The IL-12 family of heterodimeric cytokines: new players in the regulation of T cell responses

Immunity. 2003 Nov;19(5):641-4. doi: 10.1016/s1074-7613(03)00296-6.


Originally the only known heterodimeric cytokine, IL-12 is now part of a family of five cytokines and shares important functions in the regulation of both innate and adaptive immunity with two of them, IL-23 and IL-27. Although initially these three cytokines were considered to have largely overlapping immunological functions, more recent studies, including two articles in this issue of Immunity (Hamano et al., 2003; Villarino et al., 2003), indicate that they mediate complex and well-differentiated functions.

Publication types

  • Comment
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Interleukin-12 / physiology*
  • Mice
  • Multigene Family
  • T-Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Th1 Cells / physiology


  • Interleukin-12