Pathophysiological roles of interleukin-8/CXCL8 in pulmonary diseases

Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol. 2003 Apr;284(4):L566-77. doi: 10.1152/ajplung.00233.2002.


Fifteen years have passed since the first description of interleukin (IL)-8/CXCL8 as a potent neutrophil chemotactic factor. Accumulating evidence has demonstrated that various types of cells can produce a large amount of IL-8/CXCL8 in response to a wide variety of stimuli, including proinflammatory cytokines, microbes and their products, and environmental changes such as hypoxia, reperfusion, and hyperoxia. Numerous observations have established IL-8/CXCL8 as a key mediator in neutrophil-mediated acute inflammation due to its potent actions on neutrophils. However, several lines of evidence indicate that IL-8/CXCL8 has a wide range of actions on various types of cells, including lymphocytes, monocytes, endothelial cells, and fibroblasts, besides neutrophils. The discovery of these biological functions suggests that IL-8/CXCL8 has crucial roles in various pathological conditions such as chronic inflammation and cancer. Here, an overview of its protein structure, mechanisms of production, and receptor system will be discussed as well as the pathophysiological roles of IL-8/CXCL8 in various types of lung pathologies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-8 / physiology*
  • Lung Diseases / immunology*
  • Lung Diseases / physiopathology*


  • Interleukin-8