Tauopathies display a spectrum of phenotypes from cognitive to affective behavioral impairments; however, mechanisms promoting tau pathology and how tau elicits behavioral impairment remain unclear. We report a unique interaction between polyamine metabolism, behavioral impairment, and tau fate. Polyamines are ubiquitous aliphatic molecules that support neuronal function, axonal integrity, and cognitive processing. Transient increases in polyamine metabolism hallmark the cell’s response to various insults, known as the polyamine stress response (PSR). Dysregulation of gene transcripts associated with polyamine metabolism in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) brains were observed, and we found that ornithine decarboxylase antizyme inhibitor 2 (AZIN2) increased to the greatest extent. We showed that sustained AZIN2 overexpression elicited a maladaptive PSR in mice with underlying tauopathy (MAPT P301S; PS19). AZIN2 also increased acetylpolyamines, augmented tau deposition, and promoted cognitive and affective behavioral impairments. Higher-order polyamines displaced microtubule-associated tau to facilitate polymerization but also decreased tau seeding and oligomerization. Conversely, acetylpolyamines promoted tau seeding and oligomers. These data suggest that tauopathies launch an altered enzymatic signature that endorses a feed-forward cycle of disease progression. Taken together, the tau-induced PSR affects behavior and disease continuance, but may also position the polyamine pathway as a potential entry point for plausible targets and treatments of tauopathy, including AD.
Leslie A. Sandusky-Beltran, Andrii Kovalenko, Devon S. Placides, Kevin Ratnasamy, Chao Ma, Jerry B. Hunt Jr., Huimin Liang, John Ivan T. Calahatian, Camilla Michalski, Margaret Fahnestock, Laura J. Blair, April L. Darling, Jeremy D. Baker, Sarah N. Fontaine, Chad A. Dickey, Joshua J. Gamsby, Kevin R. Nash, Erin Abner, Maj-Linda B. Selenica, Daniel C. Lee
Vascular stability and tone are maintained by contractile smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). However, injury-induced growth factors stimulate a contractile-synthetic phenotypic modulation which increases susceptibility to abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). As a regulator of embryonic VSMC differentiation, we hypothesized that Thymosin β4 (Tβ4) may function to maintain healthy vasculature throughout postnatal life. This was supported by the identification of an interaction with low density lipoprotein receptor related protein 1 (LRP1), an endocytic regulator of platelet-derived growth factor BB (PDGF-BB) signaling and VSMC proliferation. LRP1 variants have been implicated by genome-wide association studies with risk of AAA and other arterial diseases. Tβ4-null mice displayed aortic VSMC and elastin defects that phenocopy those of LRP1 mutants, and their compromised vascular integrity predisposed them to Angiotensin II–induced aneurysm formation. Aneurysmal vessels were characterized by enhanced VSMC phenotypic modulation and augmented PDGFR-β signaling. In vitro, enhanced sensitivity to PDGF-BB upon loss of Tβ4 was associated with dysregulated endocytosis, with increased recycling and reduced lysosomal targeting of LRP1–PDGFR-β. Accordingly, the exacerbated aneurysmal phenotype in Tβ4-null mice was rescued upon treatment with the PDGFR-β antagonist Imatinib. Our study identifies Tβ4 as a key regulator of LRP1 for maintaining vascular health, and provides insights into the mechanisms of growth factor–controlled VSMC phenotypic modulation underlying aortic disease progression.
Sonali Munshaw, Susann Bruche, Andia N. Redpath, Alisha Jones, Jyoti Patel, Karina N. Dubé, Regent Lee, Svenja S. Hester, Rachel Davies, Giles Neal, Ashok Handa, Michael Sattler, Roman Fischer, Keith M. Channon, Nicola Smart
Oligodendrocytes express low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) to endocytose cholesterol for the maintenance of adulthood myelination. However, the potential role of LDLR in chronic cerebral ischemia–related demyelination remains unclear. We used bilateral carotid artery stenosis (BCAS) to induce sustained cerebral ischemia in mice. This hypoxic-ischemic injury caused a remarkable decrease in oligodendroglial LDLR, with impaired oligodendroglial differentiation and survival. Oligodendroglial cholesterol levels, however, remained unchanged. Mouse miR-344e-3p and the human homolog miR-410-3p, 2 miRNAs directly targeting Ldlr, were identified in experimental and clinical leukoaraiosis and were thus implicated in the LDLR reduction. Lentiviral delivery of LDLR ameliorated demyelination following chronic cerebral ischemia. By contrast, Ldlr–/– mice displayed inadequate myelination in the corpus callosum. Ldlr–/– oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) exhibited reduced ability to differentiate and myelinate axons in vitro. Transplantation with Ldlr–/– OPCs could not rescue the BCAS-induced demyelination. Such LDLR-dependent myelin restoration might involve a physical interaction of the Asn-Pro-Val-Tyr (NPVY) motif with the phosphotyrosine binding domain of Shc, which subsequently activated the MEK/ERK pathway. Together, our findings demonstrate that the aberrant oligodendroglial LDLR in chronic cerebral ischemia impairs myelination through intracellular signal transduction. Preservation of oligodendroglial LDLR may provide a promising approach to treat ischemic demyelination.
Yi Xie, Xiaohao Zhang, Pengfei Xu, Nana Zhao, Ying Zhao, Yunzi Li, Ye Hong, Mengna Peng, Kang Yuan, Ting Wan, Rui Sun, Deyan Chen, Lili Xu, Jingjing Chen, Hongquan Guo, Wanying Shan, Juanji Li, Rongrong Li, Yunyun Xiong, Dezhi Liu, Yuhui Wang, George Liu, Ruidong Ye, Xinfeng Liu
Individuals harboring the loss-of-function (LOF) proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 Gln152His variation (PCSK9Q152H) have low circulating low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels and are therefore protected against cardiovascular disease (CVD). This uncleavable form of proPCSK9, however, is retained in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of liver hepatocytes, where it would be expected to contribute to ER storage disease (ERSD), a heritable condition known to cause systemic ER stress and liver injury. Here, we examined liver function in members of several French-Canadian families known to carry the PCSK9Q152H variation. We report that PCSK9Q152H carriers exhibited marked hypocholesterolemia and normal liver function despite their lifelong state of ER PCSK9 retention. Mechanistically, hepatic overexpression of PCSK9Q152H using adeno-associated viruses in male mice greatly increased the stability of key ER stress-response chaperones in liver hepatocytes and unexpectedly protected against ER stress and liver injury rather than inducing them. Our findings show that ER retention of PCSK9 not only reduced CVD risk in patients but may also protect against ERSD and other ER stress–driven conditions of the liver. In summary, we have uncovered a cochaperone function for PCSK9Q152H that explains its hepatoprotective effects and generated a translational mouse model for further mechanistic insights into this clinically relevant LOF PCSK9 variant.
Paul F. Lebeau, Hanny Wassef, Jae Hyun Byun, Khrystyna Platko, Brandon Ason, Simon Jackson, Joshua Dobroff, Susan Shetterly, William G. Richards, Ali A. Al-Hashimi, Kevin Doyoon Won, Majambu Mbikay, Annik Prat, An Tang, Guillaume Paré, Renata Pasqualini, Nabil G. Seidah, Wadih Arap, Michel Chrétien, Richard C. Austin
Zeb1, a zinc finger E-box binding homeobox epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) transcription factor, confers properties of “stemness,” such as self-renewal, in cancer. Yet little is known about the function of Zeb1 in adult stem cells. Here, we used the hematopoietic system as a well-established paradigm of stem cell biology to evaluate Zeb1-mediated regulation of adult stem cells. We employed a conditional genetic approach using the Mx1-Cre system to specifically knock out (KO) Zeb1 in adult hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and their downstream progeny. Acute genetic deletion of Zeb1 led to rapid-onset thymic atrophy and apoptosis-driven loss of thymocytes and T cells. A profound cell-autonomous self-renewal defect and multilineage differentiation block were observed in Zeb1-KO HSCs. Loss of Zeb1 in HSCs activated transcriptional programs of deregulated HSC maintenance and multilineage differentiation genes and of cell polarity consisting of cytoskeleton-, lipid metabolism/lipid membrane–, and cell adhesion–related genes. Notably, epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) expression was prodigiously upregulated in Zeb1-KO HSCs, which correlated with enhanced cell survival, diminished mitochondrial metabolism, ribosome biogenesis, and differentiation capacity and an activated transcriptomic signature associated with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) signaling. ZEB1 expression was downregulated in AML patients, and Zeb1 KO in the malignant counterparts of HSCs — leukemic stem cells (LSCs) — accelerated MLL-AF9– and Meis1a/Hoxa9-driven AML progression, implicating Zeb1 as a tumor suppressor in AML LSCs. Thus, Zeb1 acts as a transcriptional regulator in hematopoiesis, critically coordinating HSC self-renewal, apoptotic, and multilineage differentiation fates required to suppress leukemic potential in AML.
Alhomidi Almotiri, Hamed Alzahrani, Juan Bautista Menendez-Gonzalez, Ali Abdelfattah, Badi Alotaibi, Lubaid Saleh, Adelle Greene, Mia Georgiou, Alex Gibbs, Amani Alsayari, Sarab Taha, Leigh-anne Thomas, Dhruv Shah, Sarah Edkins, Peter Giles, Marc P. Stemmler, Simone Brabletz, Thomas Brabletz, Ashleigh S. Boyd, Florian A. Siebzehnrubl, Neil P. Rodrigues
Estrogen receptor–negative (ER-negative) breast cancer is thought to be more malignant and devastating than ER-positive breast cancer. ER-negative breast cancer exhibits elevated NF-κB activity, but how this abnormally high NF-κB activity is maintained is poorly understood. The importance of linear ubiquitination, which is generated by the linear ubiquitin chain assembly complex (LUBAC), is increasingly appreciated in NF-κB signaling, which regulates cell activation and death. Here, we showed that epsin proteins, a family of ubiquitin-binding endocytic adaptors, interacted with LUBAC via its ubiquitin-interacting motif and bound LUBAC’s bona fide substrate NEMO via its N-terminal homolog (ENTH) domain. Furthermore, epsins promoted NF-κB essential modulator (NEMO) linear ubiquitination and served as scaffolds for recruiting other components of the IκB kinase (IKK) complex, resulting in the heightened IKK activation and sustained NF-κB signaling essential for the development of ER-negative breast cancer. Heightened epsin levels in ER-negative human breast cancer are associated with poor relapse-free survival. We showed that transgenic and pharmacological approaches eliminating epsins potently impeded breast cancer development in both spontaneous and patient-derived xenograft breast cancer mouse models. Our findings established the pivotal role epsins played in promoting breast cancer. Thus, targeting epsins may represent a strategy to restrain NF-κB signaling and provide an important perspective into ER-negative breast cancer treatment.
Kai Song, Xiaofeng Cai, Yunzhou Dong, Hao Wu, Yong Wei, Uma T. Shankavaram, Kui Cui, Yang Lee, Bo Zhu, Sudarshan Bhattacharjee, Beibei Wang, Kun Zhang, Aiyun Wen, Scott Wong, Lili Yu, Lijun Xia, Alana L. Welm, Diane R. Bielenberg, Kevin A. Camphausen, Yibin Kang, Hong Chen
Women with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) exhibit better right ventricular (RV) function and survival than men; however, the underlying mechanisms are unknown. We hypothesized that 17β-estradiol (E2), through estrogen receptor α (ER-α), attenuates PAH-induced RV failure (RVF) by upregulating the procontractile and prosurvival peptide apelin via a BMPR2-dependent mechanism. We found that ER-α and apelin expression were decreased in RV homogenates from patients with RVF and from rats with maladaptive (but not adaptive) RV remodeling. RV cardiomyocyte apelin abundance increased in vivo or in vitro after treatment with E2 or ER-α agonist. Studies employing ER-α–null or ER-β–null mice, ER-α loss-of-function mutant rats, or siRNA demonstrated that ER-α is necessary for E2 to upregulate RV apelin. E2 and ER-α increased BMPR2 in pulmonary hypertension RVs and in isolated RV cardiomyocytes, associated with ER-α binding to the Bmpr2 promoter. BMPR2 is required for E2-mediated increases in apelin abundance, and both BMPR2 and apelin are necessary for E2 to exert RV-protective effects. E2 or ER-α agonist rescued monocrotaline pulmonary hypertension and restored RV apelin and BMPR2. We identified what we believe to be a novel cardioprotective E2/ER-α/BMPR2/apelin axis in the RV. Harnessing this axis may lead to novel RV-targeted therapies for PAH patients of either sex.
Andrea L. Frump, Marjorie Albrecht, Bakhtiyor Yakubov, Sandra Breuils-Bonnet, Valérie Nadeau, Eve Tremblay, Francois Potus, Junichi Omura, Todd Cook, Amanda Fisher, Brooke Rodriguez, R. Dale Brown, Kurt R. Stenmark, C. Dustin Rubinstein, Kathy Krentz, Diana M. Tabima, Rongbo Li, Xin Sun, Naomi C. Chesler, Steeve Provencher, Sebastien Bonnet, Tim Lahm
The mechanism by which only some individuals infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis develop necrotic granulomas with progressive disease while others form controlled granulomas that contain the infection remains poorly defined. Mice carrying the sst1-suscepible (sst1S) genotype develop necrotic inflammatory lung lesions, similar to human tuberculosis (TB) granulomas, which are linked to macrophage dysfunction, while their congenic counterpart (B6) mice do not. In this study we report that (a) sst1S macrophages developed aberrant, biphasic responses to TNF characterized by superinduction of stress and type I interferon pathways after prolonged TNF stimulation; (b) the late-stage TNF response was driven via a JNK/IFN-β/protein kinase R (PKR) circuit; and (c) induced the integrated stress response (ISR) via PKR-mediated eIF2α phosphorylation and the subsequent hyperinduction of ATF3 and ISR-target genes Chac1, Trib3, and Ddit4. The administration of ISRIB, a small-molecule inhibitor of the ISR, blocked the development of necrosis in lung granulomas of M. tuberculosis–infected sst1S mice and concomitantly reduced the bacterial burden. Hence, induction of the ISR and the locked-in state of escalating stress driven by the type I IFN pathway in sst1S macrophages play a causal role in the development of necrosis in TB granulomas. Interruption of the aberrant stress response with inhibitors such as ISRIB may offer novel host-directed therapy strategies.
Bidisha Bhattacharya, Shiqi Xiao, Sujoy Chatterjee, Michael Urbanowski, Alvaro Ordonez, Elizabeth A. Ihms, Garima Agrahari, Shichun Lun, Robert Berland, Alexander Pichugin, Yuanwei Gao, John Connor, Alexander R. Ivanov, Bo-Shiun Yan, Lester Kobzik, Bang-Bon Koo, Sanjay Jain, William Bishai, Igor Kramnik
Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by inflammatory cell infiltration, as well as hyperproliferation of keratinocytes in skin lesions, and is considered a metabolic syndrome. We found that the expression of galectin-7 is reduced in skin lesions of patients with psoriasis. IL-17A and TNF-α, 2 cytokines intimately involved in the development of psoriatic lesions, suppressed galectin-7 expression in human primary keratinocytes (HEKn cells) and the immortalized human keratinocyte cell line HaCaT. A galectin-7 knockdown in these cells elevated the production of IL-6 and IL-8 and enhanced ERK signaling when the cells were stimulated with IL-17A. Galectin-7 attenuated IL-17A–induced production of inflammatory mediators by keratinocytes via the microRNA-146a/ERK pathway. Moreover, galectin-7–deficient mice showed enhanced epidermal hyperplasia and skin inflammation in response to intradermal IL-23 injection. We identified fluvastatin as an inducer of galectin-7 expression by connectivity map analysis, confirmed this effect in keratinocytes, and demonstrated that fluvastatin attenuated IL-6 and IL-8 production induced by IL-17A. Thus, we validate a role of galectin-7 in the pathogenesis of psoriasis, in both epidermal hyperplasia and keratinocyte-mediated inflammatory responses, and formulate a rationale for the use of statins in the treatment of psoriasis.
Hung-Lin Chen, Chia-Hui Lo, Chi-Chun Huang, Meng-Ping Lu, Po-Yuan Hu, Chang-Shan Chen, Di-Yen Chueh, Peilin Chen, Teng-Nan Lin, Yuan-Hsin Lo, Yu-Ping Hsiao, Daniel K. Hsu, Fu-Tong Liu
Group A Streptococcus (GAS), a Gram-positive human-specific pathogen, yields 517,000 deaths annually worldwide, including 163,000 due to invasive infections and among them puerperal fever. Before efficient prophylactic measures were introduced, the mortality rate for mothers during childbirth was approximately 10%; puerperal fever still accounts for over 75,000 maternal deaths annually. Yet, little is known regarding the factors and mechanisms of GAS invasion and establishment in postpartum infection. We characterized the early steps of infection in an ex vivo infection model of the human decidua, the puerperal fever portal of entry. Coordinate analysis of GAS behavior and the immune response led us to demonstrate that (a) GAS growth was stimulated by tissue products; (b) GAS invaded tissue and killed approximately 50% of host cells within 2 hours, and these processes required SpeB protease and streptolysin O (SLO) activities, respectively; and (c) GAS impaired the tissue immune response. Immune impairment occurred both at the RNA level, with only partial induction of the innate immune response, and protein level, in an SLO- and SpeB-dependent manner. Our study indicates that efficient GAS invasion of the decidua and the restricted host immune response favored its propensity to develop rapid invasive infections in a gynecological-obstetrical context.
Antonin Weckel, Thomas Guilbert, Clara Lambert, Céline Plainvert, François Goffinet, Claire Poyart, Céline Méhats, Agnès Fouet
To clarify the function of cyclin A2 in colon homeostasis and colorectal cancer (CRC), we generated mice deficient for cyclin A2 in colonic epithelial cells (CECs). Colons of these mice displayed architectural changes in the mucosa and signs of inflammation, as well as increased proliferation of CECs associated with the appearance of low- and high-grade dysplasias. The main initial events triggering those alterations in cyclin A2–deficient CECs appeared to be abnormal mitoses and DNA damage. Cyclin A2 deletion in CECs promoted the development of dysplasia and adenocarcinomas in a murine colitis–associated cancer model. We next explored the status of cyclin A2 expression in clinical CRC samples at the mRNA and protein levels and found higher expression in tumors of patients with stage 1 or 2 CRC compared with those of patients with stage 3 or 4 CRC. A meta-analysis of 11 transcriptome data sets comprising 2239 primary CRC tumors revealed different expression levels of CCNA2 (the mRNA coding for cyclin A2) among the CRC tumor subtypes, with the highest expression detected in consensus molecular subtype 1 (CMS1) and the lowest in CMS4 tumors. Moreover, we found high expression of CCNA2 to be a new, independent prognosis factor for CRC tumors.
Yuchen Guo, Monica Gabola, Rossano Lattanzio, Conception Paul, Valérie Pinet, Ruizhi Tang, Hulya Turali, Julie Bremond, Ciro Longobardi, Chloé Maurizy, Quentin Da Costa, Pascal Finetti, Florence Boissière-Michot, Benjamin Rivière, Céline Lemmers, Séverine Garnier, François Bertucci, Inti Zlobec, Karim Chebli, Jamal Tazi, Rania Azar, Jean-Marie Blanchard, Peter Sicinski, Emilie Mamessier, Bénédicte Lemmers, Michael Hahne
In order to sustain proficient life-long hematopoiesis, hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) must possess robust mechanisms to preserve their quiescence and genome integrity. DNA-damaging stress can perturb HSC homeostasis by affecting their survival, self-renewal, and differentiation. Ablation of the kinase ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM), a master regulator of the DNA damage response, impairs HSC fitness. Paradoxically, we show here that loss of a single allele of Atm enhances HSC functionality in mice. To explain this observation, we explored a possible link between ATM and the tumor suppressor phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN), which also regulates HSC function. We generated and analyzed a knockin mouse line (PtenS398A/S398A), in which PTEN cannot be phosphorylated by ATM. Similar to Atm+/–, PtenS398A/S398A HSCs have enhanced hematopoietic reconstitution ability, accompanied by resistance to apoptosis induced by genotoxic stress. Single-cell transcriptomic analyses and functional assays revealed that dormant PtenS398A/S398A HSCs aberrantly tolerate elevated mitochondrial activity and the accumulation of reactive oxygen species, which are normally associated with HSC priming for self-renewal or differentiation. Our results unveil a molecular connection between ATM and PTEN, which couples the response to genotoxic stress and dormancy in HSCs.
Jerome Fortin, Christian Bassi, Parameswaran Ramachandran, Wanda Y. Li, Ruxiao Tian, Ida Zarrabi, Graham Hill, Bryan E. Snow, Jillian Haight, Chantal Tobin, Kelsey Hodgson, Andrew Wakeham, Vuk Stambolic, Tak W. Mak
Cholangiopathies caused by biliary epithelial cell (BEC) injury represent a leading cause of liver failure. No effective pharmacologic therapies exist, and the underlying mechanisms remain obscure. We aimed to explore the mechanisms of bile duct repair after targeted BEC injury. Injection of intermedilysin into BEC-specific human CD59 (hCD59) transgenic mice induced acute and specific BEC death, representing a model to study the early signals that drive bile duct repair. Acute BEC injury induced cholestasis followed by CCR2+ monocyte recruitment and BEC proliferation. Using microdissection and next-generation RNA-Seq, we identified 5 genes, including Mapk8ip2, Cdkn1a, Itgb6, Rgs4, and Ccl2, that were most upregulated in proliferating BECs after acute injury. Immunohistochemical analyses confirmed robust upregulation of integrin αvβ6 (ITGβ6) expression in this BEC injury model, after bile duct ligation, and in patients with chronic cholangiopathies. Deletion of the Itgb6 gene attenuated BEC proliferation after acute bile duct injury. Macrophage depletion or Ccr2 deficiency impaired ITGβ6 expression and BEC proliferation. In vitro experiments revealed that bile acid–activated monocytes promoted BEC proliferation through ITGβ6. Our data suggest that BEC injury induces cholestasis, monocyte recruitment, and induction of ITGβ6, which work together to promote BEC proliferation and therefore represent potential therapeutic targets for cholangiopathies.
Adrien Guillot, Lucia Guerri, Dechun Feng, Seung-Jin Kim, Yeni Ait Ahmed, Janos Paloczi, Yong He, Kornel Schuebel, Shen Dai, Fengming Liu, Pal Pacher, Tatiana Kisseleva, Xuebin Qin, David Goldman, Frank Tacke, Bin Gao
Microglia maintain homeostasis in the brain. However, with age, they become primed and respond more strongly to inflammatory stimuli. We show here that microglia from aged mice had upregulated mTOR complex 1 signaling controlling translation, as well as protein levels of inflammatory mediators. Genetic ablation of mTOR signaling showed a dual yet contrasting effect on microglia priming: it caused an NF-κB–dependent upregulation of priming genes at the mRNA level; however, mice displayed reduced cytokine protein levels, diminished microglia activation, and milder sickness behavior. The effect on translation was dependent on reduced phosphorylation of 4EBP1, resulting in decreased binding of eIF4E to eIF4G. Similar changes were present in aged human microglia and in damage-associated microglia, indicating that upregulation of mTOR-dependent translation is an essential aspect of microglia priming in aging and neurodegeneration.
Lily Keane, Ignazio Antignano, Sean-Patrick Riechers, Raphael Zollinger, Anaelle A. Dumas, Nina Offermann, Maria E. Bernis, Jenny Russ, Frederike Graelmann, Patrick Neil McCormick, Julia Esser, Dario Tejera, Ai Nagano, Jun Wang, Claude Chelala, Yvonne Biederbick, Annett Halle, Paolo Salomoni, Michael T. Heneka, Melania Capasso
Metabolic reprogramming is a common hallmark of cancer, but a large variability in tumor bioenergetics exists between patients. Using high-resolution respirometry on fresh biopsies of human lung adenocarcinoma, we identified 2 subgroups reflected in the histologically normal, paired, cancer-adjacent tissue: high (OX+) mitochondrial respiration and low (OX–) mitochondrial respiration. The OX+ tumors poorly incorporated [18F]fluorodeoxy-glucose and showed increased expression of the mitochondrial trifunctional fatty acid oxidation enzyme (MTP; HADHA) compared with the paired adjacent tissue. Genetic inhibition of MTP altered OX+ tumor growth in vivo. Trimetazidine, an approved drug inhibitor of MTP used in cardiology, also reduced tumor growth and induced disruption of the physical interaction between the MTP and respiratory chain complex I, leading to a cellular redox and energy crisis. MTP expression in tumors was assessed using histology scoring methods and varied in negative correlation with [18F]fluorodeoxy-glucose incorporation. These findings provide proof-of-concept data for preclinical, precision, bioenergetic medicine in oxidative lung carcinomas.
Nivea Dias Amoedo, Saharnaz Sarlak, Emilie Obre, Pauline Esteves, Hugues Bégueret, Yann Kieffer, Benoît Rousseau, Alexis Dupis, Julien Izotte, Nadège Bellance, Laetitia Dard, Isabelle Redonnet-Vernhet, Giuseppe Punzi, Mariana Figueiredo Rodrigues, Elodie Dumon, Walid Mafhouf, Véronique Guyonnet-Dupérat, Lara Gales, Tony Palama, Floriant Bellvert, Nathalie Dugot-Senan, Stéphane Claverol, Jean-Marc Baste, Didier Lacombe, Hamid Reza Rezvani, Ciro Leonardo Pierri, Fatima Mechta-Grigoriou, Matthieu Thumerel, Rodrigue Rossignol
The bromodomain and extra-terminal domain (BET) proteins are promising therapeutic targets to treat refractory solid tumors; however, inherent resistance remains a major challenge in the clinic. Recently, the emerging role of the oncoprotein B cell lymphoma 6 (BCL6) in tumorigenesis and stress response has been unveiled. Here, we demonstrate that BCL6 was upregulated upon BET inhibition in KRAS-mutant cancers, including non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We further found that BRD3, not BRD2 or BRD4, directly interacted with BCL6 and maintained the negative autoregulatory circuit of BCL6. Disrupting this negative autoregulation by BET inhibitors (BETi) resulted in a striking increase in BCL6 transcription, which further activated the mTOR signaling pathway through repression of the tumor suppressor death-associated protein kinase 2. Importantly, pharmacological inhibition of either BCL6 or mTOR improved the tumor response and enhanced the sensitivity of KRAS-mutant NSCLC to BETi in both in vitro and in vivo settings. Overall, our findings identify a mechanism of BRD3-mediated BCL6 autoregulation and further develop an effective combinatorial strategy to circumvent BETi resistance in KRAS-driven NSCLC.
Jiawei Guo, Yanan Liu, Jing Lv, Bin Zou, Zhi Chen, Kun Li, Juanjuan Feng, Zhenyu Cai, Lai Wei, Mingyao Liu, Xiufeng Pang
As the interface between the gut microbiota and the mucosal immune system, there has been great interest in the maintenance of colonic epithelial integrity through mitochondrial oxidation of butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid produced by the gut microbiota. Herein, we showed that the intestinal epithelium could also oxidize long-chain fatty acids, and that luminally delivered acylcarnitines in bile could be consumed via apical absorption by the intestinal epithelium, resulting in mitochondrial oxidation. Finally, intestinal inflammation led to mitochondrial dysfunction in the apical domain of the surface epithelium that may reduce the consumption of fatty acids, contributing to higher concentrations of fecal acylcarnitines in murine Citrobacter rodentium–induced colitis and human inflammatory bowel disease. These results emphasized the importance of both the gut microbiota and the liver in the delivery of energy substrates for mitochondrial metabolism by the intestinal epithelium.
Sarah A. Smith, Sayaka A. Ogawa, Lillian Chau, Kelly A. Whelan, Kathryn E. Hamilton, Jie Chen, Lu Tan, Eric Z. Chen, Sue Keilbaugh, Franz Fogt, Meenakshi Bewtra, Jonathan Braun, Ramnik J. Xavier, Clary B. Clish, Barry Slaff, Aalim M. Weljie, Frederic D. Bushman, James D. Lewis, Hongzhe Li, Stephen R. Master, Michael J. Bennett, Hiroshi Nakagawa, Gary D. Wu
Membrane protrusion and adhesion to the extracellular matrix, which involves the extension of actin filaments and formation of adhesion complexes, are the fundamental processes for cell migration, tumor invasion, and metastasis. How cancer cells efficiently coordinate these processes remains unclear. Here, we showed that membrane-targeted chloride intracellular channel 1 (CLIC1) spatiotemporally regulates the formation of cell-matrix adhesions and membrane protrusions through the recruitment of PIP5Ks to the plasma membrane. Comparative proteomics identified CLIC1 upregulated in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and associated with tumor invasiveness, metastasis, and poor prognosis. In response to migration-related stimuli, CLIC1 recruited PIP5K1A and PIP5K1C from the cytoplasm to the leading edge of the plasma membrane, where PIP5Ks generate a phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate–rich (PIP2-rich) microdomain to induce the formation of integrin-mediated cell-matrix adhesions and the signaling for cytoskeleon extension. CLIC1 silencing inhibited the attachment of tumor cells to culture plates and the adherence and extravasation in the lung alveoli, resulting in suppressed lung metastasis in mice. This study reveals what we believe is an unrecognized mechanism that spatiotemporally coordinates the formation of both lamellipodium/invadopodia and nascent cell-matrix adhesions for directional migration and tumor invasion/metastasis. The unique traits of upregulation and membrane targeting of CLIC1 in cancer cells make it an excellent therapeutic target for tumor metastasis.
Jei-Ming Peng, Sheng-Hsuan Lin, Ming-Chin Yu, Sen-Yung Hsieh
BACKGROUND Viral load (VL) surrogate endpoints transformed development of HIV and hepatitis C therapeutics. Surrogate endpoints for CMV-related morbidity and mortality could advance development of antiviral treatments. Although observational data support using CMV VL as a trial endpoint, randomized controlled trials (RCTs) demonstrating direct associations between virological markers and clinical endpoints are lacking.METHODS We performed CMV DNA PCR on frozen serum samples from the only placebo-controlled RCT of ganciclovir for early treatment of CMV after hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). We used established criteria to assess VL kinetics as surrogates for CMV disease or death by weeks 8, 24, and 48 after randomization and quantified antiviral effects captured by each marker. We used ensemble-based machine learning to assess the predictive ability of VL kinetics and performed this analysis on a ganciclovir prophylaxis RCT for validation.RESULTS VL suppression with ganciclovir reduced cumulative incidence of CMV disease and death for 20 years after HCT. Mean VL, peak VL, and change in VL during the first 5 weeks of treatment fulfilled the Prentice definition for surrogacy, capturing more than 95% of ganciclovir’s effect, and yielded highly sensitive and specific predictions by week 48. In the prophylaxis trial, the viral shedding rate satisfied the Prentice definition for CMV disease by week 24.CONCLUSIONS Our results support using CMV VL kinetics as surrogates for CMV disease, provide a framework for developing CMV preventative and therapeutic agents, and support reductions in VL as the mechanism through which antivirals reduce CMV disease.FUNDING Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc.
Elizabeth R. Duke, Brian D. Williamson, Bhavesh Borate, Jonathan L. Golob, Chiara Wychera, Terry Stevens-Ayers, Meei-Li Huang, Nicole Cossrow, Hong Wan, T. Christopher Mast, Morgan A. Marks, Mary E. Flowers, Keith R. Jerome, Lawrence Corey, Peter B. Gilbert, Joshua T. Schiffer, Michael Boeckh
Limiting dysfunctional neutrophilic inflammation while preserving effective immunity requires a better understanding of the processes that dictate neutrophil function in the tissues. Quantitative mass-spectrometry identified how inflammatory murine neutrophils regulated expression of cell surface receptors, signal transduction networks, and metabolic machinery to shape neutrophil phenotypes in response to hypoxia. Through the tracing of labeled amino acids into metabolic enzymes, proinflammatory mediators, and granule proteins, we demonstrated that ongoing protein synthesis shapes the neutrophil proteome. To maintain energy supplies in the tissues, neutrophils consumed extracellular proteins to fuel central carbon metabolism. The physiological stresses of hypoxia and hypoglycemia, characteristic of inflamed tissues, promoted this extracellular protein scavenging with activation of the lysosomal compartment, further driving exploitation of the protein-rich inflammatory milieu. This study provides a comprehensive map of neutrophil proteomes, analysis of which has led to the identification of active catabolic and anabolic pathways that enable neutrophils to sustain synthetic and effector functions in the tissues.
Emily R. Watts, Andrew J.M. Howden, Tyler Morrison, Pranvera Sadiku, Jens Hukelmann, Alex von Kriegsheim, Bart Ghesquiere, Fiona Murphy, Ananda S. Mirchandani, Duncan C. Humphries, Robert Grecian, Eilise M. Ryan, Patricia Coelho, Gio Rodriguez Blanco, Tracie M. Plant, Rebecca S. Dickinson, Andy Finch, Wesley Vermaelen, Doreen A. Cantrell, Moira K. Whyte, Sarah R. Walmsley
Human herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) encephalitis can be caused by inborn errors of the TLR3 pathway, resulting in impairment of CNS cell-intrinsic antiviral immunity. Deficiencies of the TLR3 pathway impair cell-intrinsic immunity to vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and HSV-1 in fibroblasts, and to HSV-1 in cortical but not trigeminal neurons. The underlying molecular mechanism is thought to involve impaired IFN-α/β induction by the TLR3 recognition of dsRNA viral intermediates or by-products. However, we show here that human TLR3 controls constitutive levels of IFNB mRNA and secreted bioactive IFN-β protein, and thereby also controls constitutive mRNA levels for IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs) in fibroblasts. Tlr3–/– mouse embryonic fibroblasts also have lower basal ISG levels. Moreover, human TLR3 controls basal levels of IFN-β secretion and ISG mRNA in induced pluripotent stem cell–derived cortical neurons. Consistently, TLR3-deficient human fibroblasts and cortical neurons are vulnerable not only to both VSV and HSV-1, but also to several other families of viruses. The mechanism by which TLR3 restricts viral growth in human fibroblasts and cortical neurons in vitro and, by inference, by which the human CNS prevents infection by HSV-1 in vivo, is therefore based on the control of early viral infection by basal IFN-β immunity.
Daxing Gao, Michael J. Ciancanelli, Peng Zhang, Oliver Harschnitz, Vincent Bondet, Mary Hasek, Jie Chen, Xin Mu, Yuval Itan, Aurélie Cobat, Vanessa Sancho-Shimizu, Benedetta Bigio, Lazaro Lorenzo, Gabriele Ciceri, Jessica McAlpine, Esperanza Anguiano, Emmanuelle Jouanguy, Damien Chaussabel, Isabelle Meyts, Michael S. Diamond, Laurent Abel, Sun Hur, Gregory A. Smith, Luigi Notarangelo, Darragh Duffy, Lorenz Studer, Jean-Laurent Casanova, Shen-Ying Zhang
Polyglutamine (polyQ) diseases are devastating, slowly progressing neurodegenerative conditions caused by expansion of polyQ-encoding CAG repeats within the coding regions of distinct, unrelated genes. In spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA), polyQ expansion within the androgen receptor (AR) causes progressive neuromuscular toxicity, the molecular basis of which is unclear. Using quantitative proteomics, we identified changes in the AR interactome caused by polyQ expansion. We found that the deubiquitinase USP7 preferentially interacts with polyQ-expanded AR and that lowering USP7 levels reduced mutant AR aggregation and cytotoxicity in cell models of SBMA. Moreover, USP7 knockdown suppressed disease phenotypes in SBMA and spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3) fly models, and monoallelic knockout of Usp7 ameliorated several motor deficiencies in transgenic SBMA mice. USP7 overexpression resulted in reduced AR ubiquitination, indicating the direct action of USP7 on AR. Using quantitative proteomics, we identified the ubiquitinated lysine residues on mutant AR that are regulated by USP7. Finally, we found that USP7 also differentially interacts with mutant Huntingtin (HTT) protein in striatum and frontal cortex of a knockin mouse model of Huntington’s disease. Taken together, our findings reveal a critical role for USP7 in the pathophysiology of SBMA and suggest a similar role in SCA3 and Huntington’s disease.
Anna Pluciennik, Yuhong Liu, Elana Molotsky, Gregory B. Marsh, Bedri Ranxhi, Frederick J. Arnold, Sophie St.-Cyr, Beverly Davidson, Naemeh Pourshafie, Andrew P. Lieberman, Wei Gu, Sokol V. Todi, Diane E. Merry
Most clinically used anticancer mAbs are of the IgG isotype, which can eliminate tumor cells through NK cell–mediated antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity and macrophage-mediated antibody-dependent phagocytosis. IgG, however, ineffectively recruits neutrophils as effector cells. IgA mAbs induce migration and activation of neutrophils through the IgA Fc receptor (FcαRI) but are unable to activate NK cells and have poorer half-life. Here, we combined the agonistic activity of IgG mAbs and FcαRI targeting in a therapeutic bispecific antibody format. The resulting TrisomAb molecules recruited NK cells, macrophages, and neutrophils as effector cells for eradication of tumor cells in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, TrisomAb had long in vivo half-life and strongly decreased B16F10gp75 tumor outgrowth in mice. Importantly, neutrophils of colorectal cancer patients effectively eliminated tumor cells in the presence of anti-EGFR TrisomAb but were less efficient in mediating killing in the presence of IgG anti-EGFR mAb (cetuximab). The clinical application of TrisomAb may provide potential alternatives for cancer patients who do not benefit from current IgG mAb therapy.
Niels Heemskerk, Mandy Gruijs, A. Robin Temming, Marieke H. Heineke, Dennis Y. Gout, Tessa Hellingman, Cornelis W. Tuk, Paula J. Winter, Suzanne Lissenberg-Thunnissen, Arthur E.H. Bentlage, Marco de Donatis, Marijn Bögels, Thies Rösner, Thomas Valerius, Jantine E. Bakema, Gestur Vidarsson, Marjolein van Egmond
Resistance to oncogene-targeted therapies involves discrete drug-tolerant persister cells, originally discovered through in vitro assays. Whether a similar phenomenon limits efficacy of programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) blockade is poorly understood. Here, we performed dynamic single-cell RNA-Seq of murine organotypic tumor spheroids undergoing PD-1 blockade, identifying a discrete subpopulation of immunotherapy persister cells (IPCs) that resisted CD8+ T cell–mediated killing. These cells expressed Snai1 and stem cell antigen 1 (Sca-1) and exhibited hybrid epithelial-mesenchymal features characteristic of a stem cell–like state. IPCs were expanded by IL-6 but were vulnerable to TNF-α–induced cytotoxicity, relying on baculoviral IAP repeat-containing protein 2 (Birc2) and Birc3 as survival factors. Combining PD-1 blockade with Birc2/3 antagonism in mice reduced IPCs and enhanced tumor cell killing in vivo, resulting in durable responsiveness that matched TNF cytotoxicity thresholds in vitro. Together, these data demonstrate the power of high-resolution functional ex vivo profiling to uncover fundamental mechanisms of immune escape from durable anti–PD-1 responses, while identifying IPCs as a cancer cell subpopulation targetable by specific therapeutic combinations.
Kartik Sehgal, Andrew Portell, Elena V. Ivanova, Patrick H. Lizotte, Navin R. Mahadevan, Jonathan R. Greene, Amir Vajdi, Carino Gurjao, Tyler Teceno, Luke J. Taus, Tran C. Thai, Shunsuke Kitajima, Derek Liu, Tetsuo Tani, Moataz Noureddine, Christie J. Lau, Paul T. Kirschmeier, David Liu, Marios Giannakis, Russell W. Jenkins, Prafulla C. Gokhale, Silvia Goldoni, Maria Pinzon-Ortiz, William D. Hastings, Peter S. Hammerman, Juan J. Miret, Cloud P. Paweletz, David A. Barbie
The regulation of autophagy-dependent lysosome homeostasis in vivo is unclear. We showed that the inositol polyphosphate 5-phosphatase INPP5K regulates autophagic lysosome reformation (ALR), a lysosome recycling pathway, in muscle. INPP5K hydrolyzes phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2] to phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate [PI(4)P], and INPP5K mutations cause muscular dystrophy by unknown mechanisms. We report that loss of INPP5K in muscle caused severe disease, autophagy inhibition, and lysosome depletion. Reduced PI(4,5)P2 turnover on autolysosomes in Inpp5k–/– muscle suppressed autophagy and lysosome repopulation via ALR inhibition. Defective ALR in Inpp5k–/– myoblasts was characterized by enlarged autolysosomes and the persistence of hyperextended reformation tubules, structures that participate in membrane recycling to form lysosomes. Reduced disengagement of the PI(4,5)P2 effector clathrin was observed on reformation tubules, which we propose interfered with ALR completion. Inhibition of PI(4,5)P2 synthesis or expression of WT INPP5K but not INPP5K disease mutants in INPP5K-depleted myoblasts restored lysosomal homeostasis. Therefore, bidirectional interconversion of PI(4)P/PI(4,5)P2 on autolysosomes was integral to lysosome replenishment and autophagy function in muscle. Activation of TFEB-dependent de novo lysosome biogenesis did not compensate for loss of ALR in Inpp5k–/– muscle, revealing a dependence on this lysosome recycling pathway. Therefore, in muscle, ALR is indispensable for lysosome homeostasis during autophagy and when defective is associated with muscular dystrophy.
