Opposite effects of interleukin-13 and interleukin-12 on the release of inflammatory cytokines, cytokine inhibitors and prostaglandin E from synovial fibroblasts and blood mononuclear cells

Eur J Immunol. 1996 Sep;26(9):2198-2202. doi: 10.1002/eji.1830260935.


We examined the effects of interleukin-12 (IL-12) and interleukin-13 (IL-13) on cytokine, cytokine inhibitor and prostaglandin E (PGE) release from synovial fibroblasts and blood mononuclear cells (MNC). In resting synovial fibroblasts, we found that IL-13 is an inhibitor of IL-8 and PGE release. A significant decrease of PGE synthesis caused by IL-13 was also observed in tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha-stimulated synovial fibroblasts, whereas IL-12 had no regulatory effects on these cells. In resting and cytokine-stimulated MNC, IL-13 markedly inhibited IL-1 beta, IL-8 and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) release and potently stimulated interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) synthesis. In contrast, IL-12 stimulated the production of IL-1 beta and MCP-1 in TNF-alpha-stimulated MNC and inhibited IL-1ra synthesis in cytokine-stimulated cells. These findings identify novel biological actions of IL-12 and IL-13 on connective tissue and on blood mononuclear cells which indicate their regulatory functions as enhancer and suppressor of inflammatory processes, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cytokines / metabolism*
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Protein
  • Interleukin-1 / metabolism
  • Interleukin-12 / pharmacology*
  • Interleukin-13 / pharmacology*
  • Interleukin-8 / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-8 / metabolism
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / drug effects
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / metabolism*
  • Prostaglandins E / metabolism*
  • Sialoglycoproteins / metabolism*
  • Synovial Membrane / cytology
  • Synovial Membrane / metabolism


  • Cytokines
  • IL1RN protein, human
  • Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Protein
  • Interleukin-1
  • Interleukin-13
  • Interleukin-8
  • Prostaglandins E
  • Sialoglycoproteins
  • Interleukin-12