patients with active vasculitis, even if the statistical significance was not reached (p=0.056). Serum TNF-a levels were significantly higher in HCV-MC than in HCV+ or in controls (p<0.01). The study demonstrates high IL-6 and TNF-a serum levels in HCV-MC patients; moreover, IL-6 levels tended to be higher in HCV-MC patients in presence of active vasculitis.


Cryoglobulinemia Hepatitis C IL-6 TNF-alpha 


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Copyright information

© Clinical Rheumatology 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alessandro Antonelli
    • 1
  • Clodoveo Ferri
    • 2
  • Silvia Martina Ferrari
    • 1
  • Emiliano Ghiri
    • 1
  • Santino Marchi
    • 1
  • Michele Colaci
    • 2
  • Fabrizio Bruschi
    • 3
  • Poupak Fallahi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal MedicineUniversity of Pisa, School of MedicinePisaItaly
  2. 2.Chair and Rheumatology UnitUniversity of Modena and Reggio E. School of MedicineModenaItaly
  3. 3.Department of Experimental Pathology, Medical Biotechnology, Infectivology and EpidemiologyUniversity of Pisa, School of MedicinePisaItaly

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