IL-6 Gene Detail
Interleukin 6 is a pro-inflammatory cytokine that plays a crucial role in inflammation and regulates expression of c-reactive-protein (CRP).
IL-6 -174 G>C
The C allele has been associated with raised IL-6 and CRP concentrations, inflammation, obesity, insulin resistance, dyslipidaemia, visceral fat deposition, type 2 diabetes, several cancers and raised systolic blood pressure. All of these are pronounced in smokers.
The research does show that IL6 can have pro- and anti-inflammatory properties. IL6 can reduce inflammatory process by promoting synthesis of anti-inflammatory cytokines and negatively regulating inflammatory targets.
Individuals with the GC and CC genotype should follow a diet to reduce inflammation that includes:
- Increasing omega 3 fatty acids,
- Decreasing sources of saturated fat and trans fat and replacing them with mono-unsaturated fats. A study by van Dijk et al in 2009 saw that eating a diet high in saturated fats for 8 weeks lead to an increased expression of inflammatory genes (IL6 and NFkB) in the adipose tissue compared to a diet rich in mono-unsaturated fats resulted in more anti-inflammation gene expression.
- Moderating omega 6 fatty acid intake,
- Increasing intake of vegetables and anti-oxidant-rich foods.
- If dietary intake of omega 3 fatty acids is inadequate, supplementation may be required.
- A healthy weight as adipose tissue is a major source of IL6, providing 30% of total circulating concentration of IL6 in healthy individuals.
- Avoidance of all smoking.
- A high sensitivity CRP blood test may give further insight for at risk individuals.
Role of interleukin-6 gene polymorphisms in the risk of coronary artery disease
Wang et al, 2015