86P - Serum interleukin-6 as a prognostic biomarker for survival in patients with unresectable pancreatic cancer

Date 10 October 2016
Event ESMO 2016 Congress
Session Poster display
Topics Pancreatic Cancer
Translational Research
Basic Principles in the Management and Treatment (of cancer)
Presenter Inna Chen
Citation Annals of Oncology (2016) 27 (6): 15-42. 10.1093/annonc/mdw363
Authors I. Chen1, C. Dehlendorff2, P. Pfeiffer3, B.V. Jensen1, S.E. Nielsen1, N.H. Holländer4, M.K. Yilmaz5, J. Johansen1
  • 1Oncology, Herlev and Gentofte Hospital, 2730 - Herlev/DK
  • 2Research Center, Danish Cancer Society Institute of Cancer Biology, 2100 - Copenhagen/DK
  • 3Department Of Oncology, Odense University Hospital, 5000 - Odense C/DK
  • 4Oncology, Zealand University Hospital, 4700 - Naestved/DK
  • 5Department Of Oncology, Aalborg University Hospital, 9100 - Aalborg/DK



Patients with pancreatic cancer (PC) have the highest mortality rate of all major cancers. Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is produced by PC cells and macrophages, regulates inflammation and plays an important role in cachexia. The aim of this biomarker study was to determine the clinical utility of serum IL-6 as a prognostic factor. We further explored age, sex, CA 19.9, PS, stage and chemotherapy type as predictors of outcome in patients receiving palliative chemotherapy.


452 patients with unresectable PC (M/F: 242/210; median age 67.5 (IQR 61.8, 73.0); ECOG Performance Status (PS) of 0/1/2: 150/247/55; locally advanced disease/metastatic: 97/355; treated with gemcitabine n = 337, FOLFIRINOX n= 83, gemcitabine and nab-Paclitaxel n = 14 or capecitabine-containing regimens n = 18) were included in the BIOPAC study from five hospitals in Denmark (2008-2016). Pretreatment and longitudinal serum CA 19.9 (Siemens) and IL-6 were determined (ELISA, R&D Systems).


Patients were grouped into quartiles according to baseline IL-6 values (0.8 to 3.2, 3.2 to 6.4, 6.4 to 14, and ≥14 pg/ml) and CA 19.9 values (1 to 119, 119 to 992, 992 to 7280, and 7280 to 687.000 U/ml. On univariate analysis, IL-6 ≥6.4 pg/ml, CA 19.9, PS, stage, chemotherapy type were identified as significant risk factors for overall survival (OS). Hazard ratio (HR) in quartiles with lowest quartile as reference were 1.20 (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.91–1.57; P = 0.19), 1.87 (95% CI, 1.43–2.46; P 


The serum level of IL-6 is a strong independent prognostic biomarker in patients with unresectable PC that could be used to identify patients with poor outcome. Changes in IL-6 from baseline are predictive for survival.

Clinical trial identification

Ethics committee (nr. KA-20060113). Danish Data Protection Agency (j.nr. 2012-58-0004; HGH-2015-027; I-Suite nr:03960)

Legal entity responsible for the study

Inna Chen


Herlev Hospital


All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.