The cover image shows the organization of stromal cells in adult intestinal villus by whole-mount immunostaining of macrophages (green, F4/80), villus smooth muscle cells (cyan, α–smooth muscle actin), and a lacteal (red, LYVE1). On page 4572, Bernier-Latmani et al. report that continuous DLL4-driven regeneration is required to maintain lacteal function in adult animals. Image credit: Jeremiah Bernier-Latmani.
Clinical investigators within the Canadian and international communities were shocked when the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) announced that their funding for the MD/PhD program would be terminated after the 2015–2016 academic year. The program has trained Canadian clinician-scientists for more than two decades. The cancellation of the program is at odds with the CIHR’s mandate, which stresses the translation of new knowledge into improved health for Canadians, as well as with a series of internal reports that have recommended expanding the program. Although substantial evidence supports the analogous Medical Scientist Training Program in the United States, no parallel analysis of the MD/PhD program has been performed in Canada. Here, we highlight the long-term consequences of the program’s cancellation in the context of increased emphasis on translational research. We argue that alternative funding sources cannot ensure continuous support for students in clinician-scientist training programs and that platform funding of the MD/PhD program is necessary to ensure leadership in translational research.
David D.W. Twa, Jordan W. Squair, Michael A. Skinnider, Jennifer X. Ji
Conventional wisdom holds that methylation of RTKs should be restricted to intracellular sites. Alterations — such as deletion, mutation, and proteolytic cleavage events — to the extracellular ligand binding and dimer interface domains of the EGFR can induce EGFR dimer formation, leading to aberrant receptor activation and oncogenic activity. Recently, the extracellular domain of EGFR was also shown to be methylated, suggesting that posttranslational protein methylation events directed to the extracellular dimer interface provide another mechanism to regulate the EGFR activation state by modulating receptor dimerization. Critically, these methylation events abrogate response to conformation-specific therapeutic antibodies such as cetuximab. In this issue of the
David M. Epstein, Elizabeth Buck
Hirschsprung’s disease (HSCR) causes functional intestinal obstruction due to the absence of the enteric nervous system (ENS) in the distal bowel and is usually diagnosed shortly after birth or during childhood. While several genetic and nongenetic factors have been linked to HSCR, the underlying mechanisms that prevent ENS precursors from colonizing distal bowel during fetal development are not completely understood in many affected children. In this issue of the
Robert O. Heuckeroth
The ability of glucose to stimulate insulin secretion from the pancreatic islets of Langerhans is enhanced by the intestinal hormone glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), which is secreted from the gut in response to nutrient ingestion. This action, called the incretin effect, accounts for as much as half of the postprandial insulin response and is exploited therapeutically for diabetes treatment through the use of incretin mimetic drugs and inhibitors of dipeptidyl peptidase 4, which degrades GLP-1. Despite a prominent role for incretin mimetics in diabetes treatment, several key questions remain about GLP-1–induced insulin secretion. Most studies have examined the effects of GLP-1 at concentrations several orders of magnitude higher than those found in vivo; therefore, one might question the physiological (and perhaps even pharmacological) relevance of pathways identified in these studies and whether other important mechanisms might have been obscured. In this issue of the JCI, Shigeto and colleagues demonstrate that physiological GLP-1 does indeed amplify the insulin secretory response. Intriguingly, while much of this response is PKA dependent, as might be expected, the use of picomolar GLP-1 reveals a new and important mechanism that contributes to GLP-1–induced insulin secretion.
Jelena Kolic, Patrick E. MacDonald
Muscular dystrophies are monogenetic diseases that are often characterized by the degeneration of both cardiac and skeletal muscle. Gene therapy to correct the mutated gene has shown promise in both animal models and clinical trials; however, current gene delivery strategies are limited to the introduction of the corrected gene into only one tissue. Strategies to target multiple striated muscle types would provide a much-needed improvement for the treatment of muscular dystrophies. In this issue of the JCI, Quattrocelli and colleagues demonstrate that induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) with a myogenic propensity are able to engraft into both cardiac and skeletal muscles. The authors also identified a novel pool of mesodermal iPSC–derived progenitors (MiPs). Moreover, the authors show that these MiPs are amenable to gene correction and can restore function in murine dystrophic models. Together, the results of this study provide an important advance in improving gene delivery to treat patients with muscular dystrophy.
