Clinical significance of combined detection of interleukin-6 and tumour markers in lung cancer

Tumour markers play an important role in the early diagnosis and guidance of prognosis of lung cancer. This study focused on the significance of combined monitoring of interleukin (IL)-6 and tumour markers in improving the specificity and sensitivity of lung cancer diagnosis and disease. The expression of IL-6, carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), neuron-specific enolase (NSE) and cytokeratin 19 fragment antigen 21-1 (CYFRA21-1) in serum of patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) (n = 138) was significantly higher compared to patients with benign pulmonary lesions (BPL) (n = 60) and was associated with the clinicopathological features of NSCLC patients. The simultaneous increase in the expression of IL-6 and tumour markers worsened the prognosis of patients. Lung cancer cells were grouped into the blank control group, IL-6 group, niclosamide group (IL-6 pathway inhibitor, NIC) and IL-6 + NIC group. The expression of CEA, NSE, CYFRA21-1, p-Erk1/2 and p-AKT in the IL-6 group was significantly higher compared to the other groups. Therefore, the combined detection of IL-6 and tumour markers is critical to improve the specificity and sensitivity of lung cancer diagnosis. This in-depth study not only helped to elucidate the mechanism of how IL-6 promotes lung cancer but also provided new ideas and entry points to resolve the low specificity and sensitivity of lung cancer-related tumour markers.