Full name: Interleukin-10

Aliases:1 CSIF

Size:2 ~20.5 kDa (precursor protein); ~18.6 kDa (mature protein)

Family:2,3 IL-10 subfamily comprises IL-10, IL-19, IL-20, IL-22, IL-24, IL-26, IL-28, and IL-29

Receptors:2 IL-10R1/IL-10R2 complex

Major cellular sources:1,2 CD8+ T cells, CD4+
Treg cells, B cells, eosinophils, NK cells, DCs, mast cells, macrophages, monocytes, and granulocytes

Major cellular targets:2 T cells, B cells, macrophages, monocytes, NK cells, mast cells, DCs, and granulocytes

Disease states associated with:2,3 Immune diseases, autoimmune diseases, and inflammatory bowel disease

Major physiologic functions:

  • IL-10 has multiple and pleiotropic effects on immunoregulation and inflammation.3

  • IL-10 plays a well-coordinated role at different stages of an immune response that efficiently restricts the inflammatory process, thereby affecting many important functions of monocytes, macrophages, and DCs. Processes attenuated include phagocytosis, cytokine production, expression of costimulators, and antigen processing and presentation.3

  • IL-10 directly affects APC functions by downregulating the expression of MHC class II antigens and costimulatory molecules on macrophages and monocytes.2,3

  • IL-10 inhibits the expression of many pro-inflammatory cytokines, chemokines, and chemokine receptors and directly inhibits pro-inflammatory Th17 cells and Th1 plus Th17 cells.2,3

  • IL-10 promotes the survival, proliferation, and differentiation of human B cells and increases IgG4 production.2

APC: antigen-presenting cell; CD: cluster of differentiation; CSIF: cytokine synthesis inhibitory factor; DC: dendritic cell; Ig: immunoglobulin; IL: interleukin; IL-10R: IL-10 receptor; MHC: major histocompatibility complex; NK: natural killer; Th: T helper; Treg: regulatory T.


  • 1.

    Lourenço EV, Cava AL. Curr Mol Med. 2009;9:242-254.

  • 2.

    Akdis M, Aab A, Altunbulakli C, et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2016;138:984-1010.

  • 3.

    Banchereau J, Pascual V, O'Garra A. Nat Immunol. 2012;13:925-931.