The numerous growth factors and cytokines take part in mechanisms of tumor growth and metastasing.
The aim of this study was determination of sFas, IL-6 and VEGF serum levels in 19 patients with adrenal cortical carcinoma (11 women and 8 men aged 2172 years). The control group comprised 40 practically healthy donors (22 women and 18 men aged 1970 years). sFas, IL-6 and VEGF before adrenalectomy and in the control were measured by ELISA. Mean IL-6 (4.6 ng/ml) and VEGF (438.7 pg/ml) levels in adrenocortical carcinoma patients were significantly (P=0.004) higher than in the control (IL-6 1.3 ng/ml, VEGF 126.5 pg/ml). There was no difference in serum sFas between patients (2.0 ng/ml) and the control (0.8 ng/ml). sFas, IL-6 and VEGF were markedly elevated in patients with advanced (III-IV) stages of the disease as compared to early (I-II) stages. In patients with nonfunctional adrenal cortical carcinoma, serum level of VEGF (571.9 pg/ml) was significantly (P=0.046) higher than that in patients with Cushings syndrome (460.1 pg/ml). No differences in serum sFas and IL-6 levels were revealed between patients with nonfunctional and hormonally-active tumors. Direct correlation was found between VEGF and IL-6 (P=0.56; r=0.009). 5-year overall survival (100%) of patients with serum VEGF less then 300 pg/ml was significantly (P=0.049) higher compared to patients with serum VEGF exceeding 300 pg/ml (34.3%). 5-year overall survival didnt depend on the pretreatment serum sFas and IL-6 levels.
We suggest that VEGF serum level in adrenal cortical carcinoma patients may be used as a factor of clinical behaviour and prognosis.