Gallagher G.,Institute for Genetic Immunology
Cytokine and Growth Factor Reviews | Year: 2010
First reported in 1999, IL-19 remains a mystery in many ways. Despite appearing in many genome scans and candidate gene studies, and having been searched for specifically as part of the IL-10 family, its function is still to be defined. Nonetheless, a pattern of Th2 promotion is coalescing from this nebulous body of work, supported by increasing evidence for a role in asthma. Similarly, a clear but less intuitive role as a subtle immunomodulator is emerging in psoriasis and chronic inflammatory disorders in general. Indeed, several human diseases and their animal models have highlighted a role for IL-19. Key questions remain, relating to the nature of its receptor, its function (if any) on leukocytes and how its effects are distinguished by the cell from those of IL-20 and IL-24. In this review, I shall attempt to bring together a summary of the known work - disparate as it may be - as well as presenting a picture of these two important clinical disorders and the potential involvement of this somewhat enigmatic cytokine. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.