IL26A gene on chromosome 12q15 that encodes a protein belonging to the IL10 family of cytokines thought to have a pro-inflammatory role in mucosal immunity; it is inhibited by heparin. IL26:
• Activates STAT1 and STAT3, MAPK1/3 (ERK1/2), JUN and AKT;
• Induces expression of SOCS3, TNF-alpha and IL-8;
• Induces secretion of IL-8 and IL-10 and surface expression of ICAM1; and
• Decreases proliferation of intestinal epithelial cells.
IL26 may play a role in inflammatory bowel disease.