Cellular metabolism is increasingly recognized as a controller of immune cell fate and function. MicroRNA-33 (miR-33) regulates cellular lipid metabolism and represses genes involved in cholesterol efflux, HDL biogenesis, and fatty acid oxidation. Here, we determined that miR-33–mediated disruption of the balance of aerobic glycolysis and mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation instructs macrophage inflammatory polarization and shapes innate and adaptive immune responses. Macrophage-specific
Mireille Ouimet, Hasini N. Ediriweera, U. Mahesh Gundra, Frederick J. Sheedy, Bhama Ramkhelawon, Susan B. Hutchison, Kaitlyn Rinehold, Coen van Solingen, Morgan D. Fullerton, Katharine Cecchini, Katey J. Rayner, Gregory R. Steinberg, Phillip D. Zamore, Edward A. Fisher, P’ng Loke, Kathryn J. Moore
Tumor angiogenesis is critical for cancer progression. In multiple murine models, endothelium-specific epsin deficiency abrogates tumor progression by shifting the balance of VEGFR2 signaling toward uncontrolled tumor angiogenesis, resulting in dysfunctional tumor vasculature. Here, we designed a tumor endothelium–targeting chimeric peptide (UPI) for the purpose of inhibiting endogenous tumor endothelial epsins by competitively binding activated VEGFR2. We determined that the UPI peptide specifically targets tumor endothelial VEGFR2 through an unconventional binding mechanism that is driven by unique residues present only in the epsin ubiquitin–interacting motif (UIM) and the VEGFR2 kinase domain. In murine models of neoangiogenesis, UPI peptide increased VEGF-driven angiogenesis and neovascularization but spared quiescent vascular beds. Further, in tumor-bearing mice, UPI peptide markedly impaired functional tumor angiogenesis, tumor growth, and metastasis, resulting in a notable increase in survival. Coadministration of UPI peptide with cytotoxic chemotherapeutics further sustained tumor inhibition. Equipped with localized tumor endothelium–specific targeting, our UPI peptide provides potential for an effective and alternative cancer therapy.
Yunzhou Dong, Hao Wu, H.N. Ashiqur Rahman, Yanjun Liu, Satish Pasula, Kandice L. Tessneer, Xiaofeng Cai, Xiaolei Liu, Baojun Chang, John McManus, Scott Hahn, Jiali Dong, Megan L. Brophy, Lili Yu, Kai Song, Robert Silasi-Mansat, Debra Saunders, Charity Njoku, Hoogeun Song, Padmaja Mehta-D’Souza, Rheal Towner, Florea Lupu, Rodger P. McEver, Lijun Xia, Derek Boerboom, R. Sathish Srinivasan, Hong Chen
The nephron cortical collecting duct (CCD) is composed of principal cells, which mediate Na, K, and water transport, and intercalated cells (ICs), which are specialized for acid-base transport. There are two canonical IC forms: acid-secreting α-ICs and HCO3-secreting β-ICs. Chronic acidosis increases α-ICs at the expense of β-ICs, thereby increasing net acid secretion by the CCD. We found by growth factor quantitative PCR array that acidosis increases expression of mRNA encoding SDF1 (or CXCL12) in kidney cortex and isolated CCDs from mouse and rabbit kidney cortex. Exogenous SDF1 or pH 6.8 media increased H+ secretion and decreased HCO3 secretion in isolated perfused rabbit CCDs. Acid-dependent changes in H+ and HCO3 secretion were largely blunted by AMD3100, which selectively blocks the SDF1 receptor CXCR4. In mice, diet-induced chronic acidosis increased α-ICs and decreased β-ICs. Additionally, IC-specific
George J. Schwartz, XiaoBo Gao, Shuichi Tsuruoka, Jeffrey M. Purkerson, Hu Peng, Vivette D’Agati, Nicolas Picard, Dominique Eladari, Qais Al-Awqati
Alterations in chromatin modifications, such as histone methylation, have been suggested as mediating chemotherapy resistance in several cancer types; therefore, elucidation of the epigenetic mechanisms that underlie drug resistance may greatly contribute to the advancement of cancer therapies. In the present study, we identified histone H3–lysine 27 (H3K27) as a critical residue for epigenetic modification in multiple myeloma. We determined that abrogation of drug-induced H3K27 hypermethylation is associated with cell adhesion–mediated drug resistance (CAM-DR), which is the most important form of drug resistance, using a coculture system to evaluate stroma cell adhesion–dependent alterations in multiple myeloma cells. Cell adhesion counteracted anticancer drug–induced hypermethylation of H3K27 via inactivating phosphorylation of the transcription regulator EZH2 at serine 21, leading to the sustained expression of antiapoptotic genes, including
Jiro Kikuchi, Daisuke Koyama, Taeko Wada, Tohru Izumi, Peter O. Hofgaard, Bjarne Bogen, Yusuke Furukawa
Protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) has two distinct CGHC redox-active sites; however, the contribution of these sites during different physiologic reactions, including thrombosis, is unknown. Here, we evaluated the role of PDI and redox-active sites of PDI in thrombosis by generating mice with blood cells and vessel wall cells lacking PDI (
Junsong Zhou, Yi Wu, Lu Wang, Lubica Rauova, Vincent M. Hayes, Mortimer Poncz, David W. Essex
Emerging evidence indicates that the neuronal guidance molecule SLIT plays a role in tumor suppression, as SLIT-encoding genes are inactivated in several types of cancer, including lung cancer; however, it is not clear how SLIT functions in lung cancer. Here, our data show that SLIT inhibits cancer cell migration by activating RhoA and that myosin 9b (Myo9b) is a ROBO-interacting protein that suppresses RhoA activity in lung cancer cells. Structural analyses revealed that the RhoGAP domain of Myo9b contains a unique patch that specifically recognizes RhoA. We also determined that the ROBO intracellular domain interacts with the Myo9b RhoGAP domain and inhibits its activity; therefore, SLIT-dependent activation of RhoA is mediated by ROBO inhibition of Myo9b. In a murine model, compared with control lung cancer cells, SLIT-expressing cells had a decreased capacity for tumor formation and lung metastasis. Evaluation of human lung cancer and adjacent nontumor tissues revealed that Myo9b is upregulated in the cancer tissue. Moreover, elevated Myo9b expression was associated with lung cancer progression and poor prognosis. Together, our data identify Myo9b as a key player in lung cancer and as a ROBO-interacting protein in what is, to the best of our knowledge, a newly defined SLIT/ROBO/Myo9b/RhoA signaling pathway that restricts lung cancer progression and metastasis. Additionally, our work suggests that targeting the SLIT/ROBO/Myo9b/RhoA pathway has potential as a diagnostic and therapeutic strategy for lung cancer.
