Characterization of IL-22 and IL-17 Expressing Leukocytes in the Cervix

Hadijat M. Makinde, Nell Lurain, Pincas Bitterman, Jeff Martinson, Jill Plants, Alan L. Landay, Greg T. Spear

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Problem: Identification of the types of cells that produce IL-17 and IL-22 in the genital tract can clarify the roles that these cytokines play in responses to pathogens. Method of study: We isolated and stimulated cells from cervical tissue to identify and characterize cytokine-producing cells. Results: Upon stimulation of CD3+ CD4+ endocervical cells, 1.6, 3.4, and 1.5% were induced to produce IL-22, IL-17, and both cytokines, respectively. Stimulation of CD3+ CD4+ ectocervical cells resulted in 3.3% IL-22+, 5.5% IL-17+ and 2.6% IL-22+ IL17+ cells. CD45+ CD3- cells had relatively high endogenous levels of cytokine expression that did not increase upon stimulation. Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) made up 5.7-8% of CD45+ cervical cells and stimulation caused increases in IL-17 and IL-22. Conclusion: These studies show that the majority of the CD45+ leukocytes that can be induced to produce IL-22 and IL-17 in cervix are CD3+ CD4+, but ILCs are also present and can make both cytokines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)42-50
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Reproductive Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Cervix
  • IL-17
  • IL-22
  • ILCs
  • T-cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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