IL-13, IL-4Ralpha, and Stat6 are required for the expulsion of the gastrointestinal nematode parasite Nippostrongylus brasiliensis

Immunity. 1998 Feb;8(2):255-64. doi: 10.1016/s1074-7613(00)80477-x.


Although IL-4 induces expulsion of the gastrointestinal nematode parasite, Nippostrongylus brasiliensis, from immunodeficient mice, this parasite is expelled normally by IL-4-deficient mice. This apparent paradox is explained by observations that IL-4 receptor alpha chain (IL-4Ralpha)-deficient mice and Stat6-deficient mice fail to expel N. brasiliensis, and a specific antagonist for IL-13, another activator of Stat6 through IL-4Ralpha, prevents worm expulsion. Thus, N. brasiliensis expulsion requires signaling via IL-4Ralpha and Stat6, and IL-13 may be more important than IL-4 as an inducer of the Stat6 signaling that leads to worm expulsion. Additional observations made in the course of these experiments demonstrate that Stat6 signaling is not required for IL-4 enhancement of IgG1 production and actually inhibits IL-4-induction of mucosal mastocytosis.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Helminth / biosynthesis
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / immunology*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / parasitology
  • Host-Parasite Interactions / immunology
  • Interferon-gamma / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-13 / deficiency*
  • Interleukin-13 / genetics
  • Intestinal Mucosa / immunology
  • Mastocytosis / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Mutant Strains
  • Mice, Nude
  • Nippostrongylus / immunology*
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4 / deficiency*
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4 / genetics
  • STAT6 Transcription Factor
  • Signal Transduction
  • Strongylida Infections / immunology*
  • Trans-Activators / deficiency*
  • Trans-Activators / genetics


  • Antibodies, Helminth
  • Interleukin-13
  • Receptors, Interleukin-4
  • STAT6 Transcription Factor
  • Stat6 protein, mouse
  • Trans-Activators
  • Interferon-gamma