Cytokine genes are regulated by multiple regulatory elements that confer tissue-specific and activation-dependent expression. The cis-regulatory elements of the gene encoding IL-9, a cytokine that promotes allergy, autoimmune inflammation and tumor immunity, have not been defined. Here we identify an enhancer (CNS-25) upstream of the Il9 gene that binds most transcription factors (TFs) that promote Il9 gene expression. Deletion of the enhancer in the mouse germline alters transcription factor binding to the remaining Il9 regulatory elements, and results in diminished IL-9 production in multiple cell types including Th9 cells, and attenuates IL-9-dependent immune responses. Moreover, deletion of the homologous enhancer (CNS-18) in primary human Th9 cultures results in significant decrease of IL-9 production. Thus, Il9 CNS-25/IL9 CNS-18 is a critical and conserved regulatory element for IL-9 production.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)