Many lessons in autoimmunity — particularly relating to the role of immune privilege and the interplay between genetics and neuroimmunology — can be learned from the study of alopecia areata, the most common cause of inflammation-induced hair loss. Alopecia areata is now understood to represent an organ-restricted, T cell–mediated autoimmune disease of hair follicles. Disease induction is associated with collapse of hair follicle immune privilege in both humans and in animal models. Here, the role of HLA associations, other immunogenetic factors, and neuroendocrine parameters in alopecia areata pathogenesis are reviewed. This instructive and clinically significant model disease deserves more widespread interest in the immunology community.
Amos Gilhar, Ralf Paus, Richard S. Kalish
The discovery of the Philadelphia chromosome as a hallmark of chronic myelogenous leukemia in 1960 by Peter Nowell provided evidence for a genetic link to cancer. As with most seminal scientific observations, the description of the Philadelphia chromosome posed many more questions than were answered. This Review series includes contributions from individuals who performed critical experiments addressing some of the most important of these questions, reflecting the nearly 50 years of work inspired by Nowell’s initial finding. The legacy of the Philadelphia chromosome now serves as a paradigm for how basic science discoveries can lead to effective new approaches for the treatment of human disease.
Gary A. Koretzky
Almost 50 years ago, David Hungerford and I noticed an abnormally small chromosome in cells from patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). This article is a personal perspective of the events leading to the discovery of this chromosome, which became known as the Philadelphia chromosome. As technology advanced over subsequent decades, the translocation resulting in the Philadelphia chromosome has been identified, its role in the development of CML has been confirmed, and a therapy directed against the abnormal protein it produces has shown promising results in the treatment of patients with CML.
Peter C. Nowell
The scientists of today have become accustomed to the extremely rapid pace of progress in the biomedical sciences spurred on by the discovery of recombinant DNA and the advent of automated DNA sequencing and PCR, with progress usually being measured in months or years at most. What is often forgotten, however, are the many prior advances that were needed to reach our present state of knowledge. Here I illustrate this by discussing the scientific discoveries made over the course of the past century and a half that ultimately led to the recent successful development of drugs, particularly imatinib mesylate, to treat chronic myelogenous leukemia.
Peter Nowell and David Hungerford’s discovery of the Philadelphia chromosome facilitated many critical studies that have led to a paradigm shift in our understanding of cancer as a disease of stem cells. This Review focuses on the application of these concepts to investigation of the role of stem cells in prostate cancer initiation and progression. Major strides in the development of in vitro and in vivo assays have enabled identification and characterization of prostate stem cells as well as functional evaluation of the tumorigenic effects of prostate cancer–related genetic alterations.
Devon A. Lawson, Owen N. Witte
There is widespread aberrant expression of mature and/or precursor microRNAs in cancer cells, as microRNAs are deregulated consequent to chromosomal alterations and other genomic abnormalities. The identification of such abnormalities has a clear diagnostic and prognostic significance, and there are ever increasing examples of links between certain human cancers and modifications at microRNA loci.
George A. Calin, Carlo M. Croce
The identification of the Philadelphia chromosome in cells from individuals with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) led to the recognition that the BCR-ABL tyrosine kinase causes CML. This in turn led to the development of imatinib mesylate, a clinically successful inhibitor of the BCR-ABL kinase. Incorporating the use of markers of BCR-ABL kinase inhibition into clinical trials led to the realization that imatinib-resistant kinase domain mutations are the major cause of relapse during imatinib therapy and the subsequent development of new inhibitors to treat CML patients. The development of imatinib validates an emerging paradigm in cancer, in which a tumor is defined by genetic abnormalities and effective therapies are developed that target events critical to the growth and survival of a specific tumor.
Daniel W. Sherbenou, Brian J. Druker
Understanding the genetic origin of cancer at the molecular level has facilitated the development of novel targeted therapies. Aberrant activation of the ErbB family of receptors is implicated in many human cancers and is already the target of several anticancer therapeutics. The use of mAbs specific for the extracellular domain of ErbB receptors was the first implementation of rational targeted therapy. The cytoplasmic tyrosine kinase domain is also a preferred target for small compounds that inhibit the kinase activity of these receptors. However, current therapy has not yet been optimized, allowing for opportunities for optimization of the next generation of targeted therapy, particularly with regards to inhibiting heteromeric ErbB family receptor complexes.
Hongtao Zhang, Alan Berezov, Qiang Wang, Geng Zhang, Jeffrey Drebin, Ramachandran Murali, Mark I. Greene
The forkhead box O (Foxo) subfamily of transcription factors regulates expression of genes important for many cellular processes, ranging from initiation of cell cycle arrest and apoptosis to induction of DNA damage repair. Invertebrate Foxo orthologs such as DAF-16 also regulate longevity. Cellular responses inducing resistance to ROS are important for cellular survival and organism lifespan, but until recently, mammalian factors regulating resistance to oxidative stress have not been well characterized. Marinkovic and colleagues demonstrate in this issue of the JCI that Foxo3 is specifically required for induction of proteins that regulate the in vivo oxidative stress response in murine erythrocytes (see the related article beginning on page 2133). Their work offers the interesting hypothesis that in so doing, Foxo3 may regulate the lifespan of red blood cells, and underlies the importance of understanding the direct targets of this transcription factor and its regulation.
Shilpa M. Hattangadi, Harvey F. Lodish
Transcription factor-7–like 2 (TCF7L2) is the most important type 2 diabetes susceptibility gene identified to date, with common intronic variants strongly associated with diabetes in all major racial groups. This ubiquitous transcription factor in the Wnt signaling pathway was not previously known to be involved in glucose homeostasis, so defining the underlying mechanism(s) will provide new insights into diabetes. In this issue of the JCI, Lyssenko and colleagues report on their human and isolated islet studies and suggest that the risk allele increases TCF7L2 expression in the pancreatic β cell, reducing insulin secretion and hence predisposing the individual to diabetes (see the related article beginning on page 2155).
