A complete carcinogen, Ultraviolet B radiation (290-320 nm; UVB), is the major cause of skin cancer. UVB-induced systemic immunosuppression that contributes to photocarcinogenesis is due to the glycerophosphocholine-derived lipid mediator Platelet-activating factor. A major question in photobiology is how UVB radiation, which only absorbs appreciably in the epidermal layers of skin, can generate systemic effects. UVB exposure and PAF Receptor (PAFR) activation in keratinocytes induce large amounts of microvesicle particle (extracellular vesicles 100-1000nm; MVP) release. MVPs released from skin keratinocytes in vitro in response to UVB (UVB-MVP) are dependent upon the keratinocyte PAFR. The present studies used both pharmacologic and genetic approaches in cells and mice to determine that both the PAFR and enzyme acid sphingomyelinase (aSMase) were necessary for UVB-MVP generation. Discovery that the calcium-sensing receptor is a keratinocyte-selective MVP marker allowed us to determine that UVB-MVP leaving the keratinocyte can be found systemically in mice and in human subjects following UVB. Moreover, UVB-MVP contain bioactive contents including PAFR agonists which allow them to serve as effectors for UVB downstream effects, in particular UVB-mediated systemic immunosuppression.
Langni Liu, Azeezat A. Awoyemi, Katherine E. Fahy, Pariksha Thapa, Christina Borchers, Benita Y. Wu, Cameron L. McGlone, Benjamin Schmeusser, Zafer Sattouf, Craig A. Rohan, Amy R. Williams, Elizabeth E. Cates, Christina Knisely, Lisa E. Kelly, Ji C. Bihl, David R. Cool, Ravi P. Sahu, Jinju Wang, Yanfang Chen, Christine M. Rapp, Michael G. Kemp, R. Michael Johnson, Jeffrey B. Travers
One of the primary mechanisms of tumor cell immune evasion is the loss of antigenicity, which arises due to lack of immunogenic tumor antigens as well as dysregulation of the antigen processing machinery. In a screen for small-molecule compounds from herbal medicine that potentiate T cell-mediated cytotoxicity, we identified atractylenolide I (ATT-I) that significantly promotes tumor antigen presentation of both human and mouse colorectal cancer (CRC) cells and thereby enhances the cytotoxic response of CD8+ T cells. Cellular thermal shift assay (CETSA) with multiplexed quantitative mass spectrometry identified the proteasome 26S subunit non-ATPase 4 (PSMD4), an essential component of the immunoproteasome complex, as a primary target protein of ATT-I. Binding of ATT-I with PSMD4 augments the antigen-processing activity of immunoproteasome, leading to enhanced major histocompatibility class I (MHC-I)-mediated antigen presentation on cancer cells. In syngeneic mouse CRC models and human patient-derived CRC organoid models, ATT-I treatment promotes the cytotoxicity of CD8+ T cells and thus profoundly enhances the efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade therapy. Collectively, we show here that targeting the function of immunoproteasome with ATT-I promotes tumor antigen presentation, empowers T-cell cytotoxicity, and thus elevates the tumor response to immunotherapy.
Hanchen Xu, Kevin Van der Jeught, Zhuolong Zhou, Lu Zhang, Tao Yu, Yifan Sun, Yujing Li, Changlin Wan, Kaman So, Degang Liu, Michael Frieden, Yuanzhang Fang, Amber L. Mosley, Xiaoming He, Xinna Zhang, George E. Sandusky, Yunlong Liu, Samy O. Meroueh, Chi Zhang, Aruna B. Wijeratne, Cheng Huang, Guang Ji, Xiongbin Lu
Inhibitors of calcineurin phosphatase activity (CNIs) such as cyclosporin A (CsA) are widely used to treat tissue transplant rejection and acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD), for which inhibition of NFAT-dependent gene expression is the mechanistic paradigm. We recently reported that CNIs inhibit TCR-proximal signaling by preventing calcineurin-mediated dephosphorylation of LckS59, an inhibitory modification, raising the possibility of another mechanism by which CNIs suppress immune responses. Here we utilized T cells from mice that express LckS59A, which cannot accept a phosphate at residue 59, to initiate aGVHD. Although CsA inhibited NFAT-dependent gene upregulation in allo-aggressive T cells expressing either LckWT or LckS59A, it was ineffective in treating disease when the T cells expressed LckS59A. Two important NFAT-independent T cell functions were found to be CsA-resistant in LckS59A T cells: upregulation of the cytolytic protein perforin in tissue-infiltrating CD8+ T cells and antigen-specific T:DC (dendritic cell) adhesion and clustering in lymph nodes. These results demonstrate that effective treatment of aGVHD by CsA requires NFAT-independent inhibition of TCR signaling. Given that NFATs are widely expressed and off-target effects are a major limitation in CNI use, it is possible that targeting TCR-associated calcineurin directly may provide effective therapies with less toxicity.
Shizuka Otsuka, Nicolas Melis, Matthias M. Gaida, Debjani Dutta, Roberto Weigert, Jonathan D. Ashwell
Limiting dysfunctional neutrophilic inflammation whilst 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 labelled amino acids into metabolic enzymes, pro-inflammatory 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 hypoglycaemia, characteristic of inflamed tissues, promoted this extra-cellular 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 which enable neutrophils to sustain synthetic and effector functions in the tissues.
