Iranian Journal of Neurology 2017. 16(1):.

Circulating levels of interleukin (IL)-17 in patients with multiple sclerosis: Evaluation of the effects of gender, treatment, disease patterns and IL-23 receptor gene polymorphisms
Abdollah Jafarzadeh, Seyed Ali Ghaffari, Maryam Nemati, Hossainali Ebrahimi, Abdolkarim Sheikhi


Background and Aims: IL-17/IL-23 axis plays an important role in the pathogenesis of several autoimmune diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate the IL-17 levels in MS patients and its association with gender, treatment, disease patterns and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in IL-23R gene, including rs11209026 and rs1004819.  

Material and Methods: The blood samples were collected from 135 MS patients and 135 healthy subjects. The patients have relapsing-remitting (RRMS; n=65), primary progressive (PPMS; n=19), secondary progressive (SPMS; n=35) or progressive relapsing (PRMS; n=14) patterns.  The DNA analyzed for SNPs using PCR-RFLP and IL-17 levels measured by ELISA.  

Results: The serum IL-17 levels in MS patients was significantly higher than in control group (P<0.001). The IL-17 levels were significantly higher in MS men as compared to women patients (P<0.05). Untreated patients had significantly higher IL-17 levels than healthy group and treated patients (P<0.001 and P<0.01, respectively). The IL-17 levels in treated patients with interferon-β (IFN-β), methylprednisolone (MP) or both IFN-β and MP were significantly lower than untreated MS patients (P<0.05, P<0.02 and P<0.05, respectively). Patients with RRMS and PRMS, had significantly higher IL-17 levels than healthy group (P<0.005 and P<0.01, respectively). No significant differences were observed between patients and controls regarding the genetic variations at rs11209026 and rs1004819. The levels of IL-17 did not influenced by genetic variations at investigated SNPs.

Conclusion: These results indicated higher levels of IL-17 in MS patients that may be influenced by disease patterns, treatment and gender.  There was no any association between investigated SNPs and MS.


Multiple sclerosis, IL-17, Gender, Treatment, IL-23 receptor, Gene polymorphisms


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