Andrew T. Hattersley
Despite significant advances in our understanding of the molecular structure and composition of the glomerular filtration barrier, the mechanisms underlying the presence of excess protein in the urine (proteinuria) in acquired human kidney diseases remain elusive. In a study appearing in this issue of the JCI, Sever and associates use a combination of biochemical, genetic, and in vivo approaches in mice to demonstrate a pivotal role of cathepsin L and its substrate the GTPase dynamin, in the induction of proteinuria and associated foot process effacement in glomerular podocytes (see the related article beginning on page 2095).
Long-term correction of genetic diseases requires permanent integration of therapeutic genes into chromosomes of affected cells. Retroviral vectors are the most widely used delivery vehicles because of their efficiency and precision of integration. However, retroviral integration can take place at a variety of chromosomal sites, and examples have been reported of integration of therapeutic vectors activating oncogenes and causing cancer in patients. This issue of the JCI presents three articles that update successful human gene therapy trials and furthermore evaluate the sites of integration in cells from treated patients, including samples from individuals experiencing serious adverse events following therapy (see the related articles beginning on pages 2225, 2233, and 2241).
Frederic D. Bushman
Our understanding of magnesium (Mg2+) regulation has recently been catapulted forward by the discovery of several disease loci for monogenic disorders of Mg2+ homeostasis. In this issue of the JCI, Groenestege et al. report that their study of a rare inherited Mg2+ wasting disorder in consanguineous kindred shows that EGF acts as an autocrine/paracrine magnesiotropic hormone (see the related article beginning on page 2260). EGF stimulates Mg2+ reabsorption in the renal distal convoluted tubule (DCT) via engagement of its receptor on the basolateral membrane of DCT cells and activation of the Mg2+ channel TRPM6 (transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 6) in the apical membrane. These authors show that a point mutation in pro-EGF retains EGF secretion to the apical but not the basolateral membrane, disrupting this cascade and causing renal Mg2+ wasting. This work is another seminal example of the power of the study of monogenic disorders in the quest to understand human physiology.
Shmuel Muallem, Orson W. Moe
AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) has emerged as a metabolic “fuel gauge,” which oscillates between anabolic and catabolic processes that ultimately influence energy balance. A study in this issue of the JCI by Claret et al. now extends the role of AMPK in medial basal hypothalamic neurons (see the related article beginning on page 2325). These findings maintain AMPK signaling as a common cellular mechanism in proopiomelanocortin and neuropeptide Y/agouti-related protein neurons and links hypothalamic AMPK to coordinated energy and glucose homeostasis.
Kevin W. Williams, Roberto Coppari, Joel K. Elmquist
MHC class I–restricted CD8+ T cells are necessary to mount an immune response against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. M. tuberculosis antigens can enter MHC class I cross-processing pathways through a number of different mechanisms, including via the uptake of antigen-containing apoptotic vesicles released by infected cells. A study in this issue of the JCI by Hinchey and colleagues shows that M. tuberculosis inhibits host cell apoptosis and thus may interfere with optimal cross-priming and action of CD8+ T cells (see the related article beginning on page 2279). M. tuberculosis genetically modified to induce apoptosis is shown to be more effective in priming CD8+ T cells in vivo and therefore may be a more effective vaccine against tuberculosis than the currently utilized M. bovis BCG vaccine.
W. Henry Boom
Kidney podocytes and their foot processes maintain the ultrafiltration barrier and prevent urinary protein loss (proteinuria). Here we show that the GTPase dynamin is essential for podocyte function. During proteinuric kidney disease, induction of cytoplasmic cathepsin L leads to cleavage of dynamin at an evolutionary conserved site, resulting in reorganization of the podocyte actin cytoskeleton and proteinuria. Dynamin mutants that lack the cathepsin L site, or render the cathepsin L site inaccessible through dynamin self-assembly, are resistant to cathepsin L cleavage. When delivered into mice, these mutants restored podocyte function and resolve proteinuria. Our study identifies dynamin as a critical regulator of renal permselectivity that is specifically targeted by proteolysis under pathological conditions.
Sanja Sever, Mehmet M. Altintas, Sharif R. Nankoe, Clemens C. Möller, David Ko, Changli Wei, Joel Henderson, Elizabetta C. del Re, Lianne Hsing, Ann Erickson, Clemens D. Cohen, Matthias Kretzler, Dontscho Kerjaschki, Alexander Rudensky, Boris Nikolic, Jochen Reiser
Acute spinal cord injury (SCI) causes progressive hemorrhagic necrosis (PHN), a poorly understood pathological process characterized by hemorrhage and necrosis that leads to devastating loss of spinal cord tissue, cystic cavitation of the cord, and debilitating neurological dysfunction. Using a rodent model of severe cervical SCI, we tested the hypothesis that sulfonylurea receptor 1–regulated (SUR1-regulated) Ca2+-activated, [ATP]i-sensitive nonspecific cation (NCCa-ATP) channels are involved in PHN. In control rats, SCI caused a progressively expansive lesion with fragmentation of capillaries, hemorrhage that doubled in volume over 12 hours, tissue necrosis, and severe neurological dysfunction. SUR1 expression was upregulated in capillaries and neurons surrounding necrotic lesions. Patch clamp of cultured endothelial cells exposed to hypoxia showed that upregulation of SUR1 was associated with expression of functional SUR1-regulated NCCa-ATP channels. Following SCI, block of SUR1 by glibenclamide or repaglinide or suppression of Abcc8, which encodes for SUR1 by phosphorothioated antisense oligodeoxynucleotide essentially eliminated capillary fragmentation and progressive accumulation of blood, was associated with significant sparing of white matter tracts and a 3-fold reduction in lesion volume, and resulted in marked neurobehavioral functional improvement compared with controls. We conclude that SUR1-regulated NCCa-ATP channels in capillary endothelium are critical to development of PHN and constitute a major target for therapy in SCI.
