Table of Contents
ISRN Inflammation
Volume 2013, Article ID 512103, 23 pages
Review Article

The Enigmatic Cytokine Oncostatin M and Roles in Disease

McMaster Immunology Research Centre, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street, West, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8S 4K1

Received 3 September 2013; Accepted 29 September 2013

Academic Editors: R. Gong and N. Horwood

Copyright © 2013 Carl D. Richards. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Oncostatin M is a secreted cytokine involved in homeostasis and in diseases involving chronic inflammation. It is a member of the gp130 family of cytokines that have pleiotropic functions in differentiation, cell proliferation, and hematopoetic, immunologic, and inflammatory networks. However, Oncostatin M also has activities novel to mediators of this cytokine family and others and may have fundamental roles in mechanisms of inflammation in pathology. Studies have explored Oncostatin M functions in cancer, bone metabolism, liver regeneration, and conditions with chronic inflammation including rheumatoid arthritis, lung and skin inflammatory disease, atherosclerosis, and cardiovascular disease. This paper will review Oncostatin M biology in a historical fashion and focus on its unique activities, in vitro and in vivo, that differentiate it from other cytokines and inspire further study or consideration in therapeutic approaches.