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Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 Jul 2020 - 17 Jul 2020

Animal Studies


2020 Jul 08


The Cytokine TGF-β Induces Interleukin-31 Expression from Dermal Dendritic Cells to Activate Sensory Neurons and Stimulate Wound Itching.


Xu J, Zanvit P, Hu L, Tseng P-Y, Liu N, Wang F, Liu O, Zhang D, Jin W, Guo N, Han Y, Yin J, Cain A, Hoon MA, Wang S L, Chen WJ
Immunity. 2020 Jul 08.
PMID: 32673566.


Cutaneous wound healing is associated with the unpleasant sensation of itching. Here we investigated the mechanisms underlying this type of itch, focusing on the contribution of soluble factors released during healing. We found high amounts of interleukin 31 (IL-31) in skin wound tissue during the peak of itch responses. Il31 mice lacked wound-induced itch responses. IL-31 was released by dermal conventional type 2 dendritic cells (cDC2s) recruited to wounds and increased itch sensory neuron sensitivity. Transfer of cDC2s isolated from late-stage wounds into healthy skin was sufficient to induce itching in a manner dependent on IL-31 expression. Addition of the cytokine TGF-β1, which promotes wound healing, to dermal DCs in vitro was sufficient to induce Il31 expression, and Tgfbr1 CD11c-Cre mice exhibited reduced scratching and decreased Il31 expression in wounds in vivo. Thus, cDC2s promote itching during skin would healing via a TGF-β-IL-31 axis with implications for treatment of wound itching.