J. Marc Simard, Orest Tsymbalyuk, Alexander Ivanov, Svetlana Ivanova, Sergei Bhatta, Zhihua Geng, S. Kyoon Woo, Volodymyr Gerzanich
We hypothesized that overexpression of PDGF-BB in colorectal cancer (CRC) and pancreatic cancer cells would result in increased pericyte coverage of ECs in vivo, rendering the tumor vasculature more resistant to antiangiogenic therapy. We stably transfected the cDNA for the PDGF-B into HT-29 human CRC and FG human pancreatic cancer cells. Surprisingly, when HT-29 or FG parental and transfected cells were injected into mice (subcutaneously and orthotopically), we observed marked inhibition of tumor growth in the PDGF-BB–overexpressing clones. In the PDGF-BB–overexpressing tumors, we observed an increase in pericyte coverage of ECs. Treatment of PDGF-BB–overexpressing tumors with imatinib mesylate (PDGFR inhibitor) resulted in increased growth and decreased total pericyte content compared with those in untreated PDGF-BB–overexpressing tumors. In vitro studies demonstrated the ability of VSMCs to inhibit EC proliferation by approximately 50%. These data show that increasing the pericyte content of the tumor microenvironment inhibits the growth of angiogenesis-dependent tumors. Single-agent therapy targeting PDGF receptor must be used with caution in tumors when PDGFR is not the target on the tumor cell itself.
Marya F. McCarty, Ray J. Somcio, Oliver Stoeltzing, Jane Wey, Fan Fan, Wenbiao Liu, Corazon Bucana, Lee M. Ellis
Noonan syndrome (NS) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by a wide spectrum of defects, which most frequently include proportionate short stature, craniofacial anomalies, and congenital heart disease (CHD). NS is the most common nonchromosomal cause of CHD, and 80%–90% of NS patients have cardiac involvement. Mutations within the protein tyrosine phosphatase Src homology region 2, phosphatase 2 (SHP2) are responsible for approximately 50% of the cases of NS with cardiac involvement. To understand the developmental stage– and cell type–specific consequences of the NS SHP2 gain-of-function mutation, Q79R, we generated transgenic mice in which the mutated protein was expressed during gestation or following birth in cardiomyocytes. Q79R SHP2 embryonic hearts showed altered cardiomyocyte cell cycling, ventricular noncompaction, and ventricular septal defects, while, in the postnatal cardiomyocyte, Q79R SHP2 expression was completely benign. Fetal expression of Q79R led to the specific activation of the ERK1/2 pathway, and breeding of the Q79R transgenics into ERK1/2-null backgrounds confirmed the pathway’s necessity and sufficiency in mediating mutant SHP2’s effects. Our data establish the developmental stage–specific effects of Q79R cardiac expression in NS; show that ablation of subsequent ERK1/2 activation prevents the development of cardiac abnormalities; and suggest that ERK1/2 modulation could have important implications for developing therapeutic strategies in CHD.
Tomoki Nakamura, Melissa Colbert, Maike Krenz, Jeffery D. Molkentin, Harvey S. Hahn, Gerald W. Dorn II, Jeffrey Robbins
Erythroid cells accumulate hemoglobin as they mature and as a result are highly prone to oxidative damage. However, mechanisms of transcriptional control of antioxidant defense in erythroid cells have thus far been poorly characterized. We observed that animals deficient in the forkhead box O3 (Foxo3) transcription factor died rapidly when exposed to erythroid oxidative stress–induced conditions, while wild-type mice showed no decreased viability. In view of this striking finding, we investigated the potential role of Foxo3 in the regulation of ROS in erythropoiesis. Foxo3 expression, nuclear localization, and transcriptional activity were all enhanced during normal erythroid cell maturation. Foxo3-deficient erythrocytes exhibited decreased expression of ROS scavenging enzymes and had a ROS-mediated shortened lifespan and evidence of oxidative damage. Furthermore, loss of Foxo3 induced mitotic arrest in erythroid precursor cells, leading to a significant decrease in the rate of in vivo erythroid maturation. We identified ROS-mediated upregulation of p21CIP1/WAF1/Sdi1 (also known as Cdkn1a) as a major contributor to the interference with cell cycle progression in Foxo3-deficient erythroid precursor cells. These findings establish an essential nonredundant function for Foxo3 in the regulation of oxidative stress, cell cycle, maturation, and lifespan of erythroid cells. These results may have an impact on the understanding of human disorders in which ROS play a role.
Dragan Marinkovic, Xin Zhang, Safak Yalcin, Julia P. Luciano, Carlo Brugnara, Tara Huber, Saghi Ghaffari
The initiation of mammalian puberty and the maintenance of female reproductive cycles are events controlled by hypothalamic neurons that secrete the decapeptide gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). GnRH secretion is, in turn, controlled by changes in neuronal and glial inputs to GnRH-producing neurons. The hierarchical control of the process is unknown, but it requires coordinated regulation of these cell-cell interactions. Here we report the functional characterization of a gene (termed enhanced at puberty 1 [EAP1]) that appears to act as an upstream transcriptional regulator of neuronal networks controlling female reproductive function. EAP1 expression increased selectively at puberty in both the nonhuman primate and rodent hypothalamus. EAP1 encoded a nuclear protein expressed in neurons involved in the inhibitory and facilitatory control of reproduction. EAP1 transactivated genes required for reproductive function, such as GNRH1, and repressed inhibitory genes, such as preproenkephalin. It contained a RING finger domain of the C3HC4 subclass required for this dual transcriptional activity. Inhibition of EAP1 expression, targeted to the rodent hypothalamus via lentivirus-mediated delivery of EAP1 siRNAs, delayed puberty, disrupted estrous cyclicity, and resulted in ovarian abnormalities. These results suggest that EAP1 is a transcriptional regulator that, acting within the neuroendocrine brain, contributes to controlling female reproductive function.
