Preliminary evidence of an association between a functional interleukin-6 polymorphism and fatigue and sleep disturbance in oncology patients and their family caregivers

Christine Miaskowski, Marylin Dodd, Kathryn Lee, Claudia West, Steven M. Paul, Bruce A. Cooper, William Wara, Patrick S. Swift, Laura B. Dunn, Bradley E. Aouizerat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Context: Fatigue and sleep disturbance are common problems in oncology patients and their family caregivers (FCs). However, little is known about factors that contribute to interindividual variability in these symptoms or to their underlying biologic mechanisms. Objectives: An evaluation was done on whether genetic variation in a prominent proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin-6 (IL-6 c.-6101A>T [rs4719714]), was associated with mean ratings of evening fatigue, morning fatigue, and sleep disturbance, as well as with the trajectories of these symptoms. Methods: Over six months, participants completed standardized measures of fatigue and sleep disturbance. Linear regression was used to assess the effect of the IL-6 genotype and other covariates on mean fatigue and sleep disturbance scores. Hierarchical linear modeling was used to determine the effect of the IL-6 genotype on symptom trajectories. Results: Common allele homozygotes reported higher levels of evening fatigue (P = 0.003), morning fatigue (P = 0.09), and sleep disturbance (P = 0.003) than minor allele carriers. Predictors of baseline level and trajectories of evening fatigue included age, gender, and genotype (intercepts) and baseline level of evening fatigue (slope). Predictors of baseline level and trajectories of morning fatigue included age and genotype (intercept) and age and baseline level of morning fatigue (slope). Predictors of baseline level and trajectories of sleep disturbance included age and genotype (intercept) and baseline level of sleep disturbance (slope). Conclusions: Findings provide preliminary evidence of a genetic association between a functional promoter polymorphism in the IL-6 gene and severity of evening fatigue, morning fatigue, and sleep disturbance in oncology patients and their FCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)531-544
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Pain and Symptom Management
Volume40
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2010

Keywords

  • Fatigue
  • cancer
  • cytokines
  • family caregiver
  • genetics
  • interleukin-6
  • radiation therapy
  • sickness behavior
  • sleep disturbance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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