Open Access
Review

Novel type III interferons produce anti-tumor effects through multiple functions

Quanhai Li1,2,3,4,Kiyoko Kawamura1,Yuji Tada5,Hideaki Shimada6,Kenzo Hiroshima7,Masatoshi Tagawa1,2,*
1
Division of Pathology and Cell Therapy, Chiba Cancer Center Research Institute, Chiba, Japan
2
Department of Molecular Biology and Oncology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan
3
Department of Immunology, Basic Medical College, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, China
4
Cell Therapy Center, the First Hospital of Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, China
5
Department of Respirology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan
6
Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, Toho University, Tokyo, Japan
7
Department of Pathology, Tokyo Women's Medical University Yachiyo Medical Center, Yachiyo, Japan
DOI: 10.2741/4152 Volume 18 Issue 3, pp.909-918
Published: 01 June 2013
*Corresponding Author(s):  
Masatoshi Tagawa
E-mail:  
mtagawa@chiba-cc.jp
Abstract

Type III interferons (IFNs), a new type IFN family consisting of 3 IFN-lambdas, have been identified through a homology search. They include IFN-lambda1, IFN-lambda2 and IFN-lambda3, which are also named as interleukin (IL)-29, IL-28A and IL-28B, respectively. The receptor complex of IFN-lambdas is composed of the IL-10 receptor beta (IL-10Rbeta) and a novel IL-28 receptor alpha (IL-28Ralpha). The signal transductions of type III IFNs seem to be similar to those of type I IFNs. Both type I and III IFNs activate Janus activated kinase (JAK)/signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) signaling pathway and transcribe a number of IFN-associated genes. Various types of viruses induce expressions of type III IFNs as well as type I IFNs; however, the biological functions of type III IFNs could be distinct from those of type I IFNs partly because of the tissue-restricted expression of the type III receptor complexes. In this review, we encapsulate recent understandings about type III IFNs in particular the anti-tumor effects, and discuss possible mechanisms and a potential use for cancer therapy.

Key words

IFN-lambda, Type III IFN, Type I IFN, Antitumor effects, Apoptosis, Review

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Quanhai Li, Kiyoko Kawamura, Yuji Tada, Hideaki Shimada, Kenzo Hiroshima, Masatoshi Tagawa. Novel type III interferons produce anti-tumor effects through multiple functions. Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark. 2013. 18(3); 909-918.