Ruirui Kong, Fengshuang Yi, Pushuai Wen, Jianghong Liu, Xiaoping Chen, Jinqi Ren, Xiaofei Li, Yulong Shang, Yongzhan Nie, Kaichun Wu, Daiming Fan, Li Zhu, Wei Feng, Jane Y. Wu
BACKGROUND. Ebola virus (EBOV) causes periodic outbreaks of life-threatening EBOV disease in Africa. Historically, these outbreaks have been relatively small and geographically contained; however, the magnitude of the EBOV outbreak that began in 2014 in West Africa has been unprecedented. The aim of this study was to describe the viral kinetics of EBOV during this outbreak and identify factors that contribute to outbreak progression.
METHODS. From July to December 2014, one laboratory in Sierra Leone processed over 2,700 patient samples for EBOV detection by quantitative PCR (qPCR). Viremia was measured following patient admission. Age, sex, and approximate time of symptom onset were also recorded for each patient. The data was analyzed using various mathematical models to find trends of potential interest.
RESULTS. The analysis revealed a significant difference (
CONCLUSIONS. Our results indicate that initial viremia is associated with outcome of the individual and outbreak duration; therefore, care must be taken in planning clinical trials and interventions. Additional research in virus adaptation and the impacts of host factors on EBOV transmission and pathogenesis is needed.
Marc-Antoine de La Vega, Grazia Caleo, Jonathan Audet, Xiangguo Qiu, Robert A. Kozak, James I. Brooks, Steven Kern, Anja Wolz, Armand Sprecher, Jane Greig, Kamalini Lokuge, David K. Kargbo, Brima Kargbo, Antonino Di Caro, Allen Grolla, Darwyn Kobasa, James E. Strong, Giuseppe Ippolito, Michel Van Herp, Gary P. Kobinger
Thrombosis is a common, life-threatening consequence of systemic infection; however, the underlying mechanisms that drive the formation of infection-associated thrombi are poorly understood. Here, using a mouse model of systemic
Jessica R. Hitchcock, Charlotte N. Cook, Saeeda Bobat, Ewan A. Ross, Adriana Flores-Langarica, Kate L. Lowe, Mahmood Khan, C. Coral Dominguez-Medina, Sian Lax, Manuela Carvalho-Gaspar, Stefan Hubscher, G. Ed Rainger, Mark Cobbold, Christopher D. Buckley, Tim J. Mitchell, Andrea Mitchell, Nick D. Jones, N. Van Rooijen, Daniel Kirchhofer, Ian R. Henderson, David H. Adams, Steve P. Watson, Adam F. Cunningham
Mitochondria are critical for respiration in all tissues; however, in liver, these organelles also accommodate high-capacity anaplerotic/cataplerotic pathways that are essential to gluconeogenesis and other biosynthetic activities. During nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), mitochondria also produce ROS that damage hepatocytes, trigger inflammation, and contribute to insulin resistance. Here, we provide several lines of evidence indicating that induction of biosynthesis through hepatic anaplerotic/cataplerotic pathways is energetically backed by elevated oxidative metabolism and hence contributes to oxidative stress and inflammation during NAFLD. First, in murine livers, elevation of fatty acid delivery not only induced oxidative metabolism, but also amplified anaplerosis/cataplerosis and caused a proportional rise in oxidative stress and inflammation. Second, loss of anaplerosis/cataplerosis via genetic knockdown of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 (
Santhosh Satapati, Blanka Kucejova, Joao A.G. Duarte, Justin A. Fletcher, Lacy Reynolds, Nishanth E. Sunny, Tianteng He, L. Arya Nair, Kenneth Livingston, Xiaorong Fu, Matthew E. Merritt, A. Dean Sherry, Craig R. Malloy, John M. Shelton, Jennifer Lambert, Elizabeth J. Parks, Ian Corbin, Mark A. Magnuson, Jeffrey D. Browning, Shawn C. Burgess
Conditions such as muscular dystrophies (MDs) that affect both cardiac and skeletal muscles would benefit from therapeutic strategies that enable regeneration of both of these striated muscle types. Protocols have been developed to promote induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to differentiate toward cardiac or skeletal muscle; however, there are currently no strategies to simultaneously target both muscle types. Tissues exhibit specific epigenetic alterations; therefore, source-related lineage biases have the potential to improve iPSC-driven multilineage differentiation. Here, we determined that differential myogenic propensity influences the commitment of isogenic iPSCs and a specifically isolated pool of mesodermal iPSC-derived progenitors (MiPs) toward the striated muscle lineages. Differential myogenic propensity did not influence pluripotency, but did selectively enhance chimerism of MiP-derived tissue in both fetal and adult skeletal muscle. When injected into dystrophic mice, MiPs engrafted and repaired both skeletal and cardiac muscle, reducing functional defects. Similarly, engraftment into dystrophic mice of canine MiPs from dystrophic dogs that had undergone TALEN-mediated correction of the MD-associated mutation also resulted in functional striatal muscle regeneration. Moreover, human MiPs exhibited the same capacity for the dual differentiation observed in murine and canine MiPs. The findings of this study suggest that MiPs should be further explored for combined therapy of cardiac and skeletal muscles.
