Properties, Applications and Assays of Cytokines

Cytokines are a class of small molecule proteins with a wide range of biological activities that are synthesized and secreted by immune cells (such as monocytes, macrophages, T cells, B cells, NK cells, etc.) and certain non-immune cells (endothelial cells, epidermal cells, fibroblasts, etc.) upon stimulation. They have various functions such as regulation of intrinsic and adaptive immunity, hematopoiesis, cell growth, APSC pluripotent cells, and repair of damaged tissues.

Cytokines can be classified as interleukins (IL), interferons (IFN), tumor necrosis factor (TNF), colony-stimulating factor (CSF), chemokines, growth factors (GF), etc.

Properties of Cytokines

  • Multipotency: one cytokine can act on different cells
  • Overlap: two or more cytokines have the same or similar biological effects
  • Synergism: one cytokine can enhance the function of another cytokine
  • Antagonism: one cytokine can inhibit the function of another cytokine

Cytokine Molecular MessengersCytokine Molecular Messengers

Application of Cytokines

  • Disease treatment

Currently, recombinant cytokines can be used as drugs for the clinical treatment of tumors, infections, hematopoietic dysfunction, etc., and have achieved good results. Cytokines are biological drugs, which can be effective at low doses and have mild side effects, and are a new biological agent. Currently, the approved drugs include IFN-α, IFN-β, IFN-γ, IFN-ε, EPO, GM- CSF, G- CSF, IL-3; the drugs in clinical trials include IL-1, IL-3, IL-4, IL-6, IL-11, M- CSF, SCF, TGF-β and so on. Through various pathways, the cytokine levels in the body are increased for the purpose of treating diseases. Disease cytokine assay will help with basic disease research and the development of more therapies.

  • Aesthetic Medicine

The development of cell therapy, cytokine therapy and extracellular matrix therapy technologies has contributed to the progress of aesthetic medicine. The growth cytokines currently used for bio-aesthetic applications are EGF, bFGF, KGF, VEGF, IGF, and FGF.

  • Cell culture

As cell research advances, the requirements for all aspects of cultured cells are becoming higher. However, due to the complex composition of serum, it can have a greater impact on the results of some highly demanding basic research, especially in drug analysis and new drug development. And serum contains certain cytotoxic substances and inhibitors that have an effect on cell differentiation and affect the expression of certain functions. To make cells grow in a good state using serum-free medium, a certain amount of suitable cytokines such as EPO, NGF, PDGF, EGF, M-CSF, etc. must be added. Cytokines such as IL-15, IL-7, and IL-21 are the main reagents for the proliferation and differentiation of T\NK immune cells by medium supplements. Therefore recombinant cytokines are also widely used for stem cell differentiation, organoid culture, apoptosis, cellular value addition and growth.

Cytokine Assay

The detection of cytokines is not only an effective tool for basic immunological research, but also has an important value for disease diagnosis, efficacy determination and cytokine therapy detection. Due to the small amount of cytokines in the body, the implementation of cytokine assays is difficult, and the results obtained by different methods vary greatly, making their accuracy difficult to judge.

Luminex xMAP technology allows for the detection of multiple biomarkers using a single sample, or multiple simultaneous assays for multiple substances to be tested in a single experiment. With a range of 3 to 4 orders of magnitude, Luminex cytokine assays are highly specific, rapid, reproducible, and suitable for the simultaneous detection of multiple cytokines or proteins.

Luminex Multiplex Cytokine AssayLuminex Multiplex Cytokine Assay

* For Research Use Only. Do Not use in diagnostic or therapeutic procedures.

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