Normal production of inflammatory cytokines in chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia syndromes determined by intracellular cytokine staining in short-term cultured blood mononuclear cells

Authors

  • M. R. AMEL KASHIPAZ,

    1. Division of Molecular and Clinical Immunology, School of Clinical Laboratory Sciences, University of Nottingham, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • D. SWINDEN,

    1. Division of Molecular and Clinical Immunology, School of Clinical Laboratory Sciences, University of Nottingham, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • I. TODD,

    1. Division of Molecular and Clinical Immunology, School of Clinical Laboratory Sciences, University of Nottingham, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • R. J. POWELL

    1. Division of Molecular and Clinical Immunology, School of Clinical Laboratory Sciences, University of Nottingham, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK
    Search for more papers by this author

Dr Ian Todd, Division of Immunology, A Floor West Block, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK.
 E-mail: Ian.Todd@nottingham.ac.uk

SUMMARY

It has been proposed that cytokines play a role in the pathogenesis of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). However, different studies have reported conflicting results using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay or polymerase chain reaction to detect cytokines in these conditions. In the present study, for the first time, the production of inflammatory [interleukin (IL)-1α, IL-6, and TNF-α] and anti-inflammatory (IL-10) cytokines by CD14+ and CD14 peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) patients and sex- and age-matched normal subjects was investigated at the level of individual cells using the technique of intracellular cytokine staining and flow cytometry. Cultures were carried out in the presence of polymyxin B to inhibit the effect of endotoxins on cytokine production by monocytes. The mean intensity of fluorescence (MIF) and percentage of CD14+ (monocytes) and CD14 (lymphocytes) cytokine-producing mononuclear cells were comparable in patients and controls in either unstimulated or IFN-γ-stimulated conditions. Our study indicates that dysregulation of cytokine production by circulating monocytes or non-monocytic cells (lymphocytes) is not a dominant factor in the pathogenesis of CFS/FMS.

Ancillary