Mattia Quattrocelli, Melissa Swinnen, Giorgia Giacomazzi, Jordi Camps, Ines Barthélemy, Gabriele Ceccarelli, Ellen Caluwé, Hanne Grosemans, Lieven Thorrez, Gloria Pelizzo, Manja Muijtjens, Catherine M. Verfaillie, Stephane Blot, Stefan Janssens, Maurilio Sampaolesi
Hirschsprung’s disease (HSCR) is a severe congenital anomaly of the enteric nervous system (ENS) characterized by functional intestinal obstruction due to a lack of intrinsic innervation in the distal bowel. Distal innervation deficiency results from incomplete colonization of the bowel by enteric neural crest cells (eNCCs), the ENS precursors. Here, we report the generation of a mouse model for HSCR — named Holstein — that contains an untargeted transgenic insertion upstream of the collagen-6α4 (
Rodolphe Soret, Mathilde Mennetrey, Karl F. Bergeron, Anne Dariel, Michel Neunlist, Franziska Grunder, Christophe Faure, David W. Silversides, Nicolas Pilon, for the Ente-Hirsch study group
Despite successful control of viremia, many HIV-infected individuals given antiretroviral therapy (ART) exhibit residual inflammation, which is associated with non–AIDS-related morbidity and mortality and may contribute to virus persistence during ART. Here, we investigated the effects of IL-21 administration on both inflammation and virus persistence in ART-treated, SIV-infected rhesus macaques (RMs). Compared with SIV-infected animals only given ART, SIV-infected RMs given both ART and IL-21 showed improved restoration of intestinal Th17 and Th22 cells and a more effective reduction of immune activation in blood and intestinal mucosa, with the latter maintained through 8 months after ART interruption. Additionally, IL-21, in combination with ART, was associated with reduced levels of SIV RNA in plasma and decreased CD4+ T cell levels harboring replication-competent virus during ART. At the latest experimental time points, which were up to 8 months after ART interruption, plasma viremia and cell-associated SIV DNA levels remained substantially lower than those before ART initiation in IL-21–treated animals but not in controls. Together, these data suggest that IL-21 supplementation of ART reduces residual inflammation and virus persistence in a relevant model of lentiviral disease and warrants further investigation as a potential intervention for HIV infection.
Luca Micci, Emily S. Ryan, Rémi Fromentin, Steven E. Bosinger, Justin L. Harper, Tianyu He, Sara Paganini, Kirk A. Easley, Ann Chahroudi, Clarisse Benne, Sanjeev Gumber, Colleen S. McGary, Kenneth A. Rogers, Claire Deleage, Carissa Lucero, Siddappa N. Byrareddy, Cristian Apetrei, Jacob D. Estes, Jeffrey D. Lifson, Michael Piatak Jr., Nicolas Chomont, Francois Villinger, Guido Silvestri, Jason M. Brenchley, Mirko Paiardini
The molecular mechanisms responsible for the development and progression of atherosclerotic lesions have not been fully established. Here, we investigated the role played by endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT) and its key regulator FGF receptor 1 (FGFR1) in atherosclerosis. In cultured human endothelial cells, both inflammatory cytokines and oscillatory shear stress reduced endothelial FGFR1 expression and activated TGF-β signaling. We further explored the link between disrupted FGF endothelial signaling and progression of atherosclerosis by introducing endothelial-specific deletion of FGF receptor substrate 2 α (
Pei-Yu Chen, Lingfeng Qin, Nicolas Baeyens, Guangxin Li, Titilayo Afolabi, Madhusudhan Budatha, George Tellides, Martin A. Schwartz, Michael Simons
Posttranslational modifications to the intracellular domain of the EGFR are known to regulate EGFR functions; however, modifications to the extracellular domain and their effects remain relatively unexplored. Here, we determined that methylation at R198 and R200 of the EGFR extracellular domain by protein arginine methyltransferase 1 (PRMT1) enhances binding to EGF and subsequent receptor dimerization and signaling activation. In a mouse orthotopic colorectal cancer xenograft model, expression of a methylation-defective EGFR reduced tumor growth. Moreover, increased EGFR methylation sustained signaling activation and cell proliferation in the presence of the therapeutic EGFR monoclonal antibody cetuximab. In colorectal cancer patients, EGFR methylation level also correlated with a higher recurrence rate after cetuximab treatment and reduced overall survival. Together, these data indicate that R198/R200 methylation of the EGFR plays an important role in regulating EGFR functionality and resistance to cetuximab treatment.
