Influenza is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Here we show changes in the abundance and activation states of more than 50 immune cell subsets in 35 individuals over 11 time points during human A/California/2009 (H1N1) virus challenge monitored using mass cytometry along with other clinical assessments. Peak change in monocyte, B cell, and T cell subset frequencies coincided with peak virus shedding, followed by marked activation of T and NK cells. Results led to the identification of CD38 as a critical regulator of plasmacytoid dendritic cell function in response to influenza virus. Machine learning using study-derived clinical parameters and single-cell data effectively classified and predicted susceptibility to infection. The coordinated immune cell dynamics defined in this study provide a framework for identifying novel correlates of protection in the evaluation of future influenza therapeutics.
Zainab Rahil, Rebecca Leylek, Christian M. Schürch, Han Chen, Zach Bjornson-Hooper, Shannon R. Christensen, Pier Federico Gherardini, Salil S. Bhate, Matthew H. Spitzer, Gabriela K. Fragiadakis, Nilanjan Mukherjee, Nelson Kim, Sizun Jiang, Jennifer Yo, Brice Gaudilliere, Melton Affrime, Bonnie Bock, Scott E. Hensley, Juliana Idoyaga, Nima Aghaeepour, Kenneth Kim, Garry P. Nolan, David R. McIlwain
Store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) is the major route of Ca2+ influx in platelets. The Ca2+ sensor stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1) triggers SOCE by forming punctate structures with the Ca2+ channel Orai1 and the inositol trisphosphate receptor (IP3R), thereby linking the endo-/sarcoplasmic reticulum to the plasma membrane. Here, we identified the BAR domain superfamily member bridging integrator 2 (BIN2) as an interaction partner of STIM1 and IP3R in platelets. Deletion of platelet BIN2 (Bin2fl/fl,Pf4-Cre mice) resulted in reduced Ca2+ store release and Ca2+ influx in response to all tested platelet agonists. These defects were a consequence of impaired IP3R function in combination with defective STIM1-mediated SOC channel activation, while Ca2+ store content and agonist-induced IP3 production were unaltered. This severely defective Ca2+ signaling translated into impaired thrombus formation under flow and a protection of Bin2fl/fl,Pf4-Cre mice in models of arterial thrombosis and stroke. Our results establish BIN2 as a central regulator of platelet activation in thrombosis and thrombo-inflammatory disease settings.
Julia Volz, Charly Kusch, Sarah Beck, Michael Popp, Timo Vögtle, Mara Meub, Inga Scheller, Hannah S. Heil, Julia Preu, Michael K. Schuhmann, Katherina Hemmen, Thomas Premsler, Albert Sickmann, Katrin G. Heinze, David Stegner, Guido Stoll, Attila Braun, Markus Sauer, Bernhard Nieswandt
Air pollution involving particulate matter smaller than 2.5 μm in size (PM2.5) is the world’s leading environmental risk factor contributing to mortality through cardiometabolic pathways. In this study, we modeled early life exposure using chow-fed C57BL/6J male mice that were exposed to real-world inhaled, concentrated PM2.5 (~10 times ambient levels/~60–120 μg/m3) or filtered air over a 14-week period. We investigated the effects of PM2.5 on phenotype, the transcriptome, and chromatin accessibility and compared these with the effects of a prototypical high-fat diet (HFD) as well as cessation of exposure on phenotype reversibility. Exposure to PM2.5 impaired glucose and insulin tolerance and reduced energy expenditure and 18FDG-PET uptake in brown adipose tissue. Multiple differentially expressed gene clusters in pathways involving metabolism and circadian rhythm were noted in insulin-responsive tissues. Although the magnitude of transcriptional change detected with PM2.5 exposure was lower than that observed with a HFD, the degree of alteration in chromatin accessibility after PM2.5 exposure was significant. The novel chromatin remodeler SMARCA5 (SWI/SNF complex) was regulated in response to PM2.5 exposure, the cessation of which was associated with a reversal of insulin resistance and restoration of chromatin accessibility and nucleosome positioning near transcription start sites, as well as a reversal of exposure-induced changes in the transcriptome, including SMARCA5. These changes indicate pliable epigenetic control mechanisms following cessation of exposure.