Meagan J. McGrath, Matthew J. Eramo, Rajendra Gurung, Absorn Sriratana, Stefan M. Gehrig, Gordon S. Lynch, Sonia Raveena Lourdes, Frank Koentgen, Sandra J. Feeney, Michael Lazarou, Catriona A. McLean, Christina A. Mitchell
BACKGROUND Rejection is the primary barrier to broader implementation of vascularized composite allografts (VCAs), including face and limb transplants. The immunologic pathways activated in face transplant rejection have not been fully characterized.METHODS Using skin biopsies prospectively collected over 9 years from 7 face transplant patients, we studied rejection by gene expression profiling, histology, immunostaining, and T cell receptor sequencing.RESULTS Grade 1 rejection did not differ significantly from nonrejection, suggesting that it does not represent a pathologic state. In grade 2, there was a balanced upregulation of both proinflammatory T cell activation pathways and antiinflammatory checkpoint and immunomodulatory pathways, with a net result of no tissue injury. In grade 3, IFN-γ–driven inflammation, antigen-presenting cell activation, and infiltration of the skin by proliferative T cells bearing markers of antigen-specific activation and cytotoxicity tipped the balance toward tissue injury. Rejection of VCAs and solid organ transplants had both distinct and common features. VCA rejection was uniquely associated with upregulation of immunoregulatory genes, including SOCS1; induction of lipid antigen–presenting CD1 proteins; and infiltration by T cells predicted to recognize CD1b and CD1c.CONCLUSION Our findings suggest that the distinct features of VCA rejection reflect the unique immunobiology of skin and that enhancing cutaneous immunoregulatory networks may be a useful strategy in combatting rejection.Trial registration ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01281267.FUNDING Assistant Secretary of Defense and Health Affairs, through Reconstructive Transplant Research (W81XWH-17-1-0278, W81XWH-16-1-0647, W81XWH-16-1-0689, W81XWH-18-1-0784, W81XWH-1-810798); American Society of Transplantation’s Transplantation and Immunology Research Network Fellowship Research Grant; Plastic Surgery Foundation Fellowship from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons; Novo Nordisk Foundation (NNF15OC0014092); Lundbeck Foundation; Aage Bangs Foundation; A.P. Moller Foundation for the Advancement of Medical Science; NIH UL1 RR025758.
Thet Su Win, William J. Crisler, Beatrice Dyring-Andersen, Rachel Lopdrup, Jessica E. Teague, Qian Zhan, Victor Barrera, Shannan Ho Sui, Sotirios Tasigiorgos, Naoka Murakami, Anil Chandraker, Stefan G. Tullius, Bohdan Pomahac, Leonardo V. Riella, Rachael A. Clark
Sepsis is a leading cause of death in critical illness, and its pathophysiology varies depending on preexisting medical conditions. Here we identified nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) as an independent risk factor for sepsis in a large clinical cohort and showed a link between mortality in NAFLD-associated sepsis and hepatic mitochondrial and energetic metabolism dysfunction. Using in vivo and in vitro models of liver lipid overload, we discovered a metabolic coordination between hepatocyte mitochondria and liver macrophages that express triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells-2 (TREM2). Trem2-deficient macrophages released exosomes that impaired hepatocytic mitochondrial structure and energy supply because of their high content of miR-106b-5p, which blocks Mitofusin 2 (Mfn2). In a mouse model of NAFLD-associated sepsis, TREM2 deficiency accelerated the initial progression of NAFLD and subsequent susceptibility to sepsis. Conversely, overexpression of TREM2 in liver macrophages improved hepatic energy supply and sepsis outcome. This study demonstrates that NAFLD is a risk factor for sepsis, providing a basis for precision treatment, and identifies hepatocyte-macrophage metabolic coordination and TREM2 as potential targets for future clinical trials.
Jinchao Hou, Jue Zhang, Ping Cui, Yingyue Zhou, Can Liu, Xiaoliang Wu, Yun Ji, Sicong Wang, Baoli Cheng, Hui Ye, Liqi Shu, Kai Zhang, Di Wang, Jielin Xu, Qiang Shu, Marco Colonna, Xiangming Fang
Abnormal angiogenesis and regression of the diseased retinal vasculature are key processes associated with ischemic retinopathies, but the underlying mechanisms that regulate vascular remodeling remain poorly understood. Here, we confirmed the specific expression of semaphorin 3G (Sema3G) in retinal endothelial cells (ECs), which was required for vascular remodeling and the amelioration of ischemic retinopathy. We found that Sema3G was elevated in the vitreous fluid of patients with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) and in the neovascularization regression phase of oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR). Endothelial-specific Sema3G knockout mice exhibited decreased vessel density and excessive matrix deposition in the retinal vasculature. Moreover, loss of Sema3G aggravated pathological angiogenesis in mice with OIR. Mechanistically, we demonstrated that HIF-2α directly regulated Sema3G transcription in ECs under hypoxia. Sema3G coordinated the functional interaction between β-catenin and VE-cadherin by increasing β-catenin stability in the endothelium through the neuropilin-2 (Nrp2)/PlexinD1 receptor. Furthermore, Sema3G supplementation enhanced healthy vascular network formation and promoted diseased vasculature regression during blood vessel remodeling. Overall, we deciphered the endothelium-derived Sema3G-dependent events involved in modulating physiological vascular remodeling and regression of pathological blood vessels for reparative vascular regeneration. Our findings shed light on the protective effect of Sema3G in ischemic retinopathies.
Dan-Yang Chen, Ning-He Sun, Xiang Chen, Jun-Jie Gong, Song-Tao Yuan, Zi-Zhong Hu, Nan-Nan Lu, Jakob Körbelin, Kohji Fukunaga, Qing-Huai Liu, Ying-Mei Lu, Feng Han
Prostate cancer (PCa) is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men. Androgen receptor (AR) signaling is essential for PCa cell growth/survival and remains a key therapeutic target for lethal castration-resistant PCa (CRPC). GATA2 is a pioneer transcription factor crucial for inducing AR expression/activation. We recently reported that MAPK4, an atypical MAPK, promotes tumor progression via noncanonical activation of AKT. Here, we demonstrated that MAPK4 activated AR by enhancing GATA2 transcriptional expression and stabilizing GATA2 protein through repression of GATA2 ubiquitination/degradation. MAPK4 expression correlated with AR activation in human CRPC. Concerted activation of both GATA2/AR and AKT by MAPK4 promoted PCa cell proliferation, anchorage-independent growth, xenograft growth, and castration resistance. Conversely, knockdown of MAPK4 decreased activation of both AR and AKT and inhibited PCa cell and xenograft growth, including castration-resistant growth. Both GATA2/AR and AKT activation were necessary for MAPK4 tumor-promoting activity. Interestingly, combined overexpression of GATA2 plus a constitutively activated AKT was sufficient to drive PCa growth and castration resistance, shedding light on an alternative, MAPK4-independent tumor-promoting pathway in human PCa. We concluded that MAPK4 promotes PCa growth and castration resistance by cooperating parallel pathways of activating GATA2/AR and AKT and that MAPK4 is a novel therapeutic target in PCa, especially CRPC.
Tao Shen, Wei Wang, Wolong Zhou, Ilsa Coleman, Qinbo Cai, Bingning Dong, Michael M. Ittmann, Chad J. Creighton, Yingnan Bian, Yanling Meng, David R. Rowley, Peter S. Nelson, David D. Moore, Feng Yang
CD4+ T cell interactions with B cells play a critical role in the pathogenesis of systemic autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus and chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD). Extrafollicular CD44hiCD62LloPSGL1loCD4+ T cells (PSGL1loCD4+ T cells) are associated with the pathogenesis of lupus and cGVHD, but their causal role has not been established. With murine and humanized MHC–/–HLA-A2+DR4+ murine models of cGVHD, we showed that murine and human PSGL1loCD4+ T cells from GVHD target tissues have features of B cell helpers with upregulated expression of programmed cell death protein 1 (PD1) and inducible T cell costimulator (ICOS) and production of IL-21. They reside in nonlymphoid tissues without circulating in the blood and have features of tissue-resident memory T cells with upregulated expression of CD69. Murine PSGL1loCD4+ T cells from GVHD target tissues augmented B cell differentiation into plasma cells and production of autoantibodies via their PD1 interaction with PD-L2 on B cells. Human PSGL1loCD4+ T cells were apposed with memory B cells in the liver tissues of humanized mice and cGVHD patients. Human PSGL1loCD4+ T cells from humanized GVHD target tissues also augmented autologous memory B cell differentiation into plasma cells and antibody production in a PD1/PD-L2–dependent manner. Further preclinical studies targeting tissue-resident T cells to treat antibody-mediated features of autoimmune diseases are warranted.
Xiaohui Kong, Deye Zeng, Xiwei Wu, Bixin Wang, Shijie Yang, Qingxiao Song, Yongping Zhu, Martha Salas, Hanjun Qin, Ubaydah Nasri, Karen M. Haas, Arthur D. Riggs, Ryotaro Nakamura, Paul J. Martin, Aimin Huang, Defu Zeng
Cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL) has a poorly understood etiology and no known cure. Using conditional knockout mice, we found that ablation of the genomic organizer special AT-rich sequence–binding protein 1 (Satb1) caused malignant transformation of mature, skin-homing, Notch-activated CD4+ and CD8+ T cells into progressively fatal lymphoma. Mechanistically, Satb1 restrained Stat5 phosphorylation and the expression of skin-homing chemokine receptors in mature T cells. Notably, methyltransferase-dependent epigenetic repression of SATB1 was universally found in human Sézary syndrome, but not in other peripheral T cell malignancies. H3K27 and H3K9 trimethylation occluded the SATB1 promoter in Sézary cells, while inhibition of SUV39H1/2 methyltransferases (unlike EZH2 inhibition) restored protective SATB1 expression and selectively abrogated the growth of primary Sézary cells more effectively than romidepsin. Therefore, inhibition of methyltransferases that silence SATB1 could address an unmet need for patients with mycosis fungoides/Sézary syndrome, a set of incurable diseases.
Carly M. Harro, Jairo Perez-Sanz, Tara Lee Costich, Kyle K. Payne, Carmen M. Anadon, Ricardo A. Chaurio, Subir Biswas, Gunjan Mandal, Kristen E. Rigolizzo, Kimberly B. Sprenger, Jessica A. Mine, Louise C. Showe, Xiaoqing Yu, Kebin Liu, Paulo C. Rodriguez, Javier Pinilla-Ibarz, Lubomir Sokol, Jose R. Conejo-Garcia
DYRK1A is a serine/threonine kinase encoded on human chromosome 21 (HSA21) that has been implicated in several pathologies of Down syndrome (DS), including cognitive deficits and Alzheimer’s disease. Although children with DS are predisposed to developing leukemia, especially B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL), the HSA21 genes that contribute to malignancies remain largely undefined. Here, we report that DYRK1A is overexpressed and required for B-ALL. Genetic and pharmacologic inhibition of DYRK1A decreased leukemic cell expansion and suppressed B-ALL development in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, we found that FOXO1 and STAT3, transcription factors that are indispensable for B cell development, are critical substrates of DYRK1A. Loss of DYRK1A-mediated FOXO1 and STAT3 signaling disrupted DNA damage and ROS regulation, respectively, leading to preferential cell death in leukemic B cells. Thus, we reveal a DYRK1A/FOXO1/STAT3 axis that facilitates the development and maintenance of B-ALL.
Rahul S. Bhansali, Malini Rammohan, Paul Lee, Anouchka P. Laurent, Qiang Wen, Praveen Suraneni, Bon Ham Yip, Yi-Chien Tsai, Silvia Jenni, Beat Bornhauser, Aurélie Siret, Corinne Fruit, Alexandra Pacheco-Benichou, Ethan Harris, Thierry Besson, Benjamin J. Thompson, Young Ah Goo, Nobuko Hijiya, Maria Vilenchik, Shai Izraeli, Jean-Pierre Bourquin, Sébastien Malinge, John D. Crispino
Aberrant lipid metabolism promotes the development of skeletal muscle insulin resistance, but the exact identity of lipid-mediated mechanisms relevant to human obesity remains unclear. A comprehensive lipidomic analysis of primary myocytes from individuals who were insulin-sensitive and lean (LN) or insulin-resistant with obesity (OB) revealed several species of lysophospholipids (lyso-PLs) that were differentially abundant. These changes coincided with greater expression of lysophosphatidylcholine acyltransferase 3 (LPCAT3), an enzyme involved in phospholipid transacylation (Lands cycle). Strikingly, mice with skeletal muscle–specific knockout of LPCAT3 (LPCAT3-MKO) exhibited greater muscle lysophosphatidylcholine/phosphatidylcholine, concomitant with improved skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity. Conversely, skeletal muscle–specific overexpression of LPCAT3 (LPCAT3-MKI) promoted glucose intolerance. The absence of LPCAT3 reduced phospholipid packing of cellular membranes and increased plasma membrane lipid clustering, suggesting that LPCAT3 affects insulin receptor phosphorylation by modulating plasma membrane lipid organization. In conclusion, obesity accelerates the skeletal muscle Lands cycle, whose consequence might induce the disruption of plasma membrane organization that suppresses muscle insulin action.
Patrick J. Ferrara, Xin Rong, J. Alan Maschek, Anthony R.P. Verkerke, Piyarat Siripoksup, Haowei Song, Thomas D. Green, Karthickeyan C. Krishnan, Jordan M. Johnson, John Turk, Joseph A. Houmard, Aldons J. Lusis, Micah J. Drummond, Joseph M. McClung, James E. Cox, Saame Raza Shaikh, Peter Tontonoz, William L. Holland, Katsuhiko Funai
The aorta and the large conductive arteries are immunoprivileged tissues and are protected against inflammatory attack. A breakdown of immunoprivilege leads to autoimmune vasculitis, such as giant cell arteritis, in which CD8+ Treg cells fail to contain CD4+ T cells and macrophages, resulting in the formation of tissue-destructive granulomatous lesions. Here, we report that the molecular defect of malfunctioning CD8+ Treg cells lies in aberrant NOTCH4 signaling that deviates endosomal trafficking and minimizes exosome production. By transcriptionally controlling the profile of RAB GTPases, NOTCH4 signaling restricted vesicular secretion of the enzyme NADPH oxidase 2 (NOX2). Specifically, NOTCH4hiCD8+ Treg cells increased RAB5A and RAB11A expression and suppressed RAB7A, culminating in the accumulation of early and recycling endosomes and sequestering of NOX2 in an intracellular compartment. RAB7AloCD8+ Treg cells failed in the surface translocation and exosomal release of NOX2. NOTCH4hiRAB5AhiRAB7AloRAB11AhiCD8+ Treg cells left adaptive immunity unopposed, enabling a breakdown in tissue tolerance and aggressive vessel wall inflammation. Inhibiting NOTCH4 signaling corrected the defect and protected arteries from inflammatory insult. This study implicates NOTCH4-dependent transcriptional control of RAB proteins and intracellular vesicle trafficking in autoimmune disease and in vascular inflammation.
Ke Jin, Zhenke Wen, Bowen Wu, Hui Zhang, Jingtao Qiu, Yanan Wang, Kenneth J. Warrington, Gerald J. Berry, Jorg J. Goronzy, Cornelia M. Weyand
Mitochondrial disorders represent a large collection of rare syndromes that are difficult to manage both because we do not fully understand biochemical pathogenesis and because we currently lack facile markers of severity. The m.3243A>G variant is the most common heteroplasmic mitochondrial DNA mutation and underlies a spectrum of diseases, notably mitochondrial encephalomyopathy lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS). To identify robust circulating markers of m.3243A>G disease, we first performed discovery proteomics, targeted metabolomics, and untargeted metabolomics on plasma from a deeply phenotyped cohort (102 patients, 32 controls). In a validation phase, we measured concentrations of prioritized metabolites in an independent cohort using distinct methods. We validated 20 analytes (1 protein, 19 metabolites) that distinguish patients with MELAS from controls. The collection includes classic (lactate, alanine) and more recently identified (GDF-15, α-hydroxybutyrate) mitochondrial markers. By mining untargeted mass-spectra we uncovered 3 less well-studied metabolite families: N-lactoyl-amino acids, β-hydroxy acylcarnitines, and β-hydroxy fatty acids. Many of these 20 analytes correlate strongly with established measures of severity, including Karnofsky status, and mechanistically, nearly all markers are attributable to an elevated NADH/NAD+ ratio, or NADH-reductive stress. Our work defines a panel of organelle function tests related to NADH-reductive stress that should enable classification and monitoring of mitochondrial disease.
Rohit Sharma, Bryn Reinstadler, Kristin Engelstad, Owen S. Skinner, Erin Stackowitz, Ronald G. Haller, Clary B. Clish, Kerry Pierce, Melissa A. Walker, Robert Fryer, Devin Oglesbee, Xiangling Mao, Dikoma C. Shungu, Ashok Khatri, Michio Hirano, Darryl C. De Vivo, Vamsi K. Mootha
Glioblastoma (GBM) is composed of heterogeneous tumor cell populations, including those with stem cell properties, termed glioma stem cells (GSCs). GSCs are innately less radiation sensitive than the tumor bulk and are believed to drive GBM formation and recurrence after repeated irradiation. However, it is unclear how GSCs adapt to escape the toxicity of repeated irradiation used in clinical practice. To identify important mediators of adaptive radioresistance in GBM, we generated radioresistant human and mouse GSCs by exposing them to repeat cycles of irradiation. Surviving subpopulations acquired strong radioresistance in vivo, which was accompanied by a reduction in cell proliferation and an increase in cell-cell adhesion and N-cadherin expression. Increasing N-cadherin expression rendered parental GSCs radioresistant, reduced their proliferation, and increased their stemness and intercellular adhesive properties. Conversely, radioresistant GSCs lost their acquired phenotypes upon CRISPR/Cas9-mediated knockout of N-cadherin. Mechanistically, elevated N-cadherin expression resulted in the accumulation of β-catenin at the cell surface, which suppressed Wnt/β-catenin proliferative signaling, reduced neural differentiation, and protected against apoptosis through Clusterin secretion. N-cadherin upregulation was induced by radiation-induced IGF1 secretion, and the radiation resistance phenotype could be reverted with picropodophyllin, a clinically applicable blood-brain-barrier permeable IGF1 receptor inhibitor, supporting clinical translation.
Satoru Osuka, Dan Zhu, Zhaobin Zhang, Chaoxi Li, Christian T. Stackhouse, Oltea Sampetrean, Jeffrey J. Olson, G. Yancey Gillespie, Hideyuki Saya, Christopher D. Willey, Erwin G. Van Meir
Humans have been infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) for thousands of years. While tuberculosis (TB), one of the deadliest infectious diseases, is caused by uncontrolled Mtb infection, over 90% of presumed infected individuals remain asymptomatic and contain Mtb in a latent TB infection (LTBI) without ever developing disease, and some may clear the infection. A small number of heavily Mtb-exposed individuals appear to resist developing traditional LTBI. Because Mtb has mechanisms for intracellular survival and immune evasion, successful control involves all of the arms of the immune system. Here, we focus on immune responses to Mtb in humans and nonhuman primates and discuss new concepts and outline major knowledge gaps in our understanding of LTBI, ranging from the earliest events of exposure and infection to success or failure of Mtb control.
W. Henry Boom, Ulrich E. Schaible, Jacqueline M. Achkar
A growing number of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have emerged as vital metabolic regulators. However, most human lncRNAs are nonconserved and highly tissue specific, vastly limiting our ability to identify human lncRNA metabolic regulators (hLMRs). In this study, we established a pipeline to identify putative hLMRs that are metabolically sensitive, disease relevant, and population applicable. We first progressively processed multilevel human transcriptome data to select liver lncRNAs that exhibit highly dynamic expression in the general population, show differential expression in a nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) population, and respond to dietary intervention in a small NAFLD cohort. We then experimentally demonstrated the responsiveness of selected hepatic lncRNAs to defined metabolic milieus in a liver-specific humanized mouse model. Furthermore, by extracting a concise list of protein-coding genes that are persistently correlated with lncRNAs in general and NAFLD populations, we predicted the specific function for each hLMR. Using gain- and loss-of-function approaches in humanized mice as well as ectopic expression in conventional mice, we validated the regulatory role of one nonconserved hLMR in cholesterol metabolism by coordinating with an RNA-binding protein, PTBP1, to modulate the transcription of cholesterol synthesis genes. Our work overcame the heterogeneity intrinsic to human data to enable the efficient identification and functional definition of disease-relevant human lncRNAs in metabolic homeostasis.
Xiangbo Ruan, Ping Li, Yonghe Ma, Cheng-fei Jiang, Yi Chen, Yu Shi, Nikhil Gupta, Fayaz Seifuddin, Mehdi Pirooznia, Yasuyuki Ohnishi, Nao Yoneda, Megumi Nishiwaki, Gabrijela Dumbovic, John L. Rinn, Yuichiro Higuchi, Kenji Kawai, Hiroshi Suemizu, Haiming Cao
LMNA mutations in patients are responsible for a dilated cardiomyopathy. Molecular mechanisms underlying the origin and development of the pathology are unknown. Herein, using mouse pluripotent embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and a mouse model both harboring the p.H222P Lmna mutation, we found early defects in cardiac differentiation of mutated ESCs and dilatation of mutated embryonic hearts at E13.5, pointing to a developmental origin of the disease. Using mouse ESCs, we demonstrated that cardiac differentiation of LmnaH222P/+ was impaired at the mesodermal stage. Expression of Mesp1, a mesodermal cardiogenic gene involved in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition of epiblast cells, as well as Snai1 and Twist expression, was decreased in LmnaH222P/+ cells compared with WT cells in the course of differentiation. In turn, cardiomyocyte differentiation was impaired. ChIP assay of H3K4me1 in differentiating cells revealed a specific decrease of this histone mark on regulatory regions of Mesp1 and Twist in LmnaH222P/+ cells. Downregulation or inhibition of LSD1 that specifically demethylated H3K4me1 rescued the epigenetic landscape of mesodermal LmnaH222P/+ cells and in turn contraction of cardiomyocytes. Inhibition of LSD1 in pregnant mice or neonatal mice prevented cardiomyopathy in E13.5 LmnaH222P/H222P offspring and adults, respectively. Thus, LSD1 appeared to be a therapeutic target to prevent or cure dilated cardiomyopathy associated with a laminopathy.
Anne-Claire Guénantin, Imen Jebeniani, Julia Leschik, Erwan Watrin, Gisèle Bonne, Nicolas Vignier, Michel Pucéat
Fibrosis is a macrophage-driven process of uncontrolled extracellular matrix accumulation. Neuronal guidance proteins such as netrin-1 promote inflammatory scarring. We found that macrophage-derived netrin-1 stimulates fibrosis through its neuronal guidance functions. In mice, fibrosis due to inhaled bleomycin engendered netrin-1–expressing macrophages and fibroblasts, remodeled adrenergic nerves, and augmented noradrenaline. Cell-specific knockout mice showed that collagen accumulation, fibrotic histology, and nerve-associated endpoints required netrin-1 of macrophage but not fibroblast origin. Adrenergic denervation; haploinsufficiency of netrin-1’s receptor, deleted in colorectal carcinoma; and therapeutic α1 adrenoreceptor antagonism improved collagen content and histology. An idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) lung microarray data set showed increased netrin-1 expression. IPF lung tissues were enriched for netrin-1+ macrophages and noradrenaline. A longitudinal IPF cohort showed improved survival in patients prescribed α1 adrenoreceptor blockade. This work showed that macrophages stimulate lung fibrosis via netrin-1–driven adrenergic processes and introduced α1 blockers as a potentially new fibrotic therapy.
Ruijuan Gao, Xueyan Peng, Carrighan Perry, Huanxing Sun, Aglaia Ntokou, Changwan Ryu, Jose L. Gomez, Benjamin C. Reeves, Anjali Walia, Naftali Kaminski, Nir Neumark, Genta Ishikawa, Katharine E. Black, Lida P. Hariri, Meagan W. Moore, Mridu Gulati, Robert J. Homer, Daniel M. Greif, Holger K. Eltzschig, Erica L. Herzog
T cell–mediated responses are dependent on their secretion of key effector molecules. However, the critical molecular determinants of the secretion of these proteins are largely undefined. Here, we demonstrate that T cell activation increases trafficking via the ER-to-Golgi pathway. To study the functional role of this pathway, we generated mice with a T cell–specific deletion in SEC23B, a core subunit of coat protein complex II (COPII). We found that SEC23B critically regulated the T cell secretome following activation. SEC23B-deficient T cells exhibited a proliferative defect and reduced effector functions in vitro, as well as in experimental models of allogeneic and xenogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation in vivo. However, T cells derived from 3 patients with congenital dyserythropoietic anemia II (CDAII), which results from Sec23b mutation, did not exhibit a similar phenotype. Mechanistic studies demonstrated that unlike murine KO T cells, T cells from patients with CDAII harbor increased levels of the closely related paralog, SEC23A. In vivo rescue of murine KO by expression of Sec23a from the Sec23b genomic locus restored T cell functions. Together, our data demonstrate a critical role for the COPII pathway, with evidence for functional overlap in vivo between SEC23 paralogs in the regulation of T cell immunity in both mice and humans.
Stephanie Kim, Rami Khoriaty, Lu Li, Madison McClune, Theodosia A. Kalfa, Julia Wu, Daniel Peltier, Hideaki Fujiwara, Yaping Sun, Katherine Oravecz-Wilson, Richard A. King, David Ginsburg, Pavan Reddy
Tumors depend on a blood supply to deliver oxygen and nutrients, making tumor vasculature an attractive anticancer target. However, only a fraction of patients with cancer benefit from angiogenesis inhibitors. Whether antiangiogenic therapy would be more effective if targeted to individuals with specific tumor characteristics is unknown. To better characterize the tumor vascular environment both within and between cancer types, we developed a standardized metric — the endothelial index (EI) — to estimate vascular density in over 10,000 human tumors, corresponding to 31 solid tumor types, from transcriptome data. We then used this index to compare hyper- and hypovascular tumors, enabling the classification of human tumors into 6 vascular microenvironment signatures (VMSs) based on the expression of a panel of 24 vascular “hub” genes. The EI and VMS correlated with known tumor vascular features and were independently associated with prognosis in certain cancer types. Retrospective testing of clinical trial data identified VMS2 classification as a powerful biomarker for response to bevacizumab. Thus, we believe our studies provide an unbiased picture of human tumor vasculature that may enable more precise deployment of antiangiogenesis therapy.
Benjamin M. Kahn, Alfredo Lucas, Rohan G. Alur, Maximillian D. Wengyn, Gregory W. Schwartz, Jinyang Li, Kathryn Sun, H. Carlo Maurer, Kenneth P. Olive, Robert B. Faryabi, Ben Z. Stanger
Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is the major cause of human neonatal infections. A single clone, designated CC17-GBS, accounts for more than 80% of meningitis cases, the most severe form of the infection. However, the events allowing blood-borne GBS to penetrate the brain remain largely elusive. In this study, we identified the host transmembrane receptors α5β1 and αvβ3 integrins as the ligands of Srr2, a major CC17-GBS–specific adhesin. Two motifs located in the binding region of Srr2 were responsible for the interaction between CC17-GBS and these integrins. We demonstrated in a blood-brain-barrier cellular model that both integrins contributed to the adhesion and internalization of CC17-GBS. Strikingly, both integrins were overexpressed during the postnatal period in the brain vessels of the blood-brain barrier and blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier and contributed to juvenile susceptibility to CC17 meningitis. Finally, blocking these integrins decreased the ability of CC17-GBS to cross into the CNS of juvenile mice in an in vivo model of meningitis. Our study demonstrated that CC17-GBS exploits integrins in order to cross the brain vessels, leading to meningitis. Importantly, it provides host molecular insights into neonate’s susceptibility to CC17-GBS meningitis, thereby opening new perspectives for therapeutic and prevention strategies of GBS-elicited meningitis.
Romain Deshayes de Cambronne, Agnès Fouet, Amandine Picart, Anne-Sophie Bourrel, Cyril Anjou, Guillaume Bouvier, Cristina Candeias, Abdelouhab Bouaboud, Lionel Costa, Anne-Cécile Boulay, Martine Cohen-Salmon, Isabelle Plu, Caroline Rambaud, Eva Faurobert, Corinne Albigès-Rizo, Asmaa Tazi, Claire Poyart, Julie Guignot
Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) causes failed reconstitution of donor plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) that are critical for immune protection and tolerance. We used both murine and human systems to uncover the mechanisms whereby GVHD induces donor pDC defects. GVHD depleted Flt3-expressing donor multipotent progenitors (MPPs) that sustained pDCs, leading to impaired generation of pDCs. MPP loss was associated with decreased amounts of MPP-producing hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and oxidative stress–induced death of proliferating MPPs. Additionally, alloreactive T cells produced GM-CSF to inhibit MPP expression of Tcf4, the transcription factor essential for pDC development, subverting MPP production of pDCs. GM-CSF did not affect the maturation of pDC precursors. Notably, enhanced recovery of donor pDCs upon adoptive transfer early after allogeneic HSC transplantation repressed GVHD and restored the de novo generation of donor pDCs in recipient mice. pDCs suppressed the proliferation and expansion of activated autologous T cells via a type I IFN signaling–dependent mechanism. They also produced PD-L1 and LILRB4 to inhibit T cell production of IFN-γ. We thus demonstrate that GVHD impairs the reconstitution of tolerogenic donor pDCs by depleting DC progenitors rather than by preventing pDC maturation. MPPs are an important target to effectively bolster pDC reconstitution for controlling GVHD.
Yuanyuan Tian, Lijun Meng, Ying Wang, Bohan Li, Hongshuang Yu, Yan Zhou, Tien Bui, Ciril Abraham, Alicia Li, Yongping Zhang, Jian Wang, Chenchen Zhao, Shin Mineishi, Stefania Gallucci, David Porter, Elizabeth Hexner, Hong Zheng, Yanyun Zhang, Shaoyan Hu, Yi Zhang
Slow-cycling/dormant cancer cells (SCCs) have pivotal roles in driving cancer relapse and drug resistance. A mechanistic explanation for cancer cell dormancy and therapeutic strategies targeting SCCs are necessary to improve patient prognosis, but are limited because of technical challenges to obtaining SCCs. Here, by applying proliferation-sensitive dyes and chemotherapeutics to non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines and patient-derived xenografts, we identified a distinct SCC subpopulation that resembled SCCs in patient tumors. These SCCs displayed major dormancy-like phenotypes and high survival capacity under hostile microenvironments through transcriptional upregulation of regulator of G protein signaling 2 (RGS2). Database analysis revealed RGS2 as a biomarker of retarded proliferation and poor prognosis in NSCLC. We showed that RGS2 caused prolonged translational arrest in SCCs through persistent eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) phosphorylation via proteasome-mediated degradation of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4). Translational activation through RGS2 antagonism or the use of phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors, including sildenafil (Viagra), promoted ER stress–induced apoptosis in SCCs in vitro and in vivo under stressed conditions, such as those induced by chemotherapy. Our results suggest that a low-dose chemotherapy and translation-instigating pharmacological intervention in combination is an effective strategy to prevent tumor progression in NSCLC patients after rigorous chemotherapy.
Jaebeom Cho, Hye-Young Min, Ho Jin Lee, Seung Yeob Hyun, Jeong Yeon Sim, Myungkyung Noh, Su Jung Hwang, Shin-Hyung Park, Hye-Jin Boo, Hyo-Jong Lee, Sungyoul Hong, Rang-Woon Park, Young Kee Shin, Mien-Chie Hung, Ho-Young Lee
Protection of the brain from viral infections involves the type I IFN (IFN-I) system, defects in which render humans susceptible to herpes simplex encephalitis (HSE). However, excessive cerebral IFN-I levels lead to pathologies, suggesting the need for tight regulation of responses. Based on data from mouse models, human HSE cases, and primary cell culture systems, we showed that microglia and other immune cells undergo apoptosis in the HSV-1–infected brain through a mechanism dependent on the cyclic GMP-AMP synthase/stimulator of interferon genes (cGAS/STING) pathway, but independent of IFN-I. HSV-1 infection of microglia induced cGAS-dependent apoptosis at high viral doses, whereas lower viral doses led to IFN-I responses. Importantly, inhibition of caspase activity prevented microglial cell death and augmented IFN-I responses. Accordingly, HSV-1–infected organotypic brain slices or mice treated with a caspase inhibitor exhibited lower viral load and an improved infection outcome. Collectively, we identify an activation-induced apoptosis program in brain immune cells that downmodulates local immune responses.
Line S. Reinert, Ahmad S. Rashidi, Diana N. Tran, Georgios Katzilieris-Petras, Astrid K. Hvidt, Mette Gohr, Stefanie Fruhwürth, Chiranjeevi Bodda, Martin K. Thomsen, Mikkel H. Vendelbo, Ahmad R. Khan, Brian Hansen, Petra Bergström, Lotta Agholme, Trine H. Mogensen, Maria H. Christensen, Jens R. Nyengaard, Ganes C. Sen, Henrik Zetterberg, Georges MGM Verjans, Søren R. Paludan
The excitability of interneurons requires Nav1.1, the α subunit of the voltage-gated sodium channel. Nav1.1 deficiency and mutations reduce interneuron excitability, a major pathological mechanism for epilepsy syndromes. However, the regulatory mechanisms of Nav1.1 expression remain unclear. Here, we provide evidence that neddylation is critical to Nav1.1 stability. Mutant mice lacking Nae1, an obligatory component of the E1 ligase for neddylation, in parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVINs) exhibited spontaneous epileptic seizures and premature death. Electrophysiological studies indicate that Nae1 deletion reduced PVIN excitability and GABA release and consequently increased the network excitability of pyramidal neurons (PyNs). Further analysis revealed a reduction in sodium-current density, not a change in channel property, in mutant PVINs and decreased Nav1.1 protein levels. These results suggest that insufficient neddylation in PVINs reduces Nav1.1 stability and thus the excitability of PVINs; the ensuing increased PyN activity causes seizures in mice. Consistently, Nav1.1 was found reduced by proteomic analysis that revealed abnormality in synapses and metabolic pathways. Our findings describe a role of neddylation in maintaining Nav1.1 stability for PVIN excitability and reveal what we believe is a new mechanism in the pathogenesis of epilepsy.
Wenbing Chen, Bin Luo, Nannan Gao, Haiwen Li, Hongsheng Wang, Lei Li, Wanpeng Cui, Lei Zhang, Dong Sun, Fang Liu, Zhaoqi Dong, Xiao Ren, Hongsheng Zhang, Huabo Su, Wen-Cheng Xiong, Lin Mei
The tumor microenvironment affects the outcome of radiotherapy against head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). We recently found that tolerogenic myeloid cells accumulate in the circulation of HNSCC patients undergoing radiotherapy. Here, we analyzed tumor-containing lymph node biopsies collected from these patients. After 2 weeks of radiotherapy, we found an increase in tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) with activated STAT3, while CD8+ T cells were reduced as detected using multiplex IHC. Gene expression profiling indicated upregulation of M2 macrophage–related genes (CD163, CD206), immunosuppressive mediators (ARG1, LIF, TGFB1), and Th2 cytokines (IL4, IL5) in irradiated tumors. We next validated STAT3 as a potential target in human HNSCC-associated TAMs, using UM-SCC1 xenotransplants in humanized mice. Local injections of myeloid cell–targeted STAT3 antisense oligonucleotide (CpG-STAT3ASO) activated human DCs/macrophages and promoted CD8+ T cell recruitment, thereby arresting UM-SCC1 tumor growth. Furthermore, CpG-STAT3ASO synergized with tumor irradiation against syngeneic HPV+ mEERL and HPV– MOC2 HNSCC tumors in mice, triggering tumor regression and/or extending animal survival. The antitumor immune responses were CD8+ and CD4+ T cell dependent and associated with the activation of antigen-presenting cells (DCs/M1 macrophages) and increased CD8+ to regulatory T cell ratio. Our observations suggest that targeted inhibition of STAT3 in tumor-associated myeloid cells augments the efficacy of radiotherapy against HNSCC.
Dayson Moreira, Sagus Sampath, Haejung Won, Seok Voon White, Yu-Lin Su, Marice Alcantara, Chongkai Wang, Peter Lee, Ellie Maghami, Erminia Massarelli, Marcin Kortylewski
Pulmonary ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) is a clinical syndrome of acute lung injury that occurs after lung transplantation or remote organ ischemia. IRI causes early mortality and has no effective therapies. While NK cells are innate lymphocytes capable of recognizing injured cells, their roles in acute lung injury are incompletely understood. Here, we demonstrated that NK cells were increased in frequency and cytotoxicity in 2 different IRI mouse models. We showed that NK cells trafficked to the lung tissue from peripheral reservoirs and were more mature within lung tissue. Acute lung ischemia-reperfusion injury was blunted in a NK cell–deficient mouse strain but restored with adoptive transfer of NK cells. Mechanistically, NK cell NKG2D receptor ligands were induced on lung endothelial and epithelial cells following IRI, and antibody-mediated NK cell depletion or NKG2D stress receptor blockade abrogated acute lung injury. In human lung tissue, NK cells were increased at sites of ischemia-reperfusion injury and activated NK cells were increased in prospectively collected human bronchoalveolar lavage in subjects with severe IRI. These data support a causal role for recipient peripheral NK cells in pulmonary IRI via NK cell NKG2D receptor ligation. Therapies targeting NK cells may hold promise in acute lung injury.
Daniel R. Calabrese, Emily Aminian, Benat Mallavia, Fengchun Liu, Simon J. Cleary, Oscar A. Aguilar, Ping Wang, Jonathan P. Singer, Steven R. Hays, Jeffrey A. Golden, Jasleen Kukreja, Daniel Dugger, Mary Nakamura, Lewis L. Lanier, Mark R. Looney, John R. Greenland
Therapeutic strategies designed to target TP53-deficient cancer cells remain elusive. Here, we showed that TP53 loss initiated a pharmacologically actionable secretory process that drove lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) progression. Molecular, biochemical, and cell biological studies showed that TP53 loss increased the expression of Golgi reassembly and stacking protein 55 kDa (G55), a Golgi stacking protein that maintains Golgi organelle integrity and is part of a GOLGIN45 (G45)–myosin IIA–containing protein complex that activates secretory vesicle biogenesis in the Golgi. TP53 loss activated G55-dependent secretion by relieving G55 and myosin IIA from miR-34a–dependent silencing. G55-dependent secreted proteins enhanced the proliferative and invasive activities of TP53-deficient LUAD cells and promoted angiogenesis and CD8+ T cell exhaustion in the tumor microenvironment. A small molecule that blocks G55-G45 interactions impaired secretion and reduced TP53-deficient LUAD growth and metastasis. These results identified a targetable secretory vulnerability in TP53-deficient LUAD cells.
Xiaochao Tan, Lei Shi, Priyam Banerjee, Xin Liu, Hou-Fu Guo, Jiang Yu, Neus Bota-Rabassedas, B. Leticia Rodriguez, Don L. Gibbons, William K. Russell, Chad J. Creighton, Jonathan M. Kurie
Although platelets are the cellular mediators of thrombosis, they are also immune cells. Platelets interact both directly and indirectly with immune cells, impacting their activation and differentiation, as well as all phases of the immune response. Megakaryocytes (Mks) are the cell source of circulating platelets, and until recently Mks were typically only considered bone marrow–resident (BM-resident) cells. However, platelet-producing Mks also reside in the lung, and lung Mks express greater levels of immune molecules compared with BM Mks. We therefore sought to define the immune functions of lung Mks. Using single-cell RNA sequencing of BM and lung myeloid-enriched cells, we found that lung Mks, which we term MkL, had gene expression patterns that are similar to antigen-presenting cells. This was confirmed using imaging and conventional flow cytometry. The immune phenotype of Mks was plastic and driven by the tissue immune environment, as evidenced by BM Mks having an MkL-like phenotype under the influence of pathogen receptor challenge and lung-associated immune molecules, such as IL-33. Our in vitro and in vivo assays demonstrated that MkL internalized and processed both antigenic proteins and bacterial pathogens. Furthermore, MkL induced CD4+ T cell activation in an MHC II–dependent manner both in vitro and in vivo. These data indicated that MkL had key immune regulatory roles dictated in part by the tissue environment.
Daphne N. Pariser, Zachary T. Hilt, Sara K. Ture, Sara K. Blick-Nitko, Mark R. Looney, Simon J. Cleary, Estheany Roman-Pagan, Jerry Saunders II, Steve N. Georas, Janelle Veazey, Ferralita Madere, Laura Tesoro Santos, Allison Arne, Nguyen P.T. Huynh, Alison C. Livada, Selena M. Guerrero-Martin, Claire Lyons, Kelly A. Metcalf-Pate, Kathleen E. McGrath, James Palis, Craig N. Morrell
Macrophages are main effectors of heme metabolism, increasing transiently in the liver during heightened disposal of damaged or senescent RBCs (sRBCs). Macrophages are also essential in defense against microbial threats, but pathological states of heme excess may be immunosuppressive. Herein, we uncovered a mechanism whereby an acute rise in sRBC disposal by macrophages led to an immunosuppressive phenotype after intrapulmonary Klebsiella pneumoniae infection characterized by increased extrapulmonary bacterial proliferation and reduced survival from sepsis in mice. The impaired immunity to K. pneumoniae during heightened sRBC disposal was independent of iron acquisition by bacterial siderophores, in that K. pneumoniae mutants lacking siderophore function recapitulated the findings observed with the WT strain. Rather, sRBC disposal induced a liver transcriptomic profile notable for suppression of Stat1 and IFN-related responses during K. pneumoniae sepsis. Excess heme handling by macrophages recapitulated STAT1 suppression during infection that required synergistic NRF1 and NRF2 activation but was independent of heme oxygenase-1 induction. Whereas iron was dispensable, the porphyrin moiety of heme was sufficient to mediate suppression of STAT1-dependent responses in human and mouse macrophages and promoted liver dissemination of K. pneumoniae in vivo. Thus, cellular heme metabolism dysfunction negatively regulated the STAT1 pathway, with implications in severe infection.
