International Journal of Hematology

, Volume 80, Issue 4, pp 325–331 | Cite as

Interferon- ζ/Limitin: Novel Type I Interferon That Displays a Narrow Range of Biological Activity

  • Kenji Oritani
  • Yoshiaki Tomiyama
Review Article


Interferon ζ (IFN-ζ)/limitin has been regarded as a novel type IIFN by the Nomenclature Committee of the International Society for Interferon and Cytokine Research. IFN-ζ/limitin, which has some sequence homology with IFN-α and IFN-ß, has a globular structure with 5 α helices and 4 loops and recognizes IFN-α/ß receptor. Although it displays antiviral, immunomodulatory, and antitumor effects, IFN-ζ/limitin has much less lymphomyelosuppressive activity than IFN-α. Unique interactions between IFN-ζ/limitin and the receptor probably led to the narrow range of signals and biological activities. A human homologue of IFN-ζ/limitin may be clinically more effective than IFN-α and IFN-ß because it has fewer adverse effects. Moreover, further analysis of the structure-function relationship may establish an engineered cytokine with the useful features of IFN-ζ/ limitin.

Key words

Interferon IFN-ζ Limitin Signal Structure 


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Hematology 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Hematology and Oncology, Graduate School of MedicineOsaka UniversitySuita, OsakaJapan

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