Cytokine recruits myeloid derived suppressor cells, according to Cancer Cell study.

Elevated levels of interleukin-1 beta (IL-1ß) is a major contributor to the cause of stomach cancer, according to a multicenter research team led by Columbia University Medical Center.

“We show in this study that IL-1ß works by activating a type of white blood cell known as myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSCs), which in our study appeared to be strongly proinflammatory,” said lead author Timothy C. Wang, M.D., chief of the division of digestive and liver diseases at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Previous research illustrated that stomach cancer is strongly linked to chronic inflammation and that infection with H. pylori may trigger the chronic inflammation that can lead to malignancy. While H. pylori infection is extremely prevalent, fewer than one percent of infected individuals will go onto develop stomach cancer after many years. Previous research also linked H. pylori infection to the overexpression of IL-1ß.

The team developed a transgenic mouse model to investigate the specific role of IL-1ß in gastric carcinogenesis. Results demonstrated that the overexpression of IL-1ß in the stomach mobilizes the recruitment of MDSCs, initiating the progression of gastric inflammation into cancer.

These results are published in the November 4 issue of Cancer Cell.

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