Tolani F. Olonisakin, Tomeka Suber, Shekina Gonzalez-Ferrer, Zeyu Xiong, Hernán F. Peñaloza, Rick van der Geest, Yuting Xiong, David O. Osei-Hwedieh, Jesús Tejero, Matthew R. Rosengart, Wendy M. Mars, Daria Van Tyne, Andreas Perlegas, Samuel Brashears, Daniel B. Kim-Shapiro, Mark T. Gladwin, Michael A. Bachman, Eldad A. Hod, Claudette St. Croix, Yulia Y. Tyurina, Valerian E. Kagan, Rama K. Mallampalli, Anuradha Ray, Prabir Ray, Janet S. Lee
Human metabolic incorporation of nonhuman sialic acid (Sia) N-glycolylneuraminic acid into endogenous glycans generates inflammation via preexisting antibodies, which likely contributes to red meat–induced atherosclerosis acceleration. Exploring whether this mechanism affects atherosclerosis in end-stage renal disease (ESRD), we instead found serum accumulation of 2-keto-3-deoxy-d-glycero-d-galacto-2-nonulosonic acid (Kdn), a Sia prominently expressed in cold-blooded vertebrates. In patients with ESRD, levels of the Kdn precursor mannose also increased, but within a normal range. Mannose ingestion by healthy volunteers raised the levels of urinary mannose and Kdn. Kdn production pathways remained conserved in mammals but were diminished by an M42T substitution in a key biosynthetic enzyme, N-acetylneuraminate synthase. Remarkably, reversion to the ancestral methionine then occurred independently in 2 lineages, including humans. However, mammalian glycan databases contain no Kdn-glycans. We hypothesize that the potential toxicity of excess mannose in mammals is partly buffered by conversion to free Kdn. Thus, mammals probably conserve Kdn biosynthesis and modulate it in a lineage-specific manner, not for glycosylation, but to control physiological mannose intermediates and metabolites. However, human cells can be forced to express Kdn-glycans via genetic mutations enhancing Kdn utilization, or by transfection with fish enzymes producing cytidine monophosphate–Kdn (CMP-Kdn). Antibodies against Kdn-glycans occur in pooled human immunoglobulins. Pathological conditions that elevate Kdn levels could therefore result in antibody-mediated inflammatory pathologies.
Kunio Kawanishi, Sudeshna Saha, Sandra Diaz, Michael Vaill, Aniruddha Sasmal, Shoib S. Siddiqui, Biswa Choudhury, Kumar Sharma, Xi Chen, Ian C. Schoenhofen, Chihiro Sato, Ken Kitajima, Hudson H. Freeze, Anja Münster-Kühnel, Ajit Varki
Cx43, a major cardiac connexin, forms precursor hemichannels that accrue at the intercalated disc to assemble as gap junctions. While gap junctions are crucial for electrical conduction in the heart, little is known about the potential roles of hemichannels. Recent evidence suggests that inhibiting Cx43 hemichannel opening with Gap19 has antiarrhythmic effects. Here, we used multiple electrophysiology, imaging, and super-resolution techniques to understand and define the conditions underlying Cx43 hemichannel activation in ventricular cardiomyocytes, their contribution to diastolic Ca2+ release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum, and their impact on electrical stability. We showed that Cx43 hemichannels were activated during diastolic Ca2+ release in single ventricular cardiomyocytes and cardiomyocyte cell pairs from mice and pigs. This activation involved Cx43 hemichannel Ca2+ entry and coupling to Ca2+ release microdomains at the intercalated disc, resulting in enhanced Ca2+ dynamics. Hemichannel opening furthermore contributed to delayed afterdepolarizations and triggered action potentials. In single cardiomyocytes, cardiomyocyte cell pairs, and arterially perfused tissue wedges from failing human hearts, increased hemichannel activity contributed to electrical instability compared with nonfailing rejected donor hearts. We conclude that microdomain coupling between Cx43 hemichannels and Ca2+ release is a potentially novel, targetable mechanism of cardiac arrhythmogenesis in heart failure.
Maarten A.J. De Smet, Alessio Lissoni, Timur Nezlobinsky, Nan Wang, Eef Dries, Marta Pérez-Hernández, Xianming Lin, Matthew Amoni, Tim Vervliet, Katja Witschas, Eli Rothenberg, Geert Bultynck, Rainer Schulz, Alexander V. Panfilov, Mario Delmar, Karin R. Sipido, Luc Leybaert
Neutrophils amplify inflammation in lupus through the release of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). The endoplasmic reticulum stress sensor inositol-requiring enzyme 1 α (IRE1α) has been implicated as a perpetuator of inflammation in various chronic diseases; however, IRE1α has been little studied in relation to neutrophil function or lupus pathogenesis. Here, we found that neutrophils activated by lupus-derived immune complexes demonstrated markedly increased IRE1α ribonuclease activity. Importantly, in neutrophils isolated from patients with lupus, we also detected heightened IRE1α activity that was correlated with global disease activity. Immune complex–stimulated neutrophils produced both mitochondrial ROS (mitoROS) and the activated form of caspase-2 in an IRE1α-dependent fashion, whereas inhibition of IRE1α mitigated immune complex–mediated NETosis (in both human neutrophils and a mouse model of lupus). Administration of an IRE1α inhibitor to lupus-prone MRL/lpr mice over 8 weeks reduced mitoROS levels in peripheral blood neutrophils, while also restraining plasma cell expansion and autoantibody formation. In summary, these data identify a role for IRE1α in the hyperactivity of lupus neutrophils and show that this pathway is upstream of mitochondrial dysfunction, mitoROS formation, and NETosis. We believe that inhibition of the IRE1α pathway is a novel strategy for neutralizing NETosis in lupus, and potentially other inflammatory conditions.
Gautam Sule, Basel H. Abuaita, Paul A. Steffes, Andrew T. Fernandes, Shanea K. Estes, Craig Dobry, Deepika Pandian, Johann E. Gudjonsson, J. Michelle Kahlenberg, Mary X. O’Riordan, Jason S. Knight
Dysfunction of primary cilia is related to dyshomeostasis, leading to a wide range of disorders. The ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) is known to regulate several homeostatic processes, but those modulated specifically by VMH primary cilia are not yet known. In this study, we identify VMH primary cilia as an important organelle that maintains energy and skeletal homeostasis by modulating the autonomic nervous system. We established loss-of-function models of primary cilia in the VMH by either targeting IFT88 (IFT88-KOSF-1) using steroidogenic factor 1–Cre (SF-1–Cre) or injecting an adeno-associated virus Cre (AAV-Cre) directly into the VMH. Functional impairments of VMH primary cilia were linked to decreased sympathetic activation and central leptin resistance, which led to marked obesity and bone-density accrual. Obesity was caused by hyperphagia, decreased energy expenditure, and blunted brown fat function and was also associated with insulin and leptin resistance. The effect of bone-density accrual was independent of obesity, as it was caused by decreased sympathetic tone resulting in increased osteoblastic and decreased osteoclastic activities in the IFT88-KOSF-1 and VMH primary cilia knockdown mice. Overall, our current study identifies VMH primary cilia as a critical hypothalamic organelle that maintains energy and skeletal homeostasis.
Ji Su Sun, Dong Joo Yang, Ann W. Kinyua, Seul Gi Yoon, Je Kyung Seong, Juwon Kim, Seok Jun Moon, Dong Min Shin, Yun-Hee Choi, Ki Woo Kim
Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) is the most frequent mitochondrial disease and was the first to be genetically defined by a point mutation in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). A molecular diagnosis is achieved in up to 95% of cases, the vast majority of which are accounted for by 3 mutations within mitochondrial complex I subunit–encoding genes in the mtDNA (mtLHON). Here, we resolve the enigma of LHON in the absence of pathogenic mtDNA mutations. We describe biallelic mutations in a nuclear encoded gene, DNAJC30, in 33 unsolved patients from 29 families and establish an autosomal recessive mode of inheritance for LHON (arLHON), which to date has been a prime example of a maternally inherited disorder. Remarkably, all hallmarks of mtLHON were recapitulated, including incomplete penetrance, male predominance, and significant idebenone responsivity. Moreover, by tracking protein turnover in patient-derived cell lines and a DNAJC30-knockout cellular model, we measured reduced turnover of specific complex I N-module subunits and a resultant impairment of complex I function. These results demonstrate that DNAJC30 is a chaperone protein needed for the efficient exchange of complex I subunits exposed to reactive oxygen species and integral to a mitochondrial complex I repair mechanism, thereby providing the first example to our knowledge of a disease resulting from impaired exchange of assembled respiratory chain subunits.
Sarah L. Stenton, Natalia L. Sheremet, Claudia B. Catarino, Natalia A. Andreeva, Zahra Assouline, Piero Barboni, Ortal Barel, Riccardo Berutti, Igor Bychkov, Leonardo Caporali, Mariantonietta Capristo, Michele Carbonelli, Maria L. Cascavilla, Peter Charbel Issa, Peter Freisinger, Sylvie Gerber, Daniele Ghezzi, Elisabeth Graf, Juliana Heidler, Maja Hempel, Elise Heon, Yulya S. Itkis, Elisheva Javasky, Josseline Kaplan, Robert Kopajtich, Cornelia Kornblum, Reka Kovacs-Nagy, Tatiana D. Krylova, Wolfram S. Kunz, Chiara La Morgia, Costanza Lamperti, Christina Ludwig, Pedro F. Malacarne, Alessandra Maresca, Johannes A. Mayr, Jana Meisterknecht, Tatiana A. Nevinitsyna, Flavia Palombo, Ben Pode-Shakked, Maria S. Shmelkova, Tim M. Strom, Francesca Tagliavini, Michal Tzadok, Amelie T. van der Ven, Catherine Vignal-Clermont, Matias Wagner, Ekaterina Y. Zakharova, Nino V. Zhorzholadze, Jean-Michel Rozet, Valerio Carelli, Polina G. Tsygankova, Thomas Klopstock, Ilka Wittig, Holger Prokisch
Mutations in the core RNA splicing factor SF3B1 are prevalent in leukemias and uveal melanoma, but hotspot SF3B1 mutations are also seen in epithelial malignancies such as breast cancer. Although hotspot mutations in SF3B1 alter hematopoietic differentiation, whether SF3B1 mutations contribute to epithelial cancer development and progression is unknown. Here, we identify that SF3B1 mutations in mammary epithelial and breast cancer cells induce a recurrent pattern of aberrant splicing leading to activation of AKT and NF-κB, enhanced cell migration, and accelerated tumorigenesis. Transcriptomic analysis of human cancer specimens, MMTV-cre Sf3b1K700E/WT mice, and isogenic mutant cell lines identified hundreds of aberrant 3′ splice sites (3′ss) induced by mutant SF3B1. Consistently between mouse and human tumors, mutant SF3B1 promoted aberrant splicing (dependent on aberrant branchpoints as well as pyrimidines downstream of the cryptic 3′ss) and consequent suppression of PPP2R5A and MAP3K7, critical negative regulators of AKT and NF-κB. Coordinate activation of NF-κB and AKT signaling was observed in the knockin models, leading to accelerated cell migration and tumor development in combination with mutant PIK3CA but also hypersensitizing cells to AKT kinase inhibitors. These data identify hotspot mutations in SF3B1 as an important contributor to breast tumorigenesis and reveal unique vulnerabilities in cancers harboring them.
Bo Liu, Zhaoqi Liu, Sisi Chen, Michelle Ki, Caroline Erickson, Jorge S. Reis-Filho, Benjamin H. Durham, Qing Chang, Elisa de Stanchina, Yiwei Sun, Raul Rabadan, Omar Abdel-Wahab, Sarat Chandarlapaty
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are synthesized by neurons and glia and released into the extracellular space, where they act as modulators of neuroplasticity and neuroinflammatory agents. Development of epilepsy (epileptogenesis) is associated with increased expression of MMPs, and therefore, they may represent potential therapeutic drug targets. Using quantitative PCR (qPCR) and immunohistochemistry, we studied the expression of MMPs and their endogenous inhibitors tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs) in patients with status epilepticus (SE) or temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) and in a rat TLE model. Furthermore, we tested the MMP2/9 inhibitor IPR-179 in the rapid-kindling rat model and in the intrahippocampal kainic acid mouse model. In both human and experimental epilepsy, MMP and TIMP expression were persistently dysregulated in the hippocampus compared with in controls. IPR-179 treatment reduced seizure severity in the rapid-kindling model and reduced the number of spontaneous seizures in the kainic acid model (during and up to 7 weeks after delivery) without side effects while improving cognitive behavior. Moreover, our data suggest that IPR-179 prevented an MMP2/9-dependent switch-off normally restraining network excitability during the activity period. Since increased MMP expression is a prominent hallmark of the human epileptogenic brain and the MMP inhibitor IPR-179 exhibits antiseizure and antiepileptogenic effects in rodent epilepsy models and attenuates seizure-induced cognitive decline, it deserves further investigation in clinical trials.
Diede W.M. Broekaart, Alexandra Bertran, Shaobo Jia, Anatoly Korotkov, Oleg Senkov, Anika Bongaarts, James D. Mills, Jasper J. Anink, Jesús Seco, Johannes C. Baayen, Sander Idema, Elodie Chabrol, Albert J. Becker, Wytse J. Wadman, Teresa Tarragó, Jan A. Gorter, Eleonora Aronica, Roger Prades, Alexander Dityatev, Erwin A. van Vliet
FOXP3+ Tregs rely on fatty acid β-oxidation–driven (FAO-driven) oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) for differentiation and function. Recent data demonstrate a role for Tregs in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis, with tissue-resident Tregs possessing tissue-specific transcriptomes. However, specific signals that establish tissue-resident Treg programs remain largely unknown. Tregs metabolically rely on FAO, and considering the lipid-rich environments of tissues, we hypothesized that environmental lipids drive Treg homeostasis. First, using human adipose tissue to model tissue residency, we identified oleic acid as the most prevalent free fatty acid. Mechanistically, oleic acid amplified Treg FAO–driven OXPHOS metabolism, creating a positive feedback mechanism that increased the expression of FOXP3 and phosphorylation of STAT5, which enhanced Treg-suppressive function. Comparing the transcriptomic program induced by oleic acid with proinflammatory arachidonic acid, we found that Tregs sorted from peripheral blood and adipose tissue of healthy donors transcriptomically resembled the Tregs treated in vitro with oleic acid, whereas Tregs from patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) more closely resembled an arachidonic acid transcriptomic profile. Finally, we found that oleic acid concentrations were reduced in patients with MS and that exposure of MS Tregs to oleic acid restored defects in their suppressive function. These data demonstrate the importance of fatty acids in regulating tissue inflammatory signals.
Saige L. Pompura, Allon Wagner, Alexandra Kitz, Jacob LaPerche, Nir Yosef, Margarita Dominguez-Villar, David A. Hafler
Patients with neuromuscular disorders suffer from a lack of treatment options for skeletal muscle weakness and disease comorbidities. Here, we introduce as a potential therapeutic agent a heterodimeric ligand-trapping fusion protein, ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc, which comprises extracellular domains of activin-like kinase 4 (ALK4) and activin receptor type IIB (ActRIIB), a naturally occurring pair of type I and II receptors belonging to the TGF-β superfamily. By surface plasmon resonance (SPR), ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc exhibited a ligand binding profile distinctly different from that of its homodimeric variant ActRIIB-Fc, sequestering ActRIIB ligands known to inhibit muscle growth but not trapping the vascular regulatory ligand bone morphogenetic protein 9 (BMP9). ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc and ActRIIB-Fc administered to mice exerted differential effects — concordant with SPR results — on vessel outgrowth in a retinal explant assay. ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc induced a systemic increase in muscle mass and function in wild-type mice and in murine models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and disuse atrophy. Importantly, ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc improved neuromuscular junction abnormalities in murine models of DMD and presymptomatic ALS and alleviated acute muscle fibrosis in a DMD model. Furthermore, in combination therapy ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc increased the efficacy of antisense oligonucleotide M12-PMO on dystrophin expression and skeletal muscle endurance in an aged DMD model. ActRIIB:ALK4-Fc shows promise as a therapeutic agent, alone or in combination with dystrophin rescue therapy, to alleviate muscle weakness and comorbidities of neuromuscular disorders.
Jia Li, Maureen Fredericks, Marishka Cannell, Kathryn Wang, Dianne Sako, Michelle C. Maguire, Rosa Grenha, Katia Liharska, Lavanya Krishnan, Troy Bloom, Elitza P. Belcheva, Pedro A. Martinez, Roselyne Castonguay, Sarah Keates, Mark J. Alexander, Hyunwoo Choi, Asya V. Grinberg, R. Scott Pearsall, Paul Oh, Ravindra Kumar, Rajasekhar N.V.S. Suragani
The RNA-binding protein Apobec1 complementation factor (A1CF) regulates posttranscriptional ApoB mRNA editing, but the range of RNA targets and the long-term effect of altered A1CF expression on liver function are unknown. Here we studied hepatocyte-specific A1cf-transgenic (A1cf+/Tg), A1cf+/Tg Apobec1–/–, and A1cf–/– mice fed chow or high-fat/high-fructose diets using RNA-Seq, RNA CLIP-Seq, and tissue microarrays from human hepatocellular cancer (HCC). A1cf+/Tg mice exhibited increased hepatic proliferation and steatosis, with increased lipogenic gene expression (Mogat1, Mogat2, Cidea, Cd36) associated with shifts in polysomal RNA distribution. Aged A1cf+/Tg mice developed spontaneous fibrosis, dysplasia, and HCC, and this development was accelerated on a high-fat/high-fructose diet and was independent of Apobec1. RNA-Seq revealed increased expression of mRNAs involved in oxidative stress (Gstm3, Gpx3, Cbr3), inflammatory response (Il19, Cxcl14, Tnfα, Ly6c), extracellular matrix organization (Mmp2, Col1a1, Col4a1), and proliferation (Kif20a, Mcm2, Mcm4, Mcm6), and a subset of mRNAs (including Sox4, Sox9, Cdh1) were identified in RNA CLIP-Seq. Increased A1CF expression in human HCC correlated with advanced fibrosis and with reduced survival in a subset with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. In conclusion, we show that hepatic A1CF overexpression selectively alters polysomal distribution and mRNA expression, promoting lipogenic, proliferative, and inflammatory pathways leading to HCC.
Valerie Blanc, Jesse D. Riordan, Saeed Soleymanjahi, Joseph H. Nadeau, ILKe Nalbantoglu, Yan Xie, Elizabeth A. Molitor, Blair B. Madison, Elizabeth M. Brunt, Jason C. Mills, Deborah C. Rubin, Irene O. Ng, Yeonjung Ha, Lewis R. Roberts, Nicholas O. Davidson
Neoantigens generated by somatic nonsynonymous mutations are key targets of tumor-specific T cells, but only a small number of mutations predicted to be immunogenic are presented by MHC molecules on cancer cells. Vaccination studies in mice and patients have shown that the majority of neoepitopes that elicit T cell responses fail to induce significant antitumor activity, for incompletely understood reasons. We report that radiotherapy upregulates the expression of genes containing immunogenic mutations in a poorly immunogenic mouse model of triple-negative breast cancer. Vaccination with neoepitopes encoded by these genes elicited CD8+ and CD4+ T cells that, whereas ineffective in preventing tumor growth, improved the therapeutic efficacy of radiotherapy. Mechanistically, neoantigen-specific CD8+ T cells preferentially killed irradiated tumor cells. Neoantigen-specific CD4+ T cells were required for the therapeutic efficacy of vaccination and acted by producing Th1 cytokines, killing irradiated tumor cells, and promoting epitope spread. Such a cytotoxic activity relied on the ability of radiation to upregulate class II MHC molecules as well as the death receptors FAS/CD95 and DR5 on the surface of tumor cells. These results provide proof-of-principle evidence that radiotherapy works in concert with neoantigen vaccination to improve tumor control.
Claire Lhuillier, Nils-Petter Rudqvist, Takahiro Yamazaki, Tuo Zhang, Maud Charpentier, Lorenzo Galluzzi, Noah Dephoure, Cristina C. Clement, Laura Santambrogio, Xi Kathy Zhou, Silvia C. Formenti, Sandra Demaria
Chronic HIV-1 infection is generally characterized by progressive CD4+ T cell depletion due to direct and bystander death that is closely associated with persistent HIV-1 replication and an inflammatory environment in vivo. The mechanisms underlying the loss of CD4+ T cells in patients with chronic HIV-1 infection are incompletely understood. In this study, we simultaneously monitored caspase-1 and caspase-3 activation in circulating CD4+ T cells, which revealed that pyroptotic and apoptotic CD4+ T cells are distinct cell populations with different phenotypic characteristics. Levels of pyroptosis and apoptosis in CD4+ T cells were significantly elevated during chronic HIV-1 infection, and decreased following effective antiretroviral therapy. Notably, the occurrence of pyroptosis was further confirmed by elevated gasdermin D activation in lymph nodes of HIV-1–infected individuals. Mechanistically, caspase-1 activation closely correlated with the inflammatory marker expression and was shown to occur through NLRP3 inflammasome activation driven by virus-dependent and/or -independent ROS production, while caspase-3 activation in CD4+ T cells was more closely related to T cell activation status. Hence, our findings show that NLRP3-dependent pyroptosis plays an essential role in CD4+ T cell loss in HIV-1–infected patients and implicate pyroptosis signaling as a target for anti–HIV-1 treatment.
Chao Zhang, Jin-Wen Song, Hui-Huang Huang, Xing Fan, Lei Huang, Jian-Ning Deng, Bo Tu, Kun Wang, Jing Li, Ming-Ju Zhou, Cui-Xian Yang, Qi-Wen Zhao, Tao Yang, Li-Feng Wang, Ji-Yuan Zhang, Ruo-Nan Xu, Yan-Mei Jiao, Ming Shi, Feng Shao, Rafick-Pierre Sékaly, Fu-Sheng Wang
Previous studies have shown that nitric oxide (NO) supplements may prevent bone loss and fractures in preclinical models of estrogen deficiency. However, the mechanisms by which NO modulates bone anabolism remain largely unclear. Argininosuccinate lyase (ASL) is the only mammalian enzyme capable of synthesizing arginine, the sole precursor for nitric oxide synthase–dependent (NOS-dependent) NO synthesis. Moreover, ASL is also required for channeling extracellular arginine to NOS for NO production. ASL deficiency (ASLD) is thus a model to study cell-autonomous, NOS-dependent NO deficiency. Here, we report that loss of ASL led to decreased NO production and impairment of osteoblast differentiation. Mechanistically, the bone phenotype was at least in part driven by the loss of NO-mediated activation of the glycolysis pathway in osteoblasts that led to decreased osteoblast differentiation and function. Heterozygous deletion of caveolin 1, a negative regulator of NO synthesis, restored NO production, osteoblast differentiation, glycolysis, and bone mass in a hypomorphic mouse model of ASLD. The translational significance of these preclinical studies was further reiterated by studies conducted in induced pluripotent stem cells from an individual with ASLD. Taken together, our findings suggest that ASLD is a unique genetic model for studying NO-dependent osteoblast function and that the NO/glycolysis pathway may be a new target to modulate bone anabolism.
Zixue Jin, Jordan Kho, Brian Dawson, Ming-Ming Jiang, Yuqing Chen, Saima Ali, Lindsay C. Burrage, Monica Grover, Donna J. Palmer, Dustin L. Turner, Philip Ng, Sandesh C.S. Nagamani, Brendan Lee
Small extracellular vesicles (SEVs) are functional messengers of certain cellular niches that permit noncontact cell communications. Whether niche-specific SEVs fulfill this role in cancer is unclear. Here, we used 7 cell type–specific mouse Cre lines to conditionally knock out Vps33b in Cdh5+ or Tie2+ endothelial cells (ECs), Lepr+ BM perivascular cells, Osx+ osteoprogenitor cells, Pf4+ megakaryocytes, and Tcf21+ spleen stromal cells. We then examined the effects of reduced SEV secretion on progression of MLL-AF9–induced acute myeloid leukemia (AML), as well as normal hematopoiesis. Blocking SEV secretion from ECs, but not perivascular cells, megakaryocytes, or spleen stromal cells, markedly delayed the leukemia progression. Notably, reducing SEV production from ECs had no effect on normal hematopoiesis. Protein analysis showed that EC-derived SEVs contained a high level of ANGPTL2, which accelerated leukemia progression via binding to the LILRB2 receptor. Moreover, ANGPTL2-SEVs released from ECs were governed by VPS33B. Importantly, ANGPTL2-SEVs were also required for primary human AML cell maintenance. These findings demonstrate a role of niche-specific SEVs in cancer development and suggest targeting of ANGPTL2-SEVs from ECs as a potential strategy to interfere with certain types of AML.
Dan Huang, Guohuan Sun, Xiaoxin Hao, Xiaoxiao He, Zhaofeng Zheng, Chiqi Chen, Zhuo Yu, Li Xie, Shihui Ma, Ligen Liu, Bo O. Zhou, Hui Cheng, Junke Zheng, Tao Cheng
GDP-mannose-pyrophosphorylase-B (GMPPB) facilitates the generation of GDP-mannose, a sugar donor required for glycosylation. GMPPB defects cause muscle disease due to hypoglycosylation of α-dystroglycan (α-DG). Alpha-DG is part of a protein complex, which links the extracellular matrix with the cytoskeleton, thus stabilizing myofibers. Mutations of the catalytically inactive homolog GMPPA cause alacrima, achalasia, and mental retardation syndrome (AAMR syndrome), which also involves muscle weakness. Here, we showed that Gmppa-KO mice recapitulated cognitive and motor deficits. As structural correlates, we found cortical layering defects, progressive neuron loss, and myopathic alterations. Increased GDP-mannose levels in skeletal muscle and in vitro assays identified GMPPA as an allosteric feedback inhibitor of GMPPB. Thus, its disruption enhanced mannose incorporation into glycoproteins, including α-DG in mice and humans. This increased α-DG turnover and thereby lowered α-DG abundance. In mice, dietary mannose restriction beginning after weaning corrected α-DG hyperglycosylation and abundance, normalized skeletal muscle morphology, and prevented neuron degeneration and the development of motor deficits. Cortical layering and cognitive performance, however, were not improved. We thus identified GMPPA defects as the first congenital disorder of glycosylation characterized by α-DG hyperglycosylation, to our knowledge, and we have unraveled underlying disease mechanisms and identified potential dietary treatment options.
Patricia Franzka, Henriette Henze, M. Juliane Jung, Svenja Caren Schüler, Sonnhild Mittag, Karina Biskup, Lutz Liebmann, Takfarinas Kentache, José Morales, Braulio Martínez, Istvan Katona, Tanja Herrmann, Antje-Kathrin Huebner, J. Christopher Hennings, Susann Groth, Lennart Gresing, Rüdiger Horstkorte, Thorsten Marquardt, Joachim Weis, Christoph Kaether, Osvaldo M. Mutchinick, Alessandro Ori, Otmar Huber, Véronique Blanchard, Julia von Maltzahn, Christian A. Hübner
Approaches using a single type of data have been applied to classify human tumors. Here we integrate imaging features and transcriptomic data using a prospectively collected tumor bank. We demonstrate that increased maximum standardized uptake value on pretreatment 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose–positron emission tomography correlates with epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) gene expression. We derived and validated 3 major molecular groups, namely squamous epithelial, squamous mesenchymal, and adenocarcinoma, using prospectively collected institutional (n = 67) and publicly available (n = 304) data sets. Patients with tumors of the squamous mesenchymal subtype showed inferior survival outcomes compared with the other 2 molecular groups. High mesenchymal gene expression in cervical cancer cells positively correlated with the capacity to form spheroids and with resistance to radiation. CaSki organoids were radiation-resistant but sensitive to the glycolysis inhibitor, 2-DG. These experiments provide a strategy for response prediction by integrating large data sets, and highlight the potential for metabolic therapy to influence EMT phenotypes in cervical cancer.
Jin Zhang, Ramachandran Rashmi, Matthew Inkman, Kay Jayachandran, Fiona Ruiz, Michael R. Waters, Perry W. Grigsby, Stephanie Markovina, Julie K. Schwarz
Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a ubiquitous pathogen that causes severe disease following congenital infection and in immunocompromised individuals. No vaccines are licensed, and there are limited treatment options. We now show that the addition of anti-HCMV antibodies (Abs) can activate NK cells prior to the production of new virions, through Ab-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC), overcoming viral immune evasins. Quantitative proteomics defined the most abundant HCMV proteins on the cell surface, and we screened these targets to identify the viral antigens responsible for activating ADCC. Surprisingly, these were not structural glycoproteins; instead, the immune evasins US28, RL11, UL5, UL141, and UL16 each individually primed ADCC. We isolated human monoclonal Abs (mAbs) specific for UL16 or UL141 from a seropositive donor and optimized them for ADCC. Cloned Abs targeting a single antigen (UL141) were sufficient to mediate ADCC against HCMV-infected cells, even at low concentrations. Collectively, these findings validated an unbiased methodological approach to the identification of immunodominant viral antigens, providing a pathway toward an immunotherapeutic strategy against HCMV and potentially other pathogens.
Virginia-Maria Vlahava, Isa Murrell, Lihui Zhuang, Rebecca J. Aicheler, Eleanor Lim, Kelly L. Miners, Kristin Ladell, Nicolás M. Suárez, David A. Price, Andrew J. Davison, Gavin W.G. Wilkinson, Mark R. Wills, Michael P. Weekes, Eddie C.Y. Wang, Richard J. Stanton
The A3 adenosine receptor (A3AR) has emerged as a therapeutic target with A3AR agonists to tackle the global challenge of neuropathic pain, and investigation into its mode of action is essential for ongoing clinical development. Immune cell A3ARs, and their activation during pathology, modulate cytokine release. Thus, the use of immune cells as a cellular substrate for the pharmacological action of A3AR agonists is enticing, but unknown. The present study discovered that Rag-KO mice lacking T and B cells, as compared with WT mice, are insensitive to the anti-allodynic effects of A3AR agonists. Similar findings were observed in interleukin-10 and interleukin-10 receptor knockout mice. Adoptive transfer of CD4+ T cells from WT mice infiltrated the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and restored A3AR agonist-mediated anti-allodynia in Rag-KO mice. CD4+ T cells from Adora3-KO or Il10-KO mice did not. Transfer of CD4+ T cells from WT mice, but not Il10-KO mice, into Il10-KO mice or Adora3-KO mice fully reinstated the anti-allodynic effects of A3AR activation. Notably, A3AR agonism reduced DRG neuron excitability when cocultured with CD4+ T cells in an IL-10–dependent manner. A3AR action on CD4+ T cells infiltrated in the DRG decreased phosphorylation of GluN2B-containing N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors at Tyr1472, a modification associated with regulating neuronal hypersensitivity. Our findings establish that activation of A3AR on CD4+ T cells to release IL-10 is required and sufficient evidence for the use of A3AR agonists as therapeutics.
Mariaconcetta Durante, Silvia Squillace, Filomena Lauro, Luigino Antonio Giancotti, Elisabetta Coppi, Federica Cherchi, Lorenzo Di Cesare Mannelli, Carla Ghelardini, Grant Kolar, Carrie Wahlman, Adeleye Opejin, Cuiying Xiao, Marc L. Reitman, Dilip K. Tosh, Daniel Hawiger, Kenneth A. Jacobson, Daniela Salvemini
Novel approaches are needed to boost the efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade (ICB) therapy. Ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) protein plays a central role in sensing DNA double-stranded breaks (DSBs) and coordinating their repair. Recent data indicated that ATM might be a promising target to enhance ICB therapy. However, the molecular mechanism involved has not been clearly elucidated. Here, we show that ATM inhibition could potentiate ICB therapy by promoting cytoplasmic leakage of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and activation of the cGAS/STING pathway. We show that genetic depletion of ATM in murine cancer cells delayed tumor growth in syngeneic mouse hosts in a T cell–dependent manner. Furthermore, chemical inhibition of ATM potentiated anti–PD-1 therapy of mouse tumors. ATM inhibition potently activated the cGAS/STING pathway and enhanced lymphocyte infiltration into the tumor microenvironment by downregulating mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM), which led to mtDNA leakage into the cytoplasm. Moreover, our analysis of data from a large patient cohort indicated that ATM mutations, especially nonsense mutations, predicted for clinical benefits of ICB therapy. Our study therefore provides strong evidence that ATM may serve as both a therapeutic target and a biomarker to enable ICB therapy.
Mengjie Hu, Min Zhou, Xuhui Bao, Dong Pan, Meng Jiao, Xinjian Liu, Fang Li, Chuan-Yuan Li
Immune checkpoint blockade therapy has demonstrated promising clinical outcomes for multiple cancer types. However, the emergence of resistance as well as inadequate biomarkers for patient stratification have largely limited the clinical benefits. Here, we showed that tumors with high TYRO3 expression exhibited anti–programmed cell death protein 1/programmed death ligand 1 (anti–PD-1/PD-L1) resistance in a syngeneic mouse model and in patients who received anti–PD-1/PD-L1 therapy. Mechanistically, TYRO3 inhibited tumor cell ferroptosis triggered by anti–PD-1/PD-L1 and facilitated the development of a protumor microenvironment by reducing the M1/M2 macrophage ratio, resulting in resistance to anti–PD-1/PD-L1 therapy. Inhibition of TYRO3 promoted tumor ferroptosis and sensitized resistant tumors to anti–PD-1 therapy. Collectively, our findings suggest that TYRO3 could serve as a predictive biomarker for patient selection and a promising therapeutic target to overcome anti–PD-1/PD-L1 resistance.
Zhou Jiang, Seung-Oe Lim, Meisi Yan, Jennifer L. Hsu, Jun Yao, Yongkun Wei, Shih-Shin Chang, Hirohito Yamaguchi, Heng-Huan Lee, Baozhen Ke, Jung-Mao Hsu, Li-Chuan Chan, Gabriel N. Hortobagyi, Liuqing Yang, Chunru Lin, Dihua Yu, Mien-Chie Hung
Emerging evidence indicates that early life events can increase the risk for developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Using an inducible transgenic mouse model for NF-κB activation in the airway epithelium, we found that a brief period of inflammation during the saccular stage (P3–P5) but not alveolar stage (P10–P12) of lung development disrupted elastic fiber assembly, resulting in permanent reduction in lung function and development of a COPD-like lung phenotype that progressed through 24 months of age. Neutrophil depletion prevented disruption of elastic fiber assembly and restored normal lung development. Mechanistic studies uncovered a role for neutrophil elastase (NE) in downregulating expression of critical elastic fiber assembly components, particularly fibulin-5 and elastin. Further, purified human NE and NE-containing exosomes from tracheal aspirates of premature infants with lung inflammation downregulated elastin and fibulin-5 expression by saccular-stage mouse lung fibroblasts. Together, our studies define a critical developmental window for assembling the elastin scaffold in the distal lung, which is required to support lung structure and function throughout the lifespan. Although neutrophils play a well-recognized role in COPD development in adults, neutrophilic inflammation may also contribute to early-life predisposition to COPD.
John T. Benjamin, Erin J. Plosa, Jennifer M.S. Sucre, Riet van der Meer, Shivangi Dave, Sergey Gutor, David S. Nichols, Peter M. Gulleman, Christopher S. Jetter, Wei Han, Matthew Xin, Peter C. Dinella, Ashley Catanzarite, Seunghyi Kook, Kalsang Dolma, Charitharth V. Lal, Amit Gaggar, J. Edwin Blalock, Dawn C. Newcomb, Bradley W. Richmond, Jonathan A. Kropski, Lisa R. Young, Susan H. Guttentag, Timothy S. Blackwell
Skeletal muscle is a major determinant of systemic metabolic homeostasis that plays a critical role in glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity. By contrast, despite being a major user of fatty acids, and evidence that muscular disorders can lead to abnormal lipid deposition (e.g., nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in myopathies), our understanding of skeletal muscle regulation of systemic lipid homeostasis is not well understood. Here we show that skeletal muscle Krüppel-like factor 15 (KLF15) coordinates pathways central to systemic lipid homeostasis under basal conditions and in response to nutrient overload. Mice with skeletal muscle–specific KLF15 deletion demonstrated (a) reduced expression of key targets involved in lipid uptake, mitochondrial transport, and utilization, (b) elevated circulating lipids, (c) insulin resistance/glucose intolerance, and (d) increased lipid deposition in white adipose tissue and liver. Strikingly, a diet rich in short-chain fatty acids bypassed these defects in lipid flux and ameliorated aspects of metabolic dysregulation. Together, these findings establish skeletal muscle control of lipid flux as critical to systemic lipid homeostasis and metabolic health.
Liyan Fan, David R. Sweet, Domenick A. Prosdocimo, Vinesh Vinayachandran, Ernest R. Chan, Rongli Zhang, Olga Ilkayeva, Yuan Lu, Komal S. Keerthy, Chloe E. Booth, Christopher B. Newgard, Mukesh K. Jain
Mutant isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 (IDH1-R132H; mIDH1) is a hallmark of adult gliomas. Lower grade mIDH1 gliomas are classified into 2 molecular subgroups: 1p/19q codeletion/TERT-promoter mutations or inactivating mutations in α-thalassemia/mental retardation syndrome X-linked (ATRX) and TP53. This work focuses on glioma subtypes harboring mIDH1, TP53, and ATRX inactivation. IDH1-R132H is a gain-of-function mutation that converts α-ketoglutarate into 2-hydroxyglutarate (D-2HG). The role of D-2HG within the tumor microenvironment of mIDH1/mATRX/mTP53 gliomas remains unexplored. Inhibition of D-2HG, when used as monotherapy or in combination with radiation and temozolomide (IR/TMZ), led to increased median survival (MS) of mIDH1 glioma–bearing mice. Also, D-2HG inhibition elicited anti–mIDH1 glioma immunological memory. In response to D-2HG inhibition, PD-L1 expression levels on mIDH1-glioma cells increased to similar levels as observed in WT-IDH gliomas. Thus, we combined D-2HG inhibition/IR/TMZ with anti–PDL1 immune checkpoint blockade and observed complete tumor regression in 60% of mIDH1 glioma–bearing mice. This combination strategy reduced T cell exhaustion and favored the generation of memory CD8+ T cells. Our findings demonstrate that metabolic reprogramming elicits anti–mIDH1 glioma immunity, leading to increased MS and immunological memory. Our preclinical data support the testing of IDH-R132H inhibitors in combination with IR/TMZ and anti-PDL1 as targeted therapy for mIDH1/mATRX/mTP53 glioma patients.
Padma Kadiyala, Stephen V. Carney, Jessica C. Gauss, Maria B. Garcia-Fabiani, Santiago Haase, Mahmoud S. Alghamri, Felipe J. Núñez, Yayuan Liu, Minzhi Yu, Ayman Taher, Fernando M. Nunez, Dan Li, Marta B. Edwards, Celina G. Kleer, Henry Appelman, Yilun Sun, Lili Zhao, James J. Moon, Anna Schwendeman, Pedro R. Lowenstein, Maria G. Castro
Tyro3, AXL, and MerTK (TAM) receptors are activated in macrophages in response to tissue injury and as such have been proposed as therapeutic targets to promote inflammation resolution during sterile wound healing, including myocardial infarction. Although the role of MerTK in cardioprotection is well characterized, the unique role of the other structurally similar TAMs, and particularly AXL, in clinically relevant models of myocardial ischemia/reperfusion infarction (IRI) is comparatively unknown. Utilizing complementary approaches, validated by flow cytometric analysis of human and murine macrophage subsets and conditional genetic loss and gain of function, we uncover a maladaptive role for myeloid AXL during IRI in the heart. Cross signaling between AXL and TLR4 in cardiac macrophages directed a switch to glycolytic metabolism and secretion of proinflammatory IL-1β, leading to increased intramyocardial inflammation, adverse ventricular remodeling, and impaired contractile function. AXL functioned independently of cardioprotective MerTK to reduce the efficacy of cardiac repair, but like MerTK, was proteolytically cleaved. Administration of a selective small molecule AXL inhibitor alone improved cardiac healing, which was further enhanced in combination with blockade of MerTK cleavage. These data support further exploration of macrophage TAM receptors as therapeutic targets for myocardial infarction.
Matthew DeBerge, Kristofor Glinton, Manikandan Subramanian, Lisa D. Wilsbacher, Carla V. Rothlin, Ira Tabas, Edward B. Thorp
In inherited neurodevelopmental diseases, pathogenic processes unique to critical periods during early brain development may preclude the effectiveness of gene modification therapies applied later in life. We explored this question in a mouse model of DYT1 dystonia, a neurodevelopmental disease caused by a loss-of-function mutation in the TOR1A gene encoding torsinA. To define the temporal requirements for torsinA in normal motor function and gene replacement therapy, we developed a mouse line enabling spatiotemporal control of the endogenous torsinA allele. Suppressing torsinA during embryogenesis caused dystonia-mimicking behavioral and neuropathological phenotypes. Suppressing torsinA during adulthood, however, elicited no discernible abnormalities, establishing an essential requirement for torsinA during a developmental critical period. The developing CNS exhibited a parallel “therapeutic critical period” for torsinA repletion. Although restoring torsinA in juvenile DYT1 mice rescued motor phenotypes, there was no benefit from adult torsinA repletion. These data establish a unique requirement for torsinA in the developing nervous system and demonstrate that the critical period genetic insult provokes permanent pathophysiology mechanistically delinked from torsinA function. These findings imply that to be effective, torsinA-based therapeutic strategies must be employed early in the course of DYT1 dystonia.
Jay Li, Daniel S. Levin, Audrey J. Kim, Samuel S. Pappas, William T. Dauer
Age-related sarcopenia constitutes an important health problem associated with adverse outcomes. Sarcopenia is closely associated with fat infiltration in muscle, which is attributable to interstitial mesenchymal progenitors. Mesenchymal progenitors are nonmyogenic in nature but are required for homeostatic muscle maintenance. However, the underlying mechanism of mesenchymal progenitor–dependent muscle maintenance is not clear, nor is the precise role of mesenchymal progenitors in sarcopenia. Here, we show that mice genetically engineered to specifically deplete mesenchymal progenitors exhibited phenotypes markedly similar to sarcopenia, including muscle weakness, myofiber atrophy, alterations of fiber types, and denervation at neuromuscular junctions. Through searching for genes responsible for mesenchymal progenitor–dependent muscle maintenance, we found that Bmp3b is specifically expressed in mesenchymal progenitors, whereas its expression level is significantly decreased during aging or adipogenic differentiation. The functional importance of BMP3B in maintaining myofiber mass as well as muscle-nerve interaction was demonstrated using knockout mice and cultured cells treated with BMP3B. Furthermore, the administration of recombinant BMP3B in aged mice reversed their sarcopenic phenotypes. These results reveal previously unrecognized mechanisms by which the mesenchymal progenitors ensure muscle integrity and suggest that age-related changes in mesenchymal progenitors have a considerable impact on the development of sarcopenia.
