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Immunity. 2008 Apr;28(4):477-87. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2008.03.002.

Cytokine signaling modules in inflammatory responses.

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  • 1Molecular Immunology and Inflammation Branch, National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20852, USA.


Cytokine signaling via a restricted number of Jak-Stat pathways positively and negatively regulates all cell types involved in the initiation, propagation, and resolution of inflammation. Here, we focus on Jak-Stat signaling in three major cell types involved in inflammatory responses: T cells, neutrophils, and macrophages. We summarize how the Jak-Stat pathways in these cells are negatively regulated by the Suppressor of cytokine signaling (Socs) proteins. We emphasize that common Jak-Stat-Socs signaling modules can have diverse developmental, pro- and anti-inflammatory outcomes depending on the cytokine receptor activated and which genes are accessible at a given time in a cell's life. Because multiple components of Jak-Stat-Socs pathways are mutated or closely associated with human inflammatory diseases, and cytokine-based therapies are increasingly deployed to treat inflammation, understanding cytokine signaling will continue to advance our ability to manipulate chronic and acute inflammatory diseases.

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