Drug Discov Ther. 2020;14(2):89-92. (DOI: 10.5582/ddt.2020.03014)

Change of serum cytokine profiles by propranolol treatment in patients with infantile hemangioma

Tani S, Kunimoto K, Inaba Y, Mikita N, Kaminaka C, Kanazawa N, Yamamoto Y, Kakimoto N, Suenaga T, Takeuchi T, Suzuki H, Jinnin M


Infantile hemangioma is a benign cutaneous tumor, which sometimes rapidly enlarges, causes cosmetic problem, destroys normal tissue, and possibly threatens life. Dye lasers, steroid administration, and watchful waiting had been the treatment options for infantile hemangioma, but in recent years propranolol therapy has become available. The mechanism underlying the action of propranolol, however, is still unknown. We hypothesized that cytokines whose expressions change before and during the treatment are responsible for the efficacy of the drug. This study aims to prove the hypothesis using patients' sera and membrane array. In this study, the serum cytokine concentrations of five patients with infantile hemangioma were measured using membrane array of 20 angiogenic cytokines. We compared them before and during propranolol treatment to identify the cytokines responsible for the effect of propranolol. Signals for angiogenin, epidermal growth factor (EGF), platelet-derived growth factor-BB (PDGF-BB), regulated on activation, normal T‑cell expressed and secreted chemokine (RANTES), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases 1 (TIMP-1), and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases 2 (TIMP-2) were evident in all five cases before treatment. Furthermore, PDGFBB was the only cytokine of which concentration was decreased during treatment with statistically significant difference. This report is a pilot study with a small number of samples, and further detailed research with increased number of samples is necessary. Nonetheless, our results suggest that PDGFBB may be involved in the action of propranolol. In addition, its serum concentration can be utilized as a potential marker of the therapeutic effect.

KEYWORDS: infantile hemangioma, propranolol, PDGF-BB, cytokine, angiogenesis

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