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Keywords:

  • Chemokine;
  • Cytokine;
  • Dermatitis;
  • Epithelial cells;
  • Inflammation

Abstract

IL-20 cytokine subfamily members, including IL-19, IL-20, and IL-24, are highly expressed in psoriatic skin lesions. Here, we demonstrate that psoriasis mediators IL-17 and IL-22 synergistically induce the production of IL-20 subfamily proteins in cultured human keratinocytes. Interestingly, expression of the IL-22 receptor (IL-22R) also increased in epidermal lesions versus normal skin. IL-22R over-expression using an adenoviral vector to mimic psoriatic conditions in cultured keratinocytes significantly enhanced IL-17- and IL-22-induced production of IL-20 subfamily cytokines. Furthermore, IL-17 and IL-22 coordinately enhanced MIP-3α, IL-8, and heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor (HB-EGF) production, depending on the amount of IL-22R expression. Additionally, because IL-20 and IL-24 share the IL-22R with IL-22, the function of IL-20 and IL-24 was also increased. IL-20 and IL-24 have effects similar to that of IL-22; IL-24 showed more potent expression than IL-20. A combination of IL-24 and IL-17 increased the production of MIP-3α, IL-8, and HB-EGF, as did a combination of IL-22 and IL-17. These data indicate that increased IL-22R expression in epidermal keratinocytes contributes to the pathogenesis of psoriasis through enhancing the coordinated effects of IL-22 and IL-17, inducing the production of the IL-20 subfamily, chemokines, and growth factors.