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Gastroenterology. 2009 Jun;136(7):2270-9. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2009.02.049.

Interleukin-25 inhibits interleukin-12 production and Th1 cell-driven inflammation in the gut.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine and Centre of Excellence for Genomic Risk Assessment in Multifactorial and Complex Diseases, University "Tor Vergata" of Rome, Rome, Italy.



During the pathogenesis of Crohn's disease (CD), interleukin (IL)-12, a cytokine produced by mucosal CD14+ monocyte-like cells, promotes tissue-damaging T helper cell (Th) 1-mediated inflammation through mechanisms that are not fully understood. IL-25 promotes Th2 cell responses by activating major histocompatibility complex class II-positive non-T and non-B cells. Because Th1 and Th2 cells, and the cytokines they release, are often mutually antagonistic, we examined whether IL-25 affects IL-12 production or Th1 cell-mediated inflammation in the gut.


Studies were performed using colonic samples from patients and mice with peptidoglycan (PGN)-, 2,4,6-trinitrobenzenesulphonic acid (TNBS)-, or oxazolone-induced colitis. IL-25 receptor (IL-25R) levels were evaluated in intestinal lamina propria mononuclear cells by flow cytometry, and IL-25 levels were measured by real-time polymerase chain reaction, immunoblotting, and immunohistochemistry. Mucosal CD14+ cells from patients with CD were incubated with IL-25 and/or lipopolysaccharide or PGN. Mice were injected with IL-25, and some mice first received injections of an IL-13 blocking antibody. Cytokines were quantified by real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.


CD14+ cells from the mucosa of CD patients expressed IL-25R and responded to IL-25 by decreasing the synthesis of IL-12 and IL-23. IL-25 prevented PGN-induced colitis in mice. IL-25 induced IL-13 production in the colon, but IL-13 was not required for suppression of PGN colitis. IL-25 ameliorated TNBS- and oxazolone-colitis. Patients with CD or ulcerative colitis produced significantly less IL-25 compared with controls.


IL-25 inhibits CD14+ cell-derived cytokines and experimental colitis. IL-25 could be a useful treatment of CD and ulcerative colitis.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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