Interleukin-1 and Related Cytokines in the Regulation of Inflammation and Immunity

Immunity. 2019 Apr 16;50(4):778-795. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2019.03.012.


Forty years after its naming, interleukin-1 (IL-1) is experiencing a renaissance brought on by the growing understanding of its context-dependent roles and advances in the clinic. Recent studies have identified important roles for members of the IL-1 family-IL-18, IL-33, IL-36, IL-37, and IL-38-in inflammation and immunity. Here, we review the complex functions of IL-1 family members in the orchestration of innate and adaptive immune responses and their diversity and plasticity. We discuss the varied roles of IL-1 family members in immune homeostasis and their contribution to pathologies, including autoimmunity and auto-inflammation, dysmetabolism, cardiovascular disorders, and cancer. The trans-disease therapeutic activity of anti-IL-1 strategies argues for immunity and inflammation as a metanarrative of modern medicine.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adaptive Immunity / immunology*
  • Animals
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / immunology
  • Cytokines / genetics
  • Cytokines / immunology
  • Cytokines / physiology*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / immunology
  • Hematopoiesis / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate / immunology*
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Interleukin-1 / immunology
  • Interleukin-1 / physiology*
  • Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Multigene Family
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / immunology
  • Receptors, Cytokine / genetics
  • Receptors, Cytokine / immunology


  • Cytokines
  • Interleukin-1
  • Receptors, Cytokine