Changes in serum cytokine levels during plasmapheresis in patients with myasthenia gravis

J. H. Yeh, S. H. Wang, P. J. Chien, C. M. Shih, H. C. Chiu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The effect of plasmapheresis on cytokine levels in patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) has not been well established. Methods: Cytokine levels were measured in 19 patients with MG before and after treatment with one course of double-filtration plasmapheresis (DFP). The control group comprised 6 age- and sex-matched healthy volunteers. Results: At baseline, patients with MG had higher levels of IL-10 than normal controls. The levels of IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, and tumor necrosis factor-α were almost undetectable in MG patients. After a single session of DFP treatment, IL-10 levels were significantly increased. After three sessions, IL-10 levels were still higher than those at baseline. Elevated IL-10 level was significantly associated with use of immunosuppressant drugs, thymectomy, and good response to DFP treatment. Conclusions: Interleukin-10 might play a crucial role in the pathogenesis and perpetuation of MG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1318-1322
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Neurology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2009


  • Cytokines
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Plasmapheresis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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