The Journal of Interferon & Cytokine Research (JICR) provides authoritative peer-reviewed research, analysis, and commentary on the function of interferons (IFNs), immune cytokines, chemokines, and their gene and cell targets in mediating effector actions. This forthcoming special issue will focus on topics presented during the recent “Interferon Lambda 2022” satellite meeting that was held in September 2022 in Hawaii. The purpose of this meeting was to promote research on the IFN-λs (type-3 IFNs) by enhancing interdisciplinary communication and encouraging new scientific collaborations. The meeting co-organizer, Ludmila Prokunina-Olsson, will serve as the guest editor for this special JICR issue.
The human IFN-λ gene family includes 4 distinct genes: IFNL1, IFNL2, IFNL3, and IFNL4. These genes encode the 4 corresponding proteins: IFN-λ1, IFN-2, IFN-3, and IFN-4, respectively. Binding of the IFN-λ proteins to their cognate receptor, IFN-λR1, activates an intracellular signaling cascade that in turn activates a variety of biological functions, including antiviral and antiproliferative activity. The IFN-λ proteins are distinct from type-1 and type-2 IFNs in part because they signal through a unique receptor complex that is distinct from those used by type-1 and type-2 IFNs. Unlike the receptors for type-1 IFNs such as IFN-α and IFN-β that are broadly expressed on most somatic cell types, the receptor for type-3 IFNs has a much more restricted cellular and tissue distribution. IFN-λ receptors (IFN-λR1) are predominantly expressed by epithelial cells, including dermal, gastrointestinal, and respiratory epithelial cells. Consequently, IFN-λ appears to play a key role in mediating host defense at various barrier surfaces such skin, lung, and intestines. Attempts to harness the antiviral activity of IFN-λ are ongoing, and several clinical trials are underway to evaluate the clinical potential of recombinant human IFN-λ as a therapeutic agent.
The forthcoming special issue of JICR will highlight new developments regarding the IFN-λs (type-3 IFNs) that have occurred since the last meeting on IFN-λ was held at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, in October 2018. Article submissions for this special issue can include any of the following subject areas:
IFN-λ and IFN-λ receptor biology
Genetic association of variants in the IFN-λ gene region with multiple phenotypes
Inflammation at barrier tissues
Role in nonviral infections (eg, bacterial or fungal infections)
Role in adaptive immunity
IFN-λ interactions with immune cells
HCV, HBV, and hepatic fibrosis
Article submissions for this special issue can include primary research reports and/or review articles. The deadline for submitting articles is January 15, 2023.
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