Sabine Heger, Claudio Mastronardi, Gregory A. Dissen, Alejandro Lomniczi, Ricardo Cabrera, Christian L. Roth, Heike Jung, Francesco Galimi, Wolfgang Sippell, Sergio R. Ojeda
Genetic variants in the gene encoding for transcription factor-7–like 2 (TCF7L2) have been associated with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and impaired β cell function, but the mechanisms have remained unknown. We therefore studied prospectively the ability of common variants in TCF7L2 to predict future T2D and explored the mechanisms by which they would do this. Scandinavian subjects followed for up to 22 years were genotyped for 3 SNPs (rs7903146, rs12255372, and rs10885406) in TCF7L2, and a subset of them underwent extensive metabolic studies. Expression of TCF7L2 was related to genotype and metabolic parameters in human islets. The CT/TT genotypes of SNP rs7903146 strongly predicted future T2D in 2 independent cohorts (Swedish and Finnish). The risk T allele was associated with impaired insulin secretion, incretin effects, and enhanced rate of hepatic glucose production. TCF7L2 expression in human islets was increased 5-fold in T2D, particularly in carriers of the TT genotype. Overexpression of TCF7L2 in human islets reduced glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. In conclusion, the increased risk of T2D conferred by variants in TCF7L2 involves the enteroinsular axis, enhanced expression of the gene in islets, and impaired insulin secretion.
Valeriya Lyssenko, Roberto Lupi, Piero Marchetti, Silvia Del Guerra, Marju Orho-Melander, Peter Almgren, Marketa Sjögren, Charlotte Ling, Karl-Fredrik Eriksson, υsa-Linda Lethagen, Rita Mancarella, Göran Berglund, Tiinamaija Tuomi, Peter Nilsson, Stefano Del Prato, Leif Groop
SWAP-70–like adapter of T cells (SLAT) is a novel guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Rho GTPases that is upregulated in Th2 cells, but whose physiological function is unclear. We show that SLAT–/– mice displayed a developmental defect at one of the earliest stages of thymocyte differentiation, the double-negative 1 (DN1) stage, leading to decreased peripheral T cell numbers. SLAT–/– peripheral CD4+ T cells demonstrated impaired TCR/CD28-induced proliferation and IL-2 production, which was rescued by the addition of exogenous IL-2. Importantly, SLAT–/– mice were grossly impaired in their ability to mount not only Th2, but also Th1-mediated lung inflammatory responses, as evidenced by reduced airway neutrophilia and eosinophilia, respectively. Levels of Th1 and Th2 cytokine in the lungs were also markedly reduced, paralleling the reduction in pulmonary inflammation. This defect in mounting Th1/Th2 responses, which was also evident in vitro, was traced to a severe reduction in Ca2+ mobilization from ER stores, which consequently led to defective TCR/CD28-induced translocation of nuclear factor of activated T cells 1/2 (NFATc1/2). Thus, SLAT is required for thymic DN1 cell expansion, T cell activation, and Th1 and Th2 inflammatory responses.
Stéphane Bécart, Céline Charvet, Ann J. Canonigo Balancio, Carl De Trez, Yoshihiko Tanaka, Wei Duan, Carl Ware, Michael Croft, Amnon Altman
Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an animal model of multiple sclerosis. Immunization of B10.PL mice with the Ac1–9 peptide, the immunodominant determinant of myelin basic protein (MBP), produced a single episode of EAE followed by recovery and resistance to reinduction of disease. Using the CDR3 length spectratyping technique, we characterized the clonal composition of the Ac1–9–specific T cell repertoire from induction through onset and resolution of disease. Two clonally restricted subsets within a heterogeneous self-reactive repertoire were found in mouse lymph nodes, spleen, and spinal cord soon after immunization, before any sign of EAE. These clonotypes, designated BV8S2/BJ2S7 and BV16/BJ2S5, were present in all mice examined and thus considered public. BV8S2/BJ2S7 was found in far greater excess; was exclusively Th1 polarized; disappeared from the spinal cord, spleen, and lymph nodes concomitantly with recovery; and transferred disease to naive recipients. In contrast, BV16/BJ2S5 and numerous private clonotypes were either Th1 or Th2 and persisted following recovery. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the public clonotype BV8S2/BJ2S7 is a driver of disease and necessary for its propagation.
Juscilene S. Menezes, Peter van den Elzen, Jordan Thornes, Donald Huffman, Nathalie M. Droin, Emanual Maverakis, Eli E. Sercarz
Though B cells play key roles in lupus pathogenesis, the molecular circuitry and its dysregulation in these cells as disease evolves remain poorly understood. To address this, a comprehensive scan of multiple signaling axes using multiplexed Western blotting was undertaken in several different murine lupus strains. PI3K/AKT/mTOR (mTOR, mammalian target of rapamycin), MEK1/Erk1/2, p38, NF-κB, multiple Bcl-2 family members, and cell-cycle molecules were observed to be hyperexpressed in lupus B cells in an age-dependent and lupus susceptibility gene–dose–dependent manner. Therapeutic targeting of the AKT/mTOR axis using a rapamycin (sirolimus) derivative ameliorated the serological, cellular, and pathological phenotypes associated with lupus. Surprisingly, the targeting of this axis was associated with the crippling of several other signaling axes. These studies reveal that lupus pathogenesis is contingent upon the activation of an elaborate network of signaling cascades that is shared among genetically distinct mouse models and raise hope that targeting pivotal nodes in these networks may offer therapeutic benefit.
