Prolactin and interleukin-2 receptors in T lymphocytes signal through a MGF-STAT5-like transcription factor

Endocrinology. 1995 Dec;136(12):5700-8. doi: 10.1210/endo.136.12.7588326.


The cell surface receptors for PRL and interleukin-2 (IL-2) are structurally distinct, but share regulatory tasks in T lymphocytes. They can stimulate proliferation and activate transcription of over-lapping sets of genes of T cells. PRL and IL-2 receptor activation are both linked to the Jak/Stat (signal transducer and activator of transcription) pathway. We investigated the ability of PRL and IL-2 to activate Stat proteins in different T cell lines. The DNA binding specificities, the reactivities toward Stat-specific antisera, and the mol wt of IL-2- and PRL-induced DNA-binding proteins in Nb2 and C196 T cell lines were investigated. A comparison with the Stat proteins induced by interferon-gamma, PRL, and IL-6 in T47D mammary tumor cells was made. We found that these parameters were indistinguishable for one of the PRL- and IL-2-induced factors. A transcription factor closely related to mammary gland factor-Stat5 is rapidly activated upon interaction of IL-2 and PRL with their respective receptors. Activation of a second protein related to Stat1 was also observed. Our results emphasize the role of PRL as a regulator of the immune response and indicate that the Stat factors mammary gland factor-Stat5 and Stat1 play a role in the regulation of gene expression during T cell development.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Line
  • DNA / metabolism
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-2 / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-6 / pharmacology
  • Mice
  • Milk Proteins*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Prolactin / pharmacology
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / physiology*
  • Receptors, Prolactin / physiology*
  • STAT1 Transcription Factor
  • STAT5 Transcription Factor
  • T-Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Trans-Activators / physiology*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Interleukin-2
  • Interleukin-6
  • Milk Proteins
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • Receptors, Prolactin
  • STAT1 Transcription Factor
  • STAT1 protein, human
  • STAT5 Transcription Factor
  • STAT5A protein, human
  • Stat1 protein, mouse
  • Stat5a protein, mouse
  • Trans-Activators
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Interferon-gamma
  • Prolactin
  • DNA