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Regulation of interleukin-10 gene expression: possible mechanisms accounting for its upregulation and for maturational differences in its expression by blood mononuclear cells

Abstract

Interleukin-10 (IL-10) downmodulates phagocytic immune responses and accentuates humoral responses. Human neonates exhibit broad immune deficits that parallel actions of IL-10. We postulated that IL-10 production would be diminished in neonatal blood cells. We found that IL-10 production by lipopolysaccharide-stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMNCs) in vitro was greater by adult cells than by term cells and preterm cells. Additional studies were undertaken to identify mechanisms responsible for the developmental differences in IL-10 gene expression. IL-10 transcription was present in freshly isolated adult and neonatal cells in the absence of detectable levels of transcript. Transcription rates were not different between adult and neonatal cells. IL-10 transcripts were approximately 40% more abundant in adult cells than in term cells and were consistent with differences in secreted protein; however, no differences were noted in mRNA stability. IL-10 half-life was 60 minutes for both adult and term PBMNCs. We conclude that up-regulation of IL-10 gene expression in PBMNCs is modulated at the post-transcriptional level, that IL-10 protein production and mRNA content are greater in activated cells from adults compared with those from neonates, and that maturational differences in IL-10 expression are not due to differences in transcription rate or mRNA stability. Maturational differences in IL-10 expression might be due to differences in subpopulations of cytokine-producing cells or differences in nucleo-cytoplasmic transport.

Authors: Le T, Leung L, Carroll WL, Schibler KR
Journal: Blood 89: 4112-4119
Year: 1997
PubMed: Find in PubMed