Th22 in inflammatory and autoimmune disease: prospects for therapeutic intervention

Mol Cell Biochem. 2011 Jul;353(1-2):41-6. doi: 10.1007/s11010-011-0772-y. Epub 2011 Mar 8.


T helper cell 22 (Th22) is a new subset of T cells clearly separate from Th17 and other known T cell subsets with distinct gene expression and function. With the CCR6 + CCR4 + CCR10 + phenotype and aryl hydrocarbon receptor as the key transcription factor, Th22 subsets produce cytokines such as IL-22, whose function depends on the activation of signal transduction and activators of transcription 3. IL-22 was up-regulated in Rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, Psoriasis, and atopic dermatitis patients whereas it was down-regulated in the serum of patients with sarcoidosis and systemic lupus erythematosus. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that IL-22 may have promise as a potential therapeutic for chronic inflammatory diseases, and treatment with recombinant cytokine or gene therapy delivery of IL-22 may alleviate tissue destruction during inflammatory responses. In summary, Th22 cell plays an important and complicated role in inflammatory and autoimmune disease.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Autoimmune Diseases / genetics
  • Autoimmune Diseases / immunology*
  • Autoimmune Diseases / therapy
  • Genetic Therapy
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / genetics
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Inflammation / therapy
  • Interleukins / genetics
  • Interleukins / immunology*
  • Interleukins / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer / metabolism


  • Interleukins
  • interleukin-22