Quantitation and localization of inflammatory cytokines interleukin-6 and interleukin-8 in the lower uterine segment during cervical dilatation

Birgit Kemp, Ramkumar Menon, Stephen J. Fortunato, Matthias Winkler, Holger Maul, Werner Rath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


Purpose: Cervical dilatation during parturition is associated with a significant increase of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-8. The purpose of this study was to localize the respective messenger RNA and to quantitate their protein levels during various stages of dilatation. Methods: Protein extracts from 34 biopsy specimens of the lower uterine segment at various stages of cervical dilatation (<2, 2 to <4, 4-6, and >6 cm) were subjected to enzyme linked immunosorbent assay for IL-6 and IL-8 to document their concentration. The respective mRNA expression was studied using reverse transcriptase PCR using IL-6 and IL-8 specific primers. Localization of IL-6 and IL-8 was done by in situ hybridization using biotinylated probes. Results: The IL-6 and IL-8 concentrations increased significantly in the lower uterine segment tissues at 4-6 cm of dilatation. Expression of IL-8 was seen in all the tissues at or more than 4 cm dilatation, whereas IL-6 expression was inconsistent. In situ hybridization localized IL-6 and IL-8 mRNA to the glandular epithelium. Conclusions: The increase in the inflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and IL-8) during parturition is associated with cervical effacement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-219
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 8 2002
Externally publishedYes



  • Cervix
  • Cytokines
  • IL-6
  • IL-8
  • Messenger RNA
  • Parturition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Genetics
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Genetics(clinical)

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