Lymphokine control of in vivo immunoglobulin isotype selection

Annu Rev Immunol. 1990;8:303-33. doi: 10.1146/annurev.iy.08.040190.001511.


Several specific conclusions can be drawn from these studies: 1. IL-4 is required for the generation of both primary polyclonal and secondary antigen-specific IgE responses in vivo. 2. IL-4 is required to maintain established, ongoing, antigen-specific and polyclonal IgE responses. 3. Most, but not all, polyclonal IgE production during a secondary immune response is IL-4-dependent. Memory B cells that have already switched to IgE at the DNA level may no longer require stimulation with IL-4 to be induced to secrete IgE. 4. The generation of a secondary IgE response is not dependent upon the presence of IL-4 during primary immunization. However, if IL-4 is not present during primary immunization, it is required during secondary immunization for the generation of an IgE response. 5. IL-4 does not appear to be required for the generation of in vivo IgG1 responses, and in at least some instances, does not contribute significantly to the generation of IgG1 responses in vivo. 6. A late-acting form of T-cell help other than IL-4 appears to be required for the generation of an IgE, but not an IgG1 response. 7. An antibody that inhibits IL-4 binding to IL-4 receptors affects Ig isotype selection in the same way as an antibody that neutralizes IL-4. 8. IFN-gamma can act in both spontaneous and induced immune responses to suppress IgE production. 9. IFN-gamma can also suppress IgG1 production and stimulate IgG2a production. However, IFN-gamma appears to suppress polyclonal IgG1 responses more than antigen-specific IgG1 responses, and it enhances, but is not required for, the generation of IgG2a responses. 10. IFN-alpha appears to resemble IFN-gamma in its ability to inhibit IgE and enhance IgG2a responses in GaM delta-injected mice, but it requires the presence of IFN-gamma to suppress IgG1 production in these mice. 11. Both IFN-alpha and IFN-gamma appear to be able to decrease IgE production in some human patients. 12. There is no direct evidence that IL-5 contributes to the generation of in vivo antibody responses. Two general conclusions may also be drawn.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin E / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin Isotypes / immunology*
  • Interferons / physiology
  • Interleukin-4 / physiology
  • Interleukin-5 / physiology
  • Lymphokines / physiology*


  • Immunoglobulin Isotypes
  • Interleukin-5
  • Lymphokines
  • Interleukin-4
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Interferons