Current status of interleukin-10 and regulatory T-cells in cancer

Kristen L. Dennis, Nichole R. Blatner, Fotini Gounari, Khashayarsha Khazaie

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

139 Scopus citations


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Tumor growth elicits antigen-specific cytotoxic as well as immune suppressive responses. Interleukin-10 (IL-10) is a key immune-suppressive cytokine produced by regulatory T-cells and by helper T-cells. Here, we review pleiotropic functions of IL-10 that impact the immune pathology of cancer. RECENT FINDINGS: The role of IL-10 in cancer has become less certain with the knowledge of its immune stimulatory functions. IL-10 is needed for T-helper cell functions, T-cell immune surveillance, and suppression of cancer-associated inflammation. By promoting tumor-specific immune surveillance and hindering pathogenic inflammation, IL-10 is emerging as a key cytokine in the battle of the host against cancer. SUMMARY: IL-10 functions at the cross-roads of immune stimulation and immune suppression in cancer. Immunological mechanisms of action of IL-10 can be ultimately exploited to develop novel and effective cancer therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)637-645
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Oncology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2013


  • cancer
  • immune surveillance
  • inflammation
  • interleukin-10
  • tregs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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