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AbbKine takes you a comprehensive understanding of cytokines

Date:2021-09-23 Views:861

What are cytokines?

Cytokine (CK) is composed of immune cells (such as monocytes, macrophages, T cells, B cells, NK cells, etc.) and certain non-immune cells (endothelial cells, epidermal cells, fibroblasts, etc.). A class of small molecular proteins (polypeptides or glycoproteins) that are synthesized and secreted by stimulation and have a wide range of biological activities.

The function and characteristics of cytokines

Cytokines have various functions such as regulating innate immunity and adaptive immunity, blood cell production, cell growth, and repairing damaged tissues. The research results of cytokines provide a scientific basis for clinical prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, especially the use of cytokine therapy Tumors, infections, hematopoietic dysfunction, autoimmune diseases, etc., have very broad application prospects.

a. Low molecular weight (glyco) protein: exists as a monomer. Small molecular weight (8-30KD);
b. It usually acts on nearby cells or the cytokine producing cell itself in the form of paracrine or autocrine;
c. The same cytokine can be produced by different cells, and multiple cytokines can be produced by the same cell
d. Mainly related to regulating the body's immune response, hematopoietic function and inflammation;
e. High-potency effect, generally has obvious biological effect at pM (10-12M) level;f. Together with hormones, neuropeptides, and neurotransmitters, it forms the intercellular signaling molecule system;
g. Multiple regulatory effects. The different regulatory effects of cytokines are related to their own concentration, the type of target cell and the types of other cytokines that exist at the same time.

Classification of cytokines


Autocrine: cytokines act on the cells that release it;
Paracrine: cytokines act on neighboring cells;
Endocrine: cytokines spread to distant areas (through blood or plasma) to affect different tissues.

a. Interleukin: more than 30 kinds of IL-1-IL-38 have been reported;
b. Tumor necrosis factor: according to its production source and structure, it can be divided into two categories: TNF- α and TNF- β;
c. Chemokines family: IL-8, GRO/MGSA, PF-4, CTAP-Ⅲ, ENA-78, MIP-1α, MIP-1β, RANTES, MCP-1/MCAF, MCP-2, MCP-3;
d. Interferon: IFN-α, IFN-β and IFN-γ;
e. Colony stimulating factors: G (granulocytes)-CSF, M (macrophages)-CSF, GM (granulocytes, macrophages)-CSF, Multi (multiple)-CSF (IL-3), SCF, EPO, etc.;
f. Transforming growth factor-β family: TGF-β1, TGF-β2, TGF-β3, TGFβ1β2 and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP), etc.;
g. Growth factors: EGF, PDGF, FGF, HGF, IGF-I, IGF-II, LIF, NGF, OSM, PDECGF, TGF-α, VEGF, etc.

How to choose the right cytokine

Select the appropriate expression system according to the research purpose and protein requirements.

Research purposes Protein requirements Protein expression system
Used as an antigen to obtain specific antibodies for detection Purity>80%, no need for protein modification or natural activity  

Prokaryotic expression system

Study on Crystallization and Crystal structure of protein The purity is > 95%, the protein content is > 10mg, and the concentration is usually at 10mg/ml 2/3 is the prokaryotic expression system, 1/3 is the insect cell expression system and mammalian cell expression system
Study on the function of protein Need to maintain the natural activity of the protein Prokaryotic soluble expression and eukaryotic expression system
Proteins used in drug research It is generally required to keep the natural sequence as far as possible and have natural activity  

Eukaryotic expression system

Different expression systems have different advantages and disadvantages.

Expression system Advantages and disadvantages
Prokaryotic system Low cost, high yield, but cannot be modified by glycosylation, easy to form inclusion bodies
Mammalian cell The structure is closest to the natural protein, with modifications such as glycosylation, better activity, but lower expression level
Yeast Cell Easy to operate, weak protein background, but there are problematic cells such as low yield and excessive glycosylation
Insect cell The function is similar to the natural protein, the expression level is high, but the glycosylation degree is low, and the form is relatively simple

Precautions for the use of cytokines

Cytokines are usually freeze-dried with the least amount of salt, so a small amount of cytokines will be deposited in the tube during the freeze-drying process, forming a thin or invisible protein layer. Therefore, we recommend that after receiving the product, be sure to centrifuge before opening the cap, so that the protein sticking to the tube cap or tube wall will accumulate at the bottom of the tube (it is normal to see the white precipitate at this time).

Recommended Products

product Item No.
Human IL-6 protein PRP1012
Human TNF-alpha protein PRP1013
Human IFN-gamma protein, His Tag PRP1014
Rat EGF protein PRP1211
Human Annexin V/ANXA5 protein PRP3003
Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT) PRP3002
Mouse TGF beta 1 protein, His tag (Animal-Free) PRP1017


Cell and protein research tools

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