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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Pro-inflammatory cytokine response of the fluid contents of spermatoceles and epididymal cysts.

The aim of the study was to determine the cellular contents and concentrations of interleukin 6 (IL-6), interleukin 8 (IL-8) and tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) in fluids of patients with spermatocele or epididymal cyst. Twenty-five symptomatic patients, 14 with epididymal cysts and 11 with spermatoceles, were included in the study. Fluids were obtained during surgical excision of the cysts and cytological smears were stained with May-Gruenwald-Giemsa to establish cell components. The concentrations of IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-alpha were measured by chemiluminescent immunometric assay. Cytological analysis of the fluids demonstrated various sperm forms ranging from immature germ cells to degenerated spermatozoa without inflammatory cells such as neutrophils and macrophages. The concentrations (mean+/- SEM, pg/mg protein) of IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-alpha were 13.52 +/- 1.40, 22.20 +/- 2.43, 3.51 +/- 1.43 in spermatocele fluids and 5.76 +/- 0.48, 11.57 +/- 1.89, 2.53 +/- 0.41 in epididymal cyst fluids. Both IL-6 and IL-8 concentrations in the spermatocele group were higher than in the epididymal cyst group (P < 0.0001). There were no differences in TNF-alpha concentrations between the groups (P > 0.05). These findings indicate that local production of pro-inflammatory cytokines is involved in cyst formation. The presence of immunologic activation in these fluids advocates a policy of selective surgical intervention in patients with spermatocele or epididymal cyst.[1]


  1. Pro-inflammatory cytokine response of the fluid contents of spermatoceles and epididymal cysts. Koçak, I., Dündar, M., Yenisey, C., Serter, M., Günaydin, G. Andrologia (2002) [Pubmed]
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