Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC San Diego

UC San Diego Previously Published Works bannerUC San Diego

Interleukin 9 Alters Epithelial Barrier and E-cadherin in Eosinophilic Esophagitis

Published Web Location
No data is associated with this publication.


Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a chronic TH2-assocated inflammatory condition accompanied by substantial impairments in epithelial barrier function and increased numbers of interleukin 9 (IL-9) expressing inflammatory cells. While IL-9 is known to affect barrier function in the intestine, the functional effects of IL-9 on the esophagus are unclear. Herein we aimed to understand the expression of the IL-9 receptor and effects of IL-9 on the epithelium in EoE.


We used esophageal biopsies from pediatric EoE patients with active and inactive disease to analyze the expression of the IL-9 receptor, the adherens junction protein E-cadherin and the tight junction protein claudin-1. We treated primary human esophageal epithelial cells with IL-9 to understand its effects on E-cadherin expression and function.


Active EoE subjects had increased epithelial expression of IL-9 receptor mRNA and protein (P < 0.05) and decreased membrane bound E-cadherin (P < 0.01) and claudin-1 (P < 0.05) expression. IL-9 receptor expression and mislocalized claudin-1 positively correlated and while membrane bound E-cadherin expression negatively correlated with the degree of histologic epithelial remodeling (P < 0.05). IL-9 decreased epithelial resistance in stratified primary human esophageal epithelial cells (P < 0.01) and membrane bound E-cadherin in epithelial cell monolayers (P < 0.01).


These data suggest that IL-9, its receptor, and its effects on E-cadherin may be important mechanisms for epithelial barrier disruption in EoE.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Item not freely available? Link broken?
Report a problem accessing this item