Akiyoshi Uezumi, Madoka Ikemoto-Uezumi, Heying Zhou, Tamaki Kurosawa, Yuki Yoshimoto, Masashi Nakatani, Keisuke Hitachi, Hisateru Yamaguchi, Shuji Wakatsuki, Toshiyuki Araki, Mitsuhiro Morita, Harumoto Yamada, Masashi Toyoda, Nobuo Kanazawa, Tatsu Nakazawa, Jun Hino, So-ichiro Fukada, Kunihiro Tsuchida
BACKGROUND The ABO histo-blood group is defined by carbohydrate modifications and is associated with risk for multiple diseases, including acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). We hypothesized that genetically determined blood subtype A1 is associated with increased risk of ARDS and markers of microvascular dysfunction and coagulation.METHODS We conducted analyses in 3 cohorts of critically ill trauma and sepsis patients (n = 3710) genotyped on genome-wide platforms to determine the association of the A1 blood type genotype with ARDS risk. We subsequently determined whether associations were present in FUT2-defined nonsecretors who lack ABO antigens on epithelium, but not endothelium. In a patient subgroup, we determined the associations of blood type with plasma levels of endothelial glycoproteins and disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). Lastly, we tested whether blood type A was associated with less donor lung injury recovery during human ex vivo lung perfusion (EVLP).RESULTS The A1 genotype was associated with a higher risk of moderate to severe ARDS relative to type O in all 3 populations. In sepsis, this relationship was strongest in nonpulmonary infections. The association persisted in nonsecretors, suggesting a vascular mechanism. The A1 genotype was also associated with higher DIC risk as well as concentrations of thrombomodulin and von Willebrand factor, which in turn were associated with ARDS risk. Blood type A was also associated with less lung injury recovery during EVLP.CONCLUSION We identified a replicable association between ABO blood type A1 and risk of ARDS among the critically ill, possibly mediated through microvascular dysfunction and coagulation.FUNDING NIH HL122075, HL125723, HL137006, HL137915, DK097307, HL115354, HL101779, and the University of Pennsylvania McCabe Fund Fellowship Award.
John P. Reilly, Nuala J. Meyer, Michael G.S. Shashaty, Brian J. Anderson, Caroline Ittner, Thomas G. Dunn, Brian Lim, Caitlin Forker, Michael P. Bonk, Ethan Kotloff, Rui Feng, Edward Cantu, Nilam S. Mangalmurti, Carolyn S. Calfee, Michael A. Matthay, Carmen Mikacenic, Keith R. Walley, James Russell, David C. Christiani, Mark M. Wurfel, Paul N. Lanken, Muredach P. Reilly, Jason D. Christie
Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is a common tumor predisposition syndrome caused by NF1 gene mutation, in which affected patients develop Schwann cell lineage peripheral nerve sheath tumors (neurofibromas). To investigate human neurofibroma pathogenesis, we differentiated a series of isogenic, patient-specific NF1-mutant human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) into Schwannian lineage cells (SLCs). We found that, although WT and heterozygous NF1-mutant hiPSCs-SLCs did not form tumors following mouse sciatic nerve implantation, NF1-null SLCs formed bona fide neurofibromas with high levels of SOX10 expression. To confirm that SOX10+ SLCs contained the cells of origin for neurofibromas, both Nf1 alleles were inactivated in mouse Sox10+ cells, leading to classic nodular cutaneous and plexiform neurofibroma formation that completely recapitulated their human counterparts. Moreover, we discovered that NF1 loss impaired Schwann cell differentiation by inducing a persistent stem-like state to expand the pool of progenitors required to initiate tumor formation, indicating that, in addition to regulating MAPK-mediated cell growth, NF1 loss also altered Schwann cell differentiation to promote neurofibroma development. Taken together, we established a complementary humanized neurofibroma explant and, to our knowledge, first-in-kind genetically engineered nodular cutaneous neurofibroma mouse models that delineate neurofibroma pathogenesis amenable to future therapeutic target discovery and evaluation.
Juan Mo, Corina Anastasaki, Zhiguo Chen, Tracey Shipman, Jason Papke, Kevin Yin, David H. Gutmann, Lu Q. Le
Familial exudative vitreoretinopathy (FEVR) is a severe retinal vascular disease that causes blindness. FEVR has been linked to mutations in several genes associated with inactivation of the Norrin/β-catenin signaling pathway, but these account for only approximately 50% of cases. We report that mutations in α-catenin (CTNNA1) cause FEVR by overactivating the β-catenin pathway and disrupting cell adherens junctions. We identified 3 heterozygous mutations in CTNNA1 (p.F72S, p.R376Cfs*27, and p.P893L) by exome sequencing and further demonstrated that FEVR-associated mutations led to overactivation of Norrin/β-catenin signaling as a result of impaired protein interactions within the cadherin-catenin complex. The clinical features of FEVR were reproduced in mice lacking Ctnna1 in vascular endothelial cells (ECs) or with overactivated β-catenin signaling by an EC-specific gain-of-function allele of Ctnnb1. In isolated mouse lung ECs, both CTNNA1-P893L and F72S mutants failed to rescue either the disrupted F-actin arrangement or the VE-cadherin and CTNNB1 distribution. Moreover, we discovered that compound heterozygous Ctnna1 F72S and a deletion allele could cause a similar phenotype. Furthermore, in a FEVR family, we identified a mutation of LRP5, which activates Norrin/β-catenin signaling, and the corresponding knockin mice exhibited a partial FEVR-like phenotype. Our study demonstrates that the precise regulation of β-catenin activation is critical for retinal vascular development and provides new insights into the pathogenesis of FEVR.
Xianjun Zhu, Mu Yang, Peiquan Zhao, Shujin Li, Lin Zhang, Lulin Huang, Yi Huang, Ping Fei, Yeming Yang, Shanshan Zhang, Huijuan Xu, Ye Yuan, Xiang Zhang, Xiong Zhu, Shi Ma, Fang Hao, Periasamy Sundaresan, Weiquan Zhu, Zhenglin Yang
INTRODUCTION Acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease (CKD) are common in hospitalized patients. To inform clinical decision making, more accurate information regarding risk of long-term progression to kidney failure is required.METHODS We enrolled 1538 hospitalized patients in a multicenter, prospective cohort study. Monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1/CCL2), uromodulin (UMOD), and YKL-40 (CHI3L1) were measured in urine samples collected during outpatient follow-up at 3 months. We followed patients for a median of 4.3 years and assessed the relationship between biomarker levels and changes in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) over time and the development of a composite kidney outcome (CKD incidence, CKD progression, or end-stage renal disease). We paired these clinical studies with investigations in mouse models of renal atrophy and renal repair to further understand the molecular basis of these markers in kidney disease progression.RESULTS Higher MCP-1 and YKL-40 levels were associated with greater eGFR decline and increased incidence of the composite renal outcome, whereas higher UMOD levels were associated with smaller eGFR declines and decreased incidence of the composite kidney outcome. A multimarker score increased prognostic accuracy and reclassification compared with traditional clinical variables alone. The mouse model of renal atrophy showed greater Ccl2 and Chi3l1 mRNA expression in infiltrating macrophages and neutrophils, respectively, and evidence of progressive renal fibrosis compared with the repair model. The repair model showed greater Umod expression in the loop of Henle and correspondingly less fibrosis.CONCLUSIONS Biomarker levels at 3 months after hospitalization identify patients at risk for kidney disease progression.FUNDING NIH.
Jeremy Puthumana, Heather Thiessen-Philbrook, Leyuan Xu, Steven G. Coca, Amit X. Garg, Jonathan Himmelfarb, Pavan K. Bhatraju, T. Alp Ikizler, Edward D. Siew, Lorraine B. Ware, Kathleen D. Liu, Alan S. Go, James S. Kaufman, Paul L. Kimmel, Vernon M. Chinchilli, Lloyd G. Cantley, Chirag R. Parikh
MYC stimulates both metabolism and protein synthesis, but how cells coordinate these complementary programs is unknown. Previous work reported that, in a subset of small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) cell lines, MYC activates guanosine triphosphate (GTP) synthesis and results in sensitivity to inhibitors of the GTP synthesis enzyme inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH). Here, we demonstrated that primary MYChi human SCLC tumors also contained abundant guanosine nucleotides. We also found that elevated MYC in SCLCs with acquired chemoresistance rendered these otherwise recalcitrant tumors dependent on IMPDH. Unexpectedly, our data indicated that IMPDH linked the metabolic and protein synthesis outputs of oncogenic MYC. Coexpression analysis placed IMPDH within the MYC-driven ribosome program, and GTP depletion prevented RNA polymerase I (Pol I) from localizing to ribosomal DNA. Furthermore, the GTPases GPN1 and GPN3 were upregulated by MYC and directed Pol I to ribosomal DNA. Constitutively GTP-bound GPN1/3 mutants mitigated the effect of GTP depletion on Pol I, protecting chemoresistant SCLC cells from IMPDH inhibition. GTP therefore functioned as a metabolic gate tethering MYC-dependent ribosome biogenesis to nucleotide sufficiency through GPN1 and GPN3. IMPDH dependence is a targetable vulnerability in chemoresistant MYChi SCLC.
Fang Huang, Kenneth E. Huffman, Zixi Wang, Xun Wang, Kailong Li, Feng Cai, Chendong Yang, Ling Cai, Terry S. Shih, Lauren G. Zacharias, Andrew Chung, Qian Yang, Milind D. Chalishazar, Abbie S. Ireland, C. Allison Stewart, Kasey Cargill, Luc Girard, Yi Liu, Min Ni, Jian Xu, Xudong Wu, Hao Zhu, Benjamin Drapkin, Lauren A. Byers, Trudy G. Oliver, Adi F. Gazdar, John D. Minna, Ralph J. DeBerardinis
Inborn errors of TLR3-dependent IFN-α/β– and IFN-λ–mediated immunity in the CNS can underlie herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) encephalitis (HSE). The respective contributions of IFN-α/β and IFN-λ are unknown. We report a child homozygous for a genomic deletion of the entire coding sequence and part of the 3′-UTR of the last exon of IFNAR1, who died of HSE at the age of 2 years. An older cousin died following vaccination against measles, mumps, and rubella at 12 months of age, and another 17-year-old cousin homozygous for the same variant has had other, less severe, viral illnesses. The encoded IFNAR1 protein is expressed on the cell surface but is truncated and cannot interact with the tyrosine kinase TYK2. The patient’s fibroblasts and EBV-B cells did not respond to IFN-α2b or IFN-β, in terms of STAT1, STAT2, and STAT3 phosphorylation or the genome-wide induction of IFN-stimulated genes. The patient’s fibroblasts were susceptible to viruses, including HSV-1, even in the presence of exogenous IFN-α2b or IFN-β. HSE is therefore a consequence of inherited complete IFNAR1 deficiency. This viral disease occurred in natural conditions, unlike those previously reported in other patients with IFNAR1 or IFNAR2 deficiency. This experiment of nature indicates that IFN-α/β are essential for anti–HSV-1 immunity in the CNS.
Paul Bastard, Jeremy Manry, Jie Chen, Jérémie Rosain, Yoann Seeleuthner, Omar AbuZaitun, Lazaro Lorenzo, Taushif Khan, Mary Hasek, Nicholas Hernandez, Benedetta Bigio, Peng Zhang, Romain Lévy, Shai Shrot, Eduardo J. Garcia Reino, Yoon-Seung Lee, Soraya Boucherit, Mélodie Aubart, Rik Gijsbers, Vivien Béziat, Zhi Li, Sandra Pellegrini, Flore Rozenberg, Nico Marr, Isabelle Meyts, Bertrand Boisson, Aurélie Cobat, Jacinta Bustamante, Qian Zhang, Emmanuelle Jouangy, Laurent Abel, Raz Somech, Jean-Laurent Casanova, Shen-Ying Zhang
Adoptive transfer of Tregs has been shown to improve alloengraftment in animal models. However, it is technically challenging to expand Tregs ex vivo for the purpose of infusing large numbers of cells in the clinic. We demonstrate an innovative approach to engineering an orthogonal IL-2/IL-2 receptor (IL-2R) pair, the parts of which selectively interact with each other, transmitting native IL-2 signals, but do not interact with the natural IL-2 or IL-2R counterparts, thereby enabling selective stimulation of target cells in vivo. Here, we introduced this orthogonal IL-2R into Tregs. Upon adoptive transfer in a murine mixed hematopoietic chimerism model, orthogonal IL-2 injection significantly promoted orthogonal IL-2R+Foxp3GFP+CD4+ cell proliferation without increasing other T cell subsets and facilitated donor hematopoietic cell engraftment followed by acceptance of heart allografts. Our data indicate that selective target cell stimulation enabled by the engineered orthogonal cytokine receptor improves Treg potential for the induction of organ transplantation tolerance.
Toshihito Hirai, Teresa L. Ramos, Po-Yu Lin, Federico Simonetta, Leon L. Su, Lora K. Picton, Jeanette Baker, Jian-Xin Lin, Peng Li, Kinya Seo, Juliane K. Lohmeyer, Sara Bolivar-Wagers, Melissa Mavers, Warren J. Leonard, Bruce R. Blazar, K. Christopher Garcia, Robert S. Negrin
Dietary modification is central to obesity treatment. Weight loss diets are available that include various permutations of energy restriction, macronutrients, foods, and dietary intake patterns. Caloric restriction is the common pathway for weight reduction, but different diets may induce weight loss by varied additional mechanisms, including by facilitating dietary adherence. This narrative Review of meta-analyses and select clinical trials found that lower-calorie diets, compared with higher-calorie regimens, reliably induced larger short-term (<6 months) weight losses, with deterioration of this benefit over the long term (>12 months). Few significant long-term differences in weight loss were observed for diets of varying macronutrient composition, although some regimens were found to have short-term advantages (e.g., low carbohydrate versus low fat). Progress in improving dietary adherence, which is critical to both short- and long-term weight loss, could result from greater efforts to identify behavioral and metabolic phenotypes among dieters.
Ariana M. Chao, Kerry M. Quigley, Thomas A. Wadden
Rapidly proliferating tumor and immune cells need metabolic programs that support energy and biomass production. The amino acid glutamine is consumed by effector T cells and glutamine-addicted triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) cells, suggesting that a metabolic competition for glutamine may exist within the tumor microenvironment, potentially serving as a therapeutic intervention strategy. Here, we report that there is an inverse correlation between glutamine metabolic genes and markers of T cell–mediated cytotoxicity in human basal-like breast cancer (BLBC) patient data sets, with increased glutamine metabolism and decreased T cell cytotoxicity associated with poor survival. We found that tumor cell–specific loss of glutaminase (GLS), a key enzyme for glutamine metabolism, improved antitumor T cell activation in both a spontaneous mouse TNBC model and orthotopic grafts. The glutamine transporter inhibitor V-9302 selectively blocked glutamine uptake by TNBC cells but not CD8+ T cells, driving synthesis of glutathione, a major cellular antioxidant, to improve CD8+ T cell effector function. We propose a “glutamine steal” scenario, in which cancer cells deprive tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes of needed glutamine, thus impairing antitumor immune responses. Therefore, tumor-selective targeting of glutamine metabolism may be a promising therapeutic strategy in TNBC.
Deanna N. Edwards, Verra M. Ngwa, Ariel L. Raybuck, Shan Wang, Yoonha Hwang, Laura C. Kim, Sung Hoon Cho, Yeeun Paik, Qingfei Wang, Siyuan Zhang, H. Charles Manning, Jeffrey C. Rathmell, Rebecca S. Cook, Mark R. Boothby, Jin Chen
Germline mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 (BRCA1/2) genes considerably increase breast and ovarian cancer risk. Given that tumors with these mutations have elevated genomic instability, they exhibit relative vulnerability to certain chemotherapies and targeted treatments based on poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibition. However, the molecular mechanisms that influence cancer risk and therapeutic benefit or resistance remain only partially understood. BRCA1 and BRCA2 have also been implicated in the suppression of R-loops, triple-stranded nucleic acid structures composed of a DNA:RNA hybrid and a displaced ssDNA strand. Here, we report that loss of RNF168, an E3 ubiquitin ligase and DNA double-strand break (DSB) responder, remarkably protected Brca1-mutant mice against mammary tumorigenesis. We demonstrate that RNF168 deficiency resulted in accumulation of R-loops in BRCA1/2-mutant breast and ovarian cancer cells, leading to DSBs, senescence, and subsequent cell death. Using interactome assays, we identified RNF168 interaction with DHX9, a helicase involved in the resolution and removal of R-loops. Mechanistically, RNF168 directly ubiquitylated DHX9 to facilitate its recruitment to R-loop–prone genomic loci. Consequently, loss of RNF168 impaired DHX9 recruitment to R-loops, thereby abrogating its ability to resolve R-loops. The data presented in this study highlight a dependence of BRCA1/2-defective tumors on factors that suppress R-loops and reveal a fundamental RNF168-mediated molecular mechanism that governs cancer development and vulnerability.
Parasvi S. Patel, Karan Joshua Abraham, Kiran Kumar Naidu Guturi, Marie-Jo Halaby, Zahra Khan, Luis Palomero, Brandon Ho, Shili Duan, Jonathan St-Germain, Arash Algouneh, Francesca Mateo, Samah El Ghamrasni, Haithem Barbour, Daniel R. Barnes, Jonathan Beesley, Otto Sanchez, Hal K. Berman, Grant W. Brown, El Bachir Affar, Georgia Chenevix-Trench, Antonis C. Antoniou, Cheryl H. Arrowsmith, Brian Raught, Miquel Angel Pujana, Karim Mekhail, Anne Hakem, Razqallah Hakem
Autosomal dominant sterile α motif domain containing 9 (Samd9) and Samd9L (Samd9/9L) syndromes are a large subgroup of currently established inherited bone marrow failure syndromes that includes myelodysplasia, infection, growth restriction, adrenal hypoplasia, genital phenotypes, and enteropathy (MIRAGE), ataxia pancytopenia, and familial monosomy 7 syndromes. Samd9/9L genes are located in tandem on chromosome 7 and have been known to be the genes responsible for myeloid malignancies associated with monosomy 7. Additionally, as IFN-inducible genes, Samd9/9L are crucial for protection against viruses. Samd9/9L syndromes are caused by gain-of-function mutations and develop into infantile myelodysplastic syndromes associated with monosomy 7 (MDS/–7) at extraordinarily high frequencies. We generated mice expressing Samd9LD764N, which mimic MIRAGE syndrome, presenting with growth retardation, a short life, bone marrow failure, and multiorgan degeneration. In hematopoietic cells, Samd9LD764N downregulates the endocytosis of transferrin and c-Kit, resulting in a rare cause of anemia and a low bone marrow reconstitutive potential that ultimately causes MDS/–7. In contrast, in nonhematopoietic cells we tested, Samd9LD764N upregulated the endocytosis of EGFR by Ship2 phosphatase translocation to the cytomembrane and activated lysosomes, resulting in the reduced expression of surface receptors and signaling. Thus, Samd9/9L is a downstream regulator of IFN that controls receptor metabolism, with constitutive activation leading to multiorgan dysfunction.
Akiko Nagamachi, Akinori Kanai, Megumi Nakamura, Hiroshi Okuda, Akihiko Yokoyama, Satoru Shinriki, Hirotaka Matsui, Toshiya Inaba
Bone marrow (BM) hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) become dysfunctional during aging (i.e., they are increased in number but have an overall reduction in long-term repopulation potential and increased myeloid differentiation) compared with young HSCs, suggesting limited use of old donor BM cells for hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). BM cells reside in an in vivo hypoxic environment yet are evaluated after collection and processing in ambient air. We detected an increase in the number of both young and aged mouse BM HSCs collected and processed in 3% O2 compared with the number of young BM HSCs collected and processed in ambient air (~21% O2). Aged BM collected and processed under hypoxic conditions demonstrated enhanced engraftment capability during competitive transplantation analysis and contained more functional HSCs as determined by limiting dilution analysis. Importantly, the myeloid-to-lymphoid differentiation ratio of aged BM collected in 3% O2 was similar to that detected in young BM collected in ambient air or hypoxic conditions, consistent with the increased number of common lymphoid progenitors following collection under hypoxia. Enhanced functional activity and differentiation of old BM collected and processed in hypoxia correlated with reduced “stress” associated with ambient air BM collection and suggests that aged BM may be better and more efficiently used for HCT if collected and processed under hypoxia so that it is never exposed to ambient air O2.
Maegan L. Capitano, Safa F. Mohamad, Scott Cooper, Bin Guo, Xinxin Huang, Andrea M. Gunawan, Carol Sampson, James Ropa, Edward F. Srour, Christie M. Orschell, Hal E. Broxmeyer
Patients with acute liver failure (ALF) have systemic innate immune suppression and increased susceptibility to infections. Programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) expression by macrophages has been associated with immune suppression during sepsis and cancer. We therefore examined the role of the programmed cell death 1/programmed death ligand 1 (PD-1/PD-L1) pathway in regulating Kupffer cell (KC) inflammatory and antimicrobial responses in acetaminophen-induced (APAP-induced) acute liver injury. Using intravital imaging and flow cytometry, we found impaired KC bacterial clearance and systemic bacterial dissemination in mice with liver injury. We detected increased PD-1 and PD-L1 expression in KCs and lymphocyte subsets, respectively, during injury resolution. Gene expression profiling of PD-1+ KCs revealed an immune-suppressive profile and reduced pathogen responses. Compared with WT mice, PD-1–deficient mice and anti–PD-1–treated mice with liver injury showed improved KC bacterial clearance, a reduced tissue bacterial load, and protection from sepsis. Blood samples from patients with ALF revealed enhanced PD-1 and PD-L1 expression by monocytes and lymphocytes, respectively, and that soluble PD-L1 plasma levels could predict outcomes and sepsis. PD-1 in vitro blockade restored monocyte functionality. Our study describes a role for the PD-1/PD-L1 axis in suppressing KC and monocyte antimicrobial responses after liver injury and identifies anti–PD-1 immunotherapy as a strategy to reduce infection susceptibility in ALF.
Evangelos Triantafyllou, Cathrin L.C. Gudd, Marie-Anne Mawhin, Hannah C. Husbyn, Francesca M. Trovato, Matthew K. Siggins, Thomas O’Connor, Hiromi Kudo, Sujit K. Mukherjee, Julia A. Wendon, Christine Bernsmeier, Robert D. Goldin, Marina Botto, Wafa Khamri, Mark J.W. McPhail, Lucia A. Possamai, Kevin J. Woollard, Charalambos G. Antoniades, Mark R. Thursz
Bone is maintained by coupled activities of bone-forming osteoblasts/osteocytes and bone-resorbing osteoclasts. Alterations in this relationship can lead to pathologic bone loss such as osteoporosis. It is well known that osteogenic cells support osteoclastogenesis via production of RANKL. Interestingly, our recently identified bone marrow mesenchymal cell population—marrow adipogenic lineage precursors (MALPs) that form a multidimensional cell network in bone—was computationally demonstrated to be the most interactive with monocyte-macrophage lineage cells through high and specific expression of several osteoclast regulatory factors, including RANKL. Using an adipocyte-specific Adipoq-Cre to label MALPs, we demonstrated that mice with RANKL deficiency in MALPs have a drastic increase in trabecular bone mass in long bones and vertebrae starting from 1 month of age, while their cortical bone appears normal. This phenotype was accompanied by diminished osteoclast number and attenuated bone formation at the trabecular bone surface. Reduced RANKL signaling in calvarial MALPs abolished osteolytic lesions after LPS injections. Furthermore, in ovariectomized mice, elevated bone resorption was partially attenuated by RANKL deficiency in MALPs. In summary, our studies identified MALPs as a critical player in controlling bone remodeling during normal bone metabolism and pathological bone loss in a RANKL-dependent fashion.
Wei Yu, Leilei Zhong, Lutian Yao, Yulong Wei, Tao Gui, Ziqing Li, Hyunsoo Kim, Nicholas Holdreith, Xi Jiang, Wei Tong, Nathaniel Dyment, X. Sherry Liu, Shuying Yang, Yongwon Choi, Jaimo Ahn, Ling Qin
How particular bone marrow niche factors contribute to the leukemogenic activities of leukemia-initiating cells (LICs) remains largely unknown. Here, we showed that ATP levels were markedly increased in the bone marrow niches of mice with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and LICs preferentially localized to the endosteal niche with relatively high ATP levels, as indicated by a sensitive ATP indicator. ATP could efficiently induce the influx of ions into LICs in an MLL-AF9–induced murine AML model via the ligand-gated ion channel P2X7. P2x7 deletion led to notably impaired homing and self-renewal capacities of LICs and contributed to an approximately 5-fold decrease in the number of functional LICs but had no effect on normal hematopoiesis. ATP/P2X7 signaling enhanced the calcium flux–mediated phosphorylation of CREB, which further transactivated phosphoglycerate dehydrogenase (Phgdh) expression to maintain serine metabolism and LIC fates. P2X7 knockdown resulted in a markedly extended survival of recipients transplanted with either human AML cell lines or primary leukemia cells. Blockade of ATP/P2X7 signaling could efficiently inhibit leukemogenesis. Here, we provide a perspective for understanding how ATP/P2X7 signaling sustains LIC activities, which may benefit the development of specific strategies for targeting LICs or other types of cancer stem cells.
Xiaoxiao He, Jiangbo Wan, Xiaona Yang, Xiuze Zhang, Dan Huang, Xie Li, Yejun Zou, Chiqi Chen, Zhuo Yu, Li Xie, Yaping Zhang, Ligen Liu, Shangang Li, Yuzheng Zhao, Hongfang Shao, Ye Yu, Junke Zheng
Protein tyrosine phosphatase nonreceptor type 2 (PTPN2) recently emerged as a promising cancer immunotherapy target. We set out to investigate the functional role of PTPN2 in the pathogenesis of human colorectal carcinoma (CRC), as its role in immune-silent solid tumors is poorly understood. We demonstrate that in human CRC, increased PTPN2 expression and activity correlated with disease progression and decreased immune responses in tumor tissues. In particular, stage II and III tumors displayed enhanced PTPN2 protein expression in tumor-infiltrating T cells, and increased PTPN2 levels negatively correlated with expression of PD-1, CTLA4, STAT1, and granzyme A. In vivo, T cell– and DC-specific PTPN2 deletion reduced tumor burden in several CRC models by promoting CD44+ effector/memory T cells, as well as CD8+ T cell infiltration and cytotoxicity in the tumor. In direct relevance to CRC treatment, T cell–specific PTPN2 deletion potentiated anti–PD-1 efficacy and induced antitumor memory formation upon tumor rechallenge in vivo. Our data suggest a role for PTPN2 in suppressing antitumor immunity and promoting tumor development in patients with CRC. Our in vivo results identify PTPN2 as a key player in controlling the immunogenicity of CRC, with the strong potential to be exploited for cancer immunotherapy.
Egle Katkeviciute, Larissa Hering, Ana Montalban-Arques, Philipp Busenhart, Marlene Schwarzfischer, Roberto Manzini, Javier Conde, Kirstin Atrott, Silvia Lang, Gerhard Rogler, Elisabeth Naschberger, Vera S. Schellerer, Michael Stürzl, Andreas Rickenbacher, Matthias Turina, Achim Weber, Sebastian Leibl, Gabriel E. Leventhal, Mitchell Levesque, Onur Boyman, Michael Scharl, Marianne R. Spalinger
Alveolar macrophages orchestrate the response to viral infections. Age-related changes in these cells may underlie the differential severity of pneumonia in older patients. We performed an integrated analysis of single-cell RNA-Seq data that revealed homogenous age-related changes in the alveolar macrophage transcriptome in humans and mice. Using genetic lineage tracing with sequential injury, heterochronic adoptive transfer, and parabiosis, we found that the lung microenvironment drove an age-related resistance of alveolar macrophages to proliferation that persisted during influenza A viral infection. Ligand-receptor pair analysis localized these changes to the extracellular matrix, where hyaluronan was increased in aged animals and altered the proliferative response of bone marrow–derived macrophages to granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF). Our findings suggest that strategies targeting the aging lung microenvironment will be necessary to restore alveolar macrophage function in aging.
Alexandra C. McQuattie-Pimentel, Ziyou Ren, Nikita Joshi, Satoshi Watanabe, Thomas Stoeger, Monica Chi, Ziyan Lu, Lango Sichizya, Raul Piseaux Aillon, Ching-I Chen, Saul Soberanes, Zhangying Chen, Paul A. Reyfman, James M. Walter, Kishore R. Anekalla, Jennifer M. Davis, Kathryn A. Helmin, Constance E. Runyan, Hiam Abdala-Valencia, Kiwon Nam, Angelo Y. Meliton, Deborah R. Winter, Richard I. Morimoto, Gökhan M. Mutlu, Ankit Bharat, Harris Perlman, Cara J. Gottardi, Karen M. Ridge, Navdeep S. Chandel, Jacob I. Sznajder, William E. Balch, Benjamin D. Singer, Alexander V. Misharin, G.R. Scott Budinger
Hepatic ischemia and reperfusion (IR) injury contributes to the morbidity and mortality associated with liver transplantation. microRNAs (miRNAs) constitute a family of noncoding RNAs that regulate gene expression at the posttranslational level through the repression of specific target genes. Here, we hypothesized that miRNAs could be targeted to enhance hepatic ischemia tolerance. A miRNA screen in a murine model of hepatic IR injury pointed us toward the liver-specific miRNA miR122. Subsequent studies in mice with hepatocyte-specific deletion of miR122 (miR122loxP/loxP Alb-Cre+ mice) during hepatic ischemia and reperfusion revealed exacerbated liver injury. Transcriptional studies implicated hypoxia-inducible factor–1α (HIF1α) in the induction of miR122 and identified the oxygen-sensing prolyl hydroxylase domain 1 (PHD1) as a miR122 target. Further studies indicated that HIF1α-dependent induction of miR122 participated in a feed-forward pathway for liver protection via the enhancement of hepatic HIF responses through PHD1 repression. Moreover, pharmacologic studies utilizing nanoparticle-mediated miR122 overexpression demonstrated attenuated liver injury. Finally, proof-of-principle studies in patients undergoing orthotopic liver transplantation showed elevated miR122 levels in conjunction with the repression of PHD1 in post-ischemic liver biopsies. Taken together, the present findings provide molecular insight into the functional role of miR122 in enhancing hepatic ischemia tolerance and suggest the potential utility of pharmacologic interventions targeting miR122 to dampen hepatic injury during liver transplantation.
Cynthia Ju, Meng Wang, Eunyoung Tak, Boyun Kim, Christoph Emontzpohl, Yang Yang, Xiaoyi Yuan, Huban Kutay, Yafen Liang, David R. Hall, Wasim A. Dar, J. Steve Bynon, Peter Carmeliet, Kalpana Ghoshal, Holger K. Eltzschig
The development of ascites correlates with advanced stage disease and poor prognosis in ovarian cancer. Vascular permeability is the key pathophysiological change involved in ascites development. Previously, we provided evidence that perivascular M2-like macrophages protect the vascular barrier through direct contact with endothelial cells (ECs). Here, we investigated the molecular mechanism and its clinical significance in the ovarian cancer setting. We found that upon direct coculture with the endothelium, M2 macrophages tuned down their VLA4 and reduced the levels of VCAM1 in ECs. On the other hand, ectopically overexpressing VLA4 in macrophages or VCAM1 in ECs induced hyperpermeability. Mechanistically, downregulation of VLA4 or VCAM1 led to reduced levels of RAC1 and ROS, which resulted in decreased phosphorylation of PYK2 (p-PYK2) and VE-cadherin (p–VE-cad), hence enhancing cell adhesion. Furthermore, targeting the VLA4/VCAM1 axis augmented vascular integrity and abrogated ascites formation in vivo. Finally, VLA4 expression on the macrophages isolated from ascites dictated permeability ex vivo. Importantly, VLA4 antibody acted synergistically with bevacizumab to further enhance the vascular barrier. Taking these data together, we reveal here that M2 macrophages regulate the vascular barrier though the VCAM1/RAC1/ROS/p-PYK2/p–VE-cad cascade, which provides specific therapeutic targets for the treatment of malignant ascites.
Shibo Zhang, Bingfan Xie, Lijie Wang, Hua Yang, Haopei Zhang, Yuming Chen, Feng Wang, Changqing Liu, Huanhuan He
Unlike pathogens, which attack the host, commensal bacteria create a state of friendly coexistence. Here, we identified a mechanism of bacterial adaptation to the host niche, where they reside. Asymptomatic carrier strains were shown to inhibit RNA polymerase II (Pol II) in host cells by targeting Ser2 phosphorylation, a step required for productive mRNA elongation. Assisted by a rare, spontaneous loss-of-function mutant from a human carrier, the bacterial NlpD protein was identified as a Pol II inhibitor. After internalization by host cells, NlpD was shown to target constituents of the Pol II phosphorylation complex (RPB1 and PAF1C), attenuating host gene expression. Therapeutic efficacy of a recombinant NlpD protein was demonstrated in a urinary tract infection model, by reduced tissue pathology, accelerated bacterial clearance, and attenuated Pol II–dependent gene expression. The findings suggest an intriguing, evolutionarily conserved mechanism for bacterial modulation of host gene expression, with a remarkable therapeutic potential.
Inès Ambite, Nina A. Filenko, Elisabed Zaldastanishvili, Daniel S.C. Butler, Thi Hien Tran, Arunima Chaudhuri, Parisa Esmaeili, Shahram Ahmadi, Sanchari Paul, Björn Wullt, Johannes Putze, Swaine L. Chen, Ulrich Dobrindt, Catharina Svanborg
Obesity occurs when energy expenditure is outweighed by energy intake. Tuberal hypothalamic nuclei, including the arcuate nucleus (ARC), ventromedial nucleus (VMH), and dorsomedial nucleus (DMH), control food intake and energy expenditure. Here we report that, in contrast with females, male mice lacking circadian nuclear receptors REV-ERBα and –β in the tuberal hypothalamus (HDKO mice) gained excessive weight on an obesogenic high-fat diet due to both decreased energy expenditure and increased food intake during the light phase. Moreover, rebound food intake after fasting was markedly increased in HDKO mice. Integrative transcriptomic and cistromic analyses revealed that such disruption in feeding behavior was due to perturbed REV-ERB–dependent leptin signaling in the ARC. Indeed, in vivo leptin sensitivity was impaired in HDKO mice on an obesogenic diet in a diurnal manner. Thus, REV-ERBs play a crucial role in hypothalamic control of food intake and diurnal leptin sensitivity in diet-induced obesity.
Marine Adlanmerini, Hoang C.B. Nguyen, Brianna M. Krusen, Clare W. Teng, Caroline E. Geisler, Lindsey C. Peed, Bryce J. Carpenter, Matthew R. Hayes, Mitchell A. Lazar
Primary membranous nephropathy (pMN) is a leading cause of nephrotic syndrome in adults. In most cases, this autoimmune kidney disease is associated with autoantibodies against the M-type phospholipase A2 receptor (PLA2R1) expressed on kidney podocytes, but the mechanisms leading to glomerular damage remain elusive. Here, we developed a cell culture model using human podocytes and found that anti-PLA2R1–positive pMN patient sera or isolated IgG4, but not IgG4-depleted sera, induced proteolysis of the 2 essential podocyte proteins synaptopodin and NEPH1 in the presence of complement, resulting in perturbations of the podocyte cytoskeleton. Specific blockade of the lectin pathway prevented degradation of synaptopodin and NEPH1. Anti-PLA2R1 IgG4 directly bound mannose-binding lectin in a glycosylation-dependent manner. In a cohort of pMN patients, we identified increased levels of galactose-deficient IgG4, which correlated with anti-PLA2R1 titers and podocyte damage induced by patient sera. Assembly of the terminal C5b-9 complement complex and activation of the complement receptors C3aR1 or C5aR1 were required to induce proteolysis of synaptopodin and NEPH1 by 2 distinct proteolytic pathways mediated by cysteine and aspartic proteinases, respectively. Together, these results demonstrated a mechanism by which aberrantly glycosylated IgG4 activated the lectin pathway and induced podocyte injury in primary membranous nephropathy.
George Haddad, Johan M. Lorenzen, Hong Ma, Noortje de Haan, Harald Seeger, Christelle Zaghrini, Simone Brandt, Malte Kölling, Urs Wegmann, Bence Kiss, Gábor Pál, Péter Gál, Rudolf P. Wüthrich, Manfred Wuhrer, Laurence H. Beck, David J. Salant, Gérard Lambeau, Andreas D. Kistler
SARS-CoV-2 causes a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations and significant mortality. Studies investigating underlying immune characteristics are needed to understand disease pathogenesis and inform vaccine design. In this study, we examined immune cell subsets in hospitalized and nonhospitalized individuals. In hospitalized patients, many adaptive and innate immune cells were decreased in frequency compared with those of healthy and convalescent individuals, with the exception of an increase in B lymphocytes. Our findings show increased frequencies of T cell activation markers (CD69, OX40, HLA-DR, and CD154) in hospitalized patients, with other T cell activation/exhaustion markers (PD-L1 and TIGIT) remaining elevated in hospitalized and nonhospitalized individuals. B cells had a similar pattern of activation/exhaustion, with increased frequency of CD69 and CD95 during hospitalization followed by an increase in PD1 frequencies in nonhospitalized individuals. Interestingly, many of these changes were found to increase over time in nonhospitalized longitudinal samples, suggesting a prolonged period of immune dysregulation after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Changes in T cell activation/exhaustion in nonhospitalized patients were found to positively correlate with age. Severely infected individuals had increased expression of activation and exhaustion markers. These data suggest a prolonged period of immune dysregulation after SARS-CoV-2 infection, highlighting the need for additional studies investigating immune dysregulation in convalescent individuals.
Jacob K. Files, Sushma Boppana, Mildred D. Perez, Sanghita Sarkar, Kelsey E. Lowman, Kai Qin, Sarah Sterrett, Eric Carlin, Anju Bansal, Steffanie Sabbaj, Dustin M. Long, Olaf Kutsch, James Kobie, Paul A. Goepfert, Nathan Erdmann
The coat protein I (COPI) complex mediates retrograde trafficking from the Golgi to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Five siblings with persistent bacterial and viral infections and defective humoral and cellular immunity had a homozygous p.K652E mutation in the γ1 subunit of COPI (γ1-COP). The mutation disrupts COPI binding to the KDEL receptor and impairs the retrieval of KDEL-bearing chaperones from the Golgi to the ER. Homozygous Copg1K652E mice had increased ER stress in activated T and B cells, poor antibody responses, and normal numbers of T cells that proliferated normally, but underwent increased apoptosis upon activation. Exposure of the mutants to pet store mice caused weight loss, lymphopenia, and defective T cell proliferation that recapitulated the findings in the patients. The ER stress-relieving agent tauroursodeoxycholic acid corrected the immune defects of the mutants and reversed the phenotype they acquired following exposure to pet store mice. This study establishes the role of γ1-COP in the ER retrieval of KDEL-bearing chaperones and thereby the importance of ER homeostasis in adaptive immunity.
Wayne Bainter, Craig D. Platt, Seung-Yeol Park, Kelsey Stafstrom, Jacqueline G. Wallace, Zachary T. Peters, Michel J. Massaad, Michel Becuwe, Sandra Andrea Salinas, Jennifer Jones, Sarah Beaussant-Cohen, Faris Jaber, Jia-Shu Yang, Tobias C. Walther, Jordan S. Orange, Chitong Rao, Seth Rakoff-Nahoum, Maria Tsokos, Shafiq Ur Rehman Naseem, Salem Al-Tamemi, Janet Chou, Victor W. Hsu, Raif S. Geha
BACKGROUND Clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) is the most common histologically defined renal cancer. However, it is not a uniform disease and includes several genetic subtypes with different prognoses. ccRCC is also characterized by distinctive metabolic reprogramming. Tobacco smoking (TS) is an established risk factor for ccRCC, with unknown effects on tumor pathobiology.METHODS We investigated the landscape of ccRCCs and paired normal kidney tissues using integrated transcriptomic, metabolomic, and metallomic approaches in a cohort of white males who were long-term current smokers (LTS) or were never smokers (NS).RESULTS All 3 Omics domains consistently identified a distinct metabolic subtype of ccRCCs in LTS, characterized by activation of oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) coupled with reprogramming of the malate-aspartate shuttle and metabolism of aspartate, glutamate, glutamine, and histidine. Cadmium, copper, and inorganic arsenic accumulated in LTS tumors, showing redistribution among intracellular pools, including relocation of copper into the cytochrome c oxidase complex. A gene expression signature based on the LTS metabolic subtype provided prognostic stratification of The Cancer Genome Atlas ccRCC tumors that was independent of genomic alterations.CONCLUSION The work identified the TS-related metabolic subtype of ccRCC with vulnerabilities that can be exploited for precision medicine approaches targeting metabolic pathways. The results provided rationale for the development of metabolic biomarkers with diagnostic and prognostic applications using evaluation of OXPHOS status. The metallomic analysis revealed the role of disrupted metal homeostasis in ccRCC, highlighting the importance of studying effects of metals from e-cigarettes and environmental exposures.FUNDING Department of Defense, Veteran Administration, NIH, ACS, and University of Cincinnati Cancer Institute.
James Reigle, Dina Secic, Jacek Biesiada, Collin Wetzel, Behrouz Shamsaei, Johnson Chu, Yuanwei Zang, Xiang Zhang, Nicholas J. Talbot, Megan E. Bischoff, Yongzhen Zhang, Charuhas V. Thakar, Krishnanath Gaitonde, Abhinav Sidana, Hai Bui, John T. Cunningham, Qing Zhang, Laura S. Schmidt, W. Marston Linehan, Mario Medvedovic, David R. Plas, Julio A. Landero Figueroa, Jarek Meller, Maria F. Czyzyk-Krzeska
Early appearance of neutralizing antibodies during acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is associated with spontaneous viral clearance. However, the longitudinal changes in antigen-specific memory B cell (MBCs) associated with divergent HCV infection outcomes remain undefined. We characterized longitudinal changes in E2 glycoprotein-specific MBCs from subjects who either spontaneously resolved acute HCV infection or progressed to chronic infection, using single-cell RNA-seq and functional assays. HCV-specific antibodies in plasma from chronically infected subjects recognized multiple E2 genotypes, while those from spontaneous resolvers exhibited variable cross-reactivity to heterotypic E2. E2-specific MBCs from spontaneous resolvers peaked early after infection (4–6 months), following expansion of activated circulating T follicular helper cells (cTfh) expressing interleukin 21. In contrast, E2-specific MBCs from chronically infected subjects, enriched in VH1-69, expanded during persistent infection (> 1 year), in the absence of significantly activated cTfh expansion. Early E2-specific MBCs from spontaneous resolvers produced monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) with fewer somatic hypermutations and lower E2 binding but similar neutralization as mAbs from late E2-specific MBCs of chronically infected subjects. These findings indicate that early cTfh activity accelerates expansion of E2-specific MBCs during acute infection, which might contribute to spontaneous clearance of HCV.
