Interleukin (IL)-22 from IL-20 subfamily of cytokines induces colonic epithelial cell proliferation predominantly through ERK1/2 pathway

Md Moniruzzaman, Ran Wang, Varinder Jeet, Michael A. McGuckin, Sumaira Z. Hasnain*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)


The interleukin (IL)-20 subfamily of cytokines consists of IL-19, IL-20, IL-22, IL-24, and IL-26, and the expression of IL-20, IL-22, and IL-24 is reported to be higher in the colon of patients with ulcerative colitis. Although the receptors for these cytokines are highly expressed in the colon epithelium, their effects on epithelial renewal are not clearly understood. This study evaluated the effects of IL-20, IL-22, and IL-24 in epithelial renewal using the LS174T human colon cancer epithelial cell line. LS174T cells were treated with IL-20, IL-22, and IL-24 (25, 50, and 100 ng/mL) and a live-cell imaging system was used to evaluate the effects on cell proliferation. Following treatment, the signaling pathways contributing to cell proliferation were investigated through Western blotting in LS174T cells and downstream transcriptional changes through qRT-PCR in LS174T cells, and RNA-Seq in primary murine intestinal epithelial cells. Our results demonstrated that only IL-22 promoted LS174T cell proliferation, mediated via extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2-mediated downstream regulation of p90RSK, c-Jun, and transcriptional changes of TRIM15 and STOM. IL-22 also promoted expression of ERK1/2-independent genes such as DDR2, LCN2, and LRG1, which are known to be involved in cell proliferation and migration. This study suggests that IL-22 induces cell proliferation in highly proliferative cells such as intestinal epithelial cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3468
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2019

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Cell proliferation
  • ERK1/2
  • IL-20
  • IL-22
  • IL-24
  • Wound healing

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