The unconventional expression of IL-15 and its role in NK cell homeostasis

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Natural killer (NK) cells are the founding members of the innate lymphoid cell family and contribute to the rapid production of inflammatory mediators upon pathogen detection. The evolution of receptors for self major histocompatibility complex-I and stress-induced ligands also bestows upon NK cells an important effector role in the clearance of virus-infected and transformed cells. NK cells are dependent on the pleiotropic cytokine interleukin (IL)-15 for their development, differentiation and optimal function. Here I review the regulation of IL-15 in vivo, its role in driving NK cell differentiation and discuss the function of NK cell diversification with regard to innate immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-213
Number of pages4
JournalImmunology and Cell Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • gamma chain cytokines
  • innate immunity
  • NK cells

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