The structural basis for receptor recognition of human interleukin-18

Naotaka Tsutsumi, Takeshi Kimura, Kyohei Arita, Mariko Ariyoshi, Hidenori Ohnishi, Takahiro Yamamoto, Xiaobing Zuo, Katsumi Maenaka, Enoch Y. Park, Naomi Kondo, Masahiro Shirakawa, Hidehito Tochio, Zenichiro Kato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Citations (Scopus)


Interleukin (IL)-18 is a proinflammatory cytokine that belongs to the IL-1 family and plays an important role in inflammation. The uncontrolled release of this cytokine is associated with severe chronic inflammatory disease. IL-18 forms a signalling complex with the IL-18 receptor α (Rα) and β (Rβ) chains at the plasma membrane, which induces multiple inflammatory cytokines. Here, we present a crystal structure of human IL-18 bound to the two receptor extracellular domains. Generally, the receptors' recognition mode for IL-18 is similar to IL-1β; however, certain notable differences were observed. The architecture of the IL-18 receptor second domain (D2) is unique among the other IL-1R family members, which presumably distinguishes them from the IL-1 receptors that exhibit a more promiscuous ligand recognition mode. The structures and associated biochemical and cellular data should aid in developing novel drugs to neutralize IL-18 activity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5340
JournalNature communications
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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