Journal article

The unconventional expression of IL-15 and its role in NK cell homeostasis

Nicholas D Huntington



Natural killer (NK) cells are the founding members of the innate lymphoid cell family and contribute to the rapid production of inflammatory mediators upon pathogen detection. The evolution of receptors for self major histocompatibility complex-I and stress-induced ligands also bestows upon NK cells an important effector role in the clearance of virus-infected and transformed cells. NK cells are dependent on the pleiotropic cytokine interleukin (IL)-15 for their development, differentiation and optimal function. Here I review the regulation of IL-15 in vivo, its role in driving NK cell differentiation and discuss the function of NK cell diversification with regard to innate immunity.


Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia

Funding Acknowledgements

I wish to thank Sebastian Carotta, Mark Smyth, Stephen Nutt, David Tarlinton, James Di Santo, Andreas Strasser, Priyanka Sathe and Eric Vivier for collaborations, mentorship and discussion on the topic of NK cell homeostasis over the past 10 years. This work is supported by a project grant (GNT1049407) and a fellowship (GNT0461276) from the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia) and personal support from The Menzies Foundation. This study is made possible through Victorian State Government Operational Infrastructure Support and Australian Government NHMRC Independent Research Institute Infrastructure Support scheme.