Interleukin 2 (IL-2) plays a central role in the activation and proliferation of lymphocytes initially contacted with antigens. IL-2 plays an essential role in the proliferation of T cells, NK cells (natural killers), and B cells during specific phases of their response. IL-2-secreting cells include gamma delta T-cells (γδ T cells), activated CD4 + and CD8 + T-cells, neurons, microglia, and hematopoietic stem cells.
IL-2 is a 15 kDa glycoprotein encoded by a single gene located in the q26-28 region of human chromosome 4. IL-2 gene expression is regulated at the transcriptional level by various activation mechanisms. Specific proliferation following antigenic stimulation of helper and cytotoxic T lymphocytes depends crucially on the expression of IL-2, its secretion, and binding to IL-2 receptors, induced in an autocrine manner on the surface of T -cells.
In addition to its most important role in mediating T-cell proliferation after their specific antigenic stimulation, IL-2 regulates the expression of interferon and major histocompatibility antigens, stimulates proliferation of B-cells, increases the activity of NK cells, and inhibits the formation of granulocyte-macrophage colonies. Changes in the ability of T cells to synthesize IL-2 have been observed in physiological and pathological conditions. Due to the central role of IL-2 in the immune response, IL-2 has proven to be a very important molecule for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. IL-2 has anti-cancer activity and has been used in the treatment of cancer.
Monitoring of serum IL-2 levels provides information for various pathological conditions, such as cancer, infectious diseases, graft rejection, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and diabetes mellitus.
Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. The correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".
Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings, and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.
At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.