Hsin-Wei Liao, Jung-Mao Hsu, Weiya Xia, Hung-Ling Wang, Ying-Nai Wang, Wei-Chao Chang, Stefan T. Arold, Chao-Kai Chou, Pei-Hsiang Tsou, Hirohito Yamaguchi, Yueh-Fu Fang, Hong-Jen Lee, Heng-Huan Lee, Shyh-Kuan Tai, Mhu-Hwa Yang, Maria P. Morelli, Malabika Sen, John E. Ladbury, Chung-Hsuan Chen, Jennifer R. Grandis, Scott Kopetz, Mien-Chie Hung
Recent evidence indicates that saturated fatty acid–induced (SFA-induced) lipotoxicity contributes to the pathogenesis of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases; however, the molecular mechanisms that underlie SFA-induced lipotoxicity remain unclear. Here, we have shown that repression of stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) enzymes, which regulate the intracellular balance of SFAs and unsaturated FAs, and the subsequent accumulation of SFAs in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), are characteristic events in the development of vascular calcification. We evaluated whether SMC-specific inhibition of SCD and the resulting SFA accumulation plays a causative role in the pathogenesis of vascular calcification and generated mice with SMC-specific deletion of both
Masashi Masuda, Shinobu Miyazaki-Anzai, Audrey L. Keenan, Kayo Okamura, Jessica Kendrick, Michel Chonchol, Stefan Offermanns, James M. Ntambi, Makoto Kuro-o, Makoto Miyazaki
Rationally designed combinations of targeted therapies for refractory cancers, such as activated B cell–like diffuse large B cell lymphoma (ABC DLBCL), are likely required to achieve potent, durable responses. Here, we used a pharmacoproteomics approach to map the interactome of a tumor-enriched isoform of HSP90 (teHSP90). Specifically, we chemically precipitated teHSP90-client complexes from DLBCL cell lines with the small molecule PU-H71 and found that components of the proximal B cell receptor (BCR) signalosome were enriched within teHSP90 complexes. Functional assays revealed that teHSP90 facilitates BCR signaling dynamics by enabling phosphorylation of key BCR signalosome components, including the kinases SYK and BTK. Consequently, treatment of BCR-dependent ABC DLBCL cells with PU-H71 attenuated BCR signaling, calcium flux, and NF-κB signaling, ultimately leading to growth arrest. Combined exposure of ABC DLBCL cell lines to PU-H71 and ibrutinib, a BCR pathway inhibitor, more potently suppressed BCR signaling than either drug alone. Correspondingly, PU-H71 combined with ibrutinib induced synergistic killing of lymphoma cell lines, primary human lymphoma specimens ex vivo, and lymphoma xenografts in vivo, without notable toxicity. Together, our results demonstrate that a pharmacoproteome-driven rational combination therapy has potential to provide more potent BCR-directed therapy for ABC DLCBL patients.
Rebecca L. Goldstein, Shao Ning Yang, Tony Taldone, Betty Chang, John Gerecitano, Kojo Elenitoba-Johnson, Rita Shaknovich, Wayne Tam, John P. Leonard, Gabriela Chiosis, Leandro Cerchietti, Ari Melnick
The small intestine is a dynamic and complex organ that is characterized by constant epithelium turnover and crosstalk among various cell types and the microbiota. Lymphatic capillaries of the small intestine, called lacteals, play key roles in dietary fat absorption and the gut immune response; however, little is known about the molecular regulation of lacteal function. Here, we performed a high-resolution analysis of the small intestinal stroma and determined that lacteals reside in a permanent regenerative, proliferative state that is distinct from embryonic lymphangiogenesis or quiescent lymphatic vessels observed in other tissues. We further demonstrated that this continuous regeneration process is mediated by Notch signaling and that the expression of the Notch ligand delta-like 4 (DLL4) in lacteals requires activation of VEGFR3 and VEGFR2. Moreover, genetic inactivation of
Jeremiah Bernier-Latmani, Christophe Cisarovsky, Cansaran Saygili Demir, Marine Bruand, Muriel Jaquet, Suzel Davanture, Simone Ragusa, Stefanie Siegert, Olivier Dormond, Rui Benedito, Freddy Radtke, Sanjiv A. Luther, Tatiana V. Petrova
Leptin administration restores euglycemia in rodents with severe insulin-deficient diabetes, and recent studies to explain this phenomenon have focused on the ability of leptin to normalize excessive hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity. Here, we employed a streptozotocin-induced rat model (STZ-DM) of uncontrolled insulin-deficient diabetes mellitus (uDM) to investigate the contribution of HPA axis suppression to leptin-mediated glucose lowering. Specifically, we asked if HPA axis activation is required for diabetic hyperglycemia, whether HPA axis normalization can be achieved using a dose of leptin below that needed to normalize glycemia, and if the ability of leptin to lower plasma glucocorticoid levels is required for its antidiabetic action. In STZ-DM rats, neither adrenalectomy-induced (ADX-induced) glucocorticoid deficiency nor pharmacological glucocorticoid receptor blockade lowered elevated blood glucose levels. Although elevated plasma levels of corticosterone were normalized by i.v. leptin infusion at a dose that raises low plasma levels into the physiological range, diabetic hyperglycemia was not altered. Lastly, the potent glucose-lowering effect of continuous intracerebroventricular leptin infusion was not impacted by systemic administration of corticosterone at a dose that maintained elevated plasma levels characteristic of STZ-DM. We conclude that, although restoring low plasma leptin levels into the physiological range effectively normalizes increased HPA axis activity in rats with uDM, this effect is neither necessary nor sufficient to explain leptin’s antidiabetic action.
