eISSN: 1644-4124
ISSN: 1426-3912
Central European Journal of Immunology
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Clinical immunology

Urine interleukin-6, interleukin-8 and transforming growth factor β1 in infants with urinary tract infection and asymptomatic bacteriuria

Grażyna Krzemień, Agnieszka Szmigielska, Agnieszka Turczyn, Małgorzata Pańczyk-Tomaszewska

(Cent Eur J Immunol 2016; 41 (3): 260-267)
Introduction: Urinary tract infection (UTI) occurs in 1.1% of girls and 1.4% of boys during the first year of life. Asymptomatic bacteriuria (ABU) is usually detected incidentally in 0.9% of girls and 2.5% of boys at this age. The aim of the study was to assess the usefulness of measurement of pro-inflammatory urine interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-8 concentrations and anti-inflammatory transforming growth factor 1 (TGF-1) level in infants with febrile UTI, non-febrile UTI and ABU.

Material and methods: A total of 35 children, mean age 6.14 ±3.47 months, were divided into three groups: group I – febrile UTI (n = 13), group II – non-febrile UTI (n = 13) and group III – ABU (n = 9). At the time of enrollment urine IL-6, IL-8, TGF-β1 and serum C-reactive protein (CRP), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), and white blood cell count (WBC) were measured. Renal ultrasound was performed in all children, 99mTc-dimercaptosuccinic acid scintigraphy (DMSA) and voiding cystourethrography in children with UTI.

Results: Urine concentrations of IL-6 and IL-8 were significantly higher in febrile UTI compared to those with non-febrile UTI and ABU (p < 0.5, p < 0.01) and positively correlated with CRP, ESR and WBC (p < 0.01). Urine levels of TGF-β1 were significantly higher in children with febrile UTI compared to those with ABU (p < 0.05) and positively correlated with WBC (p < 0.01). Inflammatory changes in the DMSA scan were detected in 66.6% of children with UTI. No significant difference in frequency of an abnormal DMSA scan compared to a normal scan was found in groups with febrile and non-febrile UTI. No relations between urine cytokines, systemic inflammatory markers and changes in DMSA scan were observed. The cutoff value for detection of inflammatory changes in the DMSA scan for IL-8 was 120 pg/mg creatinine (Cr) and 40 pg/mg Cr for TGF-β1. Based on this value, the sensitivity for IL-8 was 58.3%, specificity 100% and for TGF-β1 66.7% and 83.7%, respectively.

Conclusions: We found significant differences in children with febrile UTI and ABU regarding urine IL-6, IL-8 and TGF-β1 levels. Urine cytokines and systemic inflammatory markers do not differentiate between upper and lower UTI in infants.


urinary tract infection, asymptomatic bacteriuria, interleukin-6, interleukin-8, transforming growth factor β1

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