Interleukin-26(IL-26) plays a role in local mechanisms of mucosal immunity and seems to have a proinflammatory function. May play a role in inflammatory bowel disease. Activates STAT1 and STAT3, MAPK1/3 (ERK1/2), JUN and AKT. Induces expression of SOCS3, TNF-alpha and IL-8, secretion of IL-8 and IL-10 and surface expression of ICAM1. Decreases proliferation of intestinal epithelial cells. Is inhibited by heparin.