Sanjay Rajagopalan, Bongsoo Park, Rengasamy Palanivel, Vinesh Vinayachandran, Jeffrey A. Deiuliis, Roopesh Singh Gangwar, Lopa Das, Jinhu Yin, Youngshim Choi, Sadeer Al-Kindi, Mukesh K. Jain, Kasper D. Hansen, Shyam Biswal
BACKGROUND Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell immunotherapy has resulted in complete remission (CR) and durable response in highly refractory patients. However, logistical complexity and high costs of manufacturing autologous viral products limit CAR T cell availability.METHODS We report the early results of a phase I/II trial in B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) patients relapsed after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) using donor-derived CD19 CAR T cells generated with the Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon and differentiated into cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells.RESULTS The cellular product was produced successfully for all patients from the donor peripheral blood (PB) and consisted mostly of CD3+ lymphocytes with 43% CAR expression. Four pediatric and 9 adult patients were infused with a single dose of CAR T cells. Toxicities reported were 2 grade I and 1 grade II cytokine-release syndrome (CRS) cases at the highest dose in the absence of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), neurotoxicity, or dose-limiting toxicities. Six out of 7 patients receiving the highest doses achieved CR and CR with incomplete blood count recovery (CRi) at day 28. Five out of 6 patients in CR were also minimal residual disease negative (MRD–). Robust expansion was achieved in the majority of the patients. CAR T cells were measurable by transgene copy PCR up to 10 months. Integration site analysis showed a positive safety profile and highly polyclonal repertoire in vitro and at early time points after infusion.CONCLUSION SB-engineered CAR T cells expand and persist in pediatric and adult B-ALL patients relapsed after HSCT. Antileukemic activity was achieved without severe toxicities.TRIAL REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03389035.FUNDING This study was supported by grants from the Fondazione AIRC per la Ricerca sul Cancro (AIRC); Cancer Research UK (CRUK); the Fundación Científica de la Asociación Española Contra el Cáncer (FC AECC); Ministero Della Salute; Fondazione Regionale per la Ricerca Biomedica (FRRB).
Chiara F. Magnani, Giuseppe Gaipa, Federico Lussana, Daniela Belotti, Giuseppe Gritti, Sara Napolitano, Giada Matera, Benedetta Cabiati, Chiara Buracchi, Gianmaria Borleri, Grazia Fazio, Silvia Zaninelli, Sarah Tettamanti, Stefania Cesana, Valentina Colombo, Michele Quaroni, Giovanni Cazzaniga, Attilio Rovelli, Ettore Biagi, Stefania Galimberti, Andrea Calabria, Fabrizio Benedicenti, Eugenio Montini, Silvia Ferrari, Martino Introna, Adriana Balduzzi, Maria Grazia Valsecchi, Giuseppe Dastoli, Alessandro Rambaldi, Andrea Biondi
How T cells integrate environmental cues into signals that limit the magnitude and length of immune responses is poorly understood. Here, we provide data that demonstrate that B55β, a regulatory subunit of protein phosphatase 2A, represents a molecular link between cytokine concentration and apoptosis in activated CD8+ T cells. Through the modulation of AKT, B55β induced the expression of the proapoptotic molecule Hrk in response to cytokine withdrawal. Accordingly, B55β and Hrk were both required for in vivo and in vitro contraction of activated CD8+ lymphocytes. We show that this process plays a role during clonal contraction, establishment of immune memory, and preservation of peripheral tolerance. This regulatory pathway may represent an unexplored opportunity to end unwanted immune responses or to promote immune memory.
