Human osteoblastlike cells do not respond to interleukin-6.
Littlewood AJ., Aarden LA., Evans DB., Russell RG., Gowen M.
Interleukin 6 (IL-6) exerts well-established effects on cells of the immune system as well as on various other cell types. It has been implicated in the control of connective tissue cells in such conditions as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis. We have investigated the effects of recombinant human interleukin-6 (rhIL-6) on human osteoblastlike cells derived from explants of trabecular bone. ROS 17/2.8 cells were used as an additional osteoblastlike cell model system. We were unable to identify any effects of rhIL-6 (5-5000 pg/ml) on the proliferation, alkaline phosphatase activity. osteocalcin production, or release of cytokines or prostaglandins by either osteoblastlike cell model system. Since we have shown previously that these cells release IL-6 in culture, we used a sheep anti-human IL-6 antibody to investigate the possibility that (1) action of added exogenous IL-6 could be masking endogenous production, and (2) endogenous IL-6 may regulate the effects of osteotropic agents on the osteoblastlike cells. Presence of the antibody exerted no detectable effects on 1,25-(OH)2D3-stimulated alkaline phosphatase or on proliferation or TNF production enhanced by IL-1. Thus IL-6 does not appear to be involved in the regulation of osteoblast activity.