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J Exp Med. 2007 Jan 22;204(1):141-52. Epub 2007 Jan 16.

Regulation of IL-27 p28 gene expression in macrophages through MyD88- and interferon-gamma-mediated pathways.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, NY 10021, USA.


Interleukin (IL)-27 is the newest member of the IL-12 family of heterodimeric cytokines composed of the Epstein-Barr virus-induced gene 3 and p28 chains. IL-27 not only plays an important role in the regulation of differentiation of naive T helper cells but also possesses antiinflammatory properties. IL-27 is an early product of activated monocytes/macrophages and dendritic cells. However, the mechanisms whereby inflammatory signals stimulate IL-27 production have not been explored. In this study, we investigated the transcriptional regulation of the mouse IL-27 p28 gene in macrophages in response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon (IFN)-gamma. We found that LPS-stimulated p28 production was completely dependent on the Toll-like receptor 4/myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88)-mediated pathway but only partially dependent on nuclear factor kappaB c-Rel. IFN-gamma-induced p28 production/secretion was also partially dependent on MyD88 but independent of c-Rel. We then cloned the mouse p28 gene promoter and mapped its multiple transcription initiation sites. Furthermore, we identified critical promoter elements that mediate the inductive effects of LPS and IFN-gamma, separately and synergistically, on p28 gene transcription in a c-Rel- and interferon regulatory factor 1-dependent manner, respectively.

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