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Cell Res. 2006 Nov;16(11):902-7.

Expression and regulation of IL-22 in the IL-17-producing CD4+ T lymphocytes.

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Department of Immunology, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


IL-22 is a novel cytokine in the IL-10 family that functions to promote innate immunity of tissues against infection. Although CD4+ helper T lymphocytes (TH) were found as a source of IL-22, the regulation of this cytokine has been poorly understood. Here, we show that IL-22 is expressed at both mRNA and protein levels by a novel subset of TH cells that also makes IL-17. IL-22 and IL-17 were found to be coordinately regulated by TGFbeta and IL-6 during TH differentiation by real-time PCR as well as ELISA analysis. However, IL-22 does not regulate TH differentiation; exogenous IL-22 or an IL-22 antagonist had no effect on TH differentiation. These data demonstrate a novel cytokine expressed by IL-17-producing T cells, and suggest interaction and synergy of IL-22 and IL-17 signaling pathways in tissue inflammation and autoimmune diseases.

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