The GM-CSF receptor family: mechanism of activation and implications for disease.
ABSTRACT Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is a pluripotent cytokine produced by many cells in the body, which regulates normal and malignant hemopoiesis as well as innate and adaptive immunity. GM-CSF assembles and activates its heterodimeric receptor complex on the surface of myeloid cells, initiating multiple signaling pathways that control key functions such as cell survival, cell proliferation, and functional activation. Understanding the molecular composition of these pathways, the interaction of the various components as well as the kinetics and dose-dependent mechanics of receptor activation provides valuable insights into the function of GM-CSF as well as the related cytokines, interleukin-3 and interleukin-5. This knowledge provides opportunities for the development of new therapies to block the action of these cytokines in hematological malignancy and chronic inflammation.