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Gastroenterology. 2012 Aug;143(2):347-55. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2012.04.045. Epub 2012 Apr 28.

Loss of interleukin-10 signaling and infantile inflammatory bowel disease: implications for diagnosis and therapy.

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Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.



Homozygous loss of function mutations in interleukin-10 (IL10) and interleukin-10 receptors (IL10R) cause severe infantile (very early onset) inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) was reported to induce sustained remission in 1 patient with IL-10R deficiency. We investigated heterogeneity among patients with very early onset IBD, its mechanisms, and the use of allogeneic HSCT to treat this disorder.


We analyzed 66 patients with early onset IBD (younger than 5 years of age) for mutations in the genes encoding IL-10, IL-10R1, and IL-10R2. IL-10R deficiency was confirmed by functional assays on patients' peripheral blood mononuclear cells (immunoblot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analyses). We assessed the therapeutic effects of standardized allogeneic HSCT.


Using a candidate gene sequencing approach, we identified 16 patients with IL-10 or IL-10R deficiency: 3 patients had mutations in IL-10, 5 had mutations in IL-10R1, and 8 had mutations in IL-10R2. Refractory colitis became manifest in all patients within the first 3 months of life and was associated with perianal disease (16 of 16 patients). Extraintestinal symptoms included folliculitis (11 of 16) and arthritis (4 of 16). Allogeneic HSCT was performed in 5 patients and induced sustained clinical remission with a median follow-up time of 2 years. In vitro experiments confirmed reconstitution of IL-10R-mediated signaling in all patients who received the transplant.


We identified loss of function mutations in IL-10 and IL-10R in patients with very early onset IBD. These findings indicate that infantile IBD patients with perianal disease should be screened for IL-10 and IL-10R deficiency and that allogeneic HSCT can induce remission in those with IL-10R deficiency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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