Gregory J. Morton, Thomas H. Meek, Miles E. Matsen, Michael W. Schwartz
BACKGROUND. Activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome is associated with metabolic dysfunction, and intermittent fasting has been shown to improve clinical presentation of NLRP3 inflammasome–linked diseases. As mitochondrial perturbations, which function as a damage-associated molecular pattern, exacerbate NLRP3 inflammasome activation, we investigated whether fasting blunts inflammasome activation via sirtuin-mediated augmentation of mitochondrial integrity.
METHODS. We performed a clinical study of 19 healthy volunteers. Each subject underwent a 24-hour fast and then was fed a fixed-calorie meal. Blood was drawn during the fasted and fed states and analyzed for NRLP3 inflammasome activation. We enrolled an additional group of 8 healthy volunteers to assess the effects of the sirtuin activator, nicotinamide riboside, on NLRP3 inflammasome activation.
RESULTS. In the fasting/refeeding study, individuals showed less NLRP3 inflammasome activation in the fasted state compared with that in refed conditions. In a human macrophage line, depletion of the mitochondrial-enriched sirtuin deacetylase SIRT3 increased NLRP3 inflammasome activation in association with excessive mitochondrial ROS production. Furthermore, genetic and pharmacologic SIRT3 activation blunted NLRP3 activity in parallel with enhanced mitochondrial function in cultured cells and in leukocytes extracted from healthy volunteers and from refed individuals but not in those collected during fasting.
CONCLUSIONS. Together, our data indicate that nutrient levels regulate the NLRP3 inflammasome, in part through SIRT3-mediated mitochondrial homeostatic control. Moreover, these results suggest that deacetylase-dependent inflammasome attenuation may be amenable to targeting in human disease.
TRIAL REGISTRATION. ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02122575 and NCT00442195.
FUNDING. Division of Intramural Research, NHLBI of the NIH.
Javier Traba, Miriam Kwarteng-Siaw, Tracy C. Okoli, Jessica Li, Rebecca D. Huffstutler, Amanda Bray, Myron A. Waclawiw, Kim Han, Martin Pelletier, Anthony A. Sauve, Richard M. Siegel, Michael N. Sack
In mice, FGF21 is rapidly induced by fasting, mediates critical aspects of the adaptive starvation response, and displays a number of positive metabolic properties when administered pharmacologically. In humans, however, fasting does not consistently increase FGF21, suggesting a possible evolutionary divergence in FGF21 function. Moreover, many key aspects of FGF21 function in mice have been identified in the context of transgenic overexpression or administration of supraphysiologic doses, rather than in a physiologic setting. Here, we explored the dynamics and function of FGF21 in human volunteers during a 10-day fast. Unlike mice, which show an increase in circulating FGF21 after only 6 hours, human subjects did not have a notable surge in FGF21 until 7 to 10 days of fasting. Moreover, we determined that FGF21 induction was associated with decreased thermogenesis and adiponectin, an observation that directly contrasts with previous reports based on supraphysiologic dosing. Additionally, FGF21 levels increased after ketone induction, demonstrating that endogenous FGF21 does not drive starvation-mediated ketogenesis in humans. Instead, a longitudinal analysis of biologically relevant variables identified serum transaminases — markers of tissue breakdown — as predictors of FGF21. These data establish FGF21 as a fasting-induced hormone in humans and indicate that FGF21 contributes to the late stages of adaptive starvation, when it may regulate the utilization of fuel derived from tissue breakdown.
Pouneh K. Fazeli, Mingyue Lun, Soo M. Kim, Miriam A. Bredella, Spenser Wright, Yang Zhang, Hang Lee, Ciprian Catana, Anne Klibanski, Parth Patwari, Matthew L. Steinhauser
Mutations of the gene encoding four-and-a-half LIM domain 1 (FHL1) are the causative factor of several X-linked hereditary myopathies that are collectively termed FHL1-related myopathies. These disorders are characterized by severe muscle dysfunction and damage. Here, we have shown that patients with idiopathic inflammatory myopathies (IIMs) develop autoimmunity to FHL1, which is a muscle-specific protein. Anti-FHL1 autoantibodies were detected in 25% of IIM patients, while patients with other autoimmune diseases or muscular dystrophies were largely anti-FHL1 negative. Anti-FHL1 reactivity was predictive for muscle atrophy, dysphagia, pronounced muscle fiber damage, and vasculitis. FHL1 showed an altered expression pattern, with focal accumulation in the muscle fibers of autoantibody-positive patients compared with a homogeneous expression in anti-FHL1–negative patients and healthy controls. We determined that FHL1 is a target of the cytotoxic protease granzyme B, indicating that the generation of FHL1 fragments may initiate FHL1 autoimmunity. Moreover, immunization of myositis-prone mice with FHL1 aggravated muscle weakness and increased mortality, suggesting a direct link between anti-FHL1 responses and muscle damage. Together, our findings provide evidence that FHL1 may be involved in the pathogenesis not only of genetic FHL1-related myopathies but also of autoimmune IIM. Importantly, these results indicate that anti-FHL1 autoantibodies in peripheral blood have promising potential as a biomarker to identify a subset of severe IIM.
