IL-37 impairs host resistance to Listeria infection by suppressing macrophage function

Mengmeng Zhao, Yongguang Hu, Juanjuan Shou, Shao Bo Su, Jianhua Yang, Tianshu Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Listeria monocytogenes is a Gram-positive intracellular bacterium that was transmitted through contaminated food and causes sepsis and even death. IL-37 has been described as an important anti-inflammatory factor, but little is known about the function of IL-37 in host defense against Liseria monocytogenes (Lm) infection. In mice model of systemic infection, we found that mice treated with IL-37 were more sensitive to Lm infection compared with PBS-treated mice. This reduced resistance to Lm in IL-37-treated mice is accompanied with increased bacterial burden and liver damage. Serum levels of colony-stimulating factors were decreased in IL-37-treated mice. IL-37 treatment reduced bactericidal ability of bone marrow derived macrophages (BMDMs) in vitro, which contribute to the inability of IL-37-treated mice to combat Lm infection. Furthermore, increased apoptosis was observed in Lm-infected macrophages treated with IL-37. Increased macrophage apoptosis reduced percentage in liver macrophages was observed in IL-37-treated mice following Lm infection. These results indicate the negative regulatory effect of IL-37 on host resistance during immune defense against Lm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-568
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Apoptosis
  • Interleukin-37
  • Liseria monocytogenes
  • Macrophage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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