Noé Rodríguez-Rodríguez, Iris K. Madera-Salcedo, J. Alejandro Cisneros-Segura, H. Benjamín García-González, Sokratis A. Apostolidis, Abril Saint-Martin, Marcela Esquivel-Velázquez, Tran Nguyen, Dámaris P. Romero-Rodríguez, George C. Tsokos, Jorge Alcocer-Varela, Florencia Rosetti, José C. Crispín
Antibodies targeting human leukocyte antigen (HLA)/major histocompatibility complex (MHC) proteins limit successful transplantation and transfusion, and their presence in blood products can cause lethal transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI). It is unclear which cell types are bound by these anti-leukocyte antibodies to initiate an immunologic cascade resulting in lung injury. We therefore conditionally removed MHC class I (MHC I) from likely cellular targets in antibody-mediated lung injury. Only the removal of endothelial MHC I reduced lung injury and mortality, related mechanistically to absent endothelial complement fixation and lung platelet retention. Restoration of endothelial MHC I rendered MHC I–deficient mice susceptible to lung injury. Neutrophil responses, including neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) release, were intact in endothelial MHC I–deficient mice, whereas complement depletion reduced both lung injury and NETs. Human pulmonary endothelial cells showed high HLA class I expression, and posttransfusion complement activation was increased in clinical TRALI. These results indicate that the critical source of antigen for anti-leukocyte antibodies is in fact the endothelium, which reframes our understanding of TRALI as a rapid-onset vasculitis. Inhibition of complement activation may have multiple beneficial effects of reducing endothelial injury, platelet retention, and NET release in conditions where antibodies trigger these pathogenic responses.
Simon J. Cleary, Nicholas Kwaan, Jennifer J. Tian, Daniel R. Calabrese, Beñat Mallavia, Mélia Magnen, John R. Greenland, Anatoly Urisman, Jonathan P. Singer, Steven R. Hays, Jasleen Kukreja, Ariel M. Hay, Heather L. Howie, Pearl Toy, Clifford A. Lowell, Craig N. Morrell, James C. Zimring, Mark R. Looney
Tuberculosis (TB) continues to affect over 10 million people per year worldwide. Despite advances in diagnosis, smear microscopy insufficiently detects pulmonary disease, with test result reporting taking longer than a day. While urine assays to detect the lipopolysaccharide lipoarabinomannan (LAM), present in mycobacterial cell walls, can provide results within minutes, the currently available assay has low sensitivity and its application is limited to patients with HIV suspected of having TB. In this issue of the JCI, Broger and Nicol et al. investigated 3 rapid urine tests in 372 ambulatory HIV-negative individuals suspected of having TB in South Africa and Peru. FujiLAM emerged as a rapid test to confirm TB diagnosis in the HIV-seronegative population. This study shows that FujiLAM has considerable potential to reshape the TB diagnostics landscape, making diagnosis and treatment in one office visit a reality for TB.
Elisa H. Ignatius, Keira A. Cohen, William R. Bishai
ARID1A, a component of the chromatin-remodeling complex SWI/SNF, is one of the most frequently mutated genes in human cancer. We sought to develop rational combination therapy to potentiate the efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade in ARID1A-deficient tumors. In a proteomic analysis of a data set from The Cancer Genomic Atlas, we found enhanced expression of Chk2, a DNA damage checkpoint kinase, in ARID1A-mutated/deficient tumors. Surprisingly, we found that ARID1A targets the nonchromatin substrate Chk2 for ubiquitination. Loss of ARID1A increased the Chk2 level through modulating autoubiquitination of the E3-ligase RNF8 and thereby reducing RNF8-mediated Chk2 degradation. Inhibition of the ATM/Chk2 DNA damage checkpoint axis led to replication stress and accumulation of cytosolic DNA, which subsequently activated the DNA sensor STING-mediated innate immune response in ARID1A-deficient tumors. As expected, tumors with mutation or low expression of both ARID1A and ATM/Chk2 exhibited increased tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes and were associated with longer patient survival. Notably, an ATM inhibitor selectively potentiated the efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade in ARID1A-depleted tumors but not in WT tumors. Together, these results suggest that ARID1A’s targeting of the nonchromatin substrate Chk2 for ubiquitination makes it possible to selectively modulate cancer cell–intrinsic innate immunity to enhance the antitumor activity of immune checkpoint blockade.