Inka Albrecht, Cecilia Wick, Åsa Hallgren, Anna Tjärnlund, Kanneboyina Nagaraju, Felipe Andrade, Kathryn Thompson, William Coley, Aditi Phadke, Lina-Marcela Diaz-Gallo, Matteo Bottai, Inger Nennesmo, Karine Chemin, Jessica Herrath, Karin Johansson, Anders Wikberg, A. Jimmy Ytterberg, Roman A. Zubarev, Olof Danielsson, Olga Krystufkova, Jiri Vencovsky, Nils Landegren, Marie Wahren-Herlenius, Leonid Padyukov, Olle Kämpe, Ingrid E. Lundberg
Mutations in genes encoding chromatin-remodeling proteins are often identified in a variety of cancers. For example, the histone demethylase JARID1C is frequently inactivated in patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC); however, it is largely unknown how JARID1C dysfunction promotes cancer. Here, we determined that JARID1C binds broadly to chromatin domains characterized by the trimethylation of lysine 9 (H3K9me3), which is a histone mark enriched in heterochromatin. Moreover, we found that JARID1C localizes on heterochromatin, is required for heterochromatin replication, and forms a complex with established players of heterochromatin assembly, including SUV39H1 and HP1α, as well as with proteins not previously associated with heterochromatin assembly, such as the cullin 4 (CUL4) complex adaptor protein DDB1. Transcription on heterochromatin is tightly suppressed to safeguard the genome, and in ccRCC cells, JARID1C inactivation led to the unrestrained expression of heterochromatic noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that in turn triggered genomic instability. Moreover, ccRCC patients harboring
Beatrice Rondinelli, Dalia Rosano, Elena Antonini, Michela Frenquelli, Laura Montanini, DaChuan Huang, Simona Segalla, Kosuke Yoshihara, Samir B. Amin, Dejan Lazarevic, Bin Tean The, Roel G.W. Verhaak, P. Andrew Futreal, Luciano Di Croce, Lynda Chin, Davide Cittaro, Giovanni Tonon
Thrombosis and inflammation are intricately linked in several major clinical disorders, including disseminated intravascular coagulation and acute ischemic events. The damage-associated molecular pattern molecule high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) is upregulated by activated platelets in multiple inflammatory diseases; however, the contribution of platelet-derived HMGB1 in thrombosis remains unexplored. Here, we generated transgenic mice with platelet-specific ablation of HMGB1 and determined that platelet-derived HMGB1 is a critical mediator of thrombosis. Mice lacking HMGB1 in platelets exhibited increased bleeding times as well as reduced thrombus formation, platelet aggregation, inflammation, and organ damage during experimental trauma/hemorrhagic shock. Platelets were the major source of HMGB1 within thrombi. In trauma patients, HMGB1 expression on the surface of circulating platelets was markedly upregulated. Moreover, evaluation of isolated platelets revealed that HMGB1 is critical for regulating platelet activation, granule secretion, adhesion, and spreading. These effects were mediated via TLR4- and MyD88-dependent recruitment of platelet guanylyl cyclase (GC) toward the plasma membrane, followed by MyD88/GC complex formation and activation of the cGMP-dependent protein kinase I (cGKI). Thus, we establish platelet-derived HMGB1 as an important mediator of thrombosis and identify a HMGB1-driven link between MyD88 and GC/cGKI in platelets. Additionally, these findings suggest a potential therapeutic target for patients sustaining trauma and other inflammatory disorders associated with abnormal coagulation.