Emily R. Watts, Andrew J.M. Howden, Tyler Morrison, Pranvera Sadiku, Jens L. Hukelmann, Alex von Kriegsheim, Bart Ghesquière, Fiona Murphy, Ananda S. Mirchandani, Duncan C. Humphries, Robert Grecian, Eilise M. Ryan, Patricia Coelho, Giovanny Rodriguez-Blanco, Tracie M. Plant, Rebecca S. Dickinson, Andrew J. Finch, Wesley Vermaelen, Doreen A. Cantrell, Moira K.B. Whyte, Sarah R. Walmsley
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 M2HIF2α 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
The protein kinases IKK-epsilon and TBK1 are activated in liver and fat in mouse models of obesity. We have previously demonstrated that treatment with the IKK-epsilon/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 WAT. Amlexanox increased FGF21 synthesis and secretion in several tissues. Interestingly, while 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 leads 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 suppression of hepatic glucose production via the 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 an endocrine role of adipocyte-derived IL-6 to decrease 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
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 hypothesised 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 PDGF-BB signalling 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, phenocopying LRP1 mutants, and their compromised vascular integrity predisposed to Angiotensin II-induced aneurysm formation. Aneurysmal vessels were characterised by enhanced VSMC phenotypic modulation and augmented platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) receptor (PDGFR)β signalling. In vitro, enhanced sensitivity to PDGF-BB, upon loss of Tβ4, associated with dysregulated endocytosis, with increased recycling and reduced lysosomal targeting of LRP1-PDGFRβ. Accordingly, the exacerbated aneurysmal phenotype in Tβ4-null mice was rescued upon treatment with the PDGFRβ 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
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 biopsies of persons during symptomatic HSV2 reactivation and early healing. Both CD20+ B cells, most of which are antigen-inexperienced by co-expression of IgD, and ASCs, characterized by dense IgG RNA expression in combination with CD138, IRF4 and Blimp1 RNA, are seen in association with T cells. ASCs are found clustered with CD4+ T cells, suggesting potential for crosstalk. HSV2-specific antibodies to virus surface antigens are also present in tissue and increase in concentration during HSV2 reactivation and healing, unlike in serum where concentrations remain static over time. B cells, ASCs, and HSV-specific antibody were rarely detected in biopsies of unaffected skin. Evaluation of serial biopsies demonstrate that B cells and ASCs follow a more migratory than resident pattern of infiltration in HSV-affected genital skin, in contrast to T cells. Together, these observations suggest 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
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 AAMR syndrome, which is characterized by achalasia, alacrima, mental retardation, and muscle weakness. Here we show that Gmppa KO mice recapitulate 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 identify GMPPA as an allosteric feedback inhibitor of GMPPB. Thus, its disruption enhances mannose incorporation into glycoproteins including α-Dg in mice and men. This increases α-Dg turnover and thereby lowers α-Dg abundance. In mice dietary mannose restriction beginning after weaning corrects α-DG hyperglycosylation and abundance, normalizes skeletal muscle morphology, and prevents neuron degeneration and the development of motor deficits. Cortical layering and cognitive performance, however, are not improved. We thus identify GMPPA defects as the first congenital disorder of glycosylation characterized by α-DG hyperglycosylation, unravel underlying disease mechanisms and point to potential dietary treatment options.
Patricia Franzka, Henriette Henze, M. Juliane Jung, Svenja C. 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 J. Gresing, Rüdiger Horstkorte, Thorsten Marquardt, Joachim Weis, Christoph Kaether, Osvaldo M. Mutchinick, Alessandro Ori, Otmar Huber, Véronique Blanchard, Julia von Maltzahn, Christian A. Hübner
Troponin C (TnC) is a critical regulator of skeletal muscle contraction: it binds Ca2+ to activate muscle contraction. Surprisingly, the gene encoding fast skeletal TnC (TNNC2) has not yet been implicated in muscle disease. Here, we report two families with pathogenic variants in TNNC2. Patients present with a distinct, dominantly inherited congenital muscle disease. Molecular dynamics simulations suggest that the pathomechanisms by which the variants cause muscle disease include disruption of the binding sites for Ca2+ and for troponin I. In line with these findings, physiological studies in myofibers isolated from patients’ biopsies revealed a markedly reduced force response of the sarcomeres to [Ca2+]. This pathomechanism was further confirmed in experiments in which contractile dysfunction was evoked by replacing TnC in myofibers from healthy control subjects with recombinant, mutant TnC. Conversely, the contractile dysfunction of myofibers from patients was repaired by replacing endogenous, mutant TnC with recombinant, healthy TnC. Finally, we tested the therapeutic potential of the fast skeletal muscle troponin activator tirasemtiv in patients’ myofibers and showed that the contractile dysfunction was repaired. Thus, our data reveal that pathogenic variants in TNNC2 cause congenital muscle disease, and they provide therapeutic angles to repair muscle contractility.
Martijn van de Locht, Sandra Donkervoort, Josine M. de Winter, Stefan Conijn, Leon Begthel, Benno Kusters, Payam Mohassel, Ying Hu, Livija Medne, Colin Quinn, Steven A. Moore, A. Reghan Foley, Gwimoon Seo, Darren T. Hwee, Fady I. Malik, Thomas Irving, Weikang Ma, Henk Granzier, Erik-Jan Kamsteeg, Kalyan Immadisetty, Peter Kekenes-Huskey, Jose Renato Pinto, Nicol Voermans, Carsten G. Bönnemann, Coen A.C. Ottenheijm
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