Lulu Wang, Lin Yang, Chen Wang, Wei Zhao, Zhenlin Ju, Wei Zhang, Jianfeng Shen, Yang Peng, Clemens An, Yen T. Luu, Shumei Song, Timothy A. Yap, Jaffer A. Ajani, Gordon B. Mills, Xuetong Shen, Guang Peng
The undruggable nature of oncogenic Myc transcription factors poses a therapeutic challenge in neuroblastoma, a pediatric cancer in which MYCN amplification is strongly associated with unfavorable outcome. Here, we show that CYC065 (fadraciclib), a clinical inhibitor of CDK9 and CDK2, selectively targeted MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma via multiple mechanisms. CDK9 — a component of the transcription elongation complex P-TEFb — bound to the MYCN-amplicon superenhancer, and its inhibition resulted in selective loss of nascent MYCN transcription. MYCN loss led to growth arrest, sensitizing cells for apoptosis following CDK2 inhibition. In MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma, MYCN invaded active enhancers, driving a transcriptionally encoded adrenergic gene expression program that was selectively reversed by CYC065. MYCN overexpression in mesenchymal neuroblastoma was sufficient to induce adrenergic identity and sensitize cells to CYC065. CYC065, used together with temozolomide, a reference therapy for relapsed neuroblastoma, caused long-term suppression of neuroblastoma growth in vivo, highlighting the clinical potential of CDK9/2 inhibition in the treatment of MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma.
Evon Poon, Tong Liang, Yann Jamin, Susanne Walz, Colin Kwok, Anne Hakkert, Karen Barker, Zuzanna Urban, Khin Thway, Rhamy Zeid, Albert Hallsworth, Gary Box, Marli E. Ebus, Marco P. Licciardello, Yordan Sbirkov, Glori Lazaro, Elizabeth Calton, Barbara M. Costa, Melanie Valenti, Alexis De Haven Brandon, Hannah Webber, Nicolas Tardif, Gilberto S. Almeida, Rossitza Christova, Gunther Boysen, Mark W. Richards, Giuseppe Barone, Anthony Ford, Richard Bayliss, Paul A. Clarke, Johann De Bono, Nathanael S. Gray, Julian Blagg, Simon P. Robinson, Suzanne A. Eccles, Daniella Zheleva, James E. Bradner, Jan Molenaar, Igor Vivanco, Martin Eilers, Paul Workman, Charles Y. Lin, Louis Chesler
Mitochondria have emerged as key actors of innate and adaptive immunity. Mitophagy has a pivotal role in cell homeostasis, but its contribution to macrophage functions and host defense remains to be delineated. Here, we showed that lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in combination with IFN-γ inhibited PINK1-dependent mitophagy in macrophages through a STAT1-dependent activation of the inflammatory caspases 1 and 11. In addition, we demonstrated that the inhibition of mitophagy triggered classical macrophage activation in a mitochondrial ROS–dependent manner. In a murine model of polymicrobial infection (cecal ligature and puncture), adoptive transfer of Pink1-deficient bone marrow or pharmacological inhibition of mitophagy promoted macrophage activation, which favored bactericidal clearance and led to a better survival rate. Reciprocally, mitochondrial uncouplers that promote mitophagy reversed LPS/IFN-γ–mediated activation of macrophages and led to immunoparalysis with impaired bacterial clearance and lowered survival. In critically ill patients, we showed that mitophagy was inhibited in blood monocytes of patients with sepsis as compared with nonseptic patients. Overall, this work demonstrates that the inhibition of mitophagy is a physiological mechanism that contributes to the activation of myeloid cells and improves the outcome of sepsis.
