Table of Contents
Journal of Signal Transduction
Volume 2011, Article ID 905813, 20 pages
Review Article

Fish Suppressors of Cytokine Signaling (SOCS): Gene Discovery, Modulation of Expression and Function

1Scottish Fish Immunology Research Centre, Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen AB24 2TZ, UK
2EWOS Innovation AS, 4335 Dirdal, Norway

Received 29 June 2011; Accepted 12 September 2011

Academic Editor: Fred Schaper

Copyright © 2011 Tiehui Wang et al. 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.


The intracellular suppressors of cytokine signaling (SOCS) family members, including CISH and SOCS1 to 7 in mammals, are important regulators of cytokine signaling pathways. So far, the orthologues of all the eight mammalian SOCS members have been identified in fish, with several of them having multiple copies. Whilst fish CISH, SOCS3, and SOCS5 paralogues are possibly the result of the fish-specific whole genome duplication event, gene duplication or lineage-specific genome duplication may also contribute to some paralogues, as with the three trout SOCS2s and three zebrafish SOCS5s. Fish SOCS genes are broadly expressed and also show species-specific expression patterns. They can be upregulated by cytokines, such as IFN-γ, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, and IL-21, by immune stimulants such as LPS, poly I:C, and PMA, as well as by viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections in member- and species-dependent manners. Initial functional studies demonstrate conserved mechanisms of fish SOCS action via JAK/STAT pathways.