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Pubmed ID: 30885765
Publication Date: 2019/03/15

Revisiting the combinatorial potential of cytokine subunits in the IL-12 family.

The four core members of the Interleukin-12 (IL-12) family of cytokines, IL-12, IL-23, IL-27 and IL-35 are heterodimers which share α- and β-cytokine subunits. All four cytokines are immune modulators and have been proposed to play divergent roles in inflammatory arthritis. In recent years additional combinations of α- and β-cytokine subunits belonging to the IL-12 family have been proposed to form novel cytokines such as IL-39. However, the actual extent of the combinatorial potential of the cytokine subunits in the human IL-12 family is not known. Here, we identify several combinations of subunits that form secreted heterodimeric assemblies based on a systematic orthogonal approach. The heterodimers are detected in the conditioned media harvested from mammalian cell cultures transfected with unfused pairs of cytokine subunits. While certain previously reported subunit combinations could not be recapitulated, our approach showed robustly that all four of the canonical members could be secreted. Furthermore, we provide evidence for the interaction between Cytokine Receptor Like Factor 1 (CRLF1) and Interleukin-12 subunit alpha (p35). Similar to IL-27 and IL-35 this novel heterodimer is not abundantly secreted rendering isolation from the conditioned medium very challenging, unlike IL-12 and IL-23. Our findings set the stage for fine-tuning approaches towards the biochemical reconstitution of IL-12 family cytokines for biochemical, cellular, and structural studies.
Authors: Detry Sammy , Składanowska Katarzyna , Vuylsteke Marnik , Savvides Savvas N , Bloch Yehudi ,


  1. [Last access 2019/03/15].

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