Ghrelin, a recently described endogenous ligand for the growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), is produced by stomach cells and is a potent circulating orexigen, controlling energy expenditure, adiposity, and growth hormone secretion. However, the functional role of ghrelin in regulation of immune responses remains undefined. Here we report that GHS-R and ghrelin are expressed in human T lymphocytes and monocytes, where ghrelin acts via GHS-R to specifically inhibit the expression of proinflammatory anorectic cytokines such as IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α. Ghrelin led to a dose-dependent inhibition of leptin-induced cytokine expression, while leptin upregulated GHS-R expression on human T lymphocytes. These data suggest the existence of a reciprocal regulatory network by which ghrelin and leptin control immune cell activation and inflammation. Moreover, ghrelin also exerts potent anti-inflammatory effects and attenuates endotoxin-induced anorexia in a murine endotoxemia model. We believe this to be the first report demonstrating that ghrelin functions as a key signal, coupling the metabolic axis to the immune system, and supporting the potential use of ghrelin and GHS-R agonists in the management of disease-associated cachexia.
Vishwa Deep Dixit, Eric M. Schaffer, Robert S. Pyle, Gary D. Collins, Senthil K. Sakthivel, Ravichandran Palaniappan, James W. Lillard Jr., Dennis D. Taub
Daniele Accapezzato, Vittorio Francavilla, Marino Paroli, Marco Casciaro, Lucia Valeria Chircu, Agostino Cividini, Sergio Abrignani, Mario U. Mondelli, Vincenzo Barnaba
The progeny of T lymphocytes responding to immunization mostly die rapidly, leaving a few long-lived survivors functioning as immune memory. Thus, control of this choice of death versus survival is critical for immune memory. There are indications that reactive radicals may be involved in this death pathway. We now show that, in mice lacking inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), higher frequencies of both CD4 and CD8 memory T cells persist in response to immunization, even when iNOS+/+ APCs are used for immunization. Postactivation T cell death by neglect is reduced in iNOS–/– T cells, and levels of the antiapoptotic proteins Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL are increased. Inhibitors of the iNOS-peroxynitrite pathway also enhance memory responses and block postactivation death by neglect in both mouse and human T cells. However, early primary immune responses are not enhanced, which suggests that altered survival, rather than enhanced activation, is responsible for the persistent immunity observed. Thus, in primary immune responses, iNOS in activated T cells autocrinely controls their susceptibility to death by neglect to determine the level of persisting CD4 and CD8 T cell memory, and modulation of this pathway can enhance the persistence of immune memory in response to vaccination.
Monika Vig, Smita Srivastava, Usha Kandpal, Hadassah Sade, Virginia Lewis, Apurva Sarin, Anna George, Vineeta Bal, Jeannine M. Durdik, Satyajit Rath
T cell reactivity to minor histocompatibility (mH) antigens is responsible for rejection of HLA-matched allografts, limiting the effectiveness of transplantation for the treatment of end-stage organ failure. The deadbox gene Dby is located on the Y chromosome and encodes an mH antigen that prompts rejection of male tissues by female mice. Establishing a network of regulatory T (Treg) cells that is capable of coercing naive cells to adopt a tolerant phenotype offers an attractive strategy for immune intervention in such deleterious immune responses. While various approaches have successfully induced a dominant form of transplantation tolerance, they share the propensity to provoke chronic, incomplete activation of T cells. By identifying the T cell receptor (TCR) contact sites of the dominant epitope of the Dby gene product, we have designed an altered peptide ligand (APL) that delivers incomplete signals to naive T cells from A1 ∞ RAG1–/– mice that are transgenic for a complementary TCR. Administration of this APL to female transgenic mice polarizes T cells toward a regulatory phenotype, securing a form of dominant tolerance to male skin grafts that is capable of resisting rejection by naive lymphocytes. Our results demonstrate that incomplete signaling through the TCR may establish a network of Treg cells that may be harnessed in the service of transplantation tolerance.