Tianfu Wu, Xiangmei Qin, Zoran Kurepa, Kirthi Raman Kumar, Kui Liu, Hasna Kanta, Xin J. Zhou, Anne B. Satterthwaite, Laurie S. Davis, Chandra Mohan
Lymphodepletion with total body irradiation (TBI) increases the efficacy of adoptively transferred tumor-specific CD8+ T cells by depleting inhibitory lymphocytes and increasing homeostatic cytokine levels. We found that TBI augmented the function of adoptively transferred CD8+ T cells in mice genetically deficient in all lymphocytes, indicating the existence of another TBI mechanism of action. Additional investigation revealed commensal gut microflora in the mesenteric lymph nodes and elevated LPS levels in the sera of irradiated mice. These findings correlated with increased dendritic cell activation and heightened levels of systemic inflammatory cytokines. Reduction of host microflora using antibiotics, neutralization of serum LPS using polymyxin B, or removal of LPS signaling components using mice genetically deficient in CD14 and TLR4 reduced the beneficial effects of TBI on tumor regression. Conversely, administration of microbial ligand–containing serum or ultrapure LPS from irradiated animals to nonirradiated antibody-lymphodepleted mice enhanced CD8+ T cell activation and improved tumor regression. Administration of ultrapure LPS to irradiated animals further enhanced the number and function of the adoptively transferred cells, leading to long-term cure of mice with large B16F10 tumors and enhanced autoimmune vitiligo. Thus, disruption of the homeostatic balance between the host and microbes can enhance cell-based tumor immunotherapy.
Chrystal M. Paulos, Claudia Wrzesinski, Andrew Kaiser,, Christian S. Hinrichs, Marcello Chieppa, Lydie Cassard, Douglas C. Palmer, Andrea Boni, Pawel Muranski, Zhiya Yu, Luca Gattinoni, Paul A. Antony, Steven A. Rosenberg, Nicholas P. Restifo
Estrogen drives both transcriptional activation and proteolysis of estrogen receptor α (ERα; encoded by ESR1). Here we observed variable and overlapping ESR1 mRNA levels in 200 ERα-negative and 50 ERα-positive primary breast cancers examined, which suggests important posttranscriptional ERα regulation. Our results indicate that Src cooperates with estrogen to activate ERα proteolysis. Inducible Src stimulated ligand-activated ERα transcriptional activity and reduced ERα t1/2. Src and ERα levels were inversely correlated in primary breast cancers. ERα-negative primary breast cancers and cell lines showed increased Src levels and/or activity compared with ERα-positive cancers and cells. ERα t1/2 was reduced in ERα-negative cell lines. In both ERα-positive and -negative cell lines, both proteasome and Src inhibitors increased ERα levels. Src inhibition impaired ligand-activated ERα ubiquitylation and increased ERα levels. Src siRNA impaired ligand-activated ERα loss in BT-20 cells. Pretreatment with Src increased ERα ubiquitylation and degradation in vitro. These findings provide what we believe to be a novel link between Src activation and ERα proteolysis and support a model whereby crosstalk between liganded ERα and Src drives ERα transcriptional activity and targets ERα for ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis. Oncogenic Src activation may promote not only proliferation, but also estrogen-activated ERα loss in a subset of ERα-negative breast cancers, altering prognosis and response to therapy.
Isabel Chu, Angel Arnaout, Sophie Loiseau, Jun Sun, Arun Seth, Chris McMahon, Kathy Chun, Bryan Hennessy, Gordon B. Mills, Zafar Nawaz, Joyce M. Slingerland
Macrophage ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1), scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI), and ABCG1 have been shown to promote cholesterol efflux to extracellular acceptors in vitro and influence atherosclerosis in mice, but their roles in mediating reverse cholesterol transport (RCT) from macrophages in vivo are unknown. Using an assay of macrophage RCT in mice, we found that primary macrophages lacking ABCA1 had a significant reduction in macrophage RCT in vivo, demonstrating the importance of ABCA1 in promoting macrophage RCT, however substantial residual RCT exists in the absence of macrophage ABCA1. Using primary macrophages deficient in SR-BI expression, we found that macrophage SR-BI, which was shown to promote cholesterol efflux in vitro, does not contribute to macrophage RCT in vivo. To investigate whether macrophage ABCG1 is involved in macrophage RCT in vivo, we used ABCG1-overexpressing, -knockdown, and -knockout macrophages. We show that increased macrophage ABCG1 expression significantly promoted while knockdown or knockout of macrophage ABCG1 expression significantly reduced macrophage RCT in vivo. Finally, we show that there was a greater decrease in macrophage RCT from cells where both ABCA1 and ABCG1 expression were knocked down than from ABCG1-knockdown cells. These results demonstrate that ABCA1 and ABCG1, but not SR-BI, promote macrophage RCT in vivo and are additive in their effects.
