Research ArticlesArticles

Mechanism of interleukin-2 signaling: mediation of different outcomes by a single receptor and transduction pathway

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  10 Feb 1989:
Vol. 243, Issue 4892, pp. 781-786
DOI: 10.1126/science.2492678


The T cell lymphokine, interleukin-2 (IL-2), plays a pivotal role in an immune response by stimulating antigen-activated B lymphocytes to progress through the cell cycle and to differentiate into antibody-secreting cells. An IL-2 inducible B lymphoma line, in which the growth and differentiation responses are uncoupled, provides a model system for dissecting the signaling mechanisms operating in each response. This system was used to show that both signals are initiated by IL-2 binding to a single, unifunctional receptor complex. Moreover, both signals are transduced by a pathway that does not involve any known second messenger system and that can be blocked by a second T cell lymphokine, interleukin 4. These findings suggest that the pleiotrophic effects of IL-2 are determined by different translations of the signal in the nucleus.

Stay Connected to Science