Objective: To assess whether circulating interleukin-6 (IL-6) is associated with measures of disease severity and clinical worsening in pediatric pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Study design: IL-6 was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in serum samples from a cross-sectional cohort from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Biobank (n = 175) and a longitudinal cohort from Children's Hospital Colorado (CHC) (n = 61). Associations between IL-6, disease severity, and outcomes were studied with regression and Kaplan–Meier analysis. Results: In analyses adjusted for age and sex, each log-unit greater IL-6 was significantly associated in the Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Biobank cohort with greater pulmonary vascular resistance indices, lower odds of having idiopathic PAH or treatment with prostacyclin, and greater odds of having PAH associated with a repaired congenital shunt. In the CHC cohort, each log-unit greater IL-6 was significantly associated with greater mean pulmonary arterial pressure over time. Kaplan–Meier analysis in the CHC cohort revealed that IL-6 was significantly associated with clinical worsening (a composite score of mortality, transplant, or palliative surgery) (P = .037). Conclusions: IL-6 was significantly associated with worse hemodynamics at baseline and over time and may be associated with clinical worsening. IL-6 may provide a less-invasive method for disease monitoring and prognosis in pediatric PAH as well as a potential therapeutic target.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health