Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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CKb12; HCC-4; LCC-1; LEC; Liver-expressed chemokine; LMC; monotactin-1; Mtn-1; NCC-4; SCYA16; SCYL4

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Chemokines, a subgroup of cytokines, are small (size between 8 and 10 kDa), chemotactically active proteins (signal proteins). They are common in all vertebrates, some virus types and bacteria. In humans, about 50 chemokines are currently known. A strongly conserved structural feature of all chemokines is a fixed group of cysteine residues that is stabilized by 1 or 2 disulfide bridges. This key structural position in the molecule is responsible for its fixed 3-dimensional structure.

In the CC chemokines, the cysteines follow each other directly (see figure), in the CXC chemokines they are separated (CC = acronym for cysteine-cysteine) by 1, in the CXXXC chemokines by 3 other amino acids. Chemokines are produced and secreted by a large number of immune cells. They transmit their signals by binding to chemokine receptors via G-proteins. Some chemokines have a pro-inflammatory effect, others have a regulatory effect on the formation, homeostasis and proliferation of tissues.

CCL16, also known as chemokines (C-C motif) ligand 16 or "liver-expressed chemokine" (LEC), is a small, human cytokine that belongs to the CC chemokine family. The coding human CCL16 gene is located on chromosome Chr. 17 q11.2, together with other chemokine genes that belong to the CC gene family.

CCL16 is produced by numerous immune cells, such as dendritic cells, monocytes, macrophages (also alveolar macrophages), etc. Originally, CCL16 was discovered in activated monocytes after their stimulation by interleukin-10.

General information
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CCL16 is expressed in liver, thymus and spleen. CCL16 is a ligand for the chemokine receptors CCR1, CCR2, CCR5 and CCR8.

CCL16 has a chemoattractive and activating effect on monocytes (monocytes increasingly express CD80, CD86, CD40) and lymphocytes. Interleukin-10 and interferon gamma as well as microbial lipopolysaccharides can significantly increase the expression of this chemokine on monocytes.

In human synovial fluid, CCL16, like CCL15, is processed and activated by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and serine proteases.

Chemokines play an essential role in the pathogenesis of sarcoidosis. In studies on larger patient groups with advanced type III sarcoidosis (D86.9) in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), the concentrations of the chemokines CCL16, CCL15, CCL24, CXCL8, CXCL9, CXCL10 and interleukin-16 were significantly increased. CCL16 expressions were also significantly overexpressed in eosinophilic pneumonia.

Furthermore, CCL16 together with interleukin-10 is increasingly expressed in ulcerative colitis.

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Chemokines; Lec;


Last updated on: 29.10.2020