Background: The effect of plasmapheresis on cytokine levels in patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) has not been well established. Methods: Cytokine levels were measured in 19 patients with MG before and after treatment with one course of double-filtration plasmapheresis (DFP). The control group comprised 6 age- and sex-matched healthy volunteers. Results: At baseline, patients with MG had higher levels of IL-10 than normal controls. The levels of IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, and tumor necrosis factor-α were almost undetectable in MG patients. After a single session of DFP treatment, IL-10 levels were significantly increased. After three sessions, IL-10 levels were still higher than those at baseline. Elevated IL-10 level was significantly associated with use of immunosuppressant drugs, thymectomy, and good response to DFP treatment. Conclusions: Interleukin-10 might play a crucial role in the pathogenesis and perpetuation of MG.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology