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J Immunol. 2001 Nov 1;167(9):5193-201.

Molecular mechanisms of IL-2 gene regulation following costimulation through LFA-1.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.


The integrin LFA-1 serves as an accessory molecule in T cell activation. In addition to its well-known role as an adhesion molecule, LFA-1 can contribute to T cell activation and up-regulation of IL-2 gene expression. However, the specific mechanisms by which LFA-1 influences T cell activation have not been elucidated. Therefore, we examined the impact of LFA-1:ICAM-1 interactions on transcriptional and posttranscriptional IL-2 gene regulation, using a costimulation-negative cell line transfected with MHC class II alone, or in combination with ICAM-1 or B7-1. IL-2 transcription was assessed utilizing transgenic mice expressing an IL-2 promoter luciferase reporter construct crossed to DO11.10 TCR-transgenic mice, and IL-2 mRNA stability was evaluated by real-time RT-PCR. Comparison of naive and previously activated T cells demonstrates a dramatic increase in IL-2-luciferase transcription in activated T cells that can, in part, be attributed to downstream signaling events. Costimulation through LFA-1 enhances transcription of the transgenic reporter construct across a wide Ag dose range, but does not affect IL-2 mRNA stability. In contrast, CD28 costimulation is clearly mediated through up-regulation of IL-2 transcription and through enhancement of mRNA stability. These results indicate that the primary pathway whereby engagement of LFA-1 through its ligand ICAM-1 up-regulates IL-2 gene expression is through enhanced IL-2 transcription, in the absence of any effect on IL-2 mRNA stabilization.

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