AAV-IL-22 modifies liver chemokine activity and ameliorates portal inflammation in murine autoimmune cholangitis

Yu Hsin Hsueh, Yun Ning Chang, Chia En Loh, M. Eric Gershwin, Ya Hui Chuang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


There remain significant obstacles in developing biologics to treat primary biliary cholangitis (PBC). Although a number of agents have been studied both in murine models and human patients, the results have been relatively disappointing. IL-22 is a member of the IL-10 family and has multiple theoretical reasons for predicting successful usage in PBC. We have taken advantage of an IL-22 expressing adeno-associated virus (AAV-IL-22) to address the potential role of IL-22 in not only protecting mice from autoimmune cholangitis, but also in treating animals with established portal inflammation. Using our established mouse model of 2-OA-OVA immunization, including α-galactosylceramide (α-GalCer) stimulation, we treated mice both before and after the onset of clinical disease with AAV-IL-22. Firstly, AAV-IL-22 treatment given prior to 2-OA-OVA and α-GalCer exposure, i.e. before the onset of disease, significantly reduces the portal inflammatory response, production of Th1 cytokines and appearance of liver fibrosis. It also reduced the liver lymphotropic chemokines CCL5, CCL19, CXCL9, and CXCL10. Secondly, and more importantly, therapeutic use of AAV-IL-22, administered after the onset of disease, achieved a greater hurdle and significantly improved portal pathology. Further the improvements in inflammation were negatively correlated with levels of CCL5 and CXCL10 and positively correlated with levels of IL-22. In conclusion, we submit that the clinical use of IL-22 has a potential role in modulating the inflammatory portal process in patients with PBC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-97
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Autoimmunity
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Adeno-associated virus
  • Chemokine
  • IL-22
  • Liver autoimmune disease
  • Therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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