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Biochemistry. 2003 Nov 4;42(43):12617-24.

Characterization of the recombinant extracellular domains of human interleukin-20 receptors and their complexes with interleukin-19 and interleukin-20.

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  • 1Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute at Frederick, Maryland 21702-1201, USA.


The soluble extracellular domains of human interleukin-20 (IL-20) receptors I and II (sIL-20R1 and sIL20R2), along with their ligands IL-19 and IL-20, were expressed in Drosophila S2 cells and purified to homogeneity. Formation of the receptor/receptor and ligand/receptor complexes was studied by size exclusion chromatography. Both ligands and soluble receptors were found to be monomeric in solution; homo- or heterodimers are not formed even at elevated concentrations. Under native conditions, both IL-19 and IL-20 form stable ternary 1:1:1 complexes with the sIL-20R1 and sIL20R2 receptors, as well as high-affinity binary complexes with sIL-20R2. Unexpectedly, sIL-20R1 does not bind on its own to either IL-19 or IL-20. Thus, one of the possible consecutive mechanisms of formation of the signaling ternary complex may involve two steps: first, the ligand binds to receptor II, creating a high-affinity binding site for the receptor I, and only then does receptor I complete the complex.

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