Research Papers:

Circulating levels of C-reactive protein, interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor-α and risk of colorectal adenomas: a meta-analysis

Xiaoqian Zhang, Shanglong Liu and Yanbing Zhou _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:64371-64379. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.11853

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Xiaoqian Zhang1, Shanglong Liu1, Yanbing Zhou1

1Department of General Surgery, The Affiliated Hospital of Qingdao University, Qingdao, Shandong 266003, P.R. China

Correspondence to:

Yanbing Zhou, email: [email protected]

Keywords: C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor-α, colorectal adenomas, meta-analysis

Received: May 24, 2016    Accepted: August 25, 2016    Published: September 06, 2016


Results from publications on inflammatory markers of C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and risk of colorectal adenomas are not consistent. A meta-analysis was conducted to explore the above-mentioned associations. Relevant studies were identified by a search of Embase, Medline and PubMed through February 2016. A random effect model was adopted to combine study-specific odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (95% CI). Between-study heterogeneity and publications bias were assessed. Dose–response relationships were assessed by restricted cubic splines. Nineteen observational studies were included. For highest vs. lowest levels, results from this meta-analysis did not support an association between circulating levels of CRP [OR (95% CI): 1.15 (0.94-1.40)], IL-6 [1.17 (0.94-1.46)] and TNF-α [0.99 (0.75-1.31)] and risk of colorectal adenomas, respectively. The findings were supported by sensitivity analysis and subgroup analysis. In dose-response analysis, the risk of colorectal adenomas increased by 2% [1.02 (0.97-1.08)] for each 1 mg/L increment in circulation CRP levels, 9% [1.09 (0.91-1.31)] for each 1 ng/L increment in circulation IL-6 levels, and 6% [1.06 (0.93-1.21)] for each 1 pg/mL increment in circulation TNF-α levels. Moderate between-study heterogeneity was found. No evidence of publication bias was found. Circulation levels of CRP, IL-6 and TNF-α might be not useful biomarkers for identifying colorectal adenomas, respectively.

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