Research Papers: Immunology:
Interleukin-26 (IL-26) is a novel anti-microbial peptide produced by T cells in response to staphylococcal enterotoxin
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Anders Woetmann1,*, Morten Alhede2,*, Sally Dabelsteen3,*, Thomas Bjarnsholt4,2, Morten Rybtke4,2, Claudia Nastasi1, Thorbjørn Krejsgaard1, Mads Hald Andersen5, Charlotte M. Bonefeld1, Carsten Geisler1, Michael Givskov4,5,6 and Niels Odum1
1Department of Immunology and Microbiology, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
2Department of Clinical Microbiology, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark
3Department of Odontology, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
4Costerton Biofilm Center, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
5Center for Cancer Immune Therapy (CCIT), Department of Hematology, Copenhagen University Hospital, Herlev, Denmark
6Singapore Centre for Environmental Life Sciences Engineering (SCELSE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
*These authors contributed equally to this work
Niels Odum, email: [email protected]
Keywords: IL-26; antimicrobial peptide; staphylococcus aureus enterotoxins; chronic wounds; superantigens staphylococcus pseudomonas; Immunology
Received: October 15, 2017 Accepted: February 24, 2018 Published: April 13, 2018
Anti-microbial peptides are produced at outer and inner surfaces by epithelia and innate immune cells in response to bacterial infection. Staphylococcus aureus is an enterotoxin producing, Gram-positive pathogen, which is a major cause of soft tissue infections and life-threatening bacteremia and sepsis. Here we show that (i) skin T cells in chronic wounds infected with S. aureus express interleukin-26 (IL-26) in situ, (ii) staphylococcal enterotoxins (SE) trigger IL-26 expression in T cell lines and primary skin T cells, and (iii) IL-26 triggers death and inhibits biofilm formation and growth of S. aureus. Thus, we provide novel evidence that IL-26 is an anti-microbial peptide produced by T cells in response to SE. Accordingly, we propose that IL-26 producing T cells take part in the innate immune response to SE producing S. aureus and thus play a novel role in the primary innate immune defense in addition to their classical role in adaptive immunity.
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