Interleukin-6 and the thyroid

in European Journal of Endocrinology
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Interleukins are proteins belonging to the family of cytokines, which are soluble pleiotropic mediators known to intervene quantitatively and qualitatively in the regulation of the immune response (1), in the orchestration of complex processes such as inflammation, hematopoiesis and wound healing (2), and also in normal physiological functions including bone formation and resorption (3) and the endometrial cycle (4).

Lymphocytes, macrophages and fibroblasts are the most important sources of cytokines, the synthesis of which takes place also in numerous other cell types, including brain, pituitary, gastrointestinal tract, kidney and adrenal glands (see Ref. 5 for a review). Cytokines can exert their action locally as paracrine or autocrine factors but are also capable of acting as hormone-like substances at sites distant from their synthesis, affecting various cell functions and enabling communication among different cell types, representing a link between the neuroendocrine system and the immune system (6).

The effects of several


     European Society of Endocrinology

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