Properties of Cytokines

For Immunology Chapter 4 Day 1

  1. What technologies of the 1960s, ‘70s, and ‘80s have allowed study and purification of human cytokines? Why does the textbook caution against strict interpretation of the cytokine functions in Appendix II?
  2. Use words to describe the examples of pleiotropy, redundancy, synergy, and antagonism for helper T cells that make IL-4 and other cytokines in figure 4-3. How does the cascade induction scenario differ from the other examples in Figure 4-3 (other than not pertaining to IL-4)?
  3. Discuss how activation of immune cells can change the way they respond to their environment.
  4. Secretion of IL-1 involved control at the transcriptional and post-translational levels of regulation. Skip ahead in your book to page 162 and explain how these two steps are turned “on”.  (Your answer should include discussion of two types of inflammasomes.)
  5. IL-1 binding proteins can “soak up” IL-1. There are several different molecules that do this.  How does each of these molecules work?
  6. Piecing together information from figures 4-6, 3-16, and 3-17 (and Google images too!) draw a detailed signaling pathway that is initiated by IL-1 binding to its cognate receptor.
  7. Why are members of the class I cytokine family separated into subfamilies based on common cytokine receptor subunits? Discuss how the cytokines “compete” for receptors even though the recognition subunits of the receptor are different.

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