Translational efficiency is up-regulated by alternative exon in murine IL-15 mRNA

Hitoshi Nishimura, Junji Washizu, Nobuhisa Nakamura, Atsushi Enomoto, Yasunobu Yoshikai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Citations (Scopus)


IL-15 promotes the growth of T cells and shares properties of IL-2. IL- 2 is produced exclusively by T cells, while IL-15 message is expressed by a variety of tissues. However, it has been difficult to demonstrate IL-15 in the supernatants of many cells that express message for this cytokine. This suggests that IL-15 production is regulated by post-transcriptional controls. In this study, we cloned three types of murine IL-15 cDNA isoforms generated by alternative splicing and compared the translational efficiency among these isoforms. The translational efficiency of isoforms with alternative exon 5 containing another 3' splice site was significantly higher than that of IL- 15 cDNA with originally described exon 5, which is generated by internal splicing of alternative exon 5. The translation product of the isoform containing alternative exon 5 has a shorter open reading frame due to stop codons in additional sequence, followed by a new AUG codon, and displays a shorter leader sequence. The shorter isoform of the IL-15 was detected in peritoneal macrophages stimulated with IFN-γ and LPS, which expressed an abundant level of alternative exon 5. These results suggest that normal IL- 15 production in stimulated macrophages is regulated by splicing of alternative exon 5.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)936-942
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 15 1998
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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