Eduardo Salinas, Maude Boisvert, Amit A. Upadhyay, Nathalie Bédard, Sydney A. Nelson, Julie Bruneau, Cynthia A. Derdeyn, Joseph Marcotrigiano, Matthew J. Evans, Steven E. Bosinger, Naglaa H. Shoukry, Arash Grakoui
Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) are enriched at barrier surfaces, including the gastrointestinal tract. While most studies have focused on the balance between pathogenic group 1 ILCs (ILC1s) and protective ILC3s in maintaining gut homeostasis and during chronic intestinal inflammation, such as Crohn’s disease (CD), less is known regarding ILC2s. Using an established murine model of CD-like ileitis, i.e., the SAMP1/YitFc (SAMP) mouse strain, we showed that ILC2s, compared with ILC1s and ILC3s, were increased within draining mesenteric lymph nodes and ilea of SAMP versus AKR (parental control) mice early, during the onset of disease. Gut-derived ILC2s from CD patients versus healthy controls were also increased and expanded, similarly to ILC1s, in greater proportion compared with ILC3s. Importantly, we report that the intracellular bacteria–sensing protein, nucleotide-binding oligomerization domaining–containing protein 2, encoded by Nod2, the first and strongest susceptibility gene identified for CD, promoted ILC2 expansion, which was dramatically reduced in SAMP mice lacking NOD2 and in SAMP mice raised under germ-free conditions. Furthermore, these effects occurred through a mechanism involving the IL-33/ST2 ligand-receptor pair. Collectively, our results indicate a functional link between NOD2 and ILC2s, regulated by the IL-33/ST2 axis, that mechanistically may contribute to early events leading to CD pathogenesis.
Carlo De Salvo, Kristine-Ann Buela, Brecht Creyns, Daniele Corridoni, Nitish Rana, Hannah L. Wargo, Chiara L. Cominelli, Peter G. Delaney, Alexander Rodriguez-Palacios, Fabio Cominelli, Séverine Vermeire, Theresa T. Pizarro
Dystonia is a debilitating hyperkinetic movement disorder, which can be transmitted as a monogenic trait. Here, we describe homozygous frameshift, nonsense, and missense variants in TSPOAP1, which encodes the active-zone RIM-binding protein 1 (RIMBP1), as a genetic cause of autosomal recessive dystonia in 7 subjects from 3 unrelated families. Subjects carrying loss-of-function variants presented with juvenile-onset progressive generalized dystonia, associated with intellectual disability and cerebellar atrophy. Conversely, subjects carrying a pathogenic missense variant (p.Gly1808Ser) presented with isolated adult-onset focal dystonia. In mice, complete loss of RIMBP1, known to reduce neurotransmission, led to motor abnormalities reminiscent of dystonia, decreased Purkinje cell dendritic arborization, and reduced numbers of cerebellar synapses. In vitro analysis of the p.Gly1808Ser variant showed larger spike-evoked calcium transients and enhanced neurotransmission, suggesting that RIMBP1-linked dystonia can be caused by either reduced or enhanced rates of spike-evoked release in relevant neural networks. Our findings establish a direct link between dysfunction of the presynaptic active zone and dystonia and highlight the critical role played by well-balanced neurotransmission in motor control and disease pathogenesis.
Niccolò E. Mencacci, Marisa M. Brockmann, Jinye Dai, Sander Pajusalu, Burcu Atasu, Joaquin Campos, Gabriela Pino, Paulina Gonzalez-Latapi, Christopher Patzke, Michael Schwake, Arianna Tucci, Alan Pittman, Javier Simon-Sanchez, Gemma L. Carvill, Bettina Balint, Sarah Wiethoff, Thomas T. Warner, Apostolos Papandreou, Audrey Soo, Reet Rein, Liis Kadastik-Eerme, Sanna Puusepp, Karit Reinson, Tiiu Tomberg, Hasmet Hanagasi, Thomas Gasser, Kailash P. Bhatia, Manju A. Kurian, Ebba Lohmann, Katrin Õunap, Christian Rosenmund, Thomas C. Südhof, Nicholas W. Wood, Dimitri Krainc, Claudio Acuna
Tregs restrain both the innate and adaptive immune systems to maintain homeostasis. Allergic airway inflammation, characterized by a Th2 response that results from a breakdown of tolerance to innocuous environmental antigens, is negatively regulated by Tregs. We previously reported that prostaglandin I2 (PGI2) promoted immune tolerance in models of allergic inflammation; however, the effect of PGI2 on Treg function was not investigated. Tregs from mice deficient in the PGI2 receptor IP (IP KO) had impaired suppressive capabilities during allergic airway inflammatory responses compared with mice in which PGI2 signaling was intact. IP KO Tregs had significantly enhanced expression of immunoglobulin-like transcript 3 (ILT3) compared with WT Tregs, which may contribute to the impairment of the IP KO Treg’s ability to suppress Th2 responses. Using fate-mapping mice, we reported that PGI2 signaling prevents Treg reprogramming toward a pathogenic phenotype. PGI2 analogs promoted the differentiation of naive T cells to Tregs in both mice and humans via repression of β-catenin signaling. Finally, a missense variant in IP in humans was strongly associated with chronic obstructive asthma. Together, these data support that PGI2 signaling licenses Treg suppressive function and that PGI2 is a therapeutic target for enhancing Treg function.
Allison E. Norlander, Melissa H. Bloodworth, Shinji Toki, Jian Zhang, Weisong Zhou, Kelli Boyd, Vasiliy V. Polosukhin, Jacqueline-Yvonne Cephus, Zachary J. Ceneviva, Vivek D. Gandhi, Nowrin U. Chowdhury, Louis-Marie Charbonnier, Lisa M. Rogers, Janey Wang, David M. Aronoff, Lisa Bastarache, Dawn C. Newcomb, Talal A. Chatila, R. Stokes Peebles Jr.
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) remains a major epidemiological, clinical, and biomedical challenge. During CKD, renal tubular epithelial cells (TECs) present a persistent inﬂammatory and profibrotic response. Fatty acid oxidation (FAO), the main source of energy for TECs, is reduced in kidney fibrosis and contributes to its pathogenesis. To determine whether gain of function in FAO (FAO-GOF) could protect from fibrosis, we generated a conditional transgenic mouse model with overexpression of the fatty acid shuttling enzyme carnitine palmitoyl-transferase 1A (CPT1A) in TECs. Cpt1a-knockin (CPT1A-KI) mice subjected to 3 models of renal fibrosis (unilateral ureteral obstruction, folic acid nephropathy [FAN], and adenine-induced nephrotoxicity) exhibited decreased expression of fibrotic markers, a blunted proinflammatory response, and reduced epithelial cell damage and macrophage influx. Protection from fibrosis was also observed when Cpt1a overexpression was induced after FAN. FAO-GOF restored oxidative metabolism and mitochondrial number and enhanced bioenergetics, increasing palmitate oxidation and ATP levels, changes that were also recapitulated in TECs exposed to profibrotic stimuli. Studies in patients showed decreased CPT1 levels and increased accumulation of short- and middle-chain acylcarnitines, reflecting impaired FAO in human CKD. We propose that strategies based on FAO-GOF may constitute powerful alternatives to combat fibrosis inherent to CKD.
Verónica Miguel, Jessica Tituaña, J. Ignacio Herrero, Laura Herrero, Dolors Serra, Paula Cuevas, Coral Barbas, Diego Rodríguez Puyol, Laura Márquez-Expósito, Marta Ruiz-Ortega, Carolina Castillo, Xin Sheng, Katalin Susztak, Miguel Ruiz-Canela, Jordi Salas-Salvadó, Miguel A. Martínez González, Sagrario Ortega, Ricardo Ramos, Santiago Lamas
CD1a-autoreactive T cells contribute to skin disease, but the identity of immunodominant self-lipid antigens and their mode of recognition are not yet solved. In most models, MHC and CD1 proteins serve as display platforms for smaller antigens. Here, we showed that CD1a tetramers without added antigen stained large T cell pools in every subject tested, accounting for approximately 1% of skin T cells. The mechanism of tetramer binding to T cells did not require any defined antigen. Binding occurred with approximately 100 lipid ligands carried by CD1a proteins, but could be tuned upward or downward with certain natural self-lipids. TCR recognition mapped to the outer A′ roof of CD1a at sites remote from the antigen exit portal, explaining how TCRs can bind CD1a rather than carried lipids. Thus, a major antigenic target of CD1a T cell autoreactivity in vivo is CD1a itself. Based on their high frequency and prevalence among donors, we conclude that CD1a-specific, lipid-independent T cells are a normal component of the human skin T cell repertoire. Bypassing the need to select antigens and effector molecules, CD1a tetramers represent a simple method to track such CD1a-specific T cells from tissues and in any clinical disease.
Rachel N. Cotton, Tan-Yun Cheng, Marcin Wegrecki, Jérôme Le Nours, Dennis P. Orgill, Bohdan Pomahac, Simon G. Talbot, Richard A. Willis, John D. Altman, Annemieke de Jong, Graham Ogg, Ildiko Van Rhijn, Jamie Rossjohn, Rachael A. Clark, D. Branch Moody
Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a risk factor for cancer. The role of DM-induced hyperglycemic (HG) stress in blood cancer is poorly understood. Epidemiologic studies show that individuals with DM are more likely to have a higher rate of mutations in genes found in pre-leukemic hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (pre-LHSPCs) including TET2. TET2-mutant pre-LHSPCs require additional hits to evolve into full-blown leukemia and/or an aggressive myeloproliferative neoplasm (MPN). Intrinsic mutations have been shown to cooperate with Tet2 to promote leukemic transformation. However, the extrinsic factors are poorly understood. Using a mouse model carrying Tet2 haploinsufficiency to mimic the human pre-LHSPC condition and HG stress, in the form of an Ins2Akita/+ mutation, which induces hyperglycemia and type 1 DM, we show that the compound mutant mice developed a lethal form of MPN and/or acute myeloid leukemia (AML). RNA-Seq revealed that this was due in part to upregulation of proinflammatory pathways, thereby generating a feed-forward loop, including expression of the antiapoptotic, long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) Morrbid. Loss of Morrbid in the compound mutants rescued the lethality and mitigated MPN/AML. We describe a mouse model for age-dependent MPN/AML and suggest that hyperglycemia acts as an environmental driver for myeloid neoplasms, which could be prevented by reducing expression levels of the inflammation-related lncRNA Morrbid.
Zhigang Cai, Xiaoyu Lu, Chi Zhang, Sai Nelanuthala, Fabiola Aguilera, Abigail Hadley, Baskar Ramdas, Fang Fang, Kenneth Nephew, Jonathan J. Kotzin, Adam Williams, Jorge Henao-Mejia, Laura Haneline, Reuben Kapur
Airway eosinophilia is a hallmark of allergic asthma and is associated with mucus production, airway hyperresponsiveness, and shortness of breath. Although glucocorticoids are widely used to treat asthma, their prolonged use is associated with several side effects. Furthermore, many individuals with eosinophilic asthma are resistant to glucocorticoid treatment, and they have an unmet need for novel therapies. Here, we show that UDP-glucose (UDP-G), a nucleotide sugar, is selectively released into the airways of allergen-sensitized mice upon their subsequent challenge with that same allergen. Mice lacking P2Y14R, the receptor for UDP-G, had decreased airway eosinophilia and airway hyperresponsiveness compared with wild-type mice in a protease-mediated model of asthma. P2Y14R was dispensable for allergic sensitization and for the production of type 2 cytokines in the lung after challenge. However, UDP-G increased chemokinesis in eosinophils and enhanced their response to the eosinophil chemoattractant, CCL24. In turn, eosinophils triggered the release of UDP-G into the airway, thereby amplifying eosinophilic recruitment. This positive feedback loop was sensitive to therapeutic intervention, as a small molecule antagonist of P2Y14R inhibited airway eosinophilia. These findings thus reveal a pathway that can be therapeutically targeted to treat asthma exacerbations and glucocorticoid-resistant forms of this disease.
Tadeusz P. Karcz, Gregory S. Whitehead, Keiko Nakano, Hideki Nakano, Sara A. Grimm, Jason G. Williams, Leesa J. Deterding, Kenneth A. Jacobson, Donald N. Cook
Immunological tolerance to semiallogeneic fetuses is necessary to achieving successful first pregnancy and permitting subsequent pregnancies with the same father. Paradoxically, pregnancy is an important cause of sensitization, resulting in the accelerated rejection of offspring-matched allografts. The underlying basis for divergent outcomes following reencounter of the same alloantigens on transplanted organs versus fetuses in postpartum females is incompletely understood. Using a mouse model that allows concurrent tracking of endogenous fetus-specific T and B cell responses in a single recipient, we show that semiallogeneic pregnancies simultaneously induce fetus-specific T cell tolerance and humoral sensitization. Pregnancy-induced antibodies, but not B cells, impeded transplantation tolerance elicited by costimulation blockade to offspring-matched cardiac grafts. Remarkably, in B cell–deficient mice, allogeneic pregnancy enabled the spontaneous acceptance of fetus-matched allografts. The presence of pregnancy-sensitized B cells that cannot secrete antibodies at the time of heart transplantation was sufficient to precipitate rejection and override pregnancy-established T cell tolerance. Thus, while induction of memory B cells and alloantibodies by pregnancies establishes formidable barriers to transplant success for multigravid women, our observations raise the possibility that humoral desensitization will not only improve transplantation outcomes, but also reveal an unexpected propensity of multiparous recipients to achieve tolerance to offspring-matched allografts.
Ashley N. Suah, Dong-Kha V. Tran, Stella H.W. Khiew, Michael S. Andrade, Jared M. Pollard, Dharmendra Jain, James S. Young, Dengping Yin, Geetha Chalasani, Maria-Luisa Alegre, Anita S. Chong
Melanomas commonly undergo a phenotype switch, from a proliferative to an invasive state. Such tumor cell plasticity contributes to immunotherapy resistance; however, the mechanisms are not completely understood and thus are therapeutically unexploited. Using melanoma mouse models, we demonstrated that blocking the MNK1/2-eIF4E axis inhibited melanoma phenotype switching and sensitized melanoma to anti–PD-1 immunotherapy. We showed that phospho-eIF4E–deficient murine melanomas expressed high levels of melanocytic antigens, with similar results verified in patient melanomas. Mechanistically, we identified phospho-eIF4E–mediated translational control of NGFR, a critical effector of phenotype switching. Genetic ablation of phospho-eIF4E reprogrammed the immunosuppressive microenvironment, exemplified by lowered production of inflammatory factors, decreased PD-L1 expression on dendritic cells and myeloid-derived suppressor cells, and increased CD8+ T cell infiltrates. Finally, dual blockade of the MNK1/2-eIF4E axis and the PD-1/PD-L1 immune checkpoint demonstrated efficacy in multiple melanoma models regardless of their genomic classification. An increase in the presence of intratumoral stem-like TCF1+PD-1+CD8+ T cells, a characteristic essential for durable antitumor immunity, was detected in mice given a MNK1/2 inhibitor and anti–PD-1 therapy. Using MNK1/2 inhibitors to repress phospho-eIF4E thus offers a strategy to inhibit melanoma plasticity and improve response to anti–PD-1 immunotherapy.
Fan Huang, Christophe Gonçalves, Margarita Bartish, Joelle Rémy-Sarrazin, Mark E. Issa, Brendan Cordeiro, Qianyu Guo, Audrey Emond, Mikhael Attias, William Yang, Dany Plourde, Jie Su, Marina Godoy Gimeno, Yao Zhan, Alba Galán, Tomasz Rzymski, Milena Mazan, Magdalena Masiejczyk, Jacek Faber, Elie Khoury, Alexandre Benoit, Natascha Gagnon, David Dankort, Fabrice Journe, Ghanem E. Ghanem, Connie M. Krawczyk, H. Uri Saragovi, Ciriaco A. Piccirillo, Nahum Sonenberg, Ivan Topisirovic, Christopher E. Rudd, Wilson H. Miller Jr., Sonia V. del Rincón
The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) global pandemic has led to millions of cases and hundreds of thousands of deaths. While older adults appear at high risk for severe disease, hospitalizations and deaths due to SARS-CoV-2 among children have been relatively rare. Integrating single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) of developing mouse lung with temporally resolved immunofluorescence in mouse and human lung tissue, we found that expression of SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein primer TMPRSS2 was highest in ciliated cells and type I alveolar epithelial cells (AT1), and TMPRSS2 expression increased with aging in mice and humans. Analysis of autopsy tissue from fatal COVID-19 cases detected SARS-CoV-2 RNA most frequently in ciliated and secretory cells in airway epithelium and AT1 cells in peripheral lung. SARS-CoV-2 RNA was highly colocalized in cells expressing TMPRSS2. Together, these data demonstrate the cellular spectrum infected by SARS-CoV-2 in lung epithelium and suggest that developmental regulation of TMPRSS2 may underlie the relative protection of infants and children from severe respiratory illness.
Bryce A. Schuler, A. Christian Habermann, Erin J. Plosa, Chase J. Taylor, Christopher Jetter, Nicholas M. Negretti, Meghan E. Kapp, John T. Benjamin, Peter Gulleman, David S. Nichols, Lior Z. Braunstein, Alice Hackett, Michael Koval, Susan H. Guttentag, Timothy S. Blackwell, Steven A. Webber, Nicholas E. Banovich, Vanderbilt COVID-19 Consortium Cohort, Human Cell Atlas Biological Network, Jonathan A. Kropski, Jennifer M.S. Sucre
BACKGROUND To understand the features of a replicating vaccine that might drive potent and durable immune responses to transgene-encoded antigens, we tested a replication-competent adenovirus type 4 encoding influenza virus H5 HA (Ad4-H5-Vtn) administered as an oral capsule or via tonsillar swab or nasal spray.METHODS Viral shedding from the nose, mouth, and rectum was measured by PCR and culturing. H5-specific IgG and IgA antibodies were measured by bead array binding assays. Serum antibodies were measured by a pseudovirus entry inhibition, microneutralization, and HA inhibition assays.RESULTS Ad4-H5-Vtn DNA was shed from most upper respiratory tract–immunized (URT-immunized) volunteers for 2 to 4 weeks, but cultured from only 60% of participants, with a median duration of 1 day. Ad4-H5-Vtn vaccination induced increases in H5-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in the peripheral blood as well as increases in IgG and IgA in nasal, cervical, and rectal secretions. URT immunizations induced high levels of serum neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) against H5 that remained stable out to week 26. The duration of viral shedding correlated with the magnitude of the NAb response at week 26. Adverse events (AEs) were mild, and peak NAb titers were associated with overall AE frequency and duration. Serum NAb titers could be boosted to very high levels 2 to 5 years after Ad4-H5-Vtn vaccination with recombinant H5 or inactivated split H5N1 vaccine.CONCLUSION Replicating Ad4 delivered to the URT caused prolonged exposure to antigen, drove durable systemic and mucosal immunity, and proved to be a promising platform for the induction of immunity against viral surface glycoprotein targets.TRIAL REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01443936 and NCT01806909.FUNDING Intramural and Extramural Research Programs of the NIAID, NIH (U19 AI109946) and the Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance (CEIRS), NIAID, NIH (contract HHSN272201400008C).
Kenta Matsuda, Stephen A. Migueles, Jinghe Huang, Lyuba Bolkhovitinov, Sarah Stuccio, Trevor Griesman, Alyssa A. Pullano, Byong H. Kang, Elise Ishida, Matthew Zimmerman, Neena Kashyap, Kelly M. Martins, Daniel Stadlbauer, Jessica Pederson, Andy Patamawenu, Nathaniel Wright, Tulley Shofner, Sean Evans, C. Jason Liang, Julián Candia, Angelique Biancotto, Giovanna Fantoni, April Poole, Jon Smith, Jeff Alexander, Marc Gurwith, Florian Krammer, Mark Connors
Immune evasion is a pivotal event in tumor progression. To eliminate human cancer cells, current immune checkpoint therapy is set to boost CD8+ T cell–mediated cytotoxicity. However, this action is eventually dependent on the efficient recognition of tumor-specific antigens via T cell receptors. One primary mechanism by which tumor cells evade immune surveillance is to downregulate their antigen presentation. Little progress has been made toward harnessing potential therapeutic targets for enhancing antigen presentation on the tumor cell. Here, we identified MAL2 as a key player that determines the turnover of the antigen-loaded MHC-I complex and reduces the antigen presentation on tumor cells. MAL2 promotes the endocytosis of tumor antigens via direct interaction with the MHC-I complex and endosome-associated RAB proteins. In preclinical models, depletion of MAL2 in breast tumor cells profoundly enhanced the cytotoxicity of tumor-infiltrating CD8+ T cells and suppressed breast tumor growth, suggesting that MAL2 is a potential therapeutic target for breast cancer immunotherapy.
Yuanzhang Fang, Lifei Wang, Changlin Wan, Yifan Sun, Kevin Van der Jeught, Zhuolong Zhou, Tianhan Dong, Ka Man So, Tao Yu, Yujing Li, Haniyeh Eyvani, Austyn B. Colter, Edward Dong, Sha Cao, Jin Wang, Bryan P. Schneider, George E. Sandusky, Yunlong Liu, Chi Zhang, Xiongbin Lu, Xinna Zhang
Lymphatic filariasis is the major global cause of nonhereditary lymphedema. We demonstrate that the filarial nematode Brugia malayi induced lymphatic remodeling and impaired lymphatic drainage following parasitism of limb lymphatics in a mouse model. Lymphatic insufficiency was associated with elevated circulating lymphangiogenic mediators, including vascular endothelial growth factor C. Lymphatic insufficiency was dependent on type 2 adaptive immunity, the interleukin-4 receptor, and recruitment of C-C chemokine receptor-2–positive monocytes and alternatively activated macrophages with a prolymphangiogenic phenotype. Oral treatments with second-generation tetracyclines improved lymphatic function, while other classes of antibiotic had no significant effect. Second-generation tetracyclines directly targeted lymphatic endothelial cell proliferation and modified type 2 prolymphangiogenic macrophage development. Doxycycline treatment impeded monocyte recruitment, inhibited polarization of alternatively activated macrophages, and suppressed T cell adaptive immune responses following infection. Our results determine a mechanism of action for the antimorbidity effects of doxycycline in filariasis and support clinical evaluation of second-generation tetracyclines as affordable, safe therapeutics for lymphedemas of chronic inflammatory origin.
Julio Furlong-Silva, Stephen D. Cross, Amy E. Marriott, Nicolas Pionnier, John Archer, Andrew Steven, Stefan Schulte Merker, Matthias Mack, Young-Kwon Hong, Mark J. Taylor, Joseph D. Turner
DREAM (Dp, Rb-like, E2F, and MuvB) is a transcriptional repressor complex that regulates cell proliferation, and its loss causes neonatal lethality in mice. To investigate DREAM function in adult mice, we used an assembly-defective p107 protein and conditional deletion of its redundant family member p130. In the absence of DREAM assembly, mice displayed shortened survival characterized by systemic amyloidosis but no evidence of excessive cellular proliferation. Amyloid deposits were found in the heart, liver, spleen, and kidneys but not the brain or bone marrow. Using laser-capture microdissection followed by mass spectrometry, we identified apolipoproteins as the most abundant components of amyloids. Intriguingly, apoA-IV was the most detected amyloidogenic protein in amyloid deposits, suggesting apoA-IV amyloidosis (AApoAIV). AApoAIV is a recently described form, whereby WT apoA-IV has been shown to predominate in amyloid plaques. We determined by ChIP that DREAM directly regulated Apoa4 and that the histone variant H2AZ was reduced from the Apoa4 gene body in DREAM’s absence, leading to overexpression. Collectively, we describe a mechanism by which epigenetic misregulation causes apolipoprotein overexpression and amyloidosis, potentially explaining the origins of nongenetic amyloid subtypes.
Pirunthan Perampalam, Haider M. Hassan, Grace E. Lilly, Daniel T. Passos, Joseph Torchia, Patti K. Kiser, Andrea Bozovic, Vathany Kulasingam, Frederick A. Dick
Dysfunction of immune and vascular systems has been implicated in aging and Alzheimer disease; however, their interrelatedness remains poorly understood. The complement pathway is a well-established regulator of innate immunity in the brain. Here, we report robust age-dependent increases in vascular inflammation, peripheral lymphocyte infiltration, and blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability. These phenotypes were subdued by global inactivation and by endothelial cell–specific ablation of C3ar1. Using an in vitro model of the BBB, we identified intracellular Ca2+ as a downstream effector of C3a/C3aR signaling and a functional mediator of vascular endothelial cadherin junction and barrier integrity. Endothelial C3ar1 inactivation also dampened microglia reactivity and improved hippocampal and cortical volumes in the aging brain, demonstrating a crosstalk between brain vasculature dysfunction and immune cell activation and neurodegeneration. Further, prominent C3aR-dependent vascular inflammation was also observed in a tau-transgenic mouse model. Our studies suggest that heightened C3a/C3aR signaling through endothelial cells promotes vascular inflammation and BBB dysfunction and contributes to overall neuroinflammation in aging and neurodegenerative disease.
Nicholas E. Propson, Ethan R. Roy, Alexandra Litvinchuk, Jörg Köhl, Hui Zheng
Medulloblastoma is an aggressive pediatric brain tumor that can be driven by misactivation of the Hedgehog (HH) pathway. CDK6 is a critical effector of oncogenic HH signaling, but attempts to target the HH pathway in medulloblastoma have been encumbered by resistance to single-agent molecular therapy. We identified mechanisms of resistance to CDK6 inhibition in HH-associated medulloblastoma by performing orthogonal CRISPR and CRISPR interference screens in medulloblastoma cells treated with a CDK4/6 inhibitor and RNA-Seq of a mouse model of HH-associated medulloblastoma with genetic deletion of Cdk6. Our concordant in vitro and in vivo data revealed that decreased ribosomal protein expression underlies resistance to CDK6 inhibition in HH-associated medulloblastoma, leading to ER stress and activation of the unfolded protein response (UPR). These pathways increased the activity of enzymes producing Smoothened-activating (SMO-activating) sterol lipids that sustained oncogenic HH signaling in medulloblastoma despite cell-cycle attenuation. We consistently demonstrated that concurrent genetic deletion or pharmacological inhibition of CDK6 and HSD11ß2, an enzyme producing SMO-activating lipids, additively blocked cancer growth in multiple mouse genetic models of HH-associated medulloblastoma. Our data reveal what we believe to be a novel pathway of resistance to CDK4/6 inhibition as well as a novel combination therapy to treat the most common malignant brain tumor in children.
Vikas Daggubati, Jordan Hochstelter, Anirudh Bommireddy, Abrar Choudhury, Alexis Leigh Krup, Pervinder Kaur, Pakteema Tong, Amy Li, Libin Xu, Jeremy F. Reiter, David R. Raleigh
Nuclear localization of the androgen receptor (AR) is necessary for its activation as a transcription factor. Defining the mechanisms regulating AR nuclear localization in androgen-sensitive cells and how these mechanisms are dysregulated in castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) cells is fundamentally important and clinically relevant. According to the classical model of AR intracellular trafficking, androgens induce AR nuclear import and androgen withdrawal causes AR nuclear export. The present study has led to an updated model that AR could be imported in the absence of androgens, ubiquitinated, and degraded in the nucleus. Androgen withdrawal caused nuclear AR degradation, but not export. In comparison with their parental androgen-sensitive LNCaP prostate cancer cells, castration-resistant C4-2 cells exhibited reduced nuclear AR polyubiquitination and increased nuclear AR level. We previously identified 3-(4-chlorophenyl)-6,7-dihydro-5H-pyrrolo[1,2-a]imidazole (CPPI) in a high-throughput screen for its inhibition of androgen-independent AR nuclear localization in CRPC cells. The current study shows that CPPI is a competitive AR antagonist capable of enhancing AR interaction with its E3 ligase MDM2 and degradation of AR in the nuclei of CRPC cells. Also, CPPI blocked androgen-independent AR nuclear import. Overall, these findings suggest the feasibility of targeting androgen-independent AR nuclear import and stabilization, two necessary steps leading to AR nuclear localization and activation in CRPC cells, with small molecule inhibitors.
Shidong Lv, Qiong Song, Guang Chen, Erdong Cheng, Wei Chen, Ryan Cole, Zeyu Wu, Laura E. Pascal, Ke Wang, Peter Wipf, Joel B. Nelson, Qiang Wei, Wenhua Huang, Zhou Wang
Mutations affecting mitochondrial coenzyme Q (CoQ) biosynthesis lead to kidney failure due to selective loss of podocytes, essential cells of the kidney filter. Curiously, neighboring tubular epithelial cells are spared early in disease despite higher mitochondrial content. We sought to illuminate noncanonical, cell-specific roles for CoQ, independently of the electron transport chain (ETC). Here, we demonstrate that CoQ depletion caused by Pdss2 enzyme deficiency in podocytes results in perturbations in polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) metabolism and the Braf/Mapk pathway rather than ETC dysfunction. Single-nucleus RNA-Seq from kidneys of Pdss2kd/kd mice with nephrotic syndrome and global CoQ deficiency identified a podocyte-specific perturbation of the Braf/Mapk pathway. Treatment with GDC-0879, a Braf/Mapk-targeting compound, ameliorated kidney disease in Pdss2kd/kd mice. Mechanistic studies in Pdss2-depleted podocytes revealed a previously unknown perturbation in PUFA metabolism that was confirmed in vivo. Gpx4, an enzyme that protects against PUFA-mediated lipid peroxidation, was elevated in disease and restored after GDC-0879 treatment. We demonstrate broader human disease relevance by uncovering patterns of GPX4 and Braf/Mapk pathway gene expression in tissue from patients with kidney diseases. Our studies reveal ETC-independent roles for CoQ in podocytes and point to Braf/Mapk as a candidate pathway for the treatment of kidney diseases.
Eriene-Heidi Sidhom, Choah Kim, Maria Kost-Alimova, May Theng Ting, Keith Keller, Julian Avila-Pacheco, Andrew J.B. Watts, Katherine A. Vernon, Jamie L. Marshall, Estefanía Reyes-Bricio, Matthew Racette, Nicolas Wieder, Giulio Kleiner, Elizabeth J. Grinkevich, Fei Chen, Astrid Weins, Clary B. Clish, Jillian L. Shaw, Catarina M. Quinzii, Anna Greka
BACKGROUND Transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq) improves diagnostic rates in individuals with suspected Mendelian conditions to varying degrees, primarily by directing the prioritization of candidate DNA variants identified on exome or genome sequencing (ES/GS). Here we implemented an RNA-seq–guided method to diagnose individuals across a wide range of ages and clinical phenotypes.METHODS One hundred fifteen undiagnosed adult and pediatric patients with diverse phenotypes and 67 family members (182 total individuals) underwent RNA-seq from whole blood and skin fibroblasts at the Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) Undiagnosed Diseases Network clinical site from 2014 to 2020. We implemented a workflow to detect outliers in gene expression and splicing for cases that remained undiagnosed despite standard genomic and transcriptomic analysis.RESULTS The transcriptome-directed approach resulted in a diagnostic rate of 12% across the entire cohort, or 17% after excluding cases solved on ES/GS alone. Newly diagnosed conditions included Koolen–de Vries syndrome (KANSL1), Renpenning syndrome (PQBP1), TBCK-associated encephalopathy, NSD2- and CLTC-related intellectual disability, and others, all with negative conventional genomic testing, including ES and chromosomal microarray (CMA). Skin fibroblasts exhibited higher and more consistent expression of clinically relevant genes than whole blood. In solved cases with RNA-seq from both tissues, the causative defect was missed in blood in half the cases but none from fibroblasts.CONCLUSIONS For our cohort of undiagnosed individuals with suspected Mendelian conditions, transcriptome-directed genomic analysis facilitated diagnoses, primarily through the identification of variants missed on ES and CMA.TRIAL REGISTRATION Not applicable.FUNDING NIH Common Fund, BCM Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development.
David R. Murdock, Hongzheng Dai, Lindsay C. Burrage, Jill A. Rosenfeld, Shamika Ketkar, Michaela F. Müller, Vicente A. Yépez, Julien Gagneur, Pengfei Liu, Shan Chen, Mahim Jain, Gladys Zapata, Carlos A. Bacino, Hsiao-Tuan Chao, Paolo Moretti, William J. Craigen, Neil A. Hanchard, Undiagnosed Diseases Network, Brendan Lee
Neutrophil infiltration around lipotoxic hepatocytes is a hallmark of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH); however, how these 2 types of cells communicate remains obscure. We have previously demonstrated that neutrophil-specific microRNA-223 (miR-223) is elevated in hepatocytes to limit NASH progression in obese mice. Here, we demonstrated that this elevation of miR-223 in hepatocytes was due to preferential uptake of miR-223–enriched extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from neutrophils as well other types of cells, albeit to a lesser extent. This selective uptake was dependent on the expression of low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) on hepatocytes and apolipoprotein E (APOE) on neutrophil-derived EVs, which was enhanced by free fatty acids. Once internalized by hepatocytes, the EV-derived miR-223 acted to inhibit hepatic inflammatory and fibrogenic gene expression. In the absence of this LDLR- and APOE-dependent uptake of miR-223–enriched EVs, the progression of steatosis to NASH was accelerated. In contrast, augmentation of this transfer by treatment with an inhibitor of proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9, a drug used to lower blood cholesterol by upregulating LDLR, ameliorated NASH in mice. This specific role of LDLR and APOE in the selective control of miR-223–enriched EV transfer from neutrophils to hepatocytes may serve as a potential therapeutic target for NASH.
Yong He, Robim M. Rodrigues, Xiaolin Wang, Wonhyo Seo, Jing Ma, Seonghwan Hwang, Yaojie Fu, Eszter Trojnár, Csaba Mátyás, Suxian Zhao, Ruixue Ren, Dechun Feng, Pal Pacher, George Kunos, Bin Gao
T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) is an aggressive hematologic malignancy with inferior outcome compared with that of B cell ALL. Here, we show that Runt-related transcription factor 2 (RUNX2) was upregulated in high-risk T-ALL with KMT2A rearrangements (KMT2A-R) or an immature immunophenotype. In KMT2A-R cells, we identified RUNX2 as a direct target of the KMT2A chimeras, where it reciprocally bound the KMT2A promoter, establishing a regulatory feed-forward mechanism. Notably, RUNX2 was required for survival of immature and KMT2A-R T-ALL cells in vitro and in vivo. We report direct transcriptional regulation of CXCR4 signaling by RUNX2, thereby promoting chemotaxis, adhesion, and homing to medullary and extramedullary sites. RUNX2 enabled these energy-demanding processes by increasing metabolic activity in T-ALL cells through positive regulation of both glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation. Concurrently, RUNX2 upregulation increased mitochondrial dynamics and biogenesis in T-ALL cells. Finally, as a proof of concept, we demonstrate that immature and KMT2A-R T-ALL cells were vulnerable to pharmacological targeting of the interaction between RUNX2 and its cofactor CBFβ. In conclusion, we show that RUNX2 acts as a dependency factor in high-risk subtypes of human T-ALL through concomitant regulation of tumor metabolism and leukemic cell migration.
Filip Matthijssens, Nitesh D. Sharma, Monique Nysus, Christian K. Nickl, Huining Kang, Dominique R. Perez, Beatrice Lintermans, Wouter Van Loocke, Juliette Roels, Sofie Peirs, Lisa Demoen, Tim Pieters, Lindy Reunes, Tim Lammens, Barbara De Moerloose, Filip Van Nieuwerburgh, Dieter L. Deforce, Laurence C. Cheung, Rishi S. Kotecha, Martijn D.P. Risseeuw, Serge Van Calenbergh, Takeshi Takarada, Yukio Yoneda, Frederik W. van Delft, Richard B. Lock, Seth D. Merkley, Alexandre Chigaev, Larry A. Sklar, Charles G. Mullighan, Mignon L. Loh, Stuart S. Winter, Stephen P. Hunger, Steven Goossens, Eliseo F. Castillo, Wojciech Ornatowski, Pieter Van Vlierberghe, Ksenia Matlawska-Wasowska
TH17 cell subpopulations have been defined that contribute to inflammation and homeostasis, yet the characteristics of TH17 cells that contribute to host defense against infection are not clear. To elucidate the antimicrobial machinery of the TH17 subset, we studied the response to Cutibacterium acnes, a skin commensal that is resistant to IL-26, the only known TH17-secreted protein with direct antimicrobial activity. We generated C. acnes–specific antimicrobial TH17 clones (AMTH17) with varying antimicrobial activity against C. acnes, which we correlated by RNA sequencing to the expression of transcripts encoding proteins that contribute to antimicrobial activity. Additionally, we validated that AMTH17-mediated killing of C. acnes and bacterial pathogens was dependent on the secretion of granulysin, granzyme B, perforin, and histone H2B. We found that AMTH17 cells can release fibrous structures composed of DNA decorated with histone H2B that entangle C. acnes that we call T cell extracellular traps (TETs). Within acne lesions, H2B and IL-17 colocalized in CD4+ T cells, in proximity to TETs in the extracellular space composed of DNA decorated with H2B. This study identifies a functionally distinct subpopulation of TH17 cells with an ability to form TETs containing secreted antimicrobial proteins that capture and kill bacteria.
George W. Agak, Alice Mouton, Rosane M.B. Teles, Thomas Weston, Marco Morselli, Priscila R. Andrade, Matteo Pellegrini, Robert L. Modlin
A primordial gut-epithelial innate defense response is the release of hydrogen peroxide by dual NADPH oxidase (DUOX). In inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a condition characterized by an imbalanced gut microbiota-immune homeostasis, DUOX2 isoenzyme is the highest induced gene. Performing multiomic analyses using 2872 human participants of a wellness program, we detected a substantial burden of rare protein-altering DUOX2 gene variants of unknown physiologic significance. We identified a significant association between these rare loss-of-function variants and increased plasma levels of interleukin-17C, which is induced also in mucosal biopsies of patients with IBD. DUOX2-deficient mice replicated increased IL-17C induction in the intestine, with outlier high Il17c expression linked to the mucosal expansion of specific Proteobacteria pathobionts. Integrated microbiota/host gene expression analyses in patients with IBD corroborated IL-17C as a marker for epithelial activation by gram-negative bacteria. Finally, the impact of DUOX2 variants on IL-17C induction provided a rationale for variant stratification in case control studies that substantiated DUOX2 as an IBD risk gene. Thus, our study identifies an association of deleterious DUOX2 variants with a preclinical hallmark of disturbed microbiota-immune homeostasis that appears to precede the manifestation of IBD.
Helmut Grasberger, Andrew T. Magis, Elisa Sheng, Matthew P. Conomos, Min Zhang, Lea S. Garzotto, Guoqing Hou, Shrinivas Bishu, Hiroko Nagao-Kitamoto, Mohamad El-Zaatari, Sho Kitamoto, Nobuhiko Kamada, Ryan W. Stidham, Yasutada Akiba, Jonathan Kaunitz, Yael Haberman, Subra Kugathasan, Lee A. Denson, Gilbert S. Omenn, John Y. Kao
To define the contribution of CD8+ T cell responses to control of SIV reactivation during and following antiretroviral therapy (ART), we determined the effect of long-term CD8+ T cell depletion using a rhesusized anti-CD8β monoclonal antibody on barcoded SIVmac239 dynamics on stable ART and after ART cessation in rhesus macaques (RMs). Among the RMs with full CD8+ T cell depletion in both blood and tissue, there were no significant differences in the frequency of viral blips in plasma, the number of SIV RNA+ cells and the average number of RNA copies/infected cell in tissue, and levels of cell-associated SIV RNA and DNA in blood and tissue relative to control-treated RMs during ART. Upon ART cessation, both CD8+ T cell–depleted and control RMs rebounded in fewer than 12 days, with no difference in the time to viral rebound or in either the number or growth rate of rebounding SIVmac239M barcode clonotypes. However, effectively CD8+ T cell–depleted RMs showed a stable, approximately 2-log increase in post-ART plasma viremia relative to controls. These results indicate that while potent antiviral CD8+ T cell responses can develop during ART-suppressed SIV infection, these responses effectively intercept post-ART SIV rebound only after systemic viral replication, too late to limit reactivation frequency or the early spread of reactivating SIV reservoirs.
Afam A. Okoye, Derick D. Duell, Yoshinori Fukazawa, Benjamin Varco-Merth, Alejandra Marenco, Hannah Behrens, Morgan Chaunzwa, Andrea N. Selseth, Roxanne M. Gilbride, Jason Shao, Paul T. Edlefsen, Romas Geleziunas, Mykola Pinkevych, Miles P. Davenport, Kathleen Busman-Sahay, Michael Nekorchuk, Haesun Park, Jeremy Smedley, Michael K. Axthelm, Jacob D. Estes, Scott G. Hansen, Brandon F. Keele, Jeffery D. Lifson, Louis J. Picker
Approximately 80% of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) patients harbor serum anti–aquaporin-4 autoantibodies targeting astrocytes in the CNS. Crucial for NMOSD lesion initiation is disruption of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), which allows the entrance of Abs and serum complement into the CNS and which is a target for new NMOSD therapies. Astrocytes have important functions in BBB maintenance; however, the influence of their loss and the role of immune cell infiltration on BBB permeability in NMOSD have not yet been investigated. Using an experimental model of targeted NMOSD lesions in rats, we demonstrate that astrocyte destruction coincides with a transient disruption of the BBB and a selective loss of occludin from tight junctions. It is noteworthy that BBB integrity is reestablished before astrocytes repopulate. Rather than persistent astrocyte loss, polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) are the main mediators of BBB disruption, and their depletion preserves BBB integrity and prevents astrocyte loss. Inhibition of PMN chemoattraction, activation, and proteolytic function reduces lesion size. In summary, our data support a crucial role for PMNs in BBB disruption and NMOSD lesion development, rendering their recruitment and activation promising therapeutic targets.
