, Volume 8, Issue 5, pp 386-391
Date: 25 Sep 2008

Genetic origins of hyper-IgE syndrome

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Hyper-IgE syndrome (HIES) is a complex primary immunodeficiency characterized by high serum IgE, chronic eczematoid dermatitis, and recurrent extracellular bacterial infections. Two types of HIES have been reported: type 1 and type 2. Type 1 HIES displays abnormalities in multiple systems, including the skeletal, dental, and immune systems, whereas type 2 shows abnormalities confined to the immune system. We recently identified hypomorphic mutations in the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) gene in type 1 HIES and a null mutation in the tyrosine kinase 2 (Tyk2) gene, accompanied by susceptibility to intracellular bacteria in type 2 HIES. Analyses of cytokine responses in both types of HIES revealed that severe defects in the signal transduction for multiple cytokines, including interleukin-6 and interleukin-23, are leading to impaired T-helper type 17 function. These findings suggest that HIES is caused by the defects in multiple cytokine signals and that the susceptibility to various infections in HIES is associated with the T-helper type 17 defect.