Interleukin 25

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RefSeq (mRNA)



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Interleukin-25 (IL-25) – also known as interleukin-17E (IL-17E)[1] – is a protein that in humans is encoded by the IL25 gene.[2][3][4]


IL-25 is a cytokine that shares the sequence similarity with IL-17. This cytokine can induce NF-κB activation, and stimulate the production of IL-8. Both this cytokine and IL17B are ligands for the cytokine receptor IL17RB. Studies of the similar gene in mice suggested that this cytokine may be a proinflammatory cytokine favoring Th2-type immune response. Two alternatively spliced transcript variants of this gene encoding distinct isoforms have been reported.[4]

IL-25 is a cytokine that belongs to the IL-17 cytokine family and is secreted by type 2 helper T cells (Th2) and mast cells.[5][6]

Clinical significance

IL-25 induces the production of other cytokines, including IL-4, IL-5 and IL-13 in multiple tissues, which stimulate the expansion of eosinophils. This cytokine is an important molecule controlling immunity of the gut[7] and has been implicated in chronic inflammation associated with the gastrointestinal tract. IL-25 can kill some types of breast cancer cells.[8]

Further, the IL-25 gene has been identified in a chromosomal region associated with (autoimmune deleted, IBD not defined as autoimmune) diseases of the gut such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), although no direct evidence suggests that IL-25 plays any role in this disease.[9]

IL-25 has potent antitumor activity in vivo in several human cancers including melanoma, breast, lung, colon, and pancreatic cancers, suggesting the potential clinical use of IL-17E as an anticancer agent.[10]


  1. Product reference for IL-17E
  2. Lee J, Ho WH, Maruoka M, Corpuz RT, Baldwin DT, Foster JS, Goddard AD, Yansura DG, Vandlen RL, Wood WI, Gurney AL (Jan 2001). "IL-17E, a novel proinflammatory ligand for the IL-17 receptor homolog IL-17Rh1". The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 276 (2): 1660–4. doi:10.1074/jbc.M008289200. PMID 11058597.
  3. Fort MM, Cheung J, Yen D, Li J, Zurawski SM, Lo S, Menon S, Clifford T, Hunte B, Lesley R, Muchamuel T, Hurst SD, Zurawski G, Leach MW, Gorman DM, Rennick DM (Dec 2001). "IL-25 induces IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13 and Th2-associated pathologies in vivo". Immunity. 15 (6): 985–95. doi:10.1016/S1074-7613(01)00243-6. PMID 11754819.
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Entrez Gene: IL25 interleukin 25".
  5. Ikeda K, Nakajima H, Suzuki K, Kagami S, Hirose K, Suto A, Saito Y, Iwamoto I (May 2003). "Mast cells produce interleukin-25 upon Fc epsilon RI-mediated activation". Blood. 101 (9): 3594–6. doi:10.1182/blood-2002-09-2817. PMID 12511410.
  6. The HGNC site for IL-25
  7. Owyang AM, Zaph C, Wilson EH, Guild KJ, McClanahan T, Miller HR, Cua DJ, Goldschmidt M, Hunter CA, Kastelein RA, Artis D (Apr 2006). "Interleukin 25 regulates type 2 cytokine-dependent immunity and limits chronic inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract". The Journal of Experimental Medicine. 203 (4): 843–9. doi:10.1084/jem.20051496. PMC 1800834. PMID 16606667.
  8. Furuta S, Jeng YM, Zhou L, Huang L, Kuhn I, Bissell MJ, Lee WH (Apr 2011). "IL-25 causes apoptosis of IL-25R-expressing breast cancer cells without toxicity to nonmalignant cells". Science Translational Medicine. 3 (78): 78ra31. doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.3001374. PMC 3199022. PMID 21490275. Lay summaryGenetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.
  9. Büning C, Genschel J, Weltrich R, Lochs H, Schmidt H (Oct 2003). "The interleukin-25 gene located in the inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) 4 region: no association with inflammatory bowel disease". European Journal of Immunogenetics. 30 (5): 329–33. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2370.2003.00411.x. PMID 14641539.
  10. Benatar T, Cao MY, Lee Y, Lightfoot J, Feng N, Gu X, Lee V, Jin H, Wang M, Wright JA, Young AH (Jun 2010). "IL-17E, a proinflammatory cytokine, has antitumor efficacy against several tumor types in vivo". Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy. 59 (6): 805–17. doi:10.1007/s00262-009-0802-8. PMID 20012860.

Further reading