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World J Gastroenterol. 2009 Oct 7;15(37):4609-14.

Involvement of interleukin-15 and interleukin-21, two gamma-chain-related cytokines, in celiac disease.


Celiac disease (CD), an enteropathy caused by dietary gluten in genetically susceptible individuals, is histologically characterized by villous atrophy, crypt cell hyperplasia, and increased number of intra-epithelial lymphocytes. The nature of CD pathogenesis remains unclear, but recent evidence indicates that both innate and adaptive immune responses are necessary for the phenotypic expression and pathologic changes characteristic of CD. Extensive studies of molecules produced by immune cells in the gut of CD patients have led to identification of two cytokines, namely interleukin (IL)-15 and IL-21, which are thought to play a major role in orchestrating the mucosal inflammatory response in CD. Here we review the current knowledge of the expression and function of IL-15 and IL-21 in CD.

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