Danish Patoli, Franck Mignotte, Valérie Deckert, Alois Dusuel, Adélie Dumont, Aurélie Rieu, Antoine Jalil, Kevin Van Dongen, Thibaut Bourgeois, Thomas Gautier, Charlène Magnani, Naig Le Guern, Stéphane Mandard, Jean Bastin, Fatima Djouadi, Christine Schaeffer, Nina Guillaumot, Michel Narce, Maxime Nguyen, Julien Guy, Auguste Dargent, Jean-Pierre Quenot, Mickaël Rialland, David Masson, Johan Auwerx, Laurent Lagrost, Charles Thomas
As a hallmark of immunological aging, low-grade, chronic inflammation with accumulation of effector memory T cells contributes to increased susceptibility to many aging-related diseases. While the proinflammatory state of aged T cells indicates a dysregulation of immune homeostasis, whether and how aging drives regulatory T cell (Treg) aging and alters Treg function are not fully understood owing to a lack of specific aging markers. Here, by a combination of cellular, molecular, and bioinformatic approaches, we discovered that Tregs senesce more severely than conventional T (Tconv) cells during aging. We found that Tregs from aged mice were less efficient than young Tregs in suppressing Tconv cell function in an inflammatory bowel disease model and in preventing Tconv cell aging in an irradiation-induced aging model. Furthermore, we revealed that DDB1- and CUL4-associated factor 1 (DCAF1) was downregulated in aged Tregs and was critical to restrain Treg aging via reactive oxygen species (ROS) regulated by glutathione-S-transferase P (GSTP1). Importantly, interfering with GSTP1 and ROS pathways reinvigorated the proliferation and function of aged Tregs. Therefore, our studies uncover an important role of the DCAF1/GSTP1/ROS axis in Treg senescence, which leads to uncontrolled inflammation and immunological aging.
Zengli Guo, Gang Wang, Bing Wu, Wei-Chun Chou, Liang Cheng, Chenlin Zhou, Jitong Lou, Di Wu, Lishan Su, Junnian Zheng, Jenny P.-Y. Ting, Yisong Y. Wan
Anne H. Rowley, Stanford T. Shulman, Moshe Arditi
BACKGROUND Initial reports from the severe acute respiratory coronavirus 2 (SARS–CoV-2) pandemic described children as being less susceptible to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) than adults. Subsequently, a severe and novel pediatric disorder termed multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) emerged. We report on unique hematologic and immunologic parameters that distinguish between COVID-19 and MIS-C and provide insight into pathophysiology.METHODS We prospectively enrolled hospitalized patients with evidence of SARS–CoV-2 infection and classified them as having MIS-C or COVID-19. Patients with COVID-19 were classified as having either minimal or severe disease. Cytokine profiles, viral cycle thresholds (Cts), blood smears, and soluble C5b-9 values were analyzed with clinical data.RESULTS Twenty patients were enrolled (9 severe COVID-19, 5 minimal COVID-19, and 6 MIS-C). Five cytokines (IFN-γ, IL-10, IL-6, IL-8, and TNF-α) contributed to the analysis. TNF-α and IL-10 discriminated between patients with MIS-C and severe COVID-19. The presence of burr cells on blood smears, as well as Cts, differentiated between patients with severe COVID-19 and those with MIS-C.CONCLUSION Pediatric patients with SARS–CoV-2 are at risk for critical illness with severe COVID-19 and MIS-C. Cytokine profiling and examination of peripheral blood smears may distinguish between patients with MIS-C and those with severe COVID-19.FUNDING Financial support for this project was provided by CHOP Frontiers Program Immune Dysregulation Team; National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; National Cancer Institute; the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society; Cookies for Kids Cancer; Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer; Children’s Oncology Group; Stand UP 2 Cancer; Team Connor; the Kate Amato Foundations; Burroughs Wellcome Fund CAMS; the Clinical Immunology Society; the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology; and the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics.