Xun Wang, Heidi L. Collins, Mollie Ranalletta, Ilia V. Fuki, Jeffrey T. Billheimer, George H. Rothblat, Alan R. Tall, Daniel J. Rader
Recent reports have challenged the notion that retroviruses and retroviral vectors integrate randomly into the host genome. These reports pointed to a strong bias toward integration in and near gene coding regions and, for gammaretroviral vectors, around transcription start sites. Here, we report the results obtained from a large-scale mapping of 572 retroviral integration sites (RISs) isolated from cells of 9 patients with X-linked SCID (SCID-X1) treated with a retrovirus-based gene therapy protocol. Our data showed that two-thirds of insertions occurred in or very near to genes, of which more than half were highly expressed in CD34+ progenitor cells. Strikingly, one-fourth of all integrations were clustered as common integration sites (CISs). The highly significant incidence of CISs in circulating T cells and the nature of their locations indicate that insertion in many gene loci has an influence on cell engraftment, survival, and proliferation. Beyond the observed cases of insertional mutagenesis in 3 patients, these data help to elucidate the relationship between vector insertion and long-term in vivo selection of transduced cells in human patients with SCID-X1.
Annette Deichmann, Salima Hacein-Bey-Abina, Manfred Schmidt, Alexandrine Garrigue, Martijn H. Brugman, Jingqiong Hu, Hanno Glimm, Gabor Gyapay, Bernard Prum, Christopher C. Fraser, Nicolas Fischer, Kerstin Schwarzwaelder, Maria-Luise Siegler, Dick de Ridder, Karin Pike-Overzet, Steven J. Howe, Adrian J. Thrasher, Gerard Wagemaker, Ulrich Abel, Frank J.T. Staal, Eric Delabesse, Jean-Luc Villeval, Bruce Aronow, Christophe Hue, Claudia Prinz, Manuela Wissler, Chuck Klanke, Jean Weissenbach, Ian Alexander, Alain Fischer, Christof von Kalle, Marina Cavazzana-Calvo
Gene transfer into HSCs is an effective treatment for SCID, although potentially limited by the risk of insertional mutagenesis. We performed a genome-wide analysis of retroviral vector integrations in genetically corrected HSCs and their multilineage progeny before and up to 47 months after transplantation into 5 patients with adenosine deaminase–deficient SCID. Gene-dense regions, promoters, and transcriptionally active genes were preferred retroviral integrations sites (RISs) both in preinfusion transduced CD34+ cells and in vivo after gene therapy. The occurrence of insertion sites proximal to protooncogenes or genes controlling cell growth and self renewal, including LMO2, was not associated with clonal selection or expansion in vivo. Clonal analysis of long-term repopulating cell progeny in vivo revealed highly polyclonal T cell populations and shared RISs among multiple lineages, demonstrating the engraftment of multipotent HSCs. These data have important implications for the biology of retroviral vectors, the dynamics of genetically modified HSCs, and the safety of gene therapy.
Alessandro Aiuti, Barbara Cassani, Grazia Andolfi, Massimiliano Mirolo, Luca Biasco, Alessandra Recchia, Fabrizia Urbinati, Cristina Valacca, Samantha Scaramuzza, Memet Aker, Shimon Slavin, Matteo Cazzola, Daniela Sartori, Alessandro Ambrosi, Clelia Di Serio, Maria Grazia Roncarolo, Fulvio Mavilio, Claudio Bordignon
We treated 10 children with X-linked SCID (SCID-X1) using gammaretrovirus-mediated gene transfer. Those with sufficient follow-up were found to have recovered substantial immunity in the absence of any serious adverse events up to 5 years after treatment. To determine the influence of vector integration on lymphoid reconstitution, we compared retroviral integration sites (RISs) from peripheral blood CD3+ T lymphocytes of 5 patients taken between 9 and 30 months after transplantation with transduced CD34+ progenitor cells derived from 1 further patient and 1 healthy donor. Integration occurred preferentially in gene regions on either side of transcription start sites, was clustered, and correlated with the expression level in CD34+ progenitors during transduction. In contrast to those in CD34+ cells, RISs recovered from engrafted CD3+ T cells were significantly overrepresented within or near genes encoding proteins with kinase or transferase activity or involved in phosphorus metabolism. Although gross patterns of gene expression were unchanged in transduced cells, the divergence of RIS target frequency between transduced progenitor cells and post-thymic T lymphocytes indicates that vector integration influences cell survival, engraftment, or proliferation.
Kerstin Schwarzwaelder, Steven J. Howe, Manfred Schmidt, Martijn H. Brugman, Annette Deichmann, Hanno Glimm, Sonja Schmidt, Claudia Prinz, Manuela Wissler, Douglas J.S. King, Fang Zhang, Kathryn L. Parsley, Kimberly C. Gilmour, Joanna Sinclair, Jinhua Bayford, Rachel Peraj, Karin Pike-Overzet, Frank J.T. Staal, Dick de Ridder, Christine Kinnon, Ulrich Abel, Gerard Wagemaker, H. Bobby Gaspar, Adrian J. Thrasher, Christof von Kalle
In vitro studies indicate that binding of talin to the β3 integrin cytoplasmic domain (tail) results in integrin αIIbβ3 (GPIIb–IIIa) activation. Here we tested the importance of talin binding for integrin activation in vivo and its biological significance by generating mice harboring point mutations in the β3 tail. We introduced a β3(Y747A) substitution that disrupts the binding of talin, filamin, and other cytoplasmic proteins and a β3(L746A) substitution that selectively disrupts interactions only with talin. Platelets from animals homozygous for each mutation showed impaired agonist-induced fibrinogen binding and platelet aggregation, providing proof that inside-out signals that activate αIIbβ3 require binding of talin to the β3 tail. β3(L746A) mice were resistant to both pulmonary thromboembolism and to ferric chloride–induced thrombosis of the carotid artery. Pathological bleeding, measured by the presence of fecal blood and development of anemia, occurred in 53% of β3(Y747A) and virtually all β3-null animals examined. Remarkably, less than 5% of β3(L746A) animals exhibited this form of bleeding. These results establish that αIIbβ3 activation in vivo is dependent on the interaction of talin with the β3 integrin cytoplasmic domain. Furthermore, they suggest that modulation of β3 integrin–talin interactions may provide an attractive target for antithrombotics and result in a reduced risk of pathological bleeding.
