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Reviewed February 2011
What is the official name of the IL1A gene?
The official name of this gene is “interleukin 1 alpha.”
IL1A is the gene's official symbol. The IL1A gene is also known by other names, listed below.
Read more about gene names and symbols on the About page.
What is the normal function of the IL1A gene?
The IL1A gene provides instructions for making a protein called interleukin-1 alpha. Interleukins are a group of proteins that are made primarily in immune system cells. They are involved in cell-to-cell communication and have a wide variety of functions within the immune system. Interleukin-1 alpha is described as "pro-inflammatory" because it stimulates the activity of genes involved in inflammation and immunity. This protein plays a critical role in protecting the body from foreign invaders such as bacteria and viruses. It is also involved in bone resorption, the breakdown and removal of bone tissue that is no longer needed.
Interleukin-1 alpha is initially produced as a relatively long protein that is trapped within cells. Another protein, called calpain, cuts (cleaves) this precursor protein to create a shorter, mature version of interleukin-1 alpha. The shorter form of this protein is secreted by immune system cells to influence the functions of other cells.
Does the IL1A gene share characteristics with other genes?
A gene family is a group of genes that share important characteristics. Classifying individual genes into families helps researchers describe how genes are related to each other. For more information, see What are gene families? in the Handbook.
How are changes in the IL1A gene related to health conditions?
Genetics Home Reference provides information about idiopathic inflammatory myopathy, which is also associated with changes in the IL1A gene.
Where is the IL1A gene located?
Cytogenetic Location: 2q14
Molecular Location on chromosome 2: base pairs 112,773,915 to 112,785,394
(Homo sapiens Annotation Release 107, GRCh38.p2) (
The IL1A gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 2 at position 14.
More precisely, the IL1A gene is located from base pair 112,773,915 to base pair 112,785,394 on chromosome 2.
See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.
Where can I find additional information about IL1A?
You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about IL1A helpful.
You may also be interested in these resources, which are designed for genetics professionals and researchers.
What other names do people use for the IL1A gene or gene products?
See How are genetic conditions and genes named? in the Handbook.
Where can I find general information about genes?
The Handbook provides basic information about genetics in clear language.
These links provide additional genetics resources that may be useful.
What glossary definitions help with understanding IL1A?
amino acid ; bacteria ; breakdown ; cell ; chronic ; cytokine ; dendritic cell ; DNA ; gene ; glaucoma ; idiopathic ; immune system ; infection ; inflammation ; macrophage ; monocyte ; nucleotide ; osteomyelitis ; precursor ; Pro ; protein ; risk factors ; sensitivity ; spondylitis ; tissue
You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.
References (9 links)
The resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Users seeking information about a personal genetic disease, syndrome, or condition should consult with a qualified healthcare professional. See How can I find a genetics professional in my area? in the Handbook.