Abraham Lab

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Interleukin-7 is a cytokine with well-established roles in lymphocyte development and more recently, an expanded role in immune function. IL-7Rα is highly expressed by innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), but how IL-7 directs the development or function of ILCs is not well studied. Using mice with inducible deletion of IL-7Rα, we showed that loss of IL-7 signaling led to impaired production of IL-5, IL-13 and amphiregulin in lung ST2+ group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) following influenza/A infection. Conversely, mice treated with IL-7 increased production of IL-5 and IL-13 by lung ILC2s. Moreover, we showed that IL-7 enhanced GATA3 and CD25 expression in ILC2s and loss of IL-7 signaling led to their reduced expression. Altogether, this study demonstrates that IL-7 regulates the function of ILC2s during airway viral infection and induces GATA3 and CD25 expression.