Interleukin-17 and Interferon-gamma Are Produced Concomitantly by Human Coronary Artery-Infiltrating T Cells and Act Synergistically on Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells CIRCULATION Eid, R. E., Rao, D. A., Zhou, J., Lo, S. L., Ranjbaran, H., Gallo, A., Sokol, S. I., Pfau, S., Pober, J. S., Tellides, G. 2009; 119 (10): 1424-1432


Atherosclerosis is an inflammatory disease in which interferon (IFN)-gamma, the signature cytokine of Th1 cells, plays a central role. We investigated whether interleukin (IL)-17, the signature cytokine of Th17 cells, is also associated with human coronary atherosclerosis.Circulating IL-17 and IFN-gamma were detected in a subset of patients with coronary atherosclerosis and in referent outpatients of similar age without cardiac disease but not in young healthy individuals. IL-17 plasma levels correlated closely with those of the IL-12/IFN-gamma/CXCL10 cytokine axis but not with known Th17 inducers such as IL-1beta, IL-6, and IL-23. Both IL-17 and IFN-gamma were produced at higher levels by T cells within cultured atherosclerotic coronary arteries after polyclonal activation than within nondiseased vessels. Combinations of proinflammatory cytokines induced IFN-gamma but not IL-17 secretion. Blockade of IFN-gamma signaling increased IL-17 synthesis, whereas neutralization of IL-17 responses decreased IFN-gamma synthesis; production of both cytokines was inhibited by transforming growth factor-beta1. Approximately 10-fold fewer coronary artery-infiltrating T helper cells were IL-17 producers than IFN-gamma producers, and unexpectedly, IL-17/IFN-gamma double producers were readily detectable within the artery wall. Although IL-17 did not modulate the growth or survival of cultured vascular smooth muscle cells, IL-17 interacted cooperatively with IFN-gamma to enhance IL-6, CXCL8, and CXCL10 secretion.Our findings demonstrate that IL-17 is produced concomitantly with IFN-gamma by coronary artery-infiltrating T cells and that these cytokines act synergistically to induce proinflammatory responses in vascular smooth muscle cells.

View details for DOI 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.108.827618

View details for Web of Science ID 000264243700011

View details for PubMedID 19255340