Brian G. Petrich, Per Fogelstrand, Anthony W. Partridge, Nima Yousefi, Ararat J. Ablooglu, Sanford J. Shattil, Mark H. Ginsberg
Primary hypomagnesemia constitutes a rare heterogeneous group of disorders characterized by renal or intestinal magnesium (Mg2+) wasting resulting in generally shared symptoms of Mg2+ depletion, such as tetany and generalized convulsions, and often including associated disturbances in calcium excretion. However, most of the genes involved in the physiology of Mg2+ handling are unknown. Through the discovery of a mutation in the EGF gene in isolated autosomal recessive renal hypomagnesemia, we have, for what we believe is the first time, identified a magnesiotropic hormone crucial for total body Mg2+ balance. The mutation leads to impaired basolateral sorting of pro-EGF. As a consequence, the renal EGFR is inadequately stimulated, resulting in insufficient activation of the epithelial Mg2+ channel TRPM6 (transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 6) and thereby Mg2+ loss. Furthermore, we show that colorectal cancer patients treated with cetuximab, an antagonist of the EGFR, develop hypomagnesemia, emphasizing the significance of EGF in maintaining Mg2+ balance.
Wouter M. Tiel Groenestege, Stéphanie Thébault, Jenny van der Wijst, Dennis van den Berg, Rob Janssen, Sabine Tejpar, Lambertus P. van den Heuvel, Eric van Cutsem, Joost G. Hoenderop, Nine V. Knoers, René J. Bindels
Injection of apoptotic cells can induce suppression of immune responses to cell-associated antigens. Here, we show that intravenous injection of apoptotic cells expressing a fragment of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) reduced MOG-specific T cell response and prevented the development of EAE. Since injected apoptotic cells accumulated initially in the splenic marginal zone (MZ), the role of macrophages in the MZ in immune suppression was examined using transgenic mice in which these cells could be transiently deleted by diphtheria toxin (DT) injection. DT-treated mice became susceptible to EAE even though MOG-expressing apoptotic cells were preinjected. Deletion of the macrophages caused delayed clearance of injected dying cells in the MZ. In wild-type mice, injected apoptotic cells were selectively engulfed by CD8α+ DCs, which are responsible for suppression of immune responses to cell-associated antigens. In contrast, deletion of macrophages in the MZ caused aberrant phagocytosis of injected dying cells by CD8α–CD11b+ DCs. These results indicate that macrophages in the MZ regulate not only efficient clearance of apoptotic cells but also selective engulfment of dying cells by CD8α+ DCs and that functional failure of these unique macrophages impairs suppression of immune responses to cell-associated antigens.
Yasunobu Miyake, Kenichi Asano, Hitomi Kaise, Miho Uemura, Manabu Nakayama, Masato Tanaka
The inhibition of apoptosis of infected host cells is a well-known but poorly understood function of pathogenic mycobacteria. We show that inactivation of the secA2 gene in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which encodes a component of a virulence-associated protein secretion system, enhanced the apoptosis of infected macrophages by diminishing secretion of mycobacterial superoxide dismutase. Deletion of secA2 markedly increased priming of antigen-specific CD8+ T cells in vivo, and vaccination of mice and guinea pigs with a secA2 mutant significantly increased resistance to M. tuberculosis challenge compared with standard M. bovis bacille Calmette-Guérin vaccination. Our results define a mechanism for a key immune evasion strategy of M. tuberculosis and provide what we believe to be a novel approach for improving mycobacterial vaccines.
Joseph Hinchey, Sunhee Lee, Bo Y. Jeon, Randall J. Basaraba, Manjunatha M. Venkataswamy, Bing Chen, John Chan, Miriam Braunstein, Ian M. Orme, Steven C. Derrick, Sheldon L. Morris, William R. Jacobs Jr., Steven A. Porcelli
Obesity, the metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) are major global health problems. Insulin resistance is frequently present in these disorders, but the causes and effects of such resistance are unknown. Here, we generated mice with muscle-specific knockout of the major murine atypical PKC (aPKC), PKC-λ, a postulated mediator for insulin-stimulated glucose transport. Glucose transport and translocation of glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4) to the plasma membrane were diminished in muscles of both homozygous and heterozygous PKC-λ knockout mice and were accompanied by systemic insulin resistance; impaired glucose tolerance or diabetes; islet β cell hyperplasia; abdominal adiposity; hepatosteatosis; elevated serum triglycerides, FFAs, and LDL-cholesterol; and diminished HDL-cholesterol. In contrast to the defective activation of muscle aPKC, insulin signaling and actions were intact in muscle, liver, and adipocytes. These findings demonstrate the importance of aPKC in insulin-stimulated glucose transport in muscles of intact mice and show that insulin resistance and resultant hyperinsulinemia owing to a specific defect in muscle aPKC is sufficient to induce abdominal obesity and other lipid abnormalities of the metabolic syndrome and T2DM. These findings are particularly relevant because humans who have obesity, impaired glucose tolerance, and T2DM reportedly have defective activation and/or diminished levels of muscle aPKC.
