• IL-27;
  • STAT1;
  • Th17;
  • Treg


IL-27 is an IL-12-related cytokine frequently present at sites of inflammation that can promote both anti- and pro-inflammatory immune responses. Here, we have analyzed the mechanisms how IL-27 may drive such divergent immune responses. While IL-27 suppressed the development of proinflammatory Th17 cells, a novel role for this cytokine in inhibiting the development of anti-inflammatory, inducible regulatory T cells (iTreg) was identified. In fact, IL-27 suppressed the development of adaptive, TGF-β-induced Forkhead box transcription factor p3-positive (Foxp3+) Treg. Whereas the blockade of Th17 development was dependent on the transcription factor STAT1, the suppression of iTreg development was STAT1 independent, suggesting that IL-27 utilizes different signaling pathways to shape T cell-driven immune responses. Our data thus demonstrate that IL-27 controls the development of Th17 and iTreg cells via differential effects on STAT1.