Francois B, Jeannet R, Daix T, Walton AH, Shotwell MS, Unsinger J, Monneret G, Rimmelé T, Blood T, Morre M, Gregoire A, Mayo GA, Blood J, Durum SK, Sherwood ER, Hotchkiss RS. Interleukin-7 restores lymphocytes in septic shock: the IRIS-7 randomized clinical trial. JCI insight. 2018 Mar 8;3(3). PMID: 29515037 [PubMed] PMCID: PMC5922293
A defining pathophysiologic feature of sepsis is profound apoptosis-induced death and depletion of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. Interleukin-7 (IL-7) is an antiapoptotic common γ-chain cytokine that is essential for lymphocyte proliferation and survival. Clinical trials of IL-7 in over 390 oncologic and lymphopenic patients showed that IL-7 was safe, invariably increased CD4+ and CD8+ lymphocyte counts, and improved immunity.