Anne Winkler, Claudia Wrzos, Michael Haberl, Marie-Theres Weil, Ming Gao, Wiebke Möbius, Francesca Odoardi, Dietmar R. Thal, Mayland Chang, Ghislain Opdenakker, Jeffrey L. Bennett, Stefan Nessler, Christine Stadelmann
In humans receiving intestinal transplantation (ITx), long-term multilineage blood chimerism often develops. Donor T cell macrochimerism (≥4%) frequently occurs without graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) and is associated with reduced rejection. Here we demonstrate that patients with macrochimerism had high graft-versus-host (GvH) to host-versus-graft (HvG) T cell clonal ratios in their allografts. These GvH clones entered the circulation, where their peak levels were associated with declines in HvG clones early after transplant, suggesting that GvH reactions may contribute to chimerism and control HvG responses without causing GVHD. Consistently, donor-derived T cells, including GvH clones, and CD34+ hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) were simultaneously detected in the recipients’ BM more than 100 days after transplant. Individual GvH clones appeared in ileal mucosa or PBMCs before detection in recipient BM, consistent with an intestinal mucosal origin, where donor GvH-reactive T cells expanded early upon entry of recipient APCs into the graft. These results, combined with cytotoxic single-cell transcriptional profiles of donor T cells in recipient BM, suggest that tissue-resident GvH-reactive donor T cells migrated into the recipient circulation and BM, where they destroyed recipient hematopoietic cells through cytolytic effector functions and promoted engraftment of graft-derived HSPCs that maintain chimerism. These mechanisms suggest an approach to achieving intestinal allograft tolerance.
Jianing Fu, Julien Zuber, Brittany Shonts, Aleksandar Obradovic, Zicheng Wang, Kristjana Frangaj, Wenzhao Meng, Aaron M. Rosenfeld, Elizabeth E. Waffarn, Peter Liou, Sai-ping Lau, Thomas M. Savage, Suxiao Yang, Kortney Rogers, Nichole M. Danzl, Shilpa Ravella, Prakash Satwani, Alina Iuga, Siu-hong Ho, Adam Griesemer, Yufeng Shen, Eline T. Luning Prak, Mercedes Martinez, Tomoaki Kato, Megan Sykes
The relationship between adiposity and metabolic health is well established. However, very little is known about the fat depot, known as paracardial fat (pCF), located superior to and surrounding the heart. Here, we show that pCF remodels with aging and a high-fat diet and that the size and function of this depot are controlled by alcohol dehydrogenase 1 (ADH1), an enzyme that oxidizes retinol into retinaldehyde. Elderly individuals and individuals with obesity have low ADH1 expression in pCF, and in mice, genetic ablation of Adh1 is sufficient to drive pCF accumulation, dysfunction, and global impairments in metabolic flexibility. Metabolomics analysis revealed that pCF controlled the levels of circulating metabolites affecting fatty acid biosynthesis. Also, surgical removal of the pCF depot was sufficient to rescue the impairments in cardiometabolic flexibility and fitness observed in Adh1-deficient mice. Furthermore, treatment with retinaldehyde prevented pCF remodeling in these animals. Mechanistically, we found that the ADH1/retinaldehyde pathway works by driving PGC-1α nuclear translocation and promoting mitochondrial fusion and biogenesis in the pCF depot. Together, these data demonstrate that pCF is a critical regulator of cardiometabolic fitness and that retinaldehyde and its generating enzyme ADH1 act as critical regulators of adipocyte remodeling in the pCF depot.
Jennifer M. Petrosino, Jacob Z. Longenecker, Srinivasagan Ramkumar, Xianyao Xu, Lisa E. Dorn, Anna Bratasz, Lianbo Yu, Santosh Maurya, Vladimir Tolstikov, Valerie Bussberg, Paul M.L. Janssen, Muthu Periasamy, Michael A. Kiebish, Gregg Duester, Johannes von Lintig, Ouliana Ziouzenkova, Federica Accornero
Genetic factors undoubtedly affect the development of congenital heart disease (CHD) but still remain ill defined. We sought to identify genetic risk factors associated with CHD and to accomplish a functional analysis of SNP-carrying genes. We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 4034 White patients with CHD and 8486 healthy controls. One SNP on chromosome 5q22.2 reached genome-wide significance across all CHD phenotypes and was also indicative for septal defects. One region on chromosome 20p12.1 pointing to the MACROD2 locus identified 4 highly significant SNPs in patients with transposition of the great arteries (TGA). Three highly significant risk variants on chromosome 17q21.32 within the GOSR2 locus were detected in patients with anomalies of thoracic arteries and veins (ATAV). Genetic variants associated with ATAV are suggested to influence the expression of WNT3, and the variant rs870142 related to septal defects is proposed to influence the expression of MSX1. We analyzed the expression of all 4 genes during cardiac differentiation of human and murine induced pluripotent stem cells in vitro and by single-cell RNA-Seq analyses of developing murine and human hearts. Our data show that MACROD2, GOSR2, WNT3, and MSX1 play an essential functional role in heart development at the embryonic and newborn stages.
Harald Lahm, Meiwen Jia, Martina Dreßen, Felix Wirth, Nazan Puluca, Ralf Gilsbach, Bernard D. Keavney, Julie Cleuziou, Nicole Beck, Olga Bondareva, Elda Dzilic, Melchior Burri, Karl C. König, Johannes A. Ziegelmüller, Claudia Abou-Ajram, Irina Neb, Zhong Zhang, Stefanie A. Doppler, Elisa Mastantuono, Peter Lichtner, Gertrud Eckstein, Jürgen Hörer, Peter Ewert, James R. Priest, Lutz Hein, Rüdiger Lange, Thomas Meitinger, Heather J. Cordell, Bertram Müller-Myhsok, Markus Krane
BACKGROUND There has been a striking generational increase in the prevalence of food allergies. We have proposed that this increase can be explained, in part, by alterations in the commensal microbiome.METHODS To identify bacterial signatures and metabolic pathways that may influence the expression of this disease, we collected fecal samples from a unique, well-controlled cohort of twins concordant or discordant for food allergy. Samples were analyzed by integrating 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing and liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry metabolite profiling.RESULTS A bacterial signature of 64 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) distinguished healthy from allergic twins; the OTUs enriched in the healthy twins were largely taxa from the Clostridia class. We detected significant enrichment in distinct metabolite pathways in each group. The enrichment of diacylglycerol in healthy twins is of particular interest for its potential as a readily measurable fecal biomarker of health. In addition, an integrated microbial-metabolomic analysis identified a significant association between healthy twins and Phascolarctobacterium faecium and Ruminococcus bromii, suggesting new possibilities for the development of live microbiome-modulating biotherapeutics.CONCLUSION Twin pairs exhibited significant differences in their fecal microbiomes and metabolomes through adulthood, suggesting that the gut microbiota may play a protective role in patients with food allergies beyond the infant stage.TRIAL REGISTRATION Participants in this study were recruited as part of an observational study (ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01613885) at multiple sites from 2014 to 2018.FUNDING This work was supported by the Sunshine Charitable Foundation; the Moss Family Foundation; the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) (R56AI134923 and R01AI 140134); the Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research; the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (R01 HL 118612); the Orsak family; the Kepner family; and the Stanford Institute for Immunity, Transplant and Infection.
Riyue Bao, Lauren A. Hesser, Ziyuan He, Xiaoying Zhou, Kari C. Nadeau, Cathryn R. Nagler
T cell immunity is essential for the control of tuberculosis (TB), an important disease of the lung, and is generally studied in humans using peripheral blood cells. Mounting evidence, however, indicates that tissue-resident memory T cells (Trms) are superior at controlling many pathogens, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis), and can be quite different from those in circulation. Using freshly resected lung tissue, from individuals with active or previous TB, we identified distinct CD4+ and CD8+ Trm-like clusters within TB-diseased lung tissue that were functional and enriched for IL-17–producing cells. M. tuberculosis–specific CD4+ T cells producing TNF-α, IL-2, and IL-17 were highly expanded in the lung compared with matched blood samples, in which IL-17+ cells were largely absent. Strikingly, the frequency of M. tuberculosis–specific lung T cells making IL-17, but not other cytokines, inversely correlated with the plasma IL-1β levels, suggesting a potential link with disease severity. Using a human granuloma model, we showed the addition of either exogenous IL-17 or IL-2 enhanced immune control of M. tuberculosis and was associated with increased NO production. Taken together, these data support an important role for M. tuberculosis–specific Trm-like, IL-17–producing cells in the immune control of M. tuberculosis in the human lung.
Paul Ogongo, Liku B. Tezera, Amanda Ardain, Shepherd Nhamoyebonde, Duran Ramsuran, Alveera Singh, Abigail Ng’oepe, Farina Karim, Taryn Naidoo, Khadija Khan, Kaylesh J. Dullabh, Michael Fehlings, Boon Heng Lee, Alessandra Nardin, Cecilia S. Lindestam Arlehamn, Alessandro Sette, Samuel M. Behar, Adrie J.C. Steyn, Rajhmun Madansein, Henrik N. Kløverpris, Paul T. Elkington, Alasdair Leslie
With the growing number of transgender and gender-nonbinary individuals who are becoming visible, it is clear that there is a need to develop a rigorous evidence base to inform care practice. Transgender health research is often limited to HIV/AIDS or mental health research and is typically subsumed in larger studies with general LGBTQ focus. Although the number of knowledgeable health care providers remains modest, the model for the medical approach to transgender health is shifting owing to growing social awareness and an appreciation of a biological component. Gender-affirming medicine facilitates aligning the body of the transgender person with the gender identity; typical treatment regimens include hormone therapy and/or surgical interventions. While broadly safe, hormone treatments require some monitoring for safety. Exogenous estrogens are associated with a dose-dependent increase in venous thromboembolic risk, and androgens stimulate erythropoiesis. The degree to which progressing gender-affirming hormone treatment changes cancer risk, cardiac heart disease risk, and/or bone health remains unknown. Guidelines referencing the potential exacerbation of cancer, heart disease, or other disease risk often rely on physiology models, because conclusive clinical data do not exist. Dedicated research infrastructure and funding are needed to address the knowledge gap in the field.
Joshua D. Safer
Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy has shown considerable promise for hematologic malignancies, leading to the US Food and Drug Administration approval of two CAR T cell–based therapies for the treatment of B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia and large B cell lymphoma. Despite success in hematologic malignancies, the treatment landscape of CAR T cell therapy for solid tumors has been limited. There are unique challenges in the development of novel CAR T cell therapies to improve both safety and efficacy. Improved understanding of the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment and resistance mechanisms has led to encouraging approaches to mitigating these obstacles. This Review will characterize challenges with current CAR T designs for hematologic malignancies and solid tumors and emphasize preclinical and clinical strategies to overcome them with novel CAR T cell therapies.
Emiliano Roselli, Rawan Faramand, Marco L. Davila
The melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) plays a critical role in the long-term regulation of energy homeostasis, and mutations in the MC4R are the most common cause of monogenic obesity. However, the precise molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the maintenance of energy balance within MC4R-expressing neurons are unknown. We recently reported that the MC4R localizes to the primary cilium, a cellular organelle that allows for partitioning of incoming cellular signals, raising the question of whether the MC4R functions in this organelle. Here, using mouse genetic approaches, we found that cilia were required specifically on MC4R-expressing neurons for the control of energy homeostasis. Moreover, these cilia were critical for pharmacological activators of the MC4R to exert an anorexigenic effect. The MC4R is expressed in multiple brain regions. Using targeted deletion of primary cilia, we found that cilia in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) were essential to restrict food intake. MC4R activation increased adenylyl cyclase (AC) activity. As with the removal of cilia, inhibition of AC activity in the cilia of MC4R-expressing neurons of the PVN caused hyperphagia and obesity. Thus, the MC4R signaled via PVN neuron cilia to control food intake and body weight. We propose that defects in ciliary localization of the MC4R cause obesity in human inherited obesity syndromes and ciliopathies.
Yi Wang, Adelaide Bernard, Fanny Comblain, Xinyu Yue, Christophe Paillart, Sumei Zhang, Jeremy F. Reiter, Christian Vaisse
Tissue-based T cells are important effectors in the prevention and control of mucosal viral infections; less is known about tissue-based B cells. We demonstrate that B cells and antibody-secreting cells (ASCs) are present in inflammatory infiltrates in skin biopsy specimens from study participants during symptomatic herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2) reactivation and early healing. Both CD20+ B cells, most of which are antigen inexperienced based on their coexpression of IgD, and ASCs — characterized by dense IgG RNA expression in combination with CD138, IRF4, and Blimp-1 RNA — were found to colocalize with T cells. ASCs clustered with CD4+ T cells, suggesting the potential for crosstalk. HSV-2–specific antibodies to virus surface antigens were also present in tissue and increased in concentration during HSV-2 reactivation and healing, unlike in serum, where concentrations remained static over time. B cells, ASCs, and HSV-specific antibody were rarely detected in biopsies of unaffected skin. Evaluation of samples from serial biopsies demonstrated that B cells and ASCs followed a more migratory than resident pattern of infiltration in HSV-affected genital skin, in contrast to T cells. Together, these observations suggest the presence of distinct phenotypes of B cells in HSV-affected tissue; dissecting their role in reactivation may reveal new therapeutic avenues to control these infections.
Emily S. Ford, Anton M. Sholukh, RuthMabel Boytz, Savanna S. Carmack, Alexis Klock, Khamsone Phasouk, Danica Shao, Raabya Rossenkhan, Paul T. Edlefsen, Tao Peng, Christine Johnston, Anna Wald, Jia Zhu, Lawrence Corey
Congenital heart disease is the most common type of birth defect, accounting for one-third of all congenital anomalies. Using whole-exome sequencing of 2718 patients with congenital heart disease and a search in GeneMatcher, we identified 30 patients from 21 unrelated families of different ancestries with biallelic phospholipase D1 (PLD1) variants who presented predominantly with congenital cardiac valve defects. We also associated recessive PLD1 variants with isolated neonatal cardiomyopathy. Furthermore, we established that p.I668F is a founder variant among Ashkenazi Jews (allele frequency of ~2%) and describe the phenotypic spectrum of PLD1-associated congenital heart defects. PLD1 missense variants were overrepresented in regions of the protein critical for catalytic activity, and, correspondingly, we observed a strong reduction in enzymatic activity for most of the mutant proteins in an enzymatic assay. Finally, we demonstrate that PLD1 inhibition decreased endothelial-mesenchymal transition, an established pivotal early step in valvulogenesis. In conclusion, our study provides a more detailed understanding of disease mechanisms and phenotypic expression associated with PLD1 loss of function.
Najim Lahrouchi, Alex V. Postma, Christian M. Salazar, Daniel M. De Laughter, Fleur Tjong, Lenka Piherová, Forrest Z. Bowling, Dominic Zimmerman, Elisabeth M. Lodder, Asaf Ta-Shma, Zeev Perles, Leander Beekman, Aho Ilgun, Quinn Gunst, Mariam Hababa, Doris Škorić-Milosavljević, Viktor Stránecký, Viktor Tomek, Peter de Knijff, Rick de Leeuw, Jamille Y. Robinson, Sabrina C. Burn, Hiba Mustafa, Matthew Ambrose, Timothy Moss, Jennifer Jacober, Dmitriy M. Niyazov, Barry Wolf, Katherine H. Kim, Sara Cherny, Andreas Rousounides, Aphrodite Aristidou-Kallika, George Tanteles, Bruel Ange-Line, Anne-Sophie Denommé-Pichon, Christine Francannet, Damara Ortiz, Monique C. Haak, Arend D.J. Ten Harkel, Gwendolyn T.R. Manten, Annemiek C. Dutman, Katelijne Bouman, Monia Magliozzi, Francesca Clementina Radio, Gijs W.E. Santen, Johanna C. Herkert, H. Alex Brown, Orly Elpeleg, Maurice J.B. van den Hoff, Barbara Mulder, Michael V. Airola, Stanislav Kmoch, Joey V. Barnett, Sally-Ann Clur, Michael A. Frohman, Connie R. Bezzina
Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) kills more children than any other type of brain tumor. Despite clinical trials testing many chemotherapeutic agents, palliative radiotherapy remains the standard treatment. Here, we utilized Cre/loxP technology to show that deleting Ataxia telangiectasia mutated (Atm) in primary mouse models of DIPG can enhance tumor radiosensitivity. Genetic deletion of Atm improved survival of mice with p53-deficient but not p53 wild-type gliomas after radiotherapy. Similar to patients with DIPG, mice with p53 wild-type tumors had improved survival after radiotherapy independent of Atm deletion. Primary p53 wild-type tumor cell lines induced proapoptotic genes after radiation and repressed the NRF2 target, NAD(P)H quinone dehydrogenase 1 (Nqo1). Tumors lacking p53 and Ink4a/Arf expressed the highest level of Nqo1 and were most resistant to radiation, but deletion of Atm enhanced the radiation response. These results suggest that tumor genotype may determine whether inhibition of ATM during radiotherapy will be an effective clinical approach to treat DIPGs.
Katherine Deland, Bryce F. Starr, Joshua S. Mercer, Jovita Byemerwa, Donna M. Crabtree, Nerissa T. Williams, Lixia Luo, Yan Ma, Mark Chen, Oren J. Becher, David G. Kirsch
2021 to 2022 marks the one hundredth anniversary of ground-breaking research in Toronto that changed the course of what was, then, a universally fatal disease: type 1 diabetes. Some would argue that insulin’s discovery by Banting, Best, Macleod, and Collip was the greatest scientific advance of the 20th century, being one of the first instances in which modern medical science was able to provide lifesaving therapy. As with all scientific discoveries, the work in Toronto built upon important advances of many researchers over the preceding decades. Furthermore, the Toronto work ushered in a century of discovery of the purification, isolation, structural characterization, and genetic sequencing of insulin, all of which influenced ongoing improvements in therapeutic insulin formulations. Here we discuss the body of knowledge prior to 1921 localizing insulin to the pancreas and establishing insulin’s role in glucoregulation, and provide our views as to why researchers in Toronto ultimately achieved the purification of pancreatic extracts as a therapy. We discuss the pharmaceutical industry’s role in the early days of insulin production and distribution and provide insights into why the discoverers chose not to profit financially from the discovery. This fascinating story of bench-to-beside discovery provides useful considerations for scientists now and in the future.
Gary F. Lewis, Patricia L. Brubaker
Both basal and glucose-stimulated insulin release occur primarily by insulin secretory granule exocytosis from pancreatic β cells, and both are needed to maintain normoglycemia. Loss of insulin-secreting β cells, accompanied by abnormal glucose tolerance, may involve simple exhaustion of insulin reserves (which, by immunostaining, appears as a loss of β cell identity), or β cell dedifferentiation, or β cell death. While various sensing and signaling defects can result in diminished insulin secretion, somewhat less attention has been paid to diabetes risk caused by insufficiency in the biosynthetic generation and maintenance of the total insulin granule storage pool. This Review offers an overview of insulin biosynthesis, beginning with the preproinsulin mRNA (translation and translocation into the ER), proinsulin folding and export from the ER, and delivery via the Golgi complex to secretory granules for conversion to insulin and ultimate hormone storage. All of these steps are needed for generation and maintenance of the total insulin granule pool, and defects in any of these steps may, weakly or strongly, perturb glycemic control. The foregoing considerations have obvious potential relevance to the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes and some forms of monogenic diabetes; conceivably, several of these concepts might also have implications for β cell failure in type 1 diabetes.
Ming Liu, Yumeng Huang, Xiaoxi Xu, Xin Li, Maroof Alam, Anoop Arunagiri, Leena Haataja, Li Ding, Shusen Wang, Pamela Itkin-Ansari, Randal J. Kaufman, Billy Tsai, Ling Qi, Peter Arvan
The molecular mechanisms of cellular insulin action have been the focus of much investigation since the discovery of the hormone 100 years ago. Insulin action is impaired in metabolic syndrome, a condition known as insulin resistance. The actions of the hormone are initiated by binding to its receptor on the surface of target cells. The receptor is an α2β2 heterodimer that binds to insulin with high affinity, resulting in the activation of its tyrosine kinase activity. Once activated, the receptor can phosphorylate a number of intracellular substrates that initiate discrete signaling pathways. The tyrosine phosphorylation of some substrates activates phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K), which produces polyphosphoinositides that interact with protein kinases, leading to activation of the kinase Akt. Phosphorylation of Shc leads to activation of the Ras/MAP kinase pathway. Phosphorylation of SH2B2 and of Cbl initiates activation of G proteins such as TC10. Activation of Akt and other protein kinases produces phosphorylation of a variety of substrates, including transcription factors, GTPase-activating proteins, and other kinases that control key metabolic events. Among the cellular processes controlled by insulin are vesicle trafficking, activities of metabolic enzymes, transcriptional factors, and degradation of insulin itself. Together these complex processes are coordinated to ensure glucose homeostasis.
Alan R. Saltiel
As part of the centennial celebration of insulin’s discovery, this review summarizes the current understanding of the genetics, pathogenesis, treatment, and outcomes in type 1 diabetes (T1D). T1D results from an autoimmune response that leads to destruction of the β cells in the pancreatic islet and requires lifelong insulin therapy. While much has been learned about T1D, it is now clear that there is considerable heterogeneity in T1D with regard to genetics, pathology, response to immune-based therapies, clinical course, and susceptibility to diabetes-related complications. This Review highlights knowledge gaps and opportunities to improve the understanding of T1D pathogenesis and outlines emerging therapies to treat or prevent T1D and reduce the burden of T1D.
Alvin C. Powers
Diabetes mellitus is a major public health problem, affecting about 10% of the population. Pharmacotherapy aims to protect against microvascular complications, including blindness, end-stage kidney disease, and amputations. Landmark clinical trials have demonstrated that intensive glycemic control slows progression of microvascular complications (retinopathy, nephropathy, and neuropathy). Long-term follow-up has demonstrated that intensive glycemic control also decreases risk of macrovascular disease, albeit rigorous evidence of macrovascular benefit did not emerge for over a decade. The US FDA’s recent requirement for dedicated cardiovascular outcome trials ushered in a golden age for understanding the clinical profiles of new type 2 diabetes drugs. Some clinical trials with sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors and glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP1) receptor agonists reported data demonstrating cardiovascular benefit (decreased risk of major adverse cardiovascular events and hospitalization for heart failure) and slower progression of diabetic kidney disease. This Review discusses current guidelines for use of the 12 classes of drugs approved to promote glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes. The Review also anticipates future developments with potential to improve the standard of care: availability of generic dipeptidylpeptidase-4 (DPP4) inhibitors and SGLT2 inhibitors; precision medicine to identify the best drugs for individual patients; and new therapies to protect against chronic complications of diabetes.
Simeon I. Taylor, Zhinous Shahidzadeh Yazdi, Amber L. Beitelshees
Monogenic diabetes refers to diabetes mellitus (DM) caused by a mutation in a single gene and accounts for approximately 1%–5% of diabetes. Correct diagnosis is clinically critical for certain types of monogenic diabetes, since the appropriate treatment is determined by the etiology of the disease (e.g., oral sulfonylurea treatment of HNF1A/HNF4A-diabetes vs. insulin injections in type 1 diabetes). However, achieving a correct diagnosis requires genetic testing, and the overlapping of the clinical features of monogenic diabetes with those of type 1 and type 2 diabetes has frequently led to misdiagnosis. Improvements in sequencing technology are increasing opportunities to diagnose monogenic diabetes, but challenges remain. In this Review, we describe the types of monogenic diabetes, including common and uncommon types of maturity-onset diabetes of the young, multiple causes of neonatal DM, and syndromic diabetes such as Wolfram syndrome and lipodystrophy. We also review methods of prioritizing patients undergoing genetic testing, and highlight existing challenges facing sequence data interpretation that can be addressed by forming collaborations of expertise and by pooling cases.
Haichen Zhang, Kevin Colclough, Anna L. Gloyn, Toni I. Pollin
Severe insulin resistance syndromes are a heterogeneous group of rare disorders characterized by profound insulin resistance, substantial metabolic abnormalities, and a variety of clinical manifestations and complications. The etiology of these syndromes may be hereditary or acquired, due to defects in insulin potency and action, cellular responsiveness to insulin, and/or aberrations in adipose tissue function or development. Over the past decades, advances in medical technology, particularly in genomic technologies and genetic analyses, have provided insights into the underlying pathophysiological pathways and facilitated the more precise identification of several of these conditions. However, the exact cellular and molecular mechanisms of insulin resistance have not yet been fully elucidated for all syndromes. Moreover, in clinical practice, many of the syndromes are often misdiagnosed or underdiagnosed. The majority of these disorders associate with an increased risk of severe complications and mortality; thus, early identification and personalized clinical management are of the essence. This Review aims to categorize severe insulin resistance syndromes by disease process, including insulin receptor defects, signaling defects, and lipodystrophies. We also highlight several complex syndromes and emphasize the need to identify patients, investigate underlying disease mechanisms, and develop specific treatment regimens.
Angeliki M. Angelidi, Andreas Filippaios, Christos S. Mantzoros
Carbohydrate restriction, used since the 1700s to prolong survival in people with diabetes, fell out of favor after the discovery of insulin. Despite costly pharmacological and technological developments in the last few decades, current therapies do not achieve optimal outcomes, and most people with diabetes remain at high risk for micro- and macrovascular complications. Recently, low-carbohydrate diets have regained popularity, with preliminary evidence of benefit for body weight, postprandial hyperglycemia, hyperinsulinemia, and other cardiometabolic risk factors in type 2 diabetes and, with more limited data, in type 1 diabetes. High-quality, long-term trials are needed to assess safety concerns and determine whether this old dietary approach might help people with diabetes attain clinical targets more effectively, and at a lower cost, than conventional treatment.
Belinda S. Lennerz, Andrew P. Koutnik, Svetlana Azova, Joseph I. Wolfsdorf, David S. Ludwig
The effectiveness of virus-specific strategies, including administered HIV-specific mAbs, to target cells that persistently harbor latent, rebound-competent HIV genomes during combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) has been limited by inefficient induction of viral protein expression. To examine antibody-mediated viral reservoir targeting without a need for viral induction, we used an anti-CD4 mAb to deplete both infected and uninfected CD4+ T cells. Ten rhesus macaques infected with barcoded SIVmac239M received cART for 93 weeks starting 4 days after infection. During cART, 5 animals received 5 to 6 anti-CD4 antibody administrations and CD4+ T cell populations were then allowed 1 year on cART to recover. Despite profound CD4+ T cell depletion in blood and lymph nodes, time to viral rebound following cART cessation was not significantly delayed in anti-CD4–treated animals compared with controls. Viral reactivation rates, determined based on rebounding SIVmac239M clonotype proportions, also were not significantly different in CD4-depleted animals. Notably, antibody-mediated depletion was limited in rectal tissue and negligible in lymphoid follicles. These results suggest that, even if robust viral reactivation can be achieved, antibody-mediated viral reservoir depletion may be limited in key tissue sites.
Adrienne E. Swanstrom, Taina T. Immonen, Kelli Oswald, Cathi Pyle, James A. Thomas, William J. Bosche, Lorna Silipino, Michael Hull, Laura Newman, Vicky Coalter, Adam Wiles, Rodney Wiles, Jacob Kiser, David R. Morcock, Rebecca Shoemaker, Randy Fast, Matthew W. Breed, Joshua Kramer, Duncan Donohue, Tyler Malys, Christine M. Fennessey, Charles M. Trubey, Claire Deleage, Jacob D. Estes, Jeffrey D. Lifson, Brandon F. Keele, Gregory Q. Del Prete
Inborn errors of immunity cause monogenic immune dysregulatory conditions such as severe and recurrent pathogen infection, inflammation, allergy, and malignancy. Somatic reversion refers to the spontaneous repair of a pathogenic germline genetic variant and has been reported to occur in a number of inborn errors of immunity, with a range of impacts on clinical outcomes of these conditions. DOCK8 deficiency due to biallelic inactivating mutations in DOCK8 causes a combined immunodeficiency characterized by severe bacterial, viral, and fungal infections, as well as allergic disease and some cancers. Here, we describe the clinical, genetic, and cellular features of 3 patients with biallelic DOCK8 variants who, following somatic reversion in multiple lymphocyte subsets, exhibited improved clinical features, including complete resolution of infection and allergic disease, and cure over time. Acquisition of DOCK8 expression restored defective lymphocyte signalling, survival and proliferation, as well as CD8+ T cell cytotoxicity, CD4+ T cell cytokine production, and memory B cell generation compared with typical DOCK8-deficient patients. Our temporal analysis of DOCK8-revertant and DOCK8-deficient cells within the same individual established mechanisms of clinical improvement in these patients following somatic reversion and revealed further nonredundant functions of DOCK8 in human lymphocyte biology. Last, our findings have significant implications for future therapeutic options for the treatment of DOCK8 deficiency.
Bethany A. Pillay, Mathieu Fusaro, Paul E. Gray, Aaron L. Statham, Leslie Burnett, Liliana Bezrodnik, Alisa Kane, Winnie Tong, Chrystelle Abdo, Sarah Winter, Samuel Chevalier, Romain Levy, Cécile Masson, Yohann Schmitt, Christine Bole, Marion Malphettes, Elizabeth Macintyre, Jean-Pierre De Villartay, John B. Ziegler, Joanne M. Smart, Jane Peake, Asghar Aghamohammadi, Lennart Hammarström, Hassan Abolhassani, Capucine Picard, Alain Fischer, Sylvain Latour, Benedicte Neven, Stuart G. Tangye, Cindy S. Ma
The triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 1 (TREM-1) drives inflammatory responses in several cardiovascular diseases but its role in abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) remains unknown. Our objective was to explore the role of TREM-1 in a mouse model of angiotensin II–induced (AngII–induced) AAA. TREM-1 expression was detected in mouse aortic aneurysm and colocalized with macrophages. Trem1 gene deletion (Apoe–/–Trem1–/–), as well as TREM-1 pharmacological blockade with LR-12 peptide, limited both AAA development and severity. Trem1 gene deletion attenuated the inflammatory response in the aorta, with a reduction of Il1b, Tnfa, Mmp2, and Mmp9 mRNA expression, and led to a decreased macrophage content due to a reduction of Ly6Chi classical monocyte trafficking. Conversely, antibody-mediated TREM-1 stimulation exacerbated Ly6Chi monocyte aorta infiltration after AngII infusion through CD62L upregulation and promoted proinflammatory signature in the aorta, resulting in worsening AAA severity. AngII infusion stimulated TREM-1 expression and activation on Ly6Chi monocytes through AngII receptor type I (AT1R). In human AAA, TREM-1 was detected and TREM1 mRNA expression correlated with SELL mRNA expression. Finally, circulating levels of sTREM-1 were increased in patients with AAA when compared with patients without AAA. In conclusion, TREM-1 is involved in AAA pathophysiology and may represent a promising therapeutic target in humans.
Marie Vandestienne, Yujiao Zhang, Icia Santos-Zas, Rida Al-Rifai, Jeremie Joffre, Andreas Giraud, Ludivine Laurans, Bruno Esposito, Florence Pinet, Patrick Bruneval, Juliette Raffort, Fabien Lareyre, Jose Vilar, Amir Boufenzer, Lea Guyonnet, Coralie Guerin, Eric Clauser, Jean-Sébastien Silvestre, Sylvie Lang, Laurie Soulat-Dufour, Alain Tedgui, Ziad Mallat, Soraya Taleb, Alexandre Boissonnas, Marc Derive, Giulia Chinetti, Hafid Ait-Oufella
X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease caused by mutations in ABCD1, the peroxisomal very long–chain fatty acid (VLCFA) transporter. ABCD1 deficiency results in accumulation of saturated VLCFAs. A drug screen using a phenotypic motor assay in a zebrafish ALD model identified chloroquine as the top hit. Chloroquine increased expression of stearoyl-CoA desaturase-1 (scd1), the enzyme mediating fatty acid saturation status, suggesting that a shift toward monounsaturated fatty acids relieved toxicity. In human ALD fibroblasts, chloroquine also increased SCD1 levels and reduced saturated VLCFAs. Conversely, pharmacological inhibition of SCD1 expression led to an increase in saturated VLCFAs, and CRISPR knockout of scd1 in zebrafish mimicked the motor phenotype of ALD zebrafish. Importantly, saturated VLCFAs caused ER stress in ALD fibroblasts, whereas monounsaturated VLCFA did not. In parallel, we used liver X receptor (LXR) agonists to increase SCD1 expression, causing a shift from saturated toward monounsaturated VLCFA and normalizing phospholipid profiles. Finally, Abcd1–/y mice receiving LXR agonist in their diet had VLCFA reductions in ALD-relevant tissues. These results suggest that metabolic rerouting of saturated to monounsaturated VLCFAs may alleviate lipid toxicity, a strategy that may be beneficial in ALD and other peroxisomal diseases in which VLCFAs play a key role.
Quentin Raas, Malu-Clair van de Beek, Sonja Forss-Petter, Inge M.E. Dijkstra, Abigail Deschiffart, Briana C. Freshner, Tamara J. Stevenson, Yorrick R.J. Jaspers, Liselotte Nagtzaam, Ronald J.A. Wanders, Michel van Weeghel, Joo-Yeon Engelen-Lee, Marc Engelen, Florian Eichler, Johannes Berger, Joshua L. Bonkowsky, Stephan Kemp
Gene editing holds the potential to correct mutations and cure devastating genetic disorders. The technology has not yet proven efficacious for therapeutic use in CNS diseases with ubiquitous neuronal defects. Angelman syndrome (AS), a severe neurodevelopmental disorder, is caused by a lack of maternal expression of the UBE3A gene. Because of genomic imprinting, only neurons are affected. One therapeutic approach focuses on the intact paternal UBE3A copy in patients with AS that is silenced by an antisense transcript (UBE3A-ATS). We show here that gene editing of Ube3a-ATS in the mouse brain resulted in the formation of base pair insertions/deletions (indels) in neurons and the subsequent unsilencing of the paternal Ube3a allele in neurons, which partially corrected the behavioral phenotype of a murine AS model. This study provides compelling evidence to further investigate editing of the homologous region of the human UBE3A-ATS because this may provide a lasting therapeutic effect for patients with AS.
Ralf S. Schmid, Xuefeng Deng, Priyalakshmi Panikker, Msema Msackyi, Camilo Breton, James M. Wilson
Bone mineral density (BMD) is a highly heritable predictor of osteoporotic fracture. GWAS have identified hundreds of loci influencing BMD, but few have been functionally analyzed. In this study, we show that SNPs within a BMD locus on chromosome 14q32.32 alter splicing and expression of PAR-1a/microtubule affinity regulating kinase 3 (MARK3), a conserved serine/threonine kinase known to regulate bioenergetics, cell division, and polarity. Mice lacking Mark3 either globally or selectively in osteoblasts have increased bone mass at maturity. RNA profiling from Mark3-deficient osteoblasts suggested changes in the expression of components of the Notch signaling pathway. Mark3-deficient osteoblasts exhibited greater matrix mineralization compared with controls that was accompanied by reduced Jag1/Hes1 expression and diminished downstream JNK signaling. Overexpression of Jag1 in Mark3-deficient osteoblasts both in vitro and in vivo normalized mineralization capacity and bone mass, respectively. Together, these findings reveal a mechanism whereby genetically regulated alterations in Mark3 expression perturb cell signaling in osteoblasts to influence bone mass.
Qian Zhang, Larry D. Mesner, Gina M. Calabrese, Naomi Dirckx, Zhu Li, Angela Verardo, Qian Yang, Robert J. Tower, Marie-Claude Faugere, Charles R. Farber, Thomas L. Clemens
BACKGROUND Cisplatin is widely used to treat adult and pediatric cancers. It is the most ototoxic drug in clinical use, resulting in permanent hearing loss in approximately 50% of treated patients. There is a major need for therapies that prevent cisplatin-induced hearing loss. Studies in mice suggest that concurrent use of statins reduces cisplatin-induced hearing loss.METHODS We examined hearing thresholds from 277 adults treated with cisplatin for head and neck cancer. Pretreatment and posttreatment audiograms were collected within 90 days of initiation and completion of cisplatin therapy. The primary outcome measure was a change in hearing as defined by the National Cancer Institute Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE).RESULTS Among patients on concurrent atorvastatin, 9.7% experienced a CTCAE grade 2 or higher cisplatin-induced hearing loss compared with 29.4% in nonstatin users (P < 0.0001). A mixed-effect model analysis showed that atorvastatin use was significantly associated with reduced cisplatin-induced hearing loss (P ≤ 0.01). An adjusted odds ratio (OR) analysis indicated that an atorvastatin user is 53% less likely to acquire a cisplatin-induced hearing loss than a nonstatin user (OR = 0.47; 95% CI, 0.30–0.78). Three-year survival rates were not different between atorvastatin users and nonstatin users (P > 0.05).CONCLUSIONS Our data indicate that atorvastatin use is associated with reduced incidence and severity of cisplatin-induced hearing loss in adults being treated for head and neck cancer.TRIAL REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT03225157.FUNDING Funding was provided by the Division of Intramural Research at the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (1 ZIA DC000079, ZIA DC000090).
Katharine A. Fernandez, Paul Allen, Maura Campbell, Brandi Page, Thomas Townes, Chuan-Ming Li, Hui Cheng, Jaylon Garrett, Marcia Mulquin, Anna Clements, Deborah Mulford, Candice Ortiz, Carmen Brewer, Judy R. Dubno, Shawn Newlands, Nicole C. Schmitt, Lisa L. Cunningham
DYRK1A, the dual-specificity kinase, is again doubling up on function, as reported by Bhansali, Rammohan, and colleagues in this issue of the JCI. DYRK1A is an evolutionarily conserved protein kinase with dual specificity; it adds phosphates to serine/threonine residues of diverse regulatory proteins and activates its own function by autophosphorylating a critical tyrosine at position 321 in the activation loop. Bhansali, Rammohan, and colleagues investigated B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) in individuals with Down syndrome (DS) and in children with leukemia characterized by aneuploidy. The study revealed a DYRK1A/FOXO1 and STAT3 signaling pathway in B-ALL that could be targeted pharmacologically, thus opening the door to therapeutic strategies for patients with leukemia with or without DS.
Jung-Hyun Kim, Liping Li, Linda M.S. Resar
Ovarian cancer (OC) is the most deadly gynecological malignancy, with unmet clinical need for new therapeutic approaches. The relaxin peptide is a pleiotropic hormone with reproductive functions in the ovary. Relaxin induces cell growth in several types of cancer, but the role of relaxin in OC is poorly understood. Here, using cell lines and xenograft models, we demonstrate that relaxin and its associated GPCR RXFP1 form an autocrine signaling loop essential for OC in vivo tumorigenesis, cell proliferation, and viability. We determined that relaxin signaling activates expression of prooncogenic pathways, including RHO, MAPK, Wnt, and Notch. We found that relaxin is detectable in patient-derived OC tumors, ascites, and serum. Further, inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-α activated transcription of relaxin via recruitment of STAT3 and NF-κB to the proximal promoter, initiating an autocrine feedback loop that potentiated expression. Inhibition of RXFP1 or relaxin increased cisplatin sensitivity of OC cell lines and abrogated in vivo tumor formation. Finally, we demonstrate that a relaxin-neutralizing antibody reduced OC cell viability and sensitized cells to cisplatin. Collectively, these data identify the relaxin/RXFP1 autocrine loop as a therapeutic vulnerability in OC.
Helen E. Burston, Oliver A. Kent, Laudine Communal, Molly L. Udaskin, Ren X. Sun, Kevin R. Brown, Euihye Jung, Kyle E. Francis, Jose La Rose, Joshua Lowitz, Ronny Drapkin, Anne-Marie Mes-Masson, Robert Rottapel
Identification of neoepitopes that are effective in cancer therapy is a major challenge in creating cancer vaccines. Here, using an entirely unbiased approach, we queried all possible neoepitopes in a mouse cancer model and asked which of those are effective in mediating tumor rejection and, independently, in eliciting a measurable CD8 response. This analysis uncovered a large trove of effective anticancer neoepitopes that have strikingly different properties from conventional epitopes and suggested an algorithm to predict them. It also revealed that our current methods of prediction discard the overwhelming majority of true anticancer neoepitopes. These results from a single mouse model were validated in another antigenically distinct mouse cancer model and are consistent with data reported in human studies. Structural modeling showed how the MHC I–presented neoepitopes had an altered conformation, higher stability, or increased exposure to T cell receptors as compared with the unmutated counterparts. T cells elicited by the active neoepitopes identified here demonstrated a stem-like early dysfunctional phenotype associated with effective responses against viruses and tumors of transgenic mice. These abundant anticancer neoepitopes, which have not been tested in human studies thus far, can be exploited for generation of personalized human cancer vaccines.
Cory A. Brennick, Mariam M. George, Marmar M. Moussa, Adam T. Hagymasi, Sahar Al Seesi, Tatiana V. Shcheglova, Ryan P. Englander, Grant L.J. Keller, Jeremy L. Balsbaugh, Brian M. Baker, Andrea Schietinger, Ion I. Mandoiu, Pramod K. Srivastava
Intestinal farnesoid X receptor (FXR) signaling is involved in the development of obesity, fatty liver disease, and type 2 diabetes. However, the role of intestinal FXR in atherosclerosis and its potential as a target for clinical treatment have not been explored. The serum levels of fibroblast growth factor 19 (FGF19), which is encoded by an FXR target gene, were much higher in patients with hypercholesterolemia than in control subjects and were positively related to circulating ceramide levels, indicating a link between intestinal FXR, ceramide metabolism, and atherosclerosis. Among ApoE–/– mice fed a high-cholesterol diet (HCD), intestinal FXR deficiency (in FxrΔIE ApoE–/– mice) or direct FXR inhibition (via treatment with the FXR antagonist glycoursodeoxycholic acid [GUDCA]) decreased atherosclerosis and reduced the levels of circulating ceramides and cholesterol. Sphingomyelin phosphodiesterase 3 (SMPD3), which is involved in ceramide synthesis in the intestine, was identified as an FXR target gene. SMPD3 overexpression or C16:0 ceramide supplementation eliminated the improvements in atherosclerosis in FxrΔIE ApoE–/– mice. Administration of GUDCA or GW4869, an SMPD3 inhibitor, elicited therapeutic effects on established atherosclerosis in ApoE–/– mice by decreasing circulating ceramide levels. This study identified an intestinal FXR/SMPD3 axis that is a potential target for atherosclerosis therapy.
