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Interleukin 7 (IL-7)

Can be measured in:

Interleukin 7 (IL-7) is a pleiotropic protein that stimulates lymphocyte maturation and proliferation. It is involved in several additional facets of immunity, including cell to cell communication and regulation of the humoral immune response. IL-7 has been implicated in a number of different disorders, such as multiple sclerosis and cancer. This analyte is eligible for multiplexing.

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Name: Interleukin 7 (IL-7)
Category: Health & Inflammation
Type of test: Blood + Saliva 

Interleukin-7 (IL-7) is a cytokine that acts as a hematopoietic growth factor and plays an important role in lymphocyte production and survival. IL-7 also has important thymopoietic functions and is produced in large quantities by thymic epithelial cells. IL-7 is also produced by a number of other cells, including keratinocytes, dendritic cells, liver cells, and even neurons. In addition to acting as a growth factor, IL-7 also regulates humoral immune responses, with mice overexpression IL-7 mounting more robust and lasting antibody responses to rabies vaccination than wild type mice. 

IL-7 plays a role in the etiology of several diseases, including blood cancers and cardiovascular disease. Despite its role in these disorders, IL-7 nonetheless has important clinical applications as an immunotherapy. For example, administering IL-7 alongside antiretroviral drugs appears to improve outcomes for individuals with HIV. Further, IL-7 may be beneficial for facilitating immune recovery after stem cell transplants. 

More recently, IL-7 has been explored as an immunotherapy in the context of severe COVID-19.  Preliminary data suggest that it may have some utility as a treatment in this context. IL-7 can be measured in both saliva and serum / plasma, but the extent to which levels in these sample types correlate is variable.

Fry, T. J., & Mackall, C. L. (2002). Interleukin-7: from bench to clinic. Blood, The Journal of the American Society of Hematology99, 3892-3904. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12010786/

Goodwin, R. G., Lupton, S., Schmierer, A., Hjerrild, K. J., Jerzy, R., Clevenger, W., ... & Namen, A. E. (1989). Human interleukin 7: molecular cloning and growth factor activity on human and murine B-lineage cells. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences86, 302-306. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC286452/

Laterre, P. F., François, B., Collienne, C., Hantson, P., Jeannet, R., Remy, K. E., & Hotchkiss, R. S. (2020). Association of interleukin 7 immunotherapy with lymphocyte counts among patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). JAMA network open3, e2016485-e2016485. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7376391/

Li, Y., Zhou, M., Luo, Z., Zhang, Y., Cui, M., Chen, H., ... & Zhao, L. (2017). Overexpression of interleukin-7 extends the humoral immune response induced by rabies vaccination. Journal of virology91, e02324-16. https://jvi.asm.org/content/91/7/e02324-16/article-info

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