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J Leukoc Biol. 2010 Apr;87(4):703-12. doi: 10.1189/jlb.0909639. Epub 2009 Dec 30.

c-Maf activates the promoter and enhancer of the IL-21 gene, and TGF-beta inhibits c-Maf-induced IL-21 production in CD4+ T cells.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular Genetics, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba 260-8670, Japan.

Abstract

Previous studies have shown that IL-6 potently induces IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells, whereas TGF-beta inhibits IL-6-induced IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells. In this study, we addressed the mechanisms underlying the transcriptional regulation of IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells. We found that IL-6 induced c-Maf expression in CD4(+) T cells and that the enforced expression of c-Maf induced IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells without IL-6, IL-4/STAT6 signaling, or an autocrine effect of IL-21. Moreover, we found that c-Maf directly bound to and activated IL-21P and the CNS-2 enhancer through MARE sites. On the other hand, we also found that although TGF-beta up-regulated IL-6-induced c-Maf expression in CD4(+) T cells, TGF-beta inhibited c-Maf-induced IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells. Finally, we found that Foxp3 bound to IL-21P and the CNS-2 enhancer and inhibited c-Maf-induced IL-21 production modestly but significantly in CD4(+) T cells. Taken together, these results suggest that c-Maf induces IL-21 production directly in CD4(+) T cells by activating IL-21P and the CNS-2 enhancer and that TGF-beta suppresses c-Maf-induced IL-21 production in CD4(+) T cells.

PMID:
20042469
DOI:
10.1189/jlb.0909639
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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