Caroline Diorio, Sarah E. Henrickson, Laura A. Vella, Kevin O. McNerney, Julie Chase, Chakkapong Burudpakdee, Jessica H. Lee, Cristina Jasen, Fran Balamuth, David M. Barrett, Brenda L. Banwell, Kathrin M. Bernt, Allison M. Blatz, Kathleen Chiotos, Brian T. Fisher, Julie C. Fitzgerald, Jeffrey S. Gerber, Kandace Gollomp, Christopher Gray, Stephan A. Grupp, Rebecca M. Harris, Todd J. Kilbaugh, Audrey R. Odom John, Michele Lambert, Emily J. Liebling, Michele E. Paessler, Whitney Petrosa, Charles Phillips, Anne F. Reilly, Neil D. Romberg, Alix Seif, Deborah A. Sesok-Pizzini, Kathleen E. Sullivan, Julie Vardaro, Edward M. Behrens, David T. Teachey, Hamid Bassiri
Angiosarcomas are rare, clinically aggressive tumors with limited treatment options and a dismal prognosis. We analyzed angiosarcomas from 68 patients, integrating information from multiomic sequencing, NanoString immuno-oncology profiling, and multiplex immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence for tumor-infiltrating immune cells. Through whole-genome sequencing (n = 18), 50% of the cutaneous head and neck angiosarcomas exhibited higher tumor mutation burden (TMB) and UV mutational signatures; others were mutationally quiet and non–UV driven. NanoString profiling revealed 3 distinct patient clusters represented by lack (clusters 1 and 2) or enrichment (cluster 3) of immune-related signaling and immune cells. Neutrophils (CD15+), macrophages (CD68+), cytotoxic T cells (CD8+), Tregs (FOXP3+), and PD-L1+ cells were enriched in cluster 3 relative to clusters 2 and 1. Likewise, tumor inflammation signature (TIS) scores were highest in cluster 3 (7.54 vs. 6.71 vs. 5.75, respectively; P < 0.0001). Head and neck angiosarcomas were predominant in clusters 1 and 3, providing the rationale for checkpoint immunotherapy, especially in the latter subgroup with both high TMB and TIS scores. Cluster 2 was enriched for secondary angiosarcomas and exhibited higher expression of DNMT1, BRD3/4, MYC, HRAS, and PDGFRB, in keeping with the upregulation of epigenetic and oncogenic signaling pathways amenable to targeted therapies. Molecular and immunological dissection of angiosarcomas may provide insights into opportunities for precision medicine.
Jason Yongsheng Chan, Jing Quan Lim, Joe Yeong, Vinod Ravi, Peiyong Guan, Arnoud Boot, Timothy Kwang Yong Tay, Sathiyamoorthy Selvarajan, Nur Diyana Md Nasir, Jie Hua Loh, Choon Kiat Ong, Dachuan Huang, Jing Tan, Zhimei Li, Cedric Chuan-Young Ng, Thuan Tong Tan, Mikio Masuzawa, Ken Wing-Kin Sung, Mohamad Farid, Richard Hong Hui Quek, Ngian Chye Tan, Melissa Ching Ching Teo, Steven George Rozen, Patrick Tan, Andrew Futreal, Bin Tean Teh, Khee Chee Soo
BACKGROUND Pediatric SARS–CoV-2 infection can be complicated by a dangerous hyperinflammatory condition termed multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). The clinical and immunologic spectrum of MIS-C and its relationship to other inflammatory conditions of childhood have not been studied in detail.METHODS We retrospectively studied confirmed cases of MIS-C at our institution from March to June 2020. The clinical characteristics, laboratory studies, and treatment response were collected. Data were compared with historic cohorts of Kawasaki disease (KD) and macrophage activation syndrome (MAS).RESULTS Twenty-eight patients fulfilled the case definition of MIS-C. Median age at presentation was 9 years (range: 1 month to 17 years); 50% of patients had preexisting conditions. All patients had laboratory confirmation of SARS–CoV-2 infection. Seventeen patients (61%) required intensive care, including 7 patients (25%) who required inotrope support. Seven patients (25%) met criteria for complete or incomplete KD, and coronary abnormalities were found in 6 cases. Lymphopenia, thrombocytopenia, and elevation in inflammatory markers, D-dimer, B-type natriuretic peptide, IL-6, and IL-10 levels were common but not ubiquitous. Cytopenias distinguished MIS-C from KD and the degree of hyperferritinemia and pattern of cytokine production differed between MIS-C and MAS. Immunomodulatory therapy given to patients with MIS-C included intravenous immune globulin (IVIG) (71%), corticosteroids (61%), and anakinra (18%). Clinical and laboratory improvement were observed in all cases, including 6 cases that did not require immunomodulatory therapy. No mortality was recorded in this cohort.CONCLUSION MIS-C encompasses a broad phenotypic spectrum with clinical and laboratory features distinct from KD and MAS.FUNDING This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases; the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; Rheumatology Research Foundation Investigator Awards and Medical Education Award; Boston Children’s Hospital Faculty Career Development Awards; the McCance Family Foundation; and the Samara Jan Turkel Center.