Tse-Ching Chen, Herman Waldmann, Paul J. Fairchild
Administration of an agonistic anti-CD28 mAb paradoxically inhibits donor T cell expansion and prevents graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) in mice. Here we examined the mechanism of anti-CD28–mediated immunosuppression and found that anti-CD28 mAb activated, rather than blocked, CD28-mediated signaling in vivo. Anti-CD28 treatment prevented GVHD by selectively depleting alloantigen-activated donor T cells through apoptosis but spared the T cells that did not recognize recipient alloantigens. Overexpression of Bcl-xL did not protect T cells from depletion and did not affect GVHD prevention after anti-CD28 treatment. Depletion of activated T cells mediated through CD28 did not depend on the expression of death receptors Fas and TNF receptors type I and II, but both the depletion of activated T cells and the suppressive effect of anti-CD28 mAb on GVHD lethality required donor-derived IFN-γ production. This study demonstrates that agonistic Ab’s specific for the CD28 costimulatory molecule may be used as novel therapeutic agents to abrogate pathogenic T cell responses by selective depletion of activated T cells.
Xue-Zhong Yu, Michael H. Albert, Paul J. Martin, Claudio Anasetti
OCH, a sphingosine-truncated analog of α-galactosylceramide (αGC), is a potential therapeutic reagent for a variety of Th1-mediated autoimmune diseases through its selective induction of Th2 cytokines from natural killer T (NKT) cells. We demonstrate here that the NKT cell production of IFN-γ is more susceptible to the sphingosine length of glycolipid ligand than that of IL-4 and that the length of the sphingosine chain determines the duration of NKT cell stimulation by CD1d-associated glycolipids. Furthermore, IFN-γ production by NKT cells requires longer T cell receptor stimulation than is required for IL-4 production by NKT cells stimulated either with immobilized mAb to CD3 or with immobilized “αGC-loaded” CD1d molecules. Interestingly, transcription of IFN-γ but not that of IL-4 was sensitive to cycloheximide treatment, indicating the intrinsic involvement of de novo protein synthesis for IFN-γ production by NKT cells. Finally, we determined c-Rel was preferentially transcribed in αGC-stimulated but not in OCH-stimulated NKT cells and was essential for IFN-γ production by activated NKT cells. Given the dominant immune regulation by the remarkable cytokine production of ligand-stimulated NKT cells in vivo, in comparison with that of (antigen-specific) T cells or NK cells, the current study confirms OCH as a likely therapeutic reagent for use against Th1-mediated autoimmune diseases and provides a novel clue for the design of drugs targeting NKT cells.
Shinji Oki, Asako Chiba, Takashi Yamamura, Sachiko Miyake
While the initiation of the adaptive and innate immune response is well understood, less is known about cellular mechanisms propagating inflammation. The receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE), a transmembrane receptor of the immunoglobulin superfamily, leads to perpetuated cell activation. Using novel animal models with defective or tissue-specific RAGE expression, we show that in these animal models RAGE does not play a role in the adaptive immune response. However, deletion of RAGE provides protection from the lethal effects of septic shock caused by cecal ligation and puncture. Such protection is reversed by reconstitution of RAGE in endothelial and hematopoietic cells. These results indicate that the innate immune response is controlled by pattern-recognition receptors not only at the initiating steps but also at the phase of perpetuation.
