Technology ID

Treatment of Viral Infection by Blocking Interleukin-21

Lead Inventor
Leonard, Warren (NHLBI)
Spolski, Rosanne (NHLBI)
Therapeutic Areas
Infectious Disease
Development Status
  • Early-stage
  • Pre-clinical
  • In vivo data available (animal)
Lead IC
Blocking interleukin (IL-21) may be an effective method to treat or prevent various viral infections. In the course of an immune response to a virus, IL-21, produced primarily by CD4+ T cells, can inhibit or stimulate (regulate), immune cell function (B cells, T cells, natural killer cells, dendritic cells). IL-21 regulation may be either protective or pathological; autoimmune disease pathology has been associated with IL-21 promoted inflammation (in: type 1 diabetes, lupus, and multiple sclerosis). This technology describes methods of blocking IL-21 that may reduce damaging inflammatory responses during certain viral infections. Specifically, the absence of IL-21 during respiratory viral infection such as pneumonia virus infection actually prevents some of the pathogenic effects that may be promoted by IL-21. Methods for controlling IL-21 signaling may be used to treat to prevent many pathological effects of pneumonia viruses, and other viral infections.
Commercial Applications
Prevention and treatment of many pathological effects of viral infections, including pneumonia.

Competitive Advantages
New method for treating viral infection pathology.
Licensing Contact:
Specialist (ALS), Admin. Licensing