Pui Y. Lee, Megan Day-Lewis, Lauren A. Henderson, Kevin G. Friedman, Jeffrey Lo, Jordan E. Roberts, Mindy S. Lo, Craig D. Platt, Janet Chou, Kacie J. Hoyt, Annette L. Baker, Tina M. Banzon, Margaret H. Chang, Ezra Cohen, Sarah D. de Ferranti, Audrey Dionne, Saddiq Habiballah, Olha Halyabar, Jonathan S. Hausmann, Melissa M. Hazen, Erin Janssen, Esra Meidan, Ryan W. Nelson, Alan A. Nguyen, Robert P. Sundel, Fatma Dedeoglu, Peter A. Nigrovic, Jane W. Newburger, Mary Beth F. Son
An alarming increase in children presenting with fever, hyperinflammation, and multiorgan dysfunction frequently requiring intensive care has been observed after severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection. The illness resembles Kawasaki disease (KD), with coronary dilatation and aneurysm occurring in some. However, the cardiovascular manifestations were typically on the severe end of the KD spectrum, with cardiogenic shock a common presentation together with other features. This led to defining a unique syndrome named multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). In this issue of the JCI, Lee and Day-Lewis et al. and Diorio et al. explored the clinical profiles associated with coronavirus disease 2019 in children. We posit that while splitting MIS-C into a separate disease may aid clinical management decisions, lumping it into the KD pot may better serve to understand pathobiology.
Rae S.M. Yeung, Polly J. Ferguson
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) heterogeneity causes a greater number of deaths than any other brain tumor, despite the availability of alkylating chemotherapy. GBM stem-like cells (GSCs) contribute to GBM complexity and chemoresistance, but it remains challenging to identify and target GSCs or factors that control their activity. Here, we identified a specific GSC subset and show that activity of these cells is positively regulated by stabilization of methyl CpG binding domain 3 (MBD3) protein. MBD3 binds to CK1A and to BTRCP E3 ubiquitin ligase, triggering MBD3 degradation, suggesting that modulating this circuit could antagonize GBM recurrence. Accordingly, xenograft mice treated with the CK1A activator pyrvinium pamoate (Pyr-Pam) showed enhanced MBD3 degradation in cells expressing high levels of O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) and in GSCs, overcoming temozolomide chemoresistance. Pyr-Pam blocked recruitment of MBD3 and the repressive nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase (NuRD) complex to neurogenesis-associated gene loci and increased acetyl–histone H3 activity and GSC differentiation. We conclude that CK1A/BTRCP/MBD3/NuRD signaling modulates GSC activation and malignancy, and that targeting this signaling could suppress GSC proliferation and GBM recurrence.
Byoung-San Moon, Mingyang Cai, Grace Lee, Tong Zhao, Xiaofeng Song, Steven L. Giannotta, Frank J. Attenello, Min Yu, Wange Lu
BACKGROUND HIV-1 viremia that is not suppressed by combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) is generally attributed to incomplete medication adherence and/or drug resistance. We evaluated individuals referred by clinicians for nonsuppressible viremia (plasma HIV-1 RNA above 40 copies/mL) despite reported adherence to ART and the absence of drug resistance to the current ART regimen.METHODS Samples were collected from at least 2 time points from 8 donors who had nonsuppressible viremia for more than 6 months. Single templates of HIV-1 RNA obtained from plasma and viral outgrowth of cultured cells and from proviral DNA were amplified by PCR and sequenced for evidence of clones of cells that produced infectious viruses. Clones were confirmed by host-proviral integration site analysis.RESULTS HIV-1 genomic RNA with identical sequences were identified in plasma samples from all 8 donors. The identical viral RNA sequences did not change over time and did not evolve resistance to the ART regimen. In 4 of the donors, viral RNA sequences obtained from plasma matched those sequences from viral outgrowth cultures, indicating that the viruses were replication competent. Integration sites for infectious proviruses from those 4 donors were mapped to the introns of the MATR3, ZNF268, ZNF721/ABCA11P, and ABCA11P genes. The sizes of the clones were estimated to be from 50 million to 350 million cells.CONCLUSION These findings show that clones of HIV-1–infected cells producing virus can cause failure of ART to suppress viremia. The mechanisms involved in clonal expansion and persistence need to be defined to effectively target viremia and the HIV-1 reservoir.FUNDING National Cancer Institute, NIH; Howard Hughes Medical Research Fellows Program, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Office of AIDS Research; American Cancer Society; National Cancer Institute through a Leidos subcontract; National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, NIH, to the I4C Martin Delaney Collaboratory; University of Rochester Center for AIDS Research and University of Rochester HIV/AIDS Clinical Trials Unit.