Robert V. Farese, Mini P. Sajan, Hong Yang, Pengfei Li, Steven Mastorides, William R. Gower Jr., Sonali Nimal, Cheol Soo Choi, Sheene Kim, Gerald I. Shulman, C. Ronald Kahn, Ursula Braun, Michael Leitges
Because of the paucity of known self lipid–reactive ligands for NKT cells, interactions among distinct NKT cell subsets as well as immune consequences following recognition of self glycolipids have not previously been investigated. Here we examined cellular interactions and subsequent immune regulatory mechanism following recognition of sulfatide, a self-glycolipid ligand for a subset of CD1d-restricted type II NKT cells. Using glycolipid/CD1d tetramers and cytokine responses, we showed that activation of sulfatide-reactive type II NKT cells and plasmacytoid DCs caused IL-12– and MIP-2–dependent recruitment of type I, or invariant, NKT (iNKT) cells into mouse livers. These recruited iNKT cells were anergic and prevented concanavalin A–induced (ConA-induced) hepatitis by specifically blocking effector pathways, including the cytokine burst and neutrophil recruitment that follow ConA injection. Hepatic DCs from IL-12+/+ mice, but not IL-12–/– mice, adoptively transferred anergy in recipients; thus, IL-12 secretion by DCs enables them to induce anergy in iNKT cells. Our data reveal what we believe to be a novel mechanism in which interactions among type II NKT cells and hepatic DCs result in regulation of iNKT cell activity that can be exploited for intervention in inflammatory diseases, including autoimmunity and asthma.
Ramesh C. Halder, Carlos Aguilera, Igor Maricic, Vipin Kumar
Cell surface mucin glycoproteins are highly expressed by all mucosal tissues, yet their physiological role is currently unknown. We hypothesized that cell surface mucins protect mucosal cells from infection. A rapid progressive increase in gastrointestinal expression of mucin 1 (Muc1) cell surface mucin followed infection of mice with the bacterial pathogen Campylobacter jejuni. In the first week following oral infection, C. jejuni was detected in the systemic organs of the vast majority of Muc1–/– mice but never in Muc1+/+ mice. Although C. jejuni entered gastrointestinal epithelial cells of both Muc1–/– and Muc1+/+ mice, small intestinal damage as manifested by increased apoptosis and enucleated and shed villous epithelium was more common in Muc1–/– mice. Using radiation chimeras, we determined that prevention of systemic infection in wild-type mice was due exclusively to epithelial Muc1 rather than Muc1 on hematopoietic cells. Expression of MUC1-enhanced resistance to C. jejuni cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) in vitro and CDT null C. jejuni showed lower gastric colonization in Muc1–/– mice in vivo. We believe this is the first in vivo experimental study to demonstrate that cell surface mucins are a critical component of mucosal defence and that the study provides the foundation for exploration of their contribution to epithelial infectious and inflammatory diseases.
Julie L. McAuley, Sara K. Linden, Chin Wen Png, Rebecca M. King, Helen L. Pennington, Sandra J. Gendler, Timothy H. Florin, Geoff R. Hill, Victoria Korolik, Michael A. McGuckin
Hypothalamic AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) has been suggested to act as a key sensing mechanism, responding to hormones and nutrients in the regulation of energy homeostasis. However, the precise neuronal populations and cellular mechanisms involved are unclear. The effects of long-term manipulation of hypothalamic AMPK on energy balance are also unknown. To directly address such issues, we generated POMCα2KO and AgRPα2KO mice lacking AMPKα2 in proopiomelanocortin– (POMC-) and agouti-related protein–expressing (AgRP-expressing) neurons, key regulators of energy homeostasis. POMCα2KO mice developed obesity due to reduced energy expenditure and dysregulated food intake but remained sensitive to leptin. In contrast, AgRPα2KO mice developed an age-dependent lean phenotype with increased sensitivity to a melanocortin agonist. Electrophysiological studies in AMPKα2-deficient POMC or AgRP neurons revealed normal leptin or insulin action but absent responses to alterations in extracellular glucose levels, showing that glucose-sensing signaling mechanisms in these neurons are distinct from those pathways utilized by leptin or insulin. Taken together with the divergent phenotypes of POMCα2KO and AgRPα2KO mice, our findings suggest that while AMPK plays a key role in hypothalamic function, it does not act as a general sensor and integrator of energy homeostasis in the mediobasal hypothalamus.
Marc Claret, Mark A. Smith, Rachel L. Batterham, Colin Selman, Agharul I. Choudhury, Lee G.D. Fryer, Melanie Clements, Hind Al-Qassab, Helen Heffron, Allison W. Xu, John R. Speakman, Gregory S. Barsh, Benoit Viollet, Sophie Vaulont, Michael L.J. Ashford, David Carling, Dominic J. Withers
Liver X receptors (LXRs) α and β are transcriptional regulators of cholesterol homeostasis and potential targets for the development of antiatherosclerosis drugs. However, the specific roles of individual LXR isotypes in atherosclerosis and the pharmacological effects of synthetic agonists remain unclear. Previous work has shown that mice lacking LXRα accumulate cholesterol in the liver but not in peripheral tissues. In striking contrast, we demonstrate here that LXRα–/–apoE–/– mice exhibit extreme cholesterol accumulation in peripheral tissues, a dramatic increase in whole-body cholesterol burden, and accelerated atherosclerosis. The phenotype of these mice suggests that the level of LXR pathway activation in macrophages achieved by LXRβ and endogenous ligand is unable to maintain homeostasis in the setting of hypercholesterolemia. Surprisingly, however, a highly efficacious synthetic agonist was able to compensate for the loss of LXRα. Treatment of LXRα–/–apoE–/– mice with synthetic LXR ligand ameliorates the cholesterol overload phenotype and reduces atherosclerosis. These observations indicate that LXRα has an essential role in maintaining peripheral cholesterol homeostasis in the context of hypercholesterolemia and provide in vivo support for drug development strategies targeting LXRβ.
Michelle N. Bradley, Cynthia Hong, Mingyi Chen, Sean B. Joseph, Damien C. Wilpitz, Xuping Wang, Aldons J. Lusis, Allan Collins, Willa A. Hseuh, Jon L. Collins, Rajendra K. Tangirala, Peter Tontonoz