alexa IL-21 receptor expression determines the temporal phases of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.
Genetics & Molecular Biology

Genetics & Molecular Biology

Journal of Stem Cell Research & Therapy

Author(s): Liu R

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The IL-21 receptor (IL-21R) consists of a unique subunit and a common gamma chain (gamma(c)) that is shared with other cytokines including IL-2, IL-4, IL-7, and IL-15. The interaction between IL-21 and IL-21R results in significant effects on both innate and adaptive immune responses. In this study we examined the influence of IL-21R deficiency (IL-21R(-/-)) on the development of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model of human multiple sclerosis (MS). IL-21R(-/-) mice developed EAE earlier and more severe neurological impairment than control mice, yet those mice could effectively recover from neurological deficits. The impact on EAE initiation by IL-21R deficiency was associated with a defect of CD4(+)CD25(+) T regulatory (Treg) cells and a down-regulated expression of Foxp3. The recovery from IL-21R(-/-) EAE was correlated with an expansion of Treg cells as well as an organ-specific redistribution of NK cells. These results suggest that a temporal influence of IL-21 on the activity of immunoregulatory circuits can be important in the modulation of the course of the autoimmune disease.

This article was published in Exp Neurol. and referenced in Journal of Stem Cell Research & Therapy

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