Elias K. Halvas, Kevin W. Joseph, Leah D. Brandt, Shuang Guo, Michele D. Sobolewski, Jana L. Jacobs, Camille Tumiotto, John K. Bui, Joshua C. Cyktor, Brandon F. Keele, Gene D. Morse, Michael J. Bale, Wei Shao, Mary F. Kearney, John M. Coffin, Jason W. Rausch, Xiaolin Wu, Stephen H. Hughes, John W. Mellors
Antiretroviral therapy (ART) generally reduces plasma HIV to undetectable levels, although virus persists in latently infected CD4+ T cells. In some individuals, viremia remains detectable despite adherence to ART and the absence of drug resistance mutations. In this issue of the JCI, Halvas et al. describe HIV RNA sequences from plasma of 8 donors with persistent viremia. Residual viremia was dominated by identical HIV-1 RNA sequences that remained relatively constant over 4 years. Plasma virus matched replication-competent virus cultured from CD4+ T cells. Integration site analysis confirmed the presence of large clones of infected cells. These results indicate that nonsuppressible viremia can be due to expanded clones of infected CD4+ T cells carrying replication-competent virus. The individuals described here represent extreme examples of a phenomenon that is seen in all infected individuals and that is a major barrier to curing HIV infection, the in vivo proliferation of latently infected cells.
Janet D. Siliciano, Robert F. Siliciano
BACKGROUND Therapeutic vaccinations against cancer have mainly targeted differentiation antigens, cancer-testis antigens, and overexpressed antigens and have thus far resulted in little clinical benefit. Studies conducted by multiple groups have demonstrated that T cells recognizing neoantigens are present in most cancers and offer a specific and highly immunogenic target for personalized vaccination.METHODS We recently developed a process using tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes to identify the specific immunogenic mutations expressed in patients’ tumors. Here, validated, defined neoantigens, predicted neoepitopes, and mutations of driver genes were concatenated into a single mRNA construct to vaccinate patients with metastatic gastrointestinal cancer.RESULTS The vaccine was safe and elicited mutation-specific T cell responses against predicted neoepitopes not detected before vaccination. Furthermore, we were able to isolate and verify T cell receptors targeting KRASG12D mutation. We observed no objective clinical responses in the 4 patients treated in this trial.CONCLUSION This vaccine was safe, and potential future combination of such vaccines with checkpoint inhibitors or adoptive T cell therapy should be evaluated for possible clinical benefit in patients with common epithelial cancers.TRIAL REGISTRATION Phase I/II protocol (NCT03480152) was approved by the IRB committee of the NIH and the FDA.FUNDING Center for Clinical Research, NCI, NIH.
Gal Cafri, Jared J. Gartner, Tal Zaks, Kristen Hopson, Noam Levin, Biman C. Paria, Maria R. Parkhurst, Rami Yossef, Frank J. Lowery, Mohammad S. Jafferji, Todd D. Prickett, Stephanie L. Goff, Christine T. McGowan, Samantha Seitter, Mackenzie L. Shindorf, Anup Parikh, Praveen D. Chatani, Paul F. Robbins, Steven A. Rosenberg