Regulation of interleukin-6 receptor expression in human monocytes and hepatocytes

Joachim Bauer, Gabriella Lengyel, Tilman Martin Bauer, George Acs, Wolfgang Gerok

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Human blood monocytes normally express the interleukin-6 receptor. Treatment of cultured monocytes with endotoxin, interleukin-1β, or interleukin-6 results in a decrease of interleukin-6 receptor mRNA levels. Glucocorticoids also cause a drop in monocytic interleukin-6 receptor mRNA levels. We also found interleukin-6 receptor expression in cultured human hepatocytes, but in contrast to monocytes, where interleukin-6 receptor mRNA is repressed by the ligand and by interleukin-1, treatment of hepatocytes with interleukin-6 or interleukin-1 resulted in increased interleukin-6 receptor mRNA levels. Induction of interleukin-6 receptor mRNA in hepatocytes was less pronounced when glucocorticoids were omitted from the culture medium. We conclude that during noninflammatory homeostasis, blood monocytes are involved in binding of trace amounts of circulating interleukin-6. During inflammatory events, the main tissue target of interleukin-6 may be changed from the monocytic population not only to activated B-cells, but also to the hepatocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-30
Number of pages4
JournalFEBS letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - May 22 1989



  • Hepatocyte
  • Inflammation
  • Interleukin-6
  • Monocyte
  • Receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology

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