The genomic structure of the recently described cytokine IL-13 has been determined for both human and mouse genes. The nucleotide sequence of a 4.6-kb DNA segment of the human gene is described. The human IL-13 gene (IL13) occurs as a single copy in the haploid genome and maps to human chromosome 5. A 4.3-kb DNA fragment of the mouse IL-13 gene (IL13) has been sequenced and found to occur as a single copy, mapping to mouse chromosome 11. Intrachromosomal mapping studies revealed that both genes contain four exons and three introns and show a high degree of sequence identity throughout their length. Potential recognition sequences for transcription factors that are present in the 5'-flanking region and are conserved between both genes include IFN-responsive elements, binding sites for AP-1, AP-2 and AP-3, and NF-IL 6 site, and a TATA-like sequence. Both genes map to chromosomal locations adjacent to genes encoding other cytokines, including IL-3, GM-CSF, IL-5, and IL-4, suggesting that IL-13 is another member of this cytokine gene family that may have arisen by gene duplication.

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