Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) is a rare genetic disease characterized by progressive and catastrophic heterotopic ossification (HO) of skeletal muscle and associated soft tissues. FOP is caused by dominantly acting mutations in the gene encoding the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) type I receptor, ACVR1 (ALK2), the most prevalent of which results in an arginine to histidine substitution at position 206[ACVR1(R206H)]. The fundamental pathological consequence of FOP-causing ACVR1 receptor mutations is to enable activin A to initiate canonical BMP signaling in fibro-adipogenic progenitors (FAPs), which drives HO. We developed a monoclonal blocking antibody (JAB0505) to the extracellular domain of ACVR1 and tested its effect on HO in two independent FOP mouse models. Although JAB0505 inhibited BMP-dependent gene expression in wild-type and ACVR1(R206H)-overexpressing cell lines, JAB0505 treatment profoundly exacerbated injury-induced HO. JAB0505-treated mice exhibited multiple, distinct foci of heterotopic lesions, suggesting an atypically broad anatomical domain of FAP recruitment to endochondral ossification. This was accompanied by dysregulated FAP population growth and an abnormally sustained immunological reaction following muscle injury. JAB0505 drove injury-induced HO in the absence of activin A, indicating that JAB0505 has receptor agonist activity. These data raise serious safety and efficacy concerns for the use of bivalent anti-ACVR1 antibodies to treat patients with FOP.
John B. Lees-Shepard, Sean J. Stoessel, Julian T. Chandler, Keith Bouchard, Patricia Bento, Lorraine N. Apuzzo, Parvathi Madhavi Devarakonda, Jeffrey W. Hunter, David J. Goldhamer
Once human photoreceptors die, they do not regenerate, thus photoreceptor transplantation has emerged as a potential treatment approach for blinding diseases. Improvements in transplant organization, donor cell maturation and synaptic connectivity to the host will be critical in advancing this technology to clinical practice. Unlike the unstructured grafts of prior cell suspension transplantations into end-stage degeneration models, we describe extensive incorporation of iPSC retinal organoid-derived human photoreceptors into mice with cone dysfunction. This incorporative phenotype was validated in both cone-only as well as pan-photoreceptor transplantations. Rather than forming a glial barrier, Müller cells extended throughout the graft, even forming a series of adherens junctions between mouse and human cells, reminiscent of an outer limiting membrane. Donor-host interaction appeared to promote polarisation as well as development of morphological features critical for light detection, namely formation of inner and well stacked outer segments oriented towards the retinal pigment epithelium. Putative synapse formation and graft function was evident both at a structural and electrophysiological level. Overall, these results show that human photoreceptors interact readily with a partially degenerated retina. Moreover, incorporation into the host retina appears to be beneficial to graft maturation, polarisation and function.
Sylvia J. Gasparini, Karen Tessmer, Miriam Reh, Stephanie Wieneke, Madalena Carido, Manuela Völkner, Oliver Borsch, Anka Swiersy, Marta Zuzic, Olivier Goureau, Thomas Kurth, Volker Busskamp, Günther Zeck, Mike O. Karl, Marius Ader
AbstractType 2 alveolar epithelial cells (AEC2s) function as progenitor cells in the lung. We have shown previously that failure of AEC2 regeneration results in progressive lung fibrosis in mice and is a cardinal feature of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). In this study, we identified a deficiency of a specific zinc transporter SLC39A8 (ZIP8) in AEC2s from both IPF lungs and lungs of old mice. Loss of ZIP8 expression was associated with impaired renewal capacity of AEC2s and enhanced lung fibrosis. ZIP8 regulation of AEC2 progenitor function was dependent on SIRT1. Replenishment with exogenous zinc and SIRT1 activation promoted self-renewal and differentiation of AEC2s from lung tissues of IPF patients and old mice. Deletion of Zip8 in AEC2s in mice impaired AEC2 renewal, increased susceptibility of the mice to bleomycin injury, and the mice developed spontaneous lung fibrosis. Therapeutic strategies to restore zinc metabolism and appropriate SIRT1 signaling could improve AEC2 progenitor function and mitigate ongoing fibrogenesis.
