Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Jekyll and Hyde of cytokines: IL-25 both promotes and limits inflammatory diseases

11.04.2006


The same signal responsible for promoting the type of immune responses that cause asthma and allergy can also limit the type of inflammation associated with debilitating diseases like inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis and multiple sclerosis, according to researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. The researchers discovered how IL-25, a signaling protein known as a cytokine, both prevents destructive inflammation and promotes immune responses associated with asthma and allergic responses.

The findings, which appear the April issue of the Journal of Experimental Medicine, suggest that manipulating IL-25 could provide a method to treat a wide variety of chronic inflammatory diseases.

"It appears that IL-25 has a Jekyll and Hyde personality: it can be helpful or hurtful depending on how it interacts with T helper cells, a subset of immune cells that influences inflammatory responses," said David Artis, an assistant professor in Penn’s Department of Pathobiology and senior author of the study. "These studies show that IL-25 promotes type 2 T helper cells that drive the type of response required for eradicating worm infections and causing asthma. Importantly, IL-25 can simultaneously limit destructive inflammation caused by inflammatory T helper cells commonly found in diseases like inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis and MS."



IL-25 can be considered a "good" cytokine by limiting chronic inflammatory responses. At the same time, the ability of IL-25 to promote type 2 responses that drive asthma could be considered the "evil" side of the cytokine.

By examining mice infected with Trichuris, a species of intestinal parasites known as whipworms, the researchers were able to define IL-25’s role in promoting type 2 inflammation to fight infection. In mice that lack the ability to produce IL-25, researchers saw a dramatic reduction in the ability to mount a type 2 response that eradicates the parasites. Furthermore, in the absence of IL-25, mice developed a destructive inflammatory response similar to that observed in models of inflammatory bowel disease.

These results also support the notion that the immune response that causes allergies and asthma is an evolutionary hangover resulting from mankind’s historical fight with parasitic worm infections. That is, a type 2 response that was once useful in fighting worm infections has now become a dangerous menace, causing inflammatory responses to commonly encountered environmental antigens. About 30 percent of Americans suffer from the negative affects of type 2 inflammation: asthma and allergies. These conditions result from an inflammatory response to factors encountered in the environment, whether they are industrial air pollutants or molecules of peanut oil.

"It is possible that for most of human history, cytokines like IL-25 have promoted type 2 T helper cells that fight infection with intestinal parasites like Trichuris, " said Colby Zaph, a co-author and Irvington Research Fellow at Penn. "In industrialized countries, where worm infections are now rare, this redundant type 2 response is associated with diseases like asthma. "Identifying a role for IL-25 in this type of response may offer an exciting new avenue for treating diseases associated with dysregulated inflammatory responses," Zaph said.

Greg Lester | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.upenn.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers
16.02.2018 | National University of Science and Technology MISIS

nachricht New process allows tailor-made malaria research
16.02.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

'Lipid asymmetry' plays key role in activating immune cells

20.02.2018 | Life Sciences

MRI technique differentiates benign breast lesions from malignancies

20.02.2018 | Medical Engineering

Major discovery in controlling quantum states of single atoms

20.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>