Abstract

IL-36 cytokines in inflammatory and malignant diseases: not the new kid on the block anymore

Cell Mol Life Sci. 2021 Aug 7. doi: 10.1007/s00018-021-03909-4.Online ahead of print.

James Byrne 1Kevin Baker 1Aileen Houston 2 3Elizabeth Brint 4 5

 
     

Author information

  • 1Department of Pathology, Cork University Hospital, University College Cork, Clinical Sciences Building, Cork, Ireland.
  • 2Department of Medicine, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland.
  • 3APC Microbiome Ireland, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland.
  • 4Department of Pathology, Cork University Hospital, University College Cork, Clinical Sciences Building, Cork, Ireland. e.brint@ucc.ie.
  • 5APC Microbiome Ireland, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland. e.brint@ucc.ie.

Abstract

The IL-36 family of cytokines were first identified in 2000 based on their sequence homology to IL-1 cytokines. Over subsequent years, the ability of these cytokines to either agonise or antagonise an IL-1R homologue, now known as the IL-36 Receptor (IL-36R), was identified and these cytokines went through several cycles of renaming with the current nomenclature being proposed in 2010. Despite being identified over 20 years ago, it is only during the last decade that the function of these cytokines in health and disease has really begun to be appreciated, with both homeostatic functions in wound healing and response to infection, as well as pathological functions now ascribed. In the disease context, over activation of IL-36 has now been associated with many inflammatory diseases including Psoriasis and inflammatory bowel diseases, with roles in cancer also now being investigated. This review summarises the current knowledge of IL-36 biology, its role in inflammatory diseases and focuses on an emerging role for IL-36 in cancer.

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