Sebastian Vogel, Rebecca Bodenstein, Qiwei Chen, Susanne Feil, Robert Feil, Johannes Rheinlaender, Tilman E. Schäffer, Erwin Bohn, Julia-Stefanie Frick, Oliver Borst, Patrick Münzer, Britta Walker, Justin Markel, Gabor Csanyi, Patrick J. Pagano, Patricia Loughran, Morgan E. Jessup, Simon C. Watkins, Grant C. Bullock, Jason L. Sperry, Brian S. Zuckerbraun, Timothy R. Billiar, Michael T. Lotze, Meinrad Gawaz, Matthew D. Neal
Grégoire Couvrat-Desvergnes, Apolline Salama, Ludmilla Le Berre, Gwénaëlle Evanno, Ondrej Viklicky, Petra Hruba, Pavel Vesely, Pierrick Guerif, Thomas Dejoie, Juliette Rousse, Arnaud Nicot, Jean-Marie Bach, Evelyn Ang, Yohann Foucher, Sophie Brouard, Stéphanie Castagnet, Magali Giral, Jean Harb, Hélène Perreault, Béatrice Charreau, Marine Lorent, Jean-Paul Soulillou
The incidence of cancer is higher in the elderly; however, many of the underlying mechanisms for this association remain unexplored. Here, we have shown that B cell progenitors in old mice exhibit marked signaling, gene expression, and metabolic defects. Moreover, B cell progenitors that developed from hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) transferred from young mice into aged animals exhibited similar fitness defects. We further demonstrated that ectopic expression of the oncogenes
Curtis J. Henry, Matias Casás-Selves, Jihye Kim, Vadym Zaberezhnyy, Leila Aghili, Ashley E. Daniel, Linda Jimenez, Tania Azam, Eoin N. McNamee, Eric T. Clambey, Jelena Klawitter, Natalie J. Serkova, Aik Choon Tan, Charles A. Dinarello, James DeGregori
Erythropoiesis requires rapid and extensive hemoglobin production. Heme activates globin transcription and translation; therefore, heme synthesis must precede globin synthesis. As free heme is a potent inducer of oxidative damage, its levels within cellular compartments require stringent regulation. Mice lacking the heme exporter FLVCR1 have a severe macrocytic anemia; however, the mechanisms that underlie erythropoiesis dysfunction in these animals are unclear. Here, we determined that erythropoiesis failure occurs in these animals at the CFU-E/proerythroblast stage, a point at which the transferrin receptor (CD71) is upregulated, iron is imported, and heme is synthesized — before ample globin is produced. From the CFU-E/proerythroblast (CD71+ Ter119– cells) stage onward, erythroid progenitors exhibited excess heme content, increased cytoplasmic ROS, and increased apoptosis. Reducing heme synthesis in FLVCR1-defient animals via genetic and biochemical approaches improved the anemia, implying that heme excess causes, and is not just associated with, the erythroid marrow failure. Expression of the cell surface FLVCR1 isoform, but not the mitochondrial FLVCR1 isoform, restored normal rbc production, demonstrating that cellular heme export is essential. Together, these studies provide insight into how heme is regulated to allow effective erythropoiesis, show that erythropoiesis fails when heme is excessive, and emphasize the importance of evaluating Ter119– erythroid cells when studying erythroid marrow failure in murine models.
Raymond T. Doty, Susan R. Phelps, Christina Shadle, Marilyn Sanchez-Bonilla, Siobán B. Keel, Janis L. Abkowitz
Simone Lanini, Gina Portella, Francesco Vairo, Gary P. Kobinger, Antonio Pesenti, Martin Langer, Soccoh Kabia, Giorgio Brogiato, Jackson Amone, Concetta Castilletti, Rossella Miccio, Alimuddin Zumla, Maria Rosaria Capobianchi, Antonino Di Caro, Gino Strada, Giuseppe Ippolito, INMI-EMERGENCY EBOV Sierra Leone Study group
Parasitic helminth worms, such as
Leticia Monin, Kristin L. Griffiths, Wing Y. Lam, Radha Gopal, Dongwan D. Kang, Mushtaq Ahmed, Anuradha Rajamanickam, Alfredo Cruz-Lagunas, Joaquín Zúñiga, Subash Babu, Jay K. Kolls, Makedonka Mitreva, Bruce A. Rosa, Rosalio Ramos-Payan, Thomas E. Morrison, Peter J. Murray, Javier Rangel-Moreno, Edward J. Pearce, Shabaana A. Khader
Strategies aimed at mimicking or enhancing the action of the incretin hormone glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) therapeutically improve glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS); however, it is not clear whether GLP-1 directly drives insulin secretion in pancreatic islets. Here, we examined the mechanisms by which GLP-1 stimulates insulin secretion in mouse and human islets. We found that GLP-1 enhances GSIS at a half-maximal effective concentration of 0.4 pM. Moreover, we determined that GLP-1 activates PLC, which increases submembrane diacylglycerol and thereby activates PKC, resulting in membrane depolarization and increased action potential firing and subsequent stimulation of insulin secretion. The depolarizing effect of GLP-1 on electrical activity was mimicked by the PKC activator PMA, occurred without activation of PKA, and persisted in the presence of PKA inhibitors, the KATP channel blocker tolbutamide, and the L-type Ca2+ channel blocker isradipine; however, depolarization was abolished by lowering extracellular Na+. The PKC-dependent effect of GLP-1 on membrane potential and electrical activity was mediated by activation of Na+-permeable TRPM4 and TRPM5 channels by mobilization of intracellular Ca2+ from thapsigargin-sensitive Ca2+ stores. Concordantly, GLP-1 effects were negligible in Trpm4 or Trpm5 KO islets. These data provide important insight into the therapeutic action of GLP-1 and suggest that circulating levels of this hormone directly stimulate insulin secretion by β cells.
Makoto Shigeto, Reshma Ramracheya, Andrei I. Tarasov, Chae Young Cha, Margarita V. Chibalina, Benoit Hastoy, Koenraad Philippaert, Thomas Reinbothe, Nils Rorsman, Albert Salehi, William R. Sones, Elisa Vergari, Cathryn Weston, Julia Gorelik, Masashi Katsura, Viacheslav O. Nikolaev, Rudi Vennekens, Manuela Zaccolo, Antony Galione, Paul R.V. Johnson, Kohei Kaku, Graham Ladds, Patrik Rorsman