Expression and structure of interleukin 4 receptor (IL-4R) complex in human invasive pituitary adenomas

Neurosci Lett. 2007 Apr 24;417(1):30-5. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2007.02.070. Epub 2007 Mar 2.


Pituitary adenomas are frequently invasive of surrounding tissues, which adversely affects the surgical outcome and the disease-free survival of patients. In the present study, Interleukin 4 receptor (IL-4R) complex has been investigated to figure out whether the three subunits are overexpressed in human invasive pituitary adenomas. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis for interleukin 4 receptor alpha (IL-4Ralpha), interleukin 13 receptor alpha1 (IL-13Ralpha1), interleukin 2 receptor gammac (IL-2Rgammac) were performed on total RNA extracted from 10 non-invasive pituitary adenomas, 30 invasive pituitary adenomas, one glioblastoma multiforme, one normal human pituitary tissue sample and one normal human brain tissue sample. Quantitative real-time PCR and in situ immunofluorescence assay were performed in five invasive functioning pituitary adenoma samples and five invasive nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma samples. RT-PCR analysis for IL-4Ralpha, IL-13Ralpha1 and IL-2Rgammac chains were overexpressed in invasive pituitary adenomas. The transcripts for three subunits were not/weakly expressed in normal pituitary tissue and normal brain tissue. The quantitative real-time PCR and in situ immunofluorescence assay confirmed the results of the RT-PCR analysis. Our results indicate that human invasive pituitary adenomas express type III IL-4R complex. These receptors may serve as a novel target for immunotoxin therapy in patients with invasive pituitary adenomas who are not amenable to total surgical resection or for recurrent cases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / diagnosis
  • Adenoma / immunology*
  • Adenoma / metabolism*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / chemistry
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy / methods
  • Immunotherapy / trends
  • Interleukin Receptor Common gamma Subunit / genetics
  • Interleukin-13 Receptor alpha1 Subunit / genetics
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / diagnosis
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / genetics
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / immunology
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Protein Subunits / analysis
  • Protein Subunits / chemistry
  • Protein Subunits / genetics*
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4 / analysis
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4 / chemistry
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4 / genetics*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • IL2RG protein, human
  • Interleukin Receptor Common gamma Subunit
  • Interleukin-13 Receptor alpha1 Subunit
  • Protein Subunits
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4