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Progranulin (PGRN) restrains inflammation and is therapeutic against inflammatory arthritis; however, the underlying immunological mechanism remains unknown. In this study, we demonstrated that anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 was a critical mediator for PGRN-mediated anti-inflammation in collagen-induced arthritis by using PGRN and IL-10 genetically modified mouse models. IL-10 green fluorescent protein reporter mice revealed that regulatory T (Treg) cells were the predominant source of IL-10 in response to PGRN. In addition, PGRN-mediated expansion and activation of Treg cells, as well as IL-10 production, depends on JNK signaling, but not on known PGRN-activated ERK and PI3K pathways. Furthermore, microarray and chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing screens led to the discovery of forkhead box protein O4 and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 as the transcription factors required for PGRN induction of IL-10 in Treg cells. These findings define a previously unrecognized signaling pathway that underlies IL-10 production by PGRN in Treg cells and present new insights into the mechanisms by which PGRN resolves inflammation in inflammatory conditions and autoimmune diseases, particularly inflammatory arthritis.-Fu, W., Hu, W., Shi, L., Mundra, J. J. Xiao, G., Dustin, M. L., Liu, C. Foxo4- and Stat3-dependent IL-10 production by progranulin in regulatory T cells restrains inflammatory arthritis.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





1354 - 1367


JNK, TNFR2, Treg, Animals, Arthritis, Experimental, Cells, Cultured, Forkhead Transcription Factors, Granulins, Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins, Interleukin-10, MAP Kinase Signaling System, Mice, Mice, Inbred DBA, Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases, STAT3 Transcription Factor, T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory