NK cells are directly activated by rIL-2 and subsequently undergo rIL-2-dependent proliferation in vitro. Herein, we report that rIL-4 is a potent regulator of human NK cells. Although rIL-4 had no effect on the cytotoxic activity of resting NK cells, it was capable of inhibiting in a concentration-dependent manner the rIL-2-induced cytolytic activation of NK cells against NK cell-resistant tumor cell targets. rIL-4 acted directly on NK cells and did not require accessory cells. rIL-4 induced inhibition of NK cell activation was specific for rIL-2 in that activation of NK cell cytolysis by IFN-α was not affected. These results represent the first direct evidence that rIL-2 and IFN-α activate NK cells by different pathways. rIL-4 also effectively blocked the rIL-2-dependent proliferation of NK cells. The results presented in this study clearly demonstrate that rIL-4 is a potent regulator of IL-2-dependent mechanisms of NK cell activation and proliferation and thus may play an important physiologic role in vivo.
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - 1988|