Harnessing the biology of IL-7 for therapeutic application

Crystal L. MacKall, Terry J. Fry, Ronald E. Gress

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

345 Scopus citations


Interleukin-7 (IL-7) is required for T cell development and for maintaining and restoring homeostasis of mature T cells. IL-7 is a limiting resource under normal conditions, but it accumulates during lymphopaenia, leading to increased T cell proliferation. The administration of recombinant human IL-7 to normal or lymphopenic mice, non-human primates and humans results in widespread T cell proliferation, increased T cell numbers, modulation of peripheral T cell subsets and increased T cell receptor repertoire diversity. These effects raise the prospect that IL-7 could mediate therapeutic benefits in several clinical settings. This Review summarizes the biology of IL-7 and the results of its clinical use that are available so far to provide a perspective on the opportunities for clinical application of this cytokine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)330-342
Number of pages13
JournalNature Reviews Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


Dive into the research topics of 'Harnessing the biology of IL-7 for therapeutic application'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this