Encyclopedia of Cancer

Living Edition
| Editors: Manfred Schwab


  • William L. Farrar
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27841-9_3098-2


IL-4 is a prototypic immunoregulatory cytokine secreted by activated CD4 T cells of the T helper 2 (Th2) subset and by basophils and mast cells. IL-4 has an important role in regulating antibody production, hematopoiesis, inflammation, and the development of effector T cell responses.


IL-4 is a 15–20 kD glycoprotein composed of 129 amino acids. IL-4 contains six cysteine residues that are all involved in intramolecular disulfide bridges. The secondary structure of IL-4 was shown to consist of a four-helix bundle with a unique up-up-down-down helix topology. The X-ray structure reveals that IL-4 is a highly compact and globular protein with a predominantly hydrophobic core.

Human IL-4 receptor (IL-4R) is found on T cells, B cells, mast cells, basophils, macrophages, fibroblasts, endothelial cells, hepatocytes, keratinocytes, stromal cells, and neuroblasts. IL-4 receptor is a heterodimer composed of an α-subunit, with IL-4-binding affinity, and the common...


Allergic Rhinitis Acquire Immune Deficiency Syndrome Primary Immunodeficiency Disease Kinase JAK1 Intramolecular Disulfide Bridge 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Cancer Institute – FrederickFrederickUSA