Background: The aim of this research was to estimate the expression of interleukin-10 in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) patients before and after chemotherapy in order to evaluate its role as a marker of disease progression.
Methods: Flow cytometry was used to detect the serum IL-10 levels in ALL patients before and during chemotherapy. Patients were divided into either complete remission (CR) group and non-remission (NR) group, before chemotherapy group and during chemotherapy group, B-ALL group and T-ALL group, WT-1 positive group and BCR-ABL1 positive group. The changes in serum IL-10 concentration before and during the chemotherapy were analyzed.
Results: IL-10 serum levels were significantly elevated in ALL patients at the onset of disease, and it was also more elevated in the NR group compared to the CR group. There is a significant reduction in IL-10 serum levels in ALL patients after effective chemotherapy. There was no significant difference between the before chemotherapy group and during chemotherapy group. Regardless of chemotherapy, the IL-10 levels of patients whose bone marrow achieved complete remission were lower than the patients who have not (p < 0.05). The same result can be seen in B or T-ALL groups. There was no significant difference in IL-10 serum levels between the group with WT-1(+) or BCR-ABL1(+) and the group with WT-1(-) or BCR-ABL1(-) (p > 0.05). In some ALL patients, increased IL-10 concentrations may be correlated to the number of peripheral blood leukemic cells.
Conclusions: The increase of serum IL-10 level may be a possible marker of disease progression in ALL.