Jiurong Liang, Guanling Huang, Xue Liu, Forough Taghavifar, Ningshan Liu, Yizhou Wang, Nan Deng, Changfu Yao, Ting Xie, Vrishika Kulur, Kristy Dai, Ankita Burman, Simon C. Rowan, S. Samuel Weigt, John Belperio, Barry Stripp, William C. Parks, Dianhua Jiang, Paul W. Noble
BACKGROUND. Responses to conventional donor lymphocyte infusion (DLI) for post-allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) relapse are typically poor. Natural killer (NK) cell-based therapy is a promising modality to treat post-HCT relapse. METHODS. We initiated this ongoing phase I trial of adoptively transferred cytokine induced memory-like (CIML) NK cells in patients with myeloid malignancies relapsed after haploidentical HCT. All patients received a donor-derived NK cell dose of 5–10 million cells/kg after lymphodepleting chemotherapy, followed by systemic IL-2 for 7 doses. High resolution profiling with mass cytometry and single cell RNA sequencing characterized the expanding and persistent NK cell subpopulations in a longitudinal manner after infusion. RESULTS. In the first 6 enrolled patients on the trial, infusion of CIML NK cells led to a rapid 10 to 50-fold in vivo expansion that was sustained over months. The infusion was well-tolerated, with fever and pancytopenia as the most common adverse events. Expansion of NK cells was distinct from IL-2 effects on endogenous post-HCT NK cells, and not dependent on CMV viremia. Immunophenotypic and transcriptional profiling revealed a dynamic evolution of the activated CIML NK cell phenotype, superimposed on the natural variation in donor NK cell repertoires. CONCLUSION. Given their rapid expansion and long-term persistence in an immune compatible environment, CIML NK cells serve as a promising platform for the treatment of post-transplant relapse of myeloid disease. Further characterization of their unique in vivo biology and interaction with both T cells and tumor targets will lead to improvements in cell-based immunotherapies. TRIAL REGISTRATION. NCT04024761 FUNDING. Supported by Dunkin Donuts Breakthrough Award, the NIH/National Cancer Institute R21 CA245413, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Scholar and TRP awards.
Roman M. Shapiro, Grace C. Birch, Guangan Hu, Juliana Vergara Cadavid, Sarah Nikiforow, Joanna Baginska, Alaa K. Ali, Mubin Tarannum, Michal Sheffer, Yasmin Z. Abdulhamid, Benedetta Rambaldi, Yohei Arihara, Carol Reynolds, Max S. Halpern, Scott J. Rodig, Nicole Cullen, Jacquelyn O. Wolff, Kathleen L. Pfaff, Andrew A. Lane, R. Coleman Lindsley, Corey S. Cutler, Joseph H. Antin, Vincent T. Ho, John Koreth, Mahasweta Gooptu, Haesook T. Kim, Karl-Johan Malmberg, Catherine J. Wu, Jianzhu Chen, Robert J. Soiffer, Jerome Ritz, Rizwan Romee
Platelets have a wide range of functions including critical roles in hemostasis, thrombosis, and immunity. We hypothesized that during acute inflammation, such as in life-threatening sepsis, there are fundamental changes in the sites of platelet production and phenotypes of resultant platelets. Here, we showed during sepsis that the spleen is a major site of megakaryopoiesis and platelet production. Sepsis provoked an adrenergic-dependent mobilization of megakaryocyte-erythrocyte progenitors (MEPs) from the bone marrow to the spleen where interleukin-3 (IL-3) induced their differentiation into megakaryocytes. In the spleen, immune-skewed megakaryocytes produced a CD40 ligand-high platelet population with potent immunomodulatory functions. Transfusions of post-sepsis platelets enriched from splenic production enhanced immune responses and reduced overall mortality in sepsis-challenged animals. These findings identify a spleen-derived protective platelet population that may be broadly immunomodulatory in acute inflammatory states such as sepsis.
