Both integrated and differential regulation of components of the IL-2/IL-2 receptor system

Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 2006 Oct;17(5):349-66. doi: 10.1016/j.cytogfr.2006.07.003. Epub 2006 Sep 5.


Interleukin-2 was discovered in 1976 as a T-cell growth factor. It was the first type I cytokine cloned and the first for which a receptor component was cloned. Its importance includes its multiple actions, therapeutic potential, and lessons for receptor biology, with three components differentially combining to form high, intermediate, and low-affinity receptors. IL-2Ralpha and IL-2Rbeta, respectively, are markers for double-negative thymocytes and regulatory T-cells versus memory cells. gamma(c), which is shared by six cytokines, is mutated in patients with X-linked severe-combined immunodeficiency. We now cover an under-reviewed area-the regulation of genes encoding IL-2 and IL-2R components, with an effort to integrate/explain this knowledge.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cyclic AMP Response Element Modulator / physiology
  • Cyclic AMP Response Element-Binding Protein / physiology
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-2 / genetics*
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit / genetics
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor beta Subunit / genetics
  • Mice
  • NF-kappa B / physiology
  • NFATC Transcription Factors / physiology
  • Phenotype
  • RNA Processing, Post-Transcriptional / physiology
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / genetics*
  • STAT5 Transcription Factor / physiology
  • Transcription Factor AP-1 / physiology


  • Cyclic AMP Response Element-Binding Protein
  • Interleukin-2
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor beta Subunit
  • NF-kappa B
  • NFATC Transcription Factors
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • STAT5 Transcription Factor
  • Transcription Factor AP-1
  • Cyclic AMP Response Element Modulator