Possible roles of IL-12-family cytokines in rheumatoid arthritis

Richard M. Pope, Shiva Shahrara*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


The IL-12 family members, IL-12, IL-23, IL-27 and IL-35, are heterodimeric cytokines that share subunits and have important roles in autoimmunity. As well as their structural relationship the IL-12 family cytokines share some biological characteristics but have functional differences. These cytokines contribute to immune-mediated inflammation and our improved knowledge of their actions has led to alteration of the T H 1-T H 2 paradigm. In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), leukocyte migration, bone erosions and angiogenesis are modulated by an IL-23-IL-17 cascade, which can be negated in part by IL-12, IL-27 and IL-35 function. However, the IL-12 family members are a relatively new area of research and data have been generated mostly at the preclinical stage. Further studies in patients with RA are, therefore, required to determine whether these cytokines are valid targets for RA therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-256
Number of pages5
JournalNature Reviews Rheumatology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology


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