Colin Valet, Mélia Magnen, Longhui Qiu, Simon J. Cleary, Kristin M. Wang, Serena Ranucci, Elodie Grockowiak, Rafik Boudra, Catharina Conrad, Yurim Seo, Daniel R. Calabrese, John R. Greenland, Andrew D. Leavitt, Emmanuelle Passegué, Simon Mendez-Ferrer, Filip K. Swirski, Mark R. Looney
Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and lethal primary malignant brain tumor, containing GBM stem cells (GSCs) that contribute to therapeutic resistance and relapse. Exposing potential GSC vulnerabilities may provide therapeutic strategies against GBM. Here, we interrogated the role of Adenosine-to-Inosine (A-to-I) RNA editing mediated by ADAR1 (adenosine deaminase acting on RNA 1) in GSCs and found that both ADAR1 and global RNA editomes were elevated in GSCs compared to normal neural stem cells (NSCs). ADAR1 inactivation or blocking the upstream JAK/STAT pathway through TYK2 inhibition impaired GSC self-renewal and stemness. Downstream of ADAR1, RNA editing of the 3’UTR of GM2A, a key ganglioside catabolism activator, proved to be critical, as interfering with ganglioside catabolism showed similar functional impact on GSCs as ADAR1 disruption. These findings reveal RNA editing links ganglioside catabolism to GSC self-renewal and stemness, exposing a potential vulnerability of GBM for therapeutic intervention.
Li Jiang, Yajing Hao, Changwei Shao, Qiulian Wu, Briana C. Prager, Ryan C. Gimple, Gabriele Sulli, Leo J.K. Kim, Guoxin Zhang, Zhixin Qiu, Zhe Zhu, Xiang-Dong Fu, Jeremy N. Rich
Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) hold great promise for the treatment of various human diseases. However, their therapeutic benefits and mechanisms for treating corneal endothelial dysfunction remain undefined. Here, we developed a therapeutic regimen consisting of the combination of hPSC-derived corneal endothelial precursors (CEPs) with nicotinamide (NAM) for effective treatment of corneal endothelial dysfunction. In rabbit and nonhuman primate models, intracameral injection of CEPs and NAM achieved long-term recovery of corneal clarity and thickness, similar with the therapeutic outcome of cultured human corneal endothelial cells (CECs). The transplanted human CEPs exhibited structural and functional integration with host resident CECs. However, the long-term recovery relied on the stimulation of endogenous endothelial regeneration in rabbits, but predominantly on the replacing function of transplanted cells during the 3-year follow-up in nonhuman primates, which resemble human corneal endothelium with limited regenerative capacity. Mechanistically, NAM ensured in vivo proper maturation of transplanted CEPs into functional CECs by preventing premature senescence and endothelial-mesenchymal transition within the TGF-β–enriched aqueous humor. Together, we provide compelling experimental evidence and mechanistic insights of simultaneous delivery of CEPs and NAM as a potential approach for treating corneal endothelial dysfunction.
Zongyi Li, Haoyun Duan, Yanni Jia, Can Zhao, Wenjing Li, Xin Wang, Yajie Gong, Chunxiao Dong, Bochao Ma, Shengqian Dou, Bin Zhang, Dongfang Li, Yihai Cao, Lixin Xie, Qingjun Zhou, Weiyun Shi
Insulin resistance is present in one-quarter of the general population, predisposing to a wide-range of diseases. Our aim was to identify cell-intrinsic determinants of insulin resistance in this population using IPS cell-derived myoblasts (iMyos). We found that these cells exhibited a large network of altered protein phosphorylation in vitro. Integrating these data with data from type-2-diabetic iMyos revealed critical sites of conserved altered phosphorylation in IRS-1, AKT, mTOR and TBC1D1, in addition to changes in protein phosphorylation involved in Rho/Rac signaling, chromatin organization and RNA processing. There were also striking differences in the phosphoproteome in cells from males versus females. These sex-specific and insulin resistance defects were linked to functional differences in downstream actions. Thus, there are cell-autonomous signaling alterations associated with insulin resistance within the general population and important differences in males and females, many of which are shared with diabetes, and contribute to differences in physiology and disease.
Nida Haider, Jasmin Lebastchi, Ashok Kumar Jayavelu, Thiago M. Batista, Hui Pan, Jonathan M. Dreyfuss, Ivan Carcamo-Orive, Joshua W. Knowles, Matthias Mann, C. Ronald Kahