Background: Plasma concentrations of inflammatory markers are increased in response to the trauma of cardiac surgery and cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). It is, however, unknown whether the plasma cytokine levels and cytokine mRNA expression at organ level reflect each other. Methods: Twenty-six piglets (17-19 days) were allocated to the sham-group (sternotomy only, n = 13) or to the CPB-group (sternotomy, 120 min CPB procedure with 60-min aortic cross-clamp, n = 13). The pigs were observed for 0.5 h or 4 h post-CPB. Plasma levels of IL-1beta, IL-6, IL-8 and IL-10 and mRNA expression of TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10 and iNOS in organs were registered with concomitant changes in oxygenation index (OI) and expiratory nitric oxide (NO). Results: In pigs killed 0.5 h post-CPB there was a significant increase in IL-10 mRNA in the lungs and kidneys compared with the sham-group. IL-1beta mRNA was detectable in the kidneys and lungs of the CPB-pigs, while IL-6 mRNA was up regulated only in lungs. In pigs killed 4 h post-CPB a significantly higher IL-6 mRNA was found in heart tissue and a lower IL-10 mRNA was found in lungs of CPB pigs compared with the sham-group. There was a concomitant significant increase in OI and increased plasma IL-8 and IL-10 concentrations in the CPB-pigs compared with the sham-pigs. Conclusion: The cytokine mRNA expression pattern was very different for the pigs killed already 0.5 h after the CPB procedure compared with the pigs killed 4 h post-CPB. The plasma cytokine levels poorly reflected mRNA expression of the pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines.
- lung function