IL-17 Inhibits Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cell Proliferation and Differentiation by Increasing K+ Channel Kv1.3

Han Liu, Xueke Yang, Jing Yang, Yanpeng Yuan, Yanlin Wang, Rui Zhang, Huangui Xiong, Yuming Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Interleukin 17 (IL-17) is a signature cytokine of Th17 cells. IL-17 level is significantly increased in inflammatory conditions of the CNS, including but not limited to post-stroke and multiple sclerosis. IL-17 has been detected direct toxicity on oligodendrocyte (Ol) lineage cells and inhibition on oligodendrocyte progenitor cell (OPC) differentiation, and thus promotes myelin damage. The cellular mechanism of IL-17 in CNS inflammatory diseases remains obscure. Voltage-gated K+ (Kv) channel 1.3 is the predominant Kv channel in Ol and potentially involved in Ol function and cell cycle regulation. Kv1.3 of T cells involves in immunomodulation of inflammatory progression, but the role of Ol Kv1.3 in inflammation-related pathogenesis has not been fully investigated. We hypothesized that IL-17 induces myelin injury through Kv1.3 activation. To test the hypothesis, we studied the involvement of OPC/Ol Kv1.3 in IL-17-induced Ol/myelin injury in vitro and in vivo. Kv1.3 currents and channel expression gradually decreased during the OPC development. Application of IL-17 to OPC culture increased Kv1.3 expression, leading to a decrease of AKT activation, inhibition of proliferation and myelin basic protein reduction, which were prevented by a specific Kv1.3 blocker 5-(4-phenoxybutoxy) psoralen. IL-17-caused myelin injury was validated in LPC-induced demyelination mouse model, particularly in corpus callosum, which was also mitigated by aforementioned Kv1.3 antagonist. IL-17 altered Kv1.3 expression and resultant inhibitory effects on OPC proliferation and differentiation may by interrupting AKT phosphorylating activation. Taken together, our results suggested that IL-17 impairs remyelination and promotes myelin damage by Kv1.3-mediated Ol/myelin injury. Thus, blockade of Kv1.3 as a potential therapeutic strategy for inflammatory CNS disease may partially attribute to the direct protection on OPC proliferation and differentiation other than immunomodulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number679413
JournalFrontiers in Cellular Neuroscience
StatePublished - Jun 22 2021


  • IL-17
  • Kv1.3
  • inflammation
  • myelin
  • oligodendrocyte

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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