Birgit Liliensiek, Markus A. Weigand, Angelika Bierhaus, Werner Nicklas, Michael Kasper, Stefan Hofer, Jens Plachky, Herman-Josef Gröne, Florian C. Kurschus, Ann Marie Schmidt, Shi Du Yan, Eike Martin, Erwin Schleicher, David M. Stern, Günter J. Hämmerling, Peter P. Nawroth, Bernd Arnold
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) mediate host responses to bacterial gene products. As the airway epithelium is potentially exposed to many diverse inhaled bacteria, TLRs involved in defense of the airways must be broadly responsive, available at the exposed apical surface of the cells, and highly regulated to prevent activation following trivial encounters with bacteria. We demonstrate that TLR2 is enriched in caveolin-1–associated lipid raft microdomains presented on the apical surface of airway epithelial cells after bacterial infection. These receptor complexes include myeloid differentiation protein (MyD88), interleukin-1 receptor–activated kinase-1, and TNF receptor–associated factor 6. The signaling capabilities of TLR2 are amplified through its association with the asialoganglioside gangliotetraosylceramide (Galβ1,2GalNAcβ1,4Galβ1,4Glcβ1,1Cer), which has receptor function itself for many pulmonary pathogens. Ligation of either TLR2 or asialoGM1 by ligands with specificity for either receptor, by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, or by Staphylococcus aureus stimulates IL-8 production through activation of NF-κB, as mediated by TLR2 and MyD88. Thus, TLR2 in association with asialo-glycolipids presented within the context of lipid rafts provides a broadly responsive signaling complex at the apical surfaces of airway cells to initiate the host response to potential bacterial infection.
Grace Soong, Bharat Reddy, Sach Sokol, Robert Adamo, Alice Prince
While Crohn disease (CD) has been clearly identified as a Th1 inflammation, the immunopathogenesis of its counterpart inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis (UC), remains enigmatic. Here we show that lamina propria T (LPT) cells from UC patients produce significantly greater amounts of IL-13 (and IL-5) than control cells and little IFN-γ, whereas comparable cells from CD patients produce large amounts of IFN-γ and small amounts of IL-13. We then show that stimulation of UC LPT cells bearing an NK marker (CD161) with anti-CD2/anti-CD28 or with B cells expressing transfected CD1d induces substantial IL-13 production. While this provided firm evidence that the IL-13–producing cell is an NK T (NKT) cell, it became clear that this cell does not express invariant NKT cell receptors characteristic of most NKT cells since there was no increase in cells binding α-galactosylceramide–loaded tetramers, and α-galactosylceramide did not induce IL-13 secretion. Finally, we show that both human NKT cell lines as well as UC CD161+ LPT cells are cytotoxic for HT-29 epithelial cells and that this cytotoxicity is augmented by IL-13. These studies show that UC is associated with an atypical Th2 response mediated by nonclassical NKT cells producing IL-13 and having cytotoxic potential for epithelial cells.
Ivan J. Fuss, Frank Heller, Monica Boirivant, Francisco Leon, Masaru Yoshida, Stefan Fichtner-Feigl, Zhiqiong Yang, Mark Exley, Atsushi Kitani, Richard S. Blumberg, Peter Mannon, Warren Strober
Chronic intestinal inflammation, as seen in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), results from an aberrant and poorly understood mucosal immune response to the microbiota of the gastrointestinal tract in genetically susceptible individuals. Here we used serological expression cloning to identify commensal bacterial proteins that could contribute to the pathogenesis of IBD. The dominant antigens identified were flagellins, molecules known to activate innate immunity via Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5), and critical targets of the acquired immune system in host defense. Multiple strains of colitic mice had elevated serum anti-flagellin IgG2a responses and Th1 T cell responses to flagellin. In addition, flagellin-specific CD4+ T cells induced severe colitis when adoptively transferred into naive SCID mice. Serum IgG to these flagellins, but not to the dissimilar Salmonella muenchen flagellin, was elevated in patients with Crohn disease, but not in patients with ulcerative colitis or in controls. These results identify flagellins as a class of immunodominant antigens that stimulate pathogenic intestinal immune reactions in genetically diverse hosts and suggest new avenues for the diagnosis and antigen-directed therapy of patients with IBD.
Michael J. Lodes, Yingzi Cong, Charles O. Elson, Raodoh Mohamath, Carol J. Landers, Stephan R. Targan, Madeline Fort, Robert M. Hershberg