Interleukin-25 (IL-25) is a cytokine that shares sequence similarity with interleukin 17. This cytokine can induce NF-kappaB activation, and stimulate the production of interleukin 8. Both this cytokine and interleukin 17B are ligands for the cytokine receptor IL17BR. IL-25 is a member of the IL-17 family of cytokines. However, unlike the other members of this family, IL-25 promotes T helper (Th) 2 responses. IL-25 also regulates the development of autoimmune inflammation mediated by IL-17–producing T cells. IL-25 and IL-17, being members of the same cytokine family, play opposing roles in the pathogenesis of organ-specific autoimmunity. IL-25 promotes cell expansion and Th2 cytokine production when Th2 central memory cells are stimulated with thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP)–activated dendritic cells (DCs), homeostatic cytokines, or T cell receptor for antigen triggering. Elevated expression of IL-25 and IL-25R transcripts was observed in asthmatic lung tissues and atopic dermatitis skin lesions, linking their possible roles with exacerbated allergic disorders. A plausible explanation that IL-25 produced by innate effector eosinophils and basophils may augment the allergic inflammation by enhancing the maintenance and functions of adaptive Th2 memory cells had been provided.
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