Qing Wu, Lulu Sun, Xiaomin Hu, Xuemei Wang, Feng Xu, Bo Chen, Xianyi Liang, Jialin Xia, Pengcheng Wang, Daisuke Aibara, Shaofei Zhang, Guangyi Zeng, Chuyu Yun, Yu Yan, Yicheng Zhu, Michael Bustin, Shuyang Zhang, Frank J. Gonzalez, Changtao Jiang
Inhibitors of factor VIII (FVIII) remain the most challenging complication of FVIII protein replacement therapy in hemophilia A (HA). Understanding the mechanisms that guide FVIII-specific B cell development could help identify therapeutic targets. The B cell–activating factor (BAFF) cytokine family is a key regulator of B cell differentiation in normal homeostasis and immune disorders. Thus, we used patient samples and mouse models to investigate the potential role of BAFF in modulating FVIII inhibitors. BAFF levels were elevated in pediatric and adult HA inhibitor patients and decreased to levels similar to those of noninhibitor controls after successful immune tolerance induction (ITI). Moreover, elevations in BAFF levels were seen in patients who failed to achieve FVIII tolerance with anti-CD20 antibody–mediated B cell depletion. In naive HA mice, prophylactic anti-BAFF antibody therapy prior to FVIII immunization prevented inhibitor formation and this tolerance was maintained despite FVIII exposure after immune reconstitution. In preimmunized HA mice, combination therapy with anti-CD20 and anti-BAFF antibodies dramatically reduced FVIII inhibitors via inhibition of FVIII-specific plasma cells. Our data suggest that BAFF may regulate the generation and maintenance of FVIII inhibitors and/or anti-FVIII B cells. Finally, anti-CD20/anti-BAFF combination therapy may be clinically useful for ITI.
Bhavya S. Doshi, Jyoti Rana, Giancarlo Castaman, Mostafa A. Shaheen, Radoslaw Kaczmarek, John S.S. Butterfield, Shannon L. Meeks, Cindy Leissinger, Moanaro Biswas, Valder R. Arruda
A considerable fraction of B cells recognize severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) with germline-encoded elements of their B cell receptor, resulting in the production of neutralizing and nonneutralizing antibodies. We found that antibody sequences from different discovery cohorts shared biochemical properties and could be retrieved across validation cohorts, confirming the stereotyped character of this naive response in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). While neutralizing antibody sequences were found independently of disease severity, in line with serological data, individual nonneutralizing antibody sequences were associated with fatal clinical courses, suggesting detrimental effects of these antibodies. We mined 200 immune repertoires from healthy individuals and 500 repertoires from patients with blood or solid cancers — all acquired prior to the pandemic — for SARS-CoV-2 antibody sequences. While the largely unmutated B cell rearrangements occurred in a substantial fraction of immune repertoires from young and healthy individuals, these sequences were less likely to be found in individuals over 60 years of age and in those with cancer. This reflects B cell repertoire restriction in aging and cancer, and may to a certain extent explain the different clinical courses of COVID-19 observed in these risk groups. Future studies will have to address if this stereotyped B cell response to SARS-CoV-2 emerging from unmutated antibody rearrangements will create long-lived memory.
Lisa Paschold, Donjete Simnica, Edith Willscher, Maria J.G.T. Vehreschild, Jochen Dutzmann, Daniel G. Sedding, Christoph Schultheiß, Mascha Binder
BACKGROUND We investigated residual β cell function in Diabetes Control and Complications Trial/Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications (DCCT/EDIC) study participants with an average 35-year duration of type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM).METHODS Serum C-peptide was measured during a 4-hour mixed-meal tolerance test. Associations with metabolic outcomes and complications were explored among nonresponders (all C-peptide values after meal <0.003 nmol/L) and 3 categories of responders, classified by peak C-peptide concentration (nmol/L) as high (>0.2), intermediate (>0.03 to ≤0.2), and low (≥ 0.003 to ≤0.03).RESULTS Of the 944 participants, 117 (12.4%) were classified as responders. Residual C-peptide concentrations were associated with higher DCCT baseline concentrations of stimulated C-peptide (P value for trend = 0.0001). Residual C-peptide secretion was not associated with current or mean HbA1c, HLA high-risk haplotypes for T1DM, or the current presence of T1DM autoantibodies. The proportion of subjects with a history of severe hypoglycemia was lower with high (27%) and intermediate (48%) residual C-peptide concentrations than with low (74%) and no (70%) residual C-peptide concentrations (P value for trend = 0.0001). Responders and nonresponders demonstrated similar rates of advanced microvascular complications.CONCLUSION β Cell function can persist in long-duration T1DM. With a peak C-peptide concentration of >0.03 nmol/L, we observed clinically meaningful reductions in the prevalence of severe hypoglycemia.TRIAL REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00360815 and NCT00360893.FUNDING Division of Diabetes Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (DP3-DK104438, U01 DK094176, and U01 DK094157).
Rose A. Gubitosi-Klug, Barbara H. Braffett, Susan Hitt, Valerie Arends, Diane Uschner, Kimberly Jones, Lisa Diminick, Amy B. Karger, Andrew D. Paterson, Delnaz Roshandel, Santica Marcovina, John M. Lachin, Michael Steffes, Jerry P. Palmer, the DCCT/EDIC Research Group
In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoclastic bone resorption causes structural joint damage as well as periarticular and systemic bone loss. Periarticular bone loss is one of the earliest indices of RA, often preceding the onset of clinical symptoms via largely unknown mechanisms. Excessive osteoclastogenesis induced by receptor activator of NF-κB ligand (RANKL) expressed by synovial fibroblasts causes joint erosion, whereas the role of RANKL expressed by lymphocytes in various types of bone damage has yet to be elucidated. In the bone marrow of arthritic mice, we found an increase in the number of RANKL-expressing plasma cells, which displayed an ability to induce osteoclastogenesis in vitro. Genetic ablation of RANKL in B-lineage cells resulted in amelioration of periarticular bone loss, but not of articular erosion or systemic bone loss, in autoimmune arthritis. We also show conclusive evidence for the critical contribution of synovial fibroblast RANKL to joint erosion in collagen-induced arthritis on the arthritogenic DBA/1J background. This study highlights the importance of plasma-cell RANKL in periarticular bone loss in arthritis and provides mechanistic insight into the early manifestation of bone lesion induced by autoimmunity.
Noriko Komatsu, Stephanie Win, Minglu Yan, Nam Cong-Nhat Huynh, Shinichiro Sawa, Masayuki Tsukasaki, Asuka Terashima, Warunee Pluemsakunthai, George Kollias, Tomoki Nakashima, Hiroshi Takayanagi
Estrogen deficiency causes a gut microbiome–dependent expansion of BM Th17 cells and TNF-α–producing T cells. The resulting increased BM levels of IL-17a (IL-17) and TNF stimulate RANKL expression and activity, causing bone loss. However, the origin of BM Th17 cells and TNF+ T cells is unknown. Here, we show that ovariectomy (ovx) expanded intestinal Th17 cells and TNF+ T cells, increased their S1P receptor 1–mediated (S1PR1-mediated) egress from the intestine, and enhanced their subsequent influx into the BM through CXCR3- and CCL20-mediated mechanisms. Demonstrating the functional relevance of T cell trafficking, blockade of Th17 cell and TNF+ T cell egress from the gut or their influx into the BM prevented ovx-induced bone loss. Therefore, intestinal T cells are a proximal target of sex steroid deficiency relevant for bone loss. Blockade of intestinal T cell migration may represent a therapeutic strategy for the treatment of postmenopausal bone loss.
Mingcan Yu, Subhashis Pal, Cameron W. Paterson, Jau-Yi Li, Abdul Malik Tyagi, Jonathan Adams, Craig M. Coopersmith, M. Neale Weitzmann, Roberto Pacifici
Lysosomal dysfunction caused by mutations in lysosomal genes results in lysosomal storage disorder (LSD), characterized by accumulation of damaged proteins and organelles in cells and functional abnormalities in major organs, including the heart, skeletal muscle, and liver. In LSD, autophagy is inhibited at the lysosomal degradation step and accumulation of autophagosomes is observed. Enlargement of the left ventricle (LV) and contractile dysfunction were observed in RagA/B cardiac-specific KO (cKO) mice, a mouse model of LSD in which lysosomal acidification is impaired irreversibly. YAP, a downstream effector of the Hippo pathway, was accumulated in RagA/B cKO mouse hearts. Inhibition of YAP ameliorated cardiac hypertrophy and contractile dysfunction and attenuated accumulation of autophagosomes without affecting lysosomal function, suggesting that YAP plays an important role in mediating cardiomyopathy in RagA/B cKO mice. Cardiomyopathy was also alleviated by downregulation of Atg7, an intervention to inhibit autophagy, whereas it was exacerbated by stimulation of autophagy. YAP physically interacted with transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master transcription factor that controls autophagic and lysosomal gene expression, thereby facilitating accumulation of autophagosomes without degradation. These results indicate that accumulation of YAP in the presence of LSD promotes cardiomyopathy by stimulating accumulation of autophagosomes through activation of TFEB.
Shohei Ikeda, Jihoon Nah, Akihiro Shirakabe, Peiyong Zhai, Shin-ichi Oka, Sebastiano Sciarretta, Kun-Liang Guan, Hiroaki Shimokawa, Junichi Sadoshima
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) affects hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, reducing their quality of life and leading to death from respiratory failure within years of diagnosis. Treatment options remain limited, with only two FDA-approved drugs available in the United States, neither of which reverse the lung damage caused by the disease or prolong the life of individuals with IPF. The only cure for IPF is lung transplantation. In this review, we discuss recent major advances in our understanding of the role of the immune system in IPF that have revealed immune dysregulation as a critical driver of disease pathophysiology. We also highlight ways in which an improved understanding of the immune system’s role in IPF may enable the development of targeted immunomodulatory therapies that successfully halt or potentially even reverse lung fibrosis.
Kevin Shenderov, Samuel L. Collins, Jonathan D. Powell, Maureen R. Horton
Interferons (IFNs) are pleiotropic cytokines critical for regulation of epithelial cell functions and for immune system regulation. In cancer, IFNs contribute to tumor-intrinsic and -extrinsic mechanisms that determine the quality of antitumor immunity and response to immunotherapy. In this Review, we focus on the different types of tumor IFN sensitivity that determine dynamic tumor-immune interactions and their coevolution during cancer progression and metastasis. We extend the discussion to new evidence supporting immunotherapy-mediated immunoediting and the dual opposing roles of IFNs that lead to immune checkpoint blockade response or resistance. Understanding the intricate dynamic responses to IFN will lead to novel immunotherapeutic strategies to circumvent protumorigenic effects of IFN while exploiting IFN-mediated antitumor immunity.
Michelle von Locquenghien, Catalina Rozalén, Toni Celià-Terrassa
Chronic pancreatitis affects over 250,000 people in the US and millions worldwide. It is associated with chronic debilitating pain, pancreatic exocrine failure, and high risk of pancreatic cancer and usually progresses to diabetes. Treatment options are limited and ineffective. We developed a new potential therapy, wherein a pancreatic ductal infusion of 1%–2% acetic acid in mice and nonhuman primates resulted in a nonregenerative, near-complete ablation of the exocrine pancreas, with complete preservation of the islets. Pancreatic ductal infusion of acetic acid in a mouse model of chronic pancreatitis led to resolution of chronic inflammation and pancreatitis-associated pain. Furthermore, acetic acid–treated animals showed improved glucose tolerance and insulin secretion. The loss of exocrine tissue in this procedure would not typically require further management in patients with chronic pancreatitis because they usually have pancreatic exocrine failure requiring dietary enzyme supplements. Thus, this procedure, which should be readily translatable to humans through an endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), may offer a potential innovative nonsurgical therapy for chronic pancreatitis that relieves pain and prevents the progression of pancreatic diabetes.
Mohamed Saleh, Kartikeya Sharma, Ranjeet Kalsi, Joseph Fusco, Anuradha Sehrawat, Jami L. Saloman, Ping Guo, Ting Zhang, Nada Mohamed, Yan Wang, Krishna Prasadan, George K. Gittes
IgE induced by type 2 immune responses in atopic dermatitis is implicated in the progression of atopic dermatitis to other allergic diseases, including food allergies, allergic rhinitis, and asthma. However, the keratinocyte-derived signals that promote IgE and ensuing allergic diseases remain unclear. Herein, in a mouse model of atopic dermatitis–like skin inflammation induced by epicutaneous Staphylococcus aureus exposure, keratinocyte release of IL‑36α along with IL-4 triggered B cell IgE class-switching, plasma cell differentiation, and increased serum IgE levels—all of which were abrogated in IL-36R–deficient mice or anti-IL‑36R–blocking antibody–treated mice. Moreover, skin allergen sensitization during S. aureus epicutaneous exposure-induced IL-36 responses was required for the development of allergen-specific lung inflammation. In translating these findings, elevated IL‑36 cytokines in human atopic dermatitis skin and in IL‑36 receptor antagonist–deficiency patients coincided with increased serum IgE levels. Collectively, keratinocyte-initiated IL‑36 responses represent a key mechanism and potential therapeutic target against allergic diseases.
Garrett J. Patrick, Haiyun Liu, Martin P. Alphonse, Dustin A. Dikeman, Christine Youn, Jack C. Otterson, Yu Wang, Advaitaa Ravipati, Momina Mazhar, George Denny, Roger V. Ortines, Emily Zhang, Robert J. Miller, Carly A. Dillen, Qi Liu, Sabrina J. Nolan, Kristine Nguyen, LeeAnn Marcello, Danh C. Do, Eric M. Wier, Yan Zhang, Gary Caviness, Alexander C. Klimowicz, Diane V. Mierz, Jay S. Fine, Guangping Sun, Raphaela Goldbach-Mansky, Alina I. Marusina, Alexander A. Merleev, Emanual Maverakis, Luis A. Garza, Joshua D. Milner, Peisong Gao, Meera Ramanujam, Ernest L. Raymond, Nathan K. Archer, Lloyd S. Miller
Four different endemic coronaviruses (eCoVs) are etiologic agents for the seasonal common cold, and these eCoVs share extensive sequence homology with human SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Here, we show that individuals with, as compared with those without, a recent documented infection with eCoV were tested at greater frequency for respiratory infections but had a similar rate of SARS-CoV-2 acquisition. Importantly, the patients with a previously detected eCoV had less-severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) illness. Our observations suggest that preexisting immune responses against endemic human coronaviruses can mitigate disease manifestations from SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Manish Sagar, Katherine Reifler, Michael Rossi, Nancy S. Miller, Pranay Sinha, Laura F. White, Joseph P. Mizgerd
Intratumor heterogeneity is an important mediator of poor outcomes in many cancers, including breast cancer. Genetic subclones frequently contribute to this heterogeneity; however, their growth dynamics and interactions remain poorly understood. PIK3CA and HER2 alterations are known to coexist in breast and other cancers. Herein, we present data that describe the ability of oncogenic PIK3CA mutant cells to induce the proliferation of quiescent HER2 mutant cells through a cell contact–mediated mechanism. Interestingly, the HER2 cells proliferated to become the major subclone over PIK3CA counterparts both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, this phenotype was observed in both hormone receptor–positive and –negative cell lines, and was dependent on the expression of fibronectin from mutant PIK3CA cells. Analysis of human tumors demonstrated similar HER2:PIK3CA clonal dynamics and fibronectin expression. Our study provides insight into nonrandom subclonal architecture of heterogenous tumors, which may aid the understanding of tumor evolution and inform future strategies for personalized medicine.
Swathi Karthikeyan, Ian G. Waters, Lauren Dennison, David Chu, Joshua Donaldson, Dong Ho Shin, D. Marc Rosen, Paula I. Gonzalez-Ericsson, Violeta Sanchez, Melinda E. Sanders, Morgan V. Pantone, Riley E. Bergman, Brad A. Davidson, Sarah C. Reed, Daniel J. Zabransky, Karen Cravero, Kelly Kyker-Snowman, Berry Button, Hong Yuen Wong, Paula J. Hurley, Sarah Croessmann, Ben Ho Park
Renal fibrosis, a common pathological manifestation of virtually all types of chronic kidney disease (CKD), often results in diffuse kidney scarring and predisposes to end-stage renal disease. Currently, there is no effective therapy against renal fibrosis. Recently, our laboratory identified an ER-resident protein, thioredoxin domain containing 5 (TXNDC5), as a critical mediator of cardiac fibrosis. Transcriptome analyses of renal biopsy specimens from patients with CKD revealed marked TXNDC5 upregulation in fibrotic kidneys, suggesting a potential role of TXNDC5 in renal fibrosis. Employing multiple fluorescence reporter mouse lines, we showed that TXNDC5 was specifically upregulated in collagen-secreting fibroblasts in fibrotic mouse kidneys. In addition, we showed that TXNDC5 was required for TGF-β1–induced fibrogenic responses in human kidney fibroblasts (HKFs), whereas TXNDC5 overexpression was sufficient to promote HKF activation, proliferation, and collagen production. Mechanistically, we showed that TXNDC5, transcriptionally controlled by the ATF6-dependent ER stress pathway, mediated its profibrogenic effects by enforcing TGF-β signaling activity through posttranslational stabilization and upregulation of type I TGF-β receptor in kidney fibroblasts. Using a tamoxifen-inducible, fibroblast-specific Txndc5 knockout mouse line, we demonstrated that deletion of Txndc5 in kidney fibroblasts mitigated the progression of established kidney fibrosis, suggesting the therapeutic potential of TXNDC5 targeting for renal fibrosis and CKD.
Yen-Ting Chen, Pei-Yu Jhao, Chen-Ting Hung, Yueh-Feng Wu, Sung-Jan Lin, Wen-Chih Chiang, Shuei-Liong Lin, Kai-Chien Yang
BACKGROUND Despite a rapidly growing body of literature on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), our understanding of the immune correlates of disease severity, course, and outcome remains poor.METHODS Using mass cytometry, we assessed the immune landscape in longitudinal whole-blood specimens from 59 patients presenting with acute COVID-19 and classified based on maximal disease severity. Hospitalized patients negative for SARS-CoV-2 were used as controls.RESULTS We found that the immune landscape in COVID-19 formed 3 dominant clusters, which correlated with disease severity. Longitudinal analysis identified a pattern of productive innate and adaptive immune responses in individuals who had a moderate disease course, whereas those with severe disease had features suggestive of a protracted and dysregulated immune response. Further, we identified coordinate immune alterations accompanying clinical improvement and decline that were also seen in patients who received IL-6 pathway blockade.CONCLUSION The hospitalized COVID-19 negative cohort allowed us to identify immune alterations that were shared between severe COVID-19 and other critically ill patients. Collectively, our findings indicate that selection of immune interventions should be based in part on disease presentation and early disease trajectory due to the profound differences in the immune response in those with mild to moderate disease and those with the most severe disease.FUNDING Benaroya Family Foundation, the Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation, Glenn and Mary Lynn Mounger, and the National Institutes of Health.
Hamid Bolouri, Cate Speake, David Skibinski, S. Alice Long, Anne M. Hocking, Daniel J. Campbell, Jessica A. Hamerman, Uma Malhotra, Jane H. Buckner, the Benaroya Research Institute COVID-19 Research Team
Following type 1 diabetes (T1D) diagnosis, declining C-peptide levels reflect deteriorating β cell function. However, the precise C-peptide levels that indicate protection from severe hypoglycemia remain unknown. In this issue of the JCI, Gubitosi-Klug et al. studied participants from the landmark and ongoing Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) and the Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications (EDIC) study that had long-standing (about 35 years) T1D. The authors correlated severe hypoglycemia and other disease outcomes with residual C-peptide levels. While C-peptide secretion failed to associate with hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) or microvascular complications, C-peptide levels greater than 0.03 nmol/L were linked with fewer episodes of severe hypoglycemia. These findings suggest that efforts to preserve finite β cell function early in T1D can have meaningful, long-standing health benefits for patients.
Anna Lam, Colin Dayan, Kevan C. Herold
Mutations in the gene that codes for lamin A/C (LMNA) are a common cause of adult-onset cardiomyopathy and heart failure. In this issue of the JCI, Guénantin and Jebeniani et al. identify impaired cardiomyocyte development and maturation as a prenatal feature in a model of laminopathy. Cardiomyocytes carrying the Lmna point mutation H222P misexpressed genes involved in the epithelial-mesenchymal transition and showed decreased methylation at the fourth lysine of histone H3 (H3K4). Notably, inhibiting lysine-specific demethylase 1 in the LMNA H222P mouse model treated this congenital form of cardiomyopathy and improved survival in utero. These data highlight early epigenomic modifications in lamin A/C-mediated pathology and indicate a unique therapeutic strategy for cardiomyopathy.
Jamie R. Johnston, Daniel F. Selgrade, Elizabeth M. McNally
Monocyte homing to the liver and adhesion to the liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (LSECs) are key elements in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) pathogenesis. We reported previously that VCAM-1 mediates monocyte adhesion to LSECs. However, the pathogenic role of VCAM-1 in NASH is unclear. Herein, we report that VCAM-1 was a top upregulated adhesion molecule in the NASH mouse liver transcriptome. Open chromatin landscape profiling combined with genome-wide transcriptome analysis showed robust transcriptional upregulation of LSEC VCAM-1 in murine NASH. Moreover, LSEC VCAM-1 expression was significantly increased in human NASH. LSEC VCAM-1 expression was upregulated by palmitate treatment in vitro and reduced with inhibition of the mitogen-activated protein 3 kinase (MAP3K) mixed lineage kinase 3 (MLK3). Likewise, LSEC VCAM-1 expression was reduced in the Mlk3–/– mice with diet-induced NASH. Furthermore, VCAM-1 neutralizing Ab or pharmacological inhibition attenuated diet-induced NASH in mice, mainly via reducing the proinflammatory monocyte hepatic population as examined by mass cytometry by time of flight (CyTOF). Moreover, endothelium-specific Vcam1 knockout mice were also protected against NASH. In summary, lipotoxic stress enhances the expression of LSEC VCAM-1, in part, through MLK3 signaling. Inhibition of VCAM-1 was salutary in murine NASH and might serve as a potential therapeutic strategy for human NASH.
Kunimaro Furuta, Qianqian Guo, Kevin D. Pavelko, Jeong-Heon Lee, Keith D. Robertson, Yasuhiko Nakao, Jan Melek, Vijay H. Shah, Petra Hirsova, Samar H. Ibrahim
Adoptive T cell therapies (ACTs) hold great promise in cancer treatment, but low overall response rates in patients with solid tumors underscore remaining challenges in realizing the potential of this cellular immunotherapy approach. Promoting CD8+ T cell adaptation to tissue residency represents an underutilized but promising strategy to improve tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) function. Here, we report that deletion of the HIF negative regulator von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) in CD8+ T cells induced HIF-1α/HIF-2α–dependent differentiation of tissue-resident memory–like (Trm-like) TILs in mouse models of malignancy. VHL-deficient TILs accumulated in tumors and exhibited a core Trm signature despite an exhaustion-associated phenotype, which led to retained polyfunctionality and response to αPD-1 immunotherapy, resulting in tumor eradication and protective tissue-resident memory. VHL deficiency similarly facilitated enhanced accumulation of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells with a Trm-like phenotype in tumors. Thus, HIF activity in CD8+ TILs promotes accumulation and antitumor activity, providing a new strategy to enhance the efficacy of ACTs.
Ilkka Liikanen, Colette Lauhan, Sara Quon, Kyla Omilusik, Anthony T. Phan, Laura Barceló Bartrolí, Amir Ferry, John Goulding, Joyce Chen, James P. Scott-Browne, Jason T. Yustein, Nicole E. Scharping, Deborah A. Witherden, Ananda W. Goldrath
The tumor microenvironment profoundly influences the behavior of recruited leukocytes and tissue-resident immune cells. These immune cells, which inherently have environmentally driven plasticity necessary for their roles in tissue homeostasis, dynamically interact with tumor cells and the tumor stroma and play critical roles in determining the course of disease. Among these immune cells, neutrophils were once considered much more static within the tumor microenvironment; however, some of these earlier assumptions were the product of the notorious difficulty in manipulating neutrophils in vitro. Technological advances that allow us to study neutrophils in context are now revealing the true roles of neutrophils in the tumor microenvironment. Here we discuss recent data generated by some of these tools and how these data might be synthesized into more elegant ways of targeting these powerful and abundant effector immune cells in the clinic.
Amanda J. McFarlane, Frédéric Fercoq, Seth B. Coffelt, Leo M. Carlin
Continued thinning of the atmospheric ozone, which protects the earth from damaging ultraviolet radiation (UVR), will result in elevated levels of UVR reaching the earth’s surface, leading to a drastic increase in the incidence of skin cancer. In addition to promoting carcinogenesis in skin cells, UVR is a potent extrinsic driver of age-related changes in the skin known as “photoaging.” We are in the preliminary stages of understanding of the role of intrinsic aging in melanoma, and the tumor-permissive effects of photoaging on the skin microenvironment remain largely unexplored. In this Review, we provide an overview of the impact of UVR on the skin microenvironment, addressing changes that converge or diverge with those observed in intrinsic aging. Intrinsic and extrinsic aging promote phenotypic changes to skin cell populations that alter fundamental processes such as melanogenesis, extracellular matrix deposition, inflammation, and immune response. Given the relevance of these processes in cancer, we discuss how photoaging might render the skin microenvironment permissive to melanoma progression.
Asurayya Worrede, Stephen M. Douglass, Ashani T. Weeraratna
Many solid cancers metastasize to the bone and bone marrow (BM). This process may occur even before the diagnosis of primary tumors, as evidenced by the discovery of disseminated tumor cells (DTCs) in patients without occult malignancies. The cellular fates and metastatic progression of DTCs are determined by complicated interactions between cancer cells and BM niches. Not surprisingly, these niches also play important roles in normal biology, including homeostasis and turnover of skeletal and hematopoiesis systems. In this Review, we summarize recent findings on functions of BM niches in bone metastasis (BoMet), particularly during the early stage of colonization. In light of the rich knowledge of hematopoiesis and osteogenesis, we highlight how DTCs may progress into overt BoMet by taking advantage of niche cells and their activities in tissue turnover, especially those related to immunomodulation and bone repair.
Aaron M. Muscarella, Sergio Aguirre, Xiaoxin Hao, Sarah M. Waldvogel, Xiang H.-F. Zhang
Treatment resistance leads to cancer patient mortality. Therapeutic approaches that employ synthetic lethality to target mutational vulnerabilities in key tumor cell signaling pathways have proven effective in overcoming therapeutic resistance in some cancers. Yet, tumors are organs composed of malignant cells residing within a cellular and noncellular stroma. Tumor evolution and resistance to anticancer treatment are mediated through a dynamic and reciprocal dialogue with the tumor microenvironment (TME). Accordingly, expanding tumor cell synthetic lethality to encompass contextual synthetic lethality has the potential to eradicate tumors by targeting critical TME circuits that promote tumor progression and therapeutic resistance. In this Review, we summarize current knowledge about the TME and discuss its role in treatment. We outline the concept of tumor cell–specific synthetic lethality and describe therapeutic approaches to expand this paradigm to leverage TME synthetic lethality to improve cancer therapy.
Kevin J. Metcalf, Alaa Alazzeh, Zena Werb, Valerie M. Weaver
The extrinsic and autonomic nervous system intricately controls the major functions of the gastrointestinal tract through the enteric nervous system; these include motor, secretory, sensory, storage, and excretory functions. Disorders of the nervous system affecting gastrointestinal tract function manifest primarily as abnormalities in motor (rather than secretory) functions. Common gastrointestinal symptoms in neurologic disorders include sialorrhea, dysphagia, gastroparesis, intestinal pseudo-obstruction, constipation, diarrhea, and fecal incontinence. Diseases of the entire neural axis ranging from the cerebral hemispheres to the peripheral autonomic nerves can result in gastrointestinal motility disorders. The most common neurologic diseases affecting gastrointestinal function are stroke, parkinsonism, multiple sclerosis, and diabetic neuropathy. Diagnosis involves identification of the neurologic disease and its distribution, and documentation of segmental gut dysfunction, typically using noninvasive imaging, transit measurements, or intraluminal measurements of pressure activity and coordination of motility. Apart from treatment of the underlying neurologic disease, management focuses on restoration of normal hydration and nutrition and pharmacologic treatment of the gut neuromuscular disorder.
The field of gene therapy has made considerable progress over the past several years. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors have emerged as promising and attractive tools for in vivo gene therapy. Despite the recent clinical successes achieved with recombinant AAVs (rAAVs) for therapeutics, host immune responses against the vector and transgene product have been observed in numerous preclinical and clinical studies. These outcomes have hampered the advancement of AAV gene therapies, preventing them from becoming fully viable and safe medicines. The human immune system is multidimensional and complex. Both the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system seem to play a concerted role in the response against rAAVs. While most efforts have been focused on the role of adaptive immunity and developing ways to overcome it, the innate immune system has also been found to have a critical function. Innate immunity not only mediates the initial response to the vector, but also primes the adaptive immune system to launch a more deleterious attack against the foreign vector. This Review highlights what is known about innate immune responses against rAAVs and discusses potential strategies to circumvent these pathways.
Manish Muhuri, Yukiko Maeda, Hong Ma, Sanjay Ram, Katherine A. Fitzgerald, Phillip W.L. Tai, Guangping Gao
Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil reduce triglyceride levels in mammals, yet the mechanisms underlying this effect have not been fully clarified, despite the clinical use of omega-3 ethyl esters to treat severe hypertriglyceridemia and reduce cardiovascular disease risk in humans. Here, we identified in bile a class of hypotriglyceridemic omega-3 fatty acid–derived N-acyl taurines (NATs) that, after dietary omega-3 fatty acid supplementation, increased to concentrations similar to those of steroidal bile acids. The biliary docosahexaenoic acid–containing (DHA-containing) NAT C22:6 NAT was increased in human and mouse plasma after dietary omega-3 fatty acid supplementation and potently inhibited intestinal triacylglycerol hydrolysis and lipid absorption. Supporting this observation, genetic elevation of endogenous NAT levels in mice impaired lipid absorption, whereas selective augmentation of C22:6 NAT levels protected against hypertriglyceridemia and fatty liver. When administered pharmacologically, C22:6 NAT accumulated in bile and reduced high-fat diet–induced, but not sucrose-induced, hepatic lipid accumulation in mice, suggesting that C22:6 NAT is a negative feedback mediator that limits excess intestinal lipid absorption. Thus, biliary omega-3 NATs may contribute to the hypotriglyceridemic mechanism of action of fish oil and could influence the design of more potent omega-3 fatty acid–based therapeutics.
Trisha J. Grevengoed, Samuel A.J. Trammell, Jens S. Svenningsen, Mikhail V. Makarov, Thomas Svava Nielsen, Jens Christian Brings Jacobsen, Jonas T. Treebak, Philip C. Calder, Marie E. Migaud, Benjamin F. Cravatt, Matthew P. Gillum
Ongoing observational clinical research has prioritized understanding the human immune response to SARS-CoV-2 during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Several recent studies suggest that immune dysregulation with early and prolonged adaptive immune system activation can result in cellular exhaustion. In this issue of the JCI, Files et al. compared cellular immune phenotypes during the first two months of COVID-19 in hospitalized and less severe, non-hospitalized patients. The authors utilized flow cytometry to analyze circulating peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Both patient cohorts maintained B and T cell phenotypes consistent with activation and cellular exhaustion throughout the first two months of infection. Additionally, follow-up samples from the non-hospitalized patient cohort showed that activation markers and cellular exhaustion increased over time. These findings illustrate the persistent nature of the adaptive immune system changes that have been noted in COVID-19 and suggest longer term effects that may shape the maintenance of immunity to SARS-CoV-2.
Philip A. Mudd, Kenneth E. Remy
While p53 is the most highly mutated and perhaps best studied tumor suppressor protein related to cancer, it remains refractory to targeted therapeutic strategies. In this issue of the JCI, Tan and colleagues investigated the mechanistic basis of the mutant p53 secretome in preclinical models of lung adenocarcinoma. The authors uncovered miR-34a as a regulator of a conventional protein secretion axis, which is mediated by three proteins: the Golgi reassembly and stacking protein 55 kDa (GRASP55), basic leucine zipper nuclear factor 1, and myosin IIA. Inhibition of GRASP55 in TP53-deficient lung adenocarcinoma suppressed protumorigenic secretion of osteopontin/secreted phosphoprotein 1 and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 2 and reduced tumor growth and metastases in mice as well as in patient-derived xenografts. These results provide a therapeutic opportunity to target downstream effects of p53 loss.
Kartik Sehgal, David A. Barbie
Podocytes are key to the glomerular filtration barrier by forming a slit diaphragm between interdigitating foot processes; however, the molecular details and functional importance of protein folding and degradation in the ER remain unknown. Here, we show that the SEL1L-HRD1 protein complex of ER-associated degradation (ERAD) is required for slit diaphragm formation and glomerular filtration function. SEL1L-HRD1 ERAD is highly expressed in podocytes of both mouse and human kidneys. Mice with podocyte-specific Sel1L deficiency develop podocytopathy and severe congenital nephrotic syndrome with an impaired slit diaphragm shortly after weaning and die prematurely, with a median lifespan of approximately 3 months. We show mechanistically that nephrin, a type 1 membrane protein causally linked to congenital nephrotic syndrome, is an endogenous ERAD substrate. ERAD deficiency attenuated the maturation of nascent nephrin, leading to its retention in the ER. We also show that various autosomal-recessive nephrin disease mutants were highly unstable and broken down by SEL1L-HRD1 ERAD, which attenuated the pathogenicity of the mutants toward the WT allele. This study uncovers a critical role of SEL1L-HRD1 ERAD in glomerular filtration barrier function and provides insights into the pathogenesis associated with autosomal-recessive disease mutants.
Sei Yoshida, Xiaoqiong Wei, Gensheng Zhang, Christopher L. O’Connor, Mauricio Torres, Zhangsen Zhou, Liangguang Lin, Rajasree Menon, Xiaoxi Xu, Wenyue Zheng, Yi Xiong, Edgar Otto, Chih-Hang Anthony Tang, Rui Hua, Rakesh Verma, Hiroyuki Mori, Yang Zhang, Chih-Chi Andrew Hu, Ming Liu, Puneet Garg, Jeffrey B. Hodgin, Shengyi Sun, Markus Bitzer, Ling Qi
The genetic factors that determine a patient’s risk for developing the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) remain understudied. In this issue of the JCI, Reilly and colleagues analyzed data from three cohorts of critically ill patients and observed an association between the ABO allele A1 and the onset of moderate-severe ARDS. This association was most notable in patients with non-pulmonary sepsis (an indirect, vasculature-targeted mechanism of lung injury) and persisted in patients who lacked epithelial expression of the A antigen, suggesting an endothelial mechanism of A1-associated ARDS susceptibility. Critically ill patients with blood type A had increased circulating concentrations of endothelium-derived glycoproteins such as von Willebrand factor and soluble thrombomodulin, and marginal lungs from blood type A donors were less likely to recover function during ex vivo perfusion. These findings implicate A antigen glycosylation of endothelial cells as a critical, genetically determined risk factor for indirect lung injury that may contribute to the mechanistic heterogeneity of ARDS.
Alicia N. Rizzo, Eric P. Schmidt
Anemia in β-thalassemia is related to ineffective erythropoiesis and reduced red cell survival. Excess free heme and accumulation of unpaired α-globin chains impose substantial oxidative stress on β-thalassemic erythroblasts and erythrocytes, impacting cell metabolism. We hypothesized that increased pyruvate kinase activity induced by mitapivat (AG-348) in the Hbbth3/+ mouse model for β-thalassemia would reduce chronic hemolysis and ineffective erythropoiesis through stimulation of red cell glycolytic metabolism. Oral mitapivat administration ameliorated ineffective erythropoiesis and anemia in Hbbth3/+ mice. Increased ATP, reduced reactive oxygen species production, and reduced markers of mitochondrial dysfunction associated with improved mitochondrial clearance suggested enhanced metabolism following mitapivat administration in β-thalassemia. The amelioration of responsiveness to erythropoietin resulted in reduced soluble erythroferrone, increased liver Hamp expression, and diminished liver iron overload. Mitapivat reduced duodenal Dmt1 expression potentially by activating the pyruvate kinase M2-HIF2α axis, representing a mechanism additional to Hamp in controlling iron absorption and preventing β-thalassemia–related liver iron overload. In ex vivo studies on erythroid precursors from patients with β-thalassemia, mitapivat enhanced erythropoiesis, promoted erythroid maturation, and decreased apoptosis. Overall, pyruvate kinase activation as a treatment modality for β-thalassemia in preclinical model systems had multiple beneficial effects in the erythropoietic compartment and beyond, providing a strong scientific basis for further clinical trials.
Alessandro Matte, Enrica Federti, Charles Kung, Penelope A. Kosinski, Rohini Narayanaswamy, Roberta Russo, Giorgia Federico, Francesca Carlomagno, Maria Andrea Desbats, Leonardo Salviati, Christophe Leboeuf, Maria Teresa Valenti, Francesco Turrini, Anne Janin, Shaoxia Yu, Elisabetta Beneduce, Sebastien Ronseaux, Iana Iatcenko, Lenny Dang, Tomas Ganz, Chun-Ling Jung, Achille Iolascon, Carlo Brugnara, Lucia De Franceschi
Since the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the globe, researchers have been trying to understand its origin, life cycle, and pathogenesis. There is a striking variability in the phenotypic response to infection with SARS-CoV-2 that may reflect differences in host genetics and/or immune response. It is known that the human epigenome is influenced by ethnicity, age, lifestyle, and environmental factors, including previous viral infections. This Review examines the influence of viruses on the host epigenome. We describe general lessons and methodologies that can be used to understand how the virus evades the host immune response. We consider how variation in the epigenome may contribute to heterogeneity in the response to SARS-CoV-2 and may identify a precision medicine approach to treatment.
Elizabeth J. Hennessy, Garret A. FitzGerald
Hypothalamic feeding circuits have been identified as having innate synaptic plasticity, mediating adaption to the changing metabolic milieu by controlling responses to feeding and obesity. However, less is known about the regulatory principles underlying the dynamic changes in agouti-related protein (AgRP) perikarya, a region crucial for gating of neural excitation and, hence, feeding. Here we show that AgRP neurons activated by food deprivation, ghrelin administration, or chemogenetics decreased their own inhibitory tone while triggering mitochondrial adaptations in neighboring astrocytes. We found that it was the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA released by AgRP neurons that evoked this astrocytic response; this in turn resulted in increased glial ensheetment of AgRP perikarya by glial processes and increased excitability of AgRP neurons. We also identified astrocyte-derived prostaglandin E2, which directly activated — via EP2 receptors — AgRP neurons. Taken together, these observations unmasked a feed-forward, self-exciting loop in AgRP neuronal control mediated by astrocytes, a mechanism directly relevant for hunger, feeding, and overfeeding.
Luis Varela, Bernardo Stutz, Jae Eun Song, Jae Geun Kim, Zhong-Wu Liu, Xiao-Bing Gao, Tamas L. Horvath
IL-36 is a member of the IL-1 superfamily and consists of three agonists and one receptor antagonist (IL-36Ra). The three endogenous agonists, IL-36α, –β, and –γ, act primarily as proinflammatory cytokines, and their signaling through the IL-36 receptor (IL-36R) promotes immune cell infiltration and secretion of inflammatory and chemotactic molecules. However, IL-36 signaling also fosters secretion of profibrotic soluble mediators, suggesting a role in fibrotic disorders. IL-36 isoforms and IL-36 have been implicated in inflammatory diseases including psoriasis, arthritis, inflammatory bowel diseases, and allergic rhinitis. Moreover, IL-36 has been connected to fibrotic disorders affecting the kidney, lung, and intestines. This review summarizes the expression, cellular source, and function of IL-36 in inflammation and fibrosis in various organs, and proposes that IL-36 modulation may prove valuable in preventing or treating inflammatory and fibrotic diseases and may reveal a mechanistic link between inflammation and fibrosis.
Michael Elias, Shuai Zhao, Hongnga T. Le, Jie Wang, Markus F. Neurath, Clemens Neufert, Claudio Fiocchi, Florian Rieder
The success of tumor immunotherapy, while partial, confirms the existence and importance of tumor immunosurveillance. CD8+ T cell recognition of tumor-specific peptides bound to MHC class I (MHC-I) molecules is central to this process. In this issue of the JCI, Fang, Wang, et al. describe a unique tumor immunoevasion strategy based on endocytosis and degradation of MHC-I complexes mediated by the trafficking factor MAL2. Notably, MAL2 expression was associated with poor prognosis of breast cancer, and its downregulation enhanced CD8+ T cell recognition of breast cancer in various experimental models. This work demonstrates that a deeper understanding of tumor interference with MHC-I stability and trafficking has considerable potential for enhancing immunotherapies.
Devin Dersh, Jonathan W. Yewdell
Vascular dysfunction resulting in compromised blood-brain barrier (BBB) integrity is evident in aging and disease. Although the complement C3a/C3a receptor (C3a/C3aR) axis influences normal brain aging and disease progression, the mechanisms governing endothelial C3aR–mediated neurovascular inflammation and BBB permeability remain unexplored. In this issue of the JCI, Propson et al. investigated endothelial C3a/C3aR signaling in normal, aged, and neurodegenerative mouse models. Endothelial C3aR signaling modulated age-dependent increases in VCAM1, initiated peripheral lymphocyte infiltration, and enhanced microglial activity. Increased calcium release downstream of C3aR signaling disrupted the vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-cadherin) junctions, increased BBB permeability, and degraded vascular structure and function. Mice lacking C3aR (C3ar1–/–) and mice treated with a C3aR antagonist showed attenuated age-related microglial reactivity and neurodegeneration. These results confirm that complement-mediated signaling impacts vascular health and BBB function in normal aging and neurodegenerative disease, suggesting that complement inhibitors represent a therapeutic option for cerebral microvascular dysfunction.
