IL-7 Signaling Pathways and their Primary Biological Effects in Different Immune Cell Types

Click on one of the buttons below to see either the IL-7 signaling pathways or information related to one of the other common cytokine receptor gamma-chain family members.

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
IL-7 R
IL-7 R
Promotes Human & Mouse
T Cell Development
Promotes Human & Mouse
T Cell Development
Thymic T Cell
Precursor
Thymic T Cell
Precursor
Naive T Cell
Naive T Cell

T Cell Development

T Cell Development

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
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Bcl-2
Bcl-2
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Bcl-xL
Bcl-xL
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Mcl-1
Mcl-1
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Promotes Naive T Cell Homeostasis
Promotes Naive T Cell Homeostasis
Naive T Cells
Naive T Cells

Homeostatic Proliferation

Homeostatic Proliferation

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
Regulates Activated
T Cell Proliferation
Regulates Activated
T Cell Proliferation
Activated T Cell
Activated T Cell

Proliferation

Proliferation

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
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Bcl-2
Bcl-2
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Bcl-xL
Bcl-xL
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Mcl-1
Mcl-1
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Regulates the Generation
& Survival of Memory T Cells
Regulates the Generation
& Survival of Memory T Cells
CD4+ or CD8+
Effector T Cells
CD4+ or CD8+
Effector T Cells
Stromal Cell
Stromal Cell
CD4+ or CD8+
Memory T Cells
CD4+ or CD8+
Memory T Cells

Proliferation/Survival

Proliferation/Survival

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
Regulates V(D)J Recombination at the
TCR & Distal Ig Heavy Chain Loci
Regulates V(D)J Recombination at the
TCR & Distal Ig Heavy Chain Loci
Pro-T Cell
Pro-T Cell
Pre-B Cell
Pre-B Cell

RAG Expression
Chromatin Accessibility

RAG Expression
Chromatin Accessibility

V(D)J Recombination

V(D)J Recombination

TCR gamma Expression

TCR gamma Expression

Variable Ig Synthesis

Variable Ig Synthesis

V(D)J Recombination

V(D)J Recombination

IL-7
IL-7
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IL-7 R
IL-7 R
Promotes Mouse
B Cell Development
Promotes Mouse
B Cell Development
Lymphoid Pro-B Cell
Lymphoid Pro-B Cell
Immature B Cell
Immature B Cell

B Cell Development

B Cell Development

Overview of IL-7 Signaling and its Primary Biological Effects in Different Immune Cell Types

Interleukin-7 (IL-7) is a type I glycoprotein that is predicted to form a four alpha-helix structure with a hydrophobic core. It is produced primarily by stromal cells and exerts its effects through a receptor complex consisting of IL-7 R alpha and common gamma-chain/IL-2 R gamma. IL-7 signaling is essential for the establishment and maintenance of normal immune system functions. It is required for mouse and human T cell development and homeostatic proliferation, mouse B cell development, and the generation of CD4+ and CD8+ memory T cells. IL-7 R alpha-deficient mice have reduced numbers of thymocytes, impaired T cell and B cell development, and lack gamma delta T cells, a small subset of T cells found in epithelium-rich tissues. The requirement of IL-7 for T cell survival has been partially attributed to its ability to induce expression of the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2, Bcl-xL, and Mcl-1 proteins. In addition, IL-7 plays a role in regulating V(D)J recombination at the TCR gamma, TCR beta, and immunoglobulin heavy chain loci.

To learn more, please visit our Common gamma Chain Receptor Family Research Area.