Kanchan Bhatia, Saif Ahmad, Adam Kindelin, Andrew F. Ducruet
Intellectual and social disabilities are common comorbidities in adolescents and adults with MAGE family member L2 (MAGEL2) gene deficiency characterizing the Prader-Willi and Schaaf-Yang neurodevelopmental syndromes. The cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the risk for autism in these syndromes are not understood. We asked whether vasopressin functions are altered by MAGEL2 deficiency and whether a treatment with vasopressin could alleviate the disabilities of social behavior. We used Magel2-knockout mice (adult males) combined with optogenetic or pharmacological tools to characterize disease modifications in the vasopressinergic brain system and monitor its impact on neurophysiological and behavioral functions. We found that the activation of vasopressin neurons and projections in the lateral septum were inappropriate for performing a social habituation/discrimination task. Mechanistically, the lack of vasopressin impeded the deactivation of somatostatin neurons in the lateral septum, which predicted social discrimination deficits. Correction of vasopressin septal content by administration or optogenetic stimulation of projecting axons suppressed the activity of somatostatin neurons and ameliorated social behavior. This preclinical study identified vasopressin in the lateral septum as a key factor in the pathophysiology of Magel2-related neurodevelopmental syndromes.
Amélie M. Borie, Yann Dromard, Gilles Guillon, Aleksandra Olma, Maurice Manning, Françoise Muscatelli, Michel G. Desarménien, Freddy Jeanneteau
Background We conducted a phase I clinical trial that infused CCR5 gene–edited CD4+ T cells to determine how these T cells can better enable HIV cure strategies.Methods The aim of trial was to develop RNA-based approaches to deliver zinc finger nuclease (ZFN), evaluate the effect of CCR5 gene–edited CD4+ T cells on the HIV-specific T cell response, test the ability of infused CCR5 gene–edited T cells to delay viral rebound during analytical treatment interruption, and determine whether individuals heterozygous for CCR5 Δ32 preferentially benefit. We enrolled 14 individuals living with HIV whose viral load was well controlled by antiretroviral therapy (ART). We measured the time to viral rebound after ART withdrawal, the persistence of CCR5-edited CD4+ T cells, and whether infusion of 10 billion CCR5-edited CD4+ T cells augmented the HIV-specific immune response.Results Infusion of the CD4+ T cells was well tolerated, with no serious adverse events. We observed a modest delay in the time to viral rebound relative to historical controls; however, 3 of the 14 individuals, 2 of whom were heterozygous for CCR5 Δ32, showed post-viral rebound control of viremia, before ultimately losing control of viral replication. Interestingly, only these individuals had substantial restoration of HIV-specific CD8+ T cell responses. We observed immune escape for 1 of these reinvigorated responses at viral recrudescence, illustrating a direct link between viral control and enhanced CD8+ T cell responses.Conclusion These findings demonstrate how CCR5 gene–edited CD4+ T cell infusion could aid HIV cure strategies by augmenting preexisting HIV-specific immune responses.REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02388594.Funding NIH funding (R01AI104400, UM1AI126620, U19AI149680, T32AI007632) was provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). Sangamo Therapeutics also provided funding for these studies.
Pablo Tebas, Julie K. Jadlowsky, Pamela A. Shaw, Lifeng Tian, Erin Esparza, Andrea L. Brennan, Sukyung Kim, Soe Yu Naing, Max W. Richardson, Ashley N. Vogel, Colby R. Maldini, Hong Kong, Xiaojun Liu, Simon F. Lacey, Anya M. Bauer, Felicity Mampe, Lee P. Richman, Gary Lee, Dale Ando, Bruce L. Levine, David L. Porter, Yangbing Zhao, Don L. Siegel, Katharine J. Bar, Carl H. June, James L. Riley
Multisystem inflammatory syndrome associated with the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has recently been described in children (MIS-C), partially overlapping with Kawasaki disease (KD). We hypothesized that (a) MIS-C and prepandemic KD cytokine profiles may be unique and justify the clinical differences observed, and (b) SARS-CoV-2–specific immune complexes (ICs) may explain the immunopathology of MIS-C. Seventy-four children were included: 14 with MIS-C, 9 patients positive for SARS-CoV-2 by PCR without MIS-C (COVID), 14 with prepandemic KD, and 37 healthy controls (HCs). Thirty-four circulating cytokines were quantified in pretreatment serum or plasma samples and the presence of circulating SARS-CoV-2 ICs was evaluated in MIS-C patients. Compared with HCs, the MIS-C and KD groups showed most cytokines to be significantly elevated, with IFN-γ–induced response markers (including IFN-γ, IL-18, and IP-10) and inflammatory monocyte activation markers (including MCP-1, IL-1α, and IL-1RA) being the main triggers of inflammation. In linear discriminant analysis, MIS-C and KD profiles overlapped; however, a subgroup of MIS-C patients (MIS-Cplus) differentiated from the remaining MIS-C patients in IFN-γ, IL-18, GM-CSF, RANTES, IP-10, IL-1α, and SDF-1 and incipient signs of macrophage activation syndrome. Circulating SARS-CoV-2 ICs were not detected in MIS-C patients. Our findings suggest a major role for IFN-γ in the pathogenesis of MIS-C, which may be relevant for therapeutic management.
Ana Esteve-Sole, Jordi Anton, Rosa Maria Pino-Ramirez, Judith Sanchez-Manubens, Victoria Fumadó, Claudia Fortuny, María Rios-Barnes, Joan Sanchez-de-Toledo, Mónica Girona-Alarcón, Juan Manuel Mosquera, Silvia Ricart, Cristian Launes, Mariona Fernández de Sevilla, Cristina Jou, Carmen Muñoz-Almagro, Eva González-Roca, Andrea Vergara, Jorge Carrillo, Manel Juan, Daniel Cuadras, Antoni Noguera-Julian, Iolanda Jordan, Laia Alsina
The neuronal mechanisms that establish 24-hour rhythms in feeding and metabolism remain incompletely understood. In this issue of the JCI, Adlanmerini and colleagues explored the relationship between temporal and homeostatic control of energy balance by focusing on mice that lacked the genes encoding the clock repressor elements REV-ERBα and –β, specifically in the tuberal hypothalamus. Notably, the clock transcription cycle mediated intraneuronal response to the adipostatic hormone leptin. These results show that REV-ERBα and –β in the hypothalamus are necessary for maintaining leptin responsiveness and metabolic homeostasis and lay the foundation to explore how transcriptional changes may link energy-sensing cell types with day/night rhythms. Such information may lead to therapeutics that alleviate the adverse effects of chronic shift work.
Jonathan Cedernaes, Joseph Bass
Many individuals possess B cells capable of recognizing epitopes on the spike glycoprotein of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). In this issue of the JCI, Paschold and Simnica et al. interrogated the frequency of SARS-CoV-2–specific B cell receptor rearrangements in healthy subjects based on age and cancer status. The authors found that while SARS-CoV-2–specific antibody signatures can be identified in the repertoires of young, healthy individuals, such sequences are less frequent in elderly subjects or patients with cancer. Overall, this study sheds light on B cell repertoire restrictions that might lead to an unfavorable clinical course of coronavirus disease 2019 infection in at-risk populations.
Andrew I. Flyak
Although cancer cells are frequently faced with a nutrient- and oxygen-poor microenvironment, elevated hexosamine-biosynthesis pathway (HBP) activity and protein O-GlcNAcylation (a nutrient sensor) contribute to rapid growth of tumor and are emerging hallmarks of cancer. Inhibiting O-GlcNAcylation could be a promising anticancer strategy. The gluconeogenic enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 (PCK1) is downregulated in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, little is known about the potential role of PCK1 in enhanced HBP activity and HCC carcinogenesis under glucose-limited conditions. In this study, PCK1 knockout markedly enhanced the global O-GlcNAcylation levels under low-glucose conditions. Mechanistically, metabolic reprogramming in PCK1-loss hepatoma cells led to oxaloacetate accumulation and increased de novo uridine triphosphate synthesis contributing to uridine diphosphate-N-acetylglucosamine (UDP-GlcNAc) biosynthesis. Meanwhile, deletion of PCK1 also resulted in AMPK-GFAT1 axis inactivation, promoting UDP-GlcNAc synthesis for elevated O-GlcNAcylation. Notably, lower expression of PCK1 promoted CHK2 threonine 378 O-GlcNAcylation, counteracting its stability and dimer formation, increasing CHK2-dependent Rb phosphorylation and HCC cell proliferation. Moreover, aminooxyacetic acid hemihydrochloride and 6-diazo-5-oxo-L-norleucine blocked HBP-mediated O-GlcNAcylation and suppressed tumor progression in liver-specific Pck1-knockout mice. We reveal a link between PCK1 depletion and hyper-O-GlcNAcylation that underlies HCC oncogenesis and suggest therapeutic targets for HCC that act by inhibiting O-GlcNAcylation.
Jin Xiang, Chang Chen, Rui Liu, Dongmei Gou, Lei Chang, Haijun Deng, Qingzhu Gao, Wanjun Zhang, Lin Tuo, Xuanming Pan, Li Liang, Jie Xia, Luyi Huang, Ke Yao, Bohong Wang, Zeping Hu, Ailong Huang, Kai Wang, Ni Tang
The immunopathology of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) remains enigmatic, causing immunodysregulation and T cell lymphopenia. Monocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells (M-MDSCs) are T cell suppressors that expand in inflammatory conditions, but their role in acute respiratory infections remains unclear. We studied the blood and airways of patients with COVID-19 across disease severities at multiple time points. M-MDSC frequencies were elevated in blood but not in nasopharyngeal or endotracheal aspirates of patients with COVID-19 compared with healthy controls. M-MDSCs isolated from patients with COVID-19 suppressed T cell proliferation and IFN-γ production partly via an arginase 1–dependent (Arg-1–dependent) mechanism. Furthermore, patients showed increased Arg-1 and IL-6 plasma levels. Patients with COVID-19 had fewer T cells and downregulated expression of the CD3ζ chain. Ordinal regression showed that early M-MDSC frequency predicted subsequent disease severity. In conclusion, M-MDSCs expanded in the blood of patients with COVID-19, suppressed T cells, and were strongly associated with disease severity, indicating a role for M-MDSCs in the dysregulated COVID-19 immune response.
Sara Falck-Jones, Sindhu Vangeti, Meng Yu, Ryan Falck-Jones, Alberto Cagigi, Isabella Badolati, Björn Österberg, Maximilian Julius Lautenbach, Eric Åhlberg, Ang Lin, Rico Lepzien, Inga Szurgot, Klara Lenart, Fredrika Hellgren, Holden Maecker, Jörgen Sälde, Jan Albert, Niclas Johansson, Max Bell, Karin Loré, Anna Färnert, Anna Smed-Sörensen
Tubulointerstitial accumulation of matrix proteins in human kidney biopsies is the best predictor of renal survival. In this issue of the JCI, Yen-Ting Chen et al. elegantly show that an endoplasmic reticulum resident protein, thioredoxin domain containing 5 (TXNDC5), is a key mediator of experimental kidney fibrosis. The researchers used knockout or conditional knockout animals to reduce Txndc5 expression, which reduced the accumulation of fibrous tissue in three models of chronic kidney disease (CKD), including unilateral ureteral obstruction, unilateral ischemia reperfusion injury, and folic acid nephropathy. More importantly, the studies demonstrate that the activated fibroblasts are almost exclusively responsible for producing matrix proteins. The study also showed that reducing Txndc5 in mice after tubulointerstitial fibrosis (TIF) was established mitigated the fibrosis. These experiments have obvious clinical importance but warrant caution because a key question remains unanswered. The impact of reducing TXNDC5 on renal function itself, the very heart of CKD, demands further exploration.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to cause morbidity and mortality. Since SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was identified as the cause for COVID-19, some have questioned whether exposure to seasonal common cold coronaviruses (CCCs) could provide tangible protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection or disease. In this issue of the JCI, Sagar et al. examined SARS-CoV-2 infections and outcomes of patients who had previously tested positive or negative for CCC infection (CCC+ or CCC–) by a comprehensive respiratory panel using PCR. No differences were seen between groups in terms of susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, hospitalized patients with a documented history of CCC infection had lower rates of intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and higher rates of survival than hospitalized CCC– patients. While these findings are associative and not causative, they highlight evidence suggesting that previous CCC infection may influence the disease course of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
David K. Meyerholz, Stanley Perlman
Discovering dominant epitopes for T cells, particularly CD4+ T cells, in human immune-mediated diseases remains a significant challenge. Here, we used bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) cells from HLA-DP2–expressing patients with chronic beryllium disease (CBD), a debilitating granulomatous lung disorder characterized by accumulations of beryllium-specific (Be-specific) CD4+ T cells in the lung. We discovered lung-resident CD4+ T cells that expressed a disease-specific public CDR3β T cell receptor motif and were specific to Be-modified self-peptides derived from C-C motif ligand 4 (CCL4) and CCL3. HLA-DP2–CCL/Be tetramer staining confirmed that these chemokine-derived peptides represented major antigenic targets in CBD. Furthermore, Be induced CCL3 and CCL4 secretion in the lungs of mice and humans. In a murine model of CBD, the addition of LPS to Be oxide exposure enhanced CCL4 and CCL3 secretion in the lung and significantly increased the number and percentage of CD4+ T cells specific for the HLA-DP2–CCL/Be epitope. Thus, we demonstrate a direct link between Be-induced innate production of chemokines and the development of a robust adaptive immune response to those same chemokines presented as Be-modified self-peptides, creating a cycle of innate and adaptive immune activation.
Michael T. Falta, Jeremy C. Crawford, Alex N. Tinega, Laurie G. Landry, Frances Crawford, Douglas G. Mack, Allison K. Martin, Shaikh M. Atif, Li Li, Radleigh G. Santos, Maki Nakayama, John W. Kappler, Lisa A. Maier, Paul G. Thomas, Clemencia Pinilla, Andrew P. Fontenot
Adipose thermogenesis is repressed in obesity, reducing the homeostatic capacity to compensate for chronic overnutrition. Inflammation inhibits adipose thermogenesis, but little is known about how this occurs. Here we showed that the innate immune transcription factor IRF3 is a strong repressor of thermogenic gene expression and oxygen consumption in adipocytes. IRF3 achieved this by driving expression of the ubiquitin-like modifier ISG15, which became covalently attached to glycolytic enzymes, thus reducing their function and decreasing lactate production. Lactate repletion was able to restore thermogenic gene expression, even when the IRF3/ISG15 axis was activated. Mice lacking ISG15 phenocopied mice lacking IRF3 in adipocytes, as both had elevated energy expenditure and were resistant to diet-induced obesity. These studies provide a deep mechanistic understanding of how the chronic inflammatory milieu of adipose tissue in obesity prevents thermogenic compensation for overnutrition.
Shuai Yan, Manju Kumari, Haopeng Xiao, Christopher Jacobs, Shihab Kochumon, Mark Jedrychowski, Edward Chouchani, Rasheed Ahmad, Evan D. Rosen
Propranolol, a pleiotropic β-adrenergic blocker, has been anecdotally reported to reduce cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs) in humans. However, propranolol has not been rigorously evaluated in animal models, nor has its mechanism of action in CCM been defined. We report that propranolol or its S(-) enantiomer dramatically reduced embryonic venous cavernomas in ccm2 mosaic zebrafish, whereas R-(+)-propranolol, lacking β antagonism, had no effect. Silencing of the β1, but not β2, adrenergic receptor mimicked the beneficial effects of propranolol in a zebrafish CCM model, as did the β1-selective antagonist metoprolol. Thus, propranolol ameliorated cavernous malformations by β1 adrenergic antagonism in zebrafish. Oral propranolol significantly reduced lesion burden in 2 chronic murine models of the exceptionally aggressive Pdcd10/Ccm3 form of CCM. Propranolol or other β1-selective antagonists may be beneficial in CCM disease.
Wenqing Li, Robert Shenkar, Mathew R. Detter, Thomas Moore, Christian Benavides, Rhonda Lightle, Romuald Girard, Nicholas Hobson, Ying Cao, Yan Li, Erin Griffin, Carol Gallione, Joseph M. Zabramski, Mark H. Ginsberg, Douglas A. Marchuk, Issam A. Awad
The etiopathogenesis of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), a clinically heterogeneous multisystemic syndrome that derives its name from the initial characterization of facial lesions that resemble the bite of a wolf, is considered a complex, multifactorial interplay between underlying genetic susceptibility factors and the environment. Prominent pathogenic factors include the induction of aberrant cell death pathways coupled with defective cell death clearance mechanisms that promote excessive externalization of modified cellular and nuclear debris with subsequent loss of tolerance to a wide variety of autoantigens and innate and adaptive immune dysregulation. While abnormalities in adaptive immunity are well recognized and are key to the pathogenesis of SLE, recent findings have emphasized fundamental roles of the innate immune system in the initiation and propagation of autoimmunity and the development of organ damage in this disease. This Review focuses on recent discoveries regarding the role of components of the innate immune system, specifically neutrophils and interferons, in promoting various aspects of lupus pathogenesis, with potential implications for novel therapeutic strategies.
Sarthak Gupta, Mariana J. Kaplan
BACKGROUND SARS-CoV-2–specific antibodies may protect from reinfection and disease, providing rationale for administration of plasma containing SARS-CoV-2–neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) as a treatment for COVID-19. Clinical factors and laboratory assays to streamline plasma donor selection, and the durability of nAb responses, are incompletely understood.METHODS Potential convalescent plasma donors with virologically documented SARS-CoV-2 infection were tested for serum IgG against SARS-CoV-2 spike protein S1 domain and against nucleoprotein (NP), and for nAb.RESULTS Among 250 consecutive persons, including 27 (11%) requiring hospitalization, who were studied a median of 67 days since symptom onset, 97% were seropositive on 1 or more assays. Sixty percent of donors had nAb titers ≥1:80. Correlates of higher nAb titers included older age (adjusted OR [AOR] 1.03 per year of age, 95% CI 1.00–1.06), male sex (AOR 2.08, 95% CI 1.13–3.82), fever during illness (AOR 2.73, 95% CI 1.25–5.97), and disease severity represented by hospitalization (AOR 6.59, 95% CI 1.32–32.96). Receiver operating characteristic analyses of anti-S1 and anti-NP antibody results yielded cutoffs that corresponded well with nAb titers, with the anti-S1 assay being slightly more predictive. nAb titers declined in 37 of 41 paired specimens collected a median of 98 days (range 77–120) apart (P < 0.001). Seven individuals (2.8%) were persistently seronegative and lacked T cell responses.CONCLUSION nAb titers correlated with COVID-19 severity, age, and sex. SARS-CoV-2 IgG results can serve as useful surrogates for nAb testing. Functional nAb levels declined, and a small proportion of convalescent individuals lacked adaptive immune responses.FUNDING The project was supported by the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research with support from the NIAID under contract number 75N91019D00024, and was supported by the Fred Hutchinson Joel Meyers Endowment, Fast-Grants, a New Investigator award from the American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy, and NIH contracts 75N93019C0063, 75N91019D00024, and HHSN272201800013C, and NIH grants T32-AI118690, T32-AI007044, K08-AI119142, and K23-AI140918.
Jim Boonyaratanakornkit, Chihiro Morishima, Stacy Selke, Danniel Zamora, Sarah McGuffin, Adrienne E. Shapiro, Victoria L. Campbell, Christopher L. McClurkan, Lichen Jing, Robin Gross, Janie Liang, Elena Postnikova, Steven Mazur, Vladimir V. Lukin, Anu Chaudhary, Marie K. Das, Susan L. Fink, Andrew Bryan, Alex L. Greninger, Keith R. Jerome, Michael R. Holbrook, Terry B. Gernsheimer, Mark H. Wener, Anna Wald, David M. Koelle
Megakaryocytes (MKs) give rise to platelets, which are blood cells that are essential to prevent hemorrhage. Although the majority of MKs localize to the bone marrow, there is a distinct population of lung-residing MKs (MKL). In this issue of the JCI, Pariser et al. examined gene expression patterns of MKs collected from murine and nonhuman primate bone marrow or lung. This Commentary explores the premise that environmental factors from the lung determine the genetic and phenotypic similarity of MKL to lung dendritic cells, distinguishing MKL from bone marrow MKs. Indeed, while MKL retain the ability to make platelets, they also process and present antigens that activate CD4+ lymphocytes. These data suggest that MKL may play an important role in immune processes beyond platelet production.
Eric Boilard, Kellie R. Machlus
The increase in food allergy prevalence in recent years suggests that environmental factors, such as diet and intestinal microbiota, play contributory roles. In this issue of the JCI, Bao et al. compared twins that differed with respect to food allergies. The researchers analyzed sequences from microbe ribosomal RNA and profiled microbe metabolites, identifying health-associated microbes at the species level. In addition to revealing microbes from the Clostridia class enriched in healthy twins, the authors identified two commensal species (Phascolarctobacterium faecium and Ruminococcus bromii) related to the healthy fecal metabolome. This study advances the goal for next-generation probiotic therapies that effectively treat or prevent food allergy.
M. Cecilia Berin
Nearly 140 years after Robert Koch discovered Mycobacterium tuberculosis, tuberculosis (TB) remains a global threat and a deadly human pathogen. M. tuberculosis is notable for complex host-pathogen interactions that lead to poorly understood disease states ranging from latent infection to active disease. Additionally, multiple pathologies with a distinct local milieu (bacterial burden, antibiotic exposure, and host response) can coexist simultaneously within the same subject and change independently over time. Current tools cannot optimally measure these distinct pathologies or the spatiotemporal changes. Next-generation molecular imaging affords unparalleled opportunities to visualize infection by providing holistic, 3D spatial characterization and noninvasive, temporal monitoring within the same subject. This rapidly evolving technology could powerfully augment TB research by advancing fundamental knowledge and accelerating the development of novel diagnostics, biomarkers, and therapeutics.
Alvaro A. Ordonez, Elizabeth W. Tucker, Carolyn J. Anderson, Claire L. Carter, Shashank Ganatra, Deepak Kaushal, Igor Kramnik, Philana L. Lin, Cressida A. Madigan, Susana Mendez, Jianghong Rao, Rada M. Savic, David M. Tobin, Gerhard Walzl, Robert J. Wilkinson, Karen A. Lacourciere, Laura E. Via, Sanjay K. Jain
The emergence of drug-resistant fungi has prompted an urgent threat alert from the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Biofilm assembly by these pathogens further impairs effective therapy. We recently identified an antifungal, turbinmicin, that inhibits the fungal vesicle–mediated trafficking pathway and demonstrates broad-spectrum activity against planktonically growing fungi. During biofilm growth, vesicles with unique features play a critical role in the delivery of biofilm extracellular matrix components. As these components are largely responsible for the drug resistance associated with biofilm growth, we explored the utility of turbinmicin in the biofilm setting. We found that turbinmicin disrupted extracellular vesicle (EV) delivery during biofilm growth and that this impaired the subsequent assembly of the biofilm matrix. We demonstrated that elimination of the extracellular matrix rendered the drug-resistant biofilm communities susceptible to fungal killing by turbinmicin. Furthermore, the addition of turbinmicin to otherwise ineffective antifungal therapy potentiated the activity of these drugs. The underlying role of vesicles explains this dramatic activity and was supported by phenotype reversal with the addition of exogenous biofilm EVs. This striking capacity to cripple biofilm assembly mechanisms reveals a new approach to eradicating biofilms and sheds light on turbinmicin as a promising anti-biofilm drug.
Miao Zhao, Fan Zhang, Robert Zarnowski, Kenneth Barns, Ryley Jones, Jen Fossen, Hiram Sanchez, Scott R. Rajski, Anjon Audhya, Tim S. Bugni, David R. Andes
BACKGROUND Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused more than 1 million deaths worldwide; thus, there is an urgent need to develop preventive and therapeutic strategies. The antituberculosis vaccine bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) demonstrates nonspecific, protective innate immune–boosting effects. Here, we determined whether a history of BCG vaccination was associated with decreased SARS-CoV-2 infection and seroconversion in a longitudinal, retrospective observational study of a diverse cohort of health care workers (HCWs).METHODS We assessed SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence and collected medical questionnaires, which included information on BCG vaccination status and preexisting demographic and clinical characteristics, from an observational cohort of HCWs in a multisite Los Angeles health care organization. We used multivariate analysis to determine whether a history of BCG vaccination was associated with decreased rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection and seroconversion.RESULTS Of the 6201 HCWs, 29.6% reported a history of BCG vaccination, whereas 68.9% had not received BCG vaccination. Seroprevalence of anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG as well as the incidence of self-reported clinical symptoms associated with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were markedly decreased among HCWs with a history of BCG vaccination compared with those without BCG vaccination. After adjusting for age and sex, we found that a history of BCG vaccination, but not meningococcal, pneumococcal, or influenza vaccination, was associated with decreased SARS-CoV-2 IgG seroconversion.CONCLUSIONS A history of BCG vaccination was associated with a decrease in the seroprevalence of anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG and a lower number of participants who self-reported experiencing COVID-19–related clinical symptoms in this cohort of HCWs. Therefore, large randomized, prospective clinical trials of BCG vaccination are urgently needed to confirm whether BCG vaccination can confer a protective effect against SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Magali Noval Rivas, Joseph E. Ebinger, Min Wu, Nancy Sun, Jonathan Braun, Kimia Sobhani, Jennifer E. Van Eyk, Susan Cheng, Moshe Arditi
Advancing proteomic and metabolomic technologies that integrate curated omic databases have crossed a threshold to enable their clinical utility. In this issue of the JCI, Sharma et al. exploit emerging technologies to evaluate whether biomarkers identified in the mitochondrial encephalomyopathy lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) syndrome could refine disease characterization, uncover pathways to monitor therapeutic efficacy, and/or delineate disease-modifying targets. The authors analyzed blood and urine samples from patients with this genetic mitochondrial disease and elucidated proteins and metabolites related to NADH-reductive stress. These circulating biomarkers have intriguing clinical potential that implicate disease pathophysiology and may prove important biomarkers for the future management of MELAS.
Marjan Gucek, Michael N. Sack
Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) have transformed the treatment of various cancers, including malignancies once considered untreatable. These agents, however, are associated with inflammation and tissue damage in multiple organs. Myocarditis has emerged as a serious ICI-associated toxicity, because, while seemingly infrequent, it is often fulminant and lethal. The underlying basis of ICI-associated myocarditis is not completely understood. While the importance of T cells is clear, the inciting antigens, why they are recognized, and the mechanisms leading to cardiac cell injury remain poorly characterized. These issues underscore the need for basic and clinical studies to define pathogenesis, identify predictive biomarkers, improve diagnostic strategies, and develop effective treatments. An improved understanding of ICI-associated myocarditis will provide insights into the equilibrium between the immune and cardiovascular systems.
Javid Moslehi, Andrew H. Lichtman, Arlene H. Sharpe, Lorenzo Galluzzi, Richard N. Kitsis
Katherine E. Uyhazi, Jean Bennett
Clonal expansion of infected CD4+ T cells is a major mechanism of HIV-1 persistence and a barrier to achieving a cure. Potential causes are homeostatic proliferation, effects of HIV-1 integration, and interaction with antigens. Here, we show that it is possible to link antigen responsiveness, the full proviral sequence, the integration site, and the T cell receptor β-chain (TCRβ) sequence to examine the role of recurrent antigenic exposure in maintaining the HIV-1 reservoir. We isolated CMV- and Gag-responding CD4+ T cells from 10 treated individuals. Proviral populations in CMV-responding cells were dominated by large clones, including clones harboring replication-competent proviruses. TCRβ repertoires showed high clonality driven by converging adaptive responses. Although some proviruses were in genes linked to HIV-1 persistence (BACH2, STAT5B, MKL1), the proliferation of infected cells under antigenic stimulation occurred regardless of the site of integration. Paired TCRβ and integration site analysis showed that infection could occur early or late in the course of a clone’s response to antigen and could generate infected cell populations too large to be explained solely by homeostatic proliferation. Together, these findings implicate antigen-driven clonal selection as a major factor in HIV-1 persistence, a finding that will be a difficult challenge to eradication efforts.
Francesco R. Simonetti, Hao Zhang, Garshasb P. Soroosh, Jiayi Duan, Kyle Rhodehouse, Alison L. Hill, Subul A. Beg, Kevin McCormick, Hayley E. Raymond, Christopher L. Nobles, John K. Everett, Kyungyoon J. Kwon, Jennifer A. White, Jun Lai, Joseph B. Margolick, Rebecca Hoh, Steven G. Deeks, Frederic D. Bushman, Janet D. Siliciano, Robert F. Siliciano
Efferocytosis, the process through which apoptotic cells (ACs) are cleared through actin-mediated engulfment by macrophages, prevents secondary necrosis, suppresses inflammation, and promotes resolution. Impaired efferocytosis drives the formation of clinically dangerous necrotic atherosclerotic plaques, the underlying etiology of coronary artery disease (CAD). An intron of the gene encoding PHACTR1 contains rs9349379 (A>G), a common variant associated with CAD. As PHACTR1 is an actin-binding protein, we reasoned that if the rs9349379 risk allele G causes lower PHACTR1 expression in macrophages, it might link the risk allele to CAD via impaired efferocytosis. We show here that rs9349379-G/G was associated with lower levels of PHACTR1 and impaired efferocytosis in human monocyte–derived macrophages and human atherosclerotic lesional macrophages compared with rs9349379-A/A. Silencing PHACTR1 in human and mouse macrophages compromised AC engulfment, and Western diet–fed Ldlr–/– mice in which hematopoietic Phactr1 was genetically targeted showed impaired lesional efferocytosis, increased plaque necrosis, and thinner fibrous caps — all signs of vulnerable plaques in humans. Mechanistically, PHACTR1 prevented dephosphorylation of myosin light chain (MLC), which was necessary for AC engulfment. In summary, rs9349379-G lowered PHACTR1, which, by lowering phospho-MLC, compromised efferocytosis. Thus, rs9349379-G may contribute to CAD risk, at least in part, by impairing atherosclerotic lesional macrophage efferocytosis.
Canan Kasikara, Maaike Schilperoort, Brennan Gerlach, Chenyi Xue, Xiaobo Wang, Ze Zheng, George Kuriakose, Bernhard Dorweiler, Hanrui Zhang, Gabrielle Fredman, Danish Saleheen, Muredach P. Reilly, Ira Tabas
The genetic, epigenetic, and environmental etiologic basis of congenital heart disease (CHD) for most heart anomalies remains unexplained. In this issue of the JCI, Lahm et al. performed the largest genome-wide association study (GWAS) to date of European individuals with CHD and clinical subtypes. The comprehensive meta-analysis included over 4000 patients and 8000 controls and uncovered common genetic variants that associated with cardiac anomalies. Lahm and colleagues performed single-cell analysis of induced pluripotent stem cells and heart cells, revealing a role for MACROD2, GOSR2, WNT3, and MSX1 in the developing heart. This study advances our understanding of the genetic basis of common forms of CHD.
Commensal or pathogenic bacterial communities of the skin interact with the host immune system to preserve homeostasis or sustain disease. In this issue of the JCI, Agak et al. substantially advance our conceptual understanding of TH17 cell biology. The researchers identified IL-26–independent mechanisms by which CD4+ TH17 clones directly kill bacteria. These CD4+ TH17 clones share antimicrobial properties with cytotoxic T cells and granulocytes as evidenced by secretion of granulysin, granzyme B, and histone-laden DNA extracellular traps. Interestingly, these clones emerged following monocyte education by Cutibacterium acnes strains associated with healthy skin, but not those associated with acne. Overall, the antimicrobial mechanisms employed by these TH17 subsets suggest a unique link between innate and adaptive immune responses.
Diane M. Thiboutot, Amanda M. Nelson
The effect of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection on the pathophysiology of the placenta and its impact on pregnancy outcome has not yet been fully elucidated. Here, we present a comprehensive clinical, morphological, and molecular analysis of placental tissues from pregnant women with and without SARS-CoV-2 infection. SARS-CoV-2 could be detected in half of placental tissues from SARS-CoV-2–positive women. The presence of the virus was not associated with any distinctive pathological, maternal, or neonatal outcome features. SARS-CoV-2 tissue load was low in all but one patient who exhibited severe placental damage leading to neonatal neurological manifestations. The placental transcriptional response induced by high viral load of SARS-CoV-2 showed an immunopathology phenotype similar to autopsy lung tissues from patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019. This finding contrasted with the lack of inflammatory response in placental tissues from SARS-CoV-2–positive women with low viral tissue load and from SARS-CoV-2–negative women. Importantly, no evidence of vertical transmission of SARS-CoV-2 was found in any newborns, suggesting that the placenta may be an effective maternal-neonatal barrier against the virus even in the presence of severe infection. Our observations suggest that severe placental damage induced by the virus may be detrimental for the neonate independently of vertical transmission.
Fulvia Milena Cribiù, Roberta Erra, Lorenza Pugni, Carlota Rubio-Perez, Lidia Alonso, Sara Simonetti, Giorgio Alberto Croci, Garazi Serna, Andrea Ronchi, Carlo Pietrasanta, Giovanna Lunghi, Anna Maria Fagnani, Maria Piñana, Matthias Matter, Alexandar Tzankov, Luigi Terracciano, Andres Anton, Enrico Ferrazzi, Stefano Ferrero, Enrico Iurlaro, Joan Seoane, Paolo Nuciforo
Characterization of the T cell response in individuals who recover from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection is critical to understanding its contribution to protective immunity. A multiplexed peptide-MHC tetramer approach was used to screen 408 SARS-CoV-2 candidate epitopes for CD8+ T cell recognition in a cross-sectional sample of 30 coronavirus disease 2019 convalescent individuals. T cells were evaluated using a 28-marker phenotypic panel, and findings were modelled against time from diagnosis and from humoral and inflammatory responses. There were 132 SARS-CoV-2–specific CD8+ T cell responses detected across 6 different HLAs, corresponding to 52 unique epitope reactivities. CD8+ T cell responses were detected in almost all convalescent individuals and were directed against several structural and nonstructural target epitopes from the entire SARS-CoV-2 proteome. A unique phenotype for SARS-CoV-2–specific T cells was observed that was distinct from other common virus-specific T cells detected in the same cross-sectional sample and characterized by early differentiation kinetics. Modelling demonstrated a coordinated and dynamic immune response characterized by a decrease in inflammation, increase in neutralizing antibody titer, and differentiation of a specific CD8+ T cell response. Overall, T cells exhibited distinct differentiation into stem cell and transitional memory states (subsets), which may be key to developing durable protection.
Hassen Kared, Andrew D. Redd, Evan M. Bloch, Tania S. Bonny, Hermi Sumatoh, Faris Kairi, Daniel Carbajo, Brian Abel, Evan W. Newell, Maria P. Bettinotti, Sarah E. Benner, Eshan U. Patel, Kirsten Littlefield, Oliver Laeyendecker, Shmuel Shoham, David Sullivan, Arturo Casadevall, Andrew Pekosz, Alessandra Nardin, Michael Fehlings, Aaron A.R. Tobian, Thomas C. Quinn
BACKGROUND Patients with p16+ oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OPSCC) are potentially cured with definitive treatment. However, there are currently no reliable biomarkers of treatment failure for p16+ OPSCC. Pathologist-based visual assessment of tumor cell multinucleation (MN) has been shown to be independently prognostic of disease-free survival (DFS) in p16+ OPSCC. However, its quantification is time intensive, subjective, and at risk of interobserver variability.METHODS We present a deep-learning–based metric, the multinucleation index (MuNI), for prognostication in p16+ OPSCC. This approach quantifies tumor MN from digitally scanned H&E-stained slides. Representative H&E-stained whole-slide images from 1094 patients with previously untreated p16+ OPSCC were acquired from 6 institutions for optimization and validation of the MuNI.RESULTS The MuNI was prognostic for DFS, overall survival (OS), or distant metastasis–free survival (DMFS) in p16+ OPSCC, with HRs of 1.78 (95% CI: 1.37–2.30), 1.94 (1.44–2.60), and 1.88 (1.43–2.47), respectively, independent of age, smoking status, treatment type, or tumor and lymph node (T/N) categories in multivariable analyses. The MuNI was also prognostic for DFS, OS, and DMFS in patients with stage I and stage III OPSCC, separately.CONCLUSION MuNI holds promise as a low-cost, tissue-nondestructive, H&E stain–based digital biomarker test for counseling, treatment, and surveillance of patients with p16+ OPSCC. These data support further confirmation of the MuNI in prospective trials.FUNDING National Cancer Institute (NCI), NIH; National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, NIH; National Center for Research Resources, NIH; VA Merit Review Award from the US Department of VA Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development Service; US Department of Defense (DOD) Breast Cancer Research Program Breakthrough Level 1 Award; DOD Prostate Cancer Idea Development Award; DOD Lung Cancer Investigator-Initiated Translational Research Award; DOD Peer-Reviewed Cancer Research Program; Ohio Third Frontier Technology Validation Fund; Wallace H. Coulter Foundation Program in the Department of Biomedical Engineering; Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program, Case Western Reserve University; NCI Cancer Center Support Grant, NIH; Career Development Award from the US Department of VA Clinical Sciences Research and Development Program; Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center Support Grant, NIH; and Computational Genomic Epidemiology of Cancer Program, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH, the US Department of VA, the DOD, or the US Government.
Can F. Koyuncu, Cheng Lu, Kaustav Bera, Zelin Zhang, Jun Xu, Paula Toro, German Corredor, Deborah Chute, Pingfu Fu, Wade L. Thorstad, Farhoud Faraji, Justin A. Bishop, Mitra Mehrad, Patricia D. Castro, Andrew G. Sikora, Lester D.R. Thompson, R.D. Chernock, Krystle A. Lang Kuhs, Jingqin Luo, Vlad Sandulache, David J. Adelstein, Shlomo Koyfman, James S. Lewis Jr., Anant Madabhushi
Multiple studies have shown loss of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2–specific (SARS-CoV-2–specific) antibodies over time after infection, raising concern that humoral immunity against the virus is not durable. If immunity wanes quickly, millions of people may be at risk for reinfection after recovery from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). However, memory B cells (MBCs) could provide durable humoral immunity even if serum neutralizing antibody titers decline. We performed multidimensional flow cytometric analysis of S protein receptor binding domain–specific (S-RBD–specific) MBCs in cohorts of ambulatory patients with COVID-19 with mild disease (n = 7), and hospitalized patients with moderate to severe disease (n = 7), at a median of 54 days (range, 39–104 days) after symptom onset. We detected S-RBD–specific class-switched MBCs in 13 of 14 participants, failing only in the individual with the lowest plasma levels of anti–S-RBD IgG and neutralizing antibodies. Resting MBCs (rMBCs) made up the largest proportion of S-RBD–specific MBCs in both cohorts. FCRL5, a marker of functional memory on rMBCs, was more dramatically upregulated on S-RBD–specific rMBCs after mild infection than after severe infection. These data indicate that most SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals develop S-RBD–specific, class-switched rMBCs that resemble germinal center–derived B cells induced by effective vaccination against other pathogens, providing evidence for durable B cell–mediated immunity against SARS-CoV-2 after mild or severe disease.
Clinton O. Ogega, Nicole E. Skinner, Paul W. Blair, Han-Sol Park, Kirsten Littlefield, Abhinaya Ganesan, Santosh Dhakal, Pranay Ladiwala, Annukka A.R. Antar, Stuart C. Ray, Michael J. Betenbaugh, Andrew Pekosz, Sabra L. Klein, Yukari C. Manabe, Andrea L. Cox, Justin R. Bailey
A number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine candidates have shown promising results, but substantial uncertainty remains regarding their effectiveness and global rollout. Boosting innate immunity with bacillus Calmette Guérin (BCG) or other live attenuated vaccines may also play a role in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. BCG has long been known for its nonspecific beneficial effects that are most likely explained by epigenetic and metabolic reprogramming of innate immune cells, termed trained immunity. In this issue of the JCI, Rivas et al. add to these arguments by showing that BCG-vaccinated health care providers from a Los Angeles health care organization had lower rates of COVID-19 diagnoses and seropositivity compared with unvaccinated individuals. Prospective clinical trials are thus warranted to explore the effects of BCG vaccination in COVID-19. We posit that beyond COVID-19, vaccines such as BCG that elicit trained immunity may mitigate the impact of emerging pathogens in future pandemics.
Mihai G. Netea, Jos W.M. van der Meer, Reinout van Crevel
The protein kinases IKKε and TBK1 are activated in liver and fat in mouse models of obesity. We have previously demonstrated that treatment with the IKKε/TBK1 inhibitor amlexanox produces weight loss and relieves insulin resistance in obese animals and patients. While amlexanox treatment caused a transient reduction in food intake, long-term weight loss was attributable to increased energy expenditure via FGF21-dependent beiging of white adipose tissue (WAT). Amlexanox increased FGF21 synthesis and secretion in several tissues. Interestingly, although hepatic secretion determined circulating levels, it was dispensable for regulating energy expenditure. In contrast, adipocyte-secreted FGF21 may have acted as an autocrine factor that led to adipose tissue browning and weight loss in obese mice. Moreover, increased energy expenditure was an important determinant of improved insulin sensitivity by amlexanox. Conversely, the immediate reductions in fasting blood glucose observed with acute amlexanox treatment were mediated by the suppression of hepatic glucose production via activation of STAT3 by adipocyte-secreted IL-6. These findings demonstrate that amlexanox improved metabolic health via FGF21 action in adipocytes to increase energy expenditure via WAT beiging and that adipocyte-derived IL-6 has an endocrine role in decreasing gluconeogenesis via hepatic STAT3 activation, thereby producing a coordinated improvement in metabolic parameters.
Shannon M. Reilly, Mohammad Abu-Odeh, Magdalene Ameka, Julia H. DeLuca, Meghan C. Naber, Benyamin Dadpey, Nima Ebadat, Andrew V. Gomez, Xiaoling Peng, BreAnne Poirier, Elyse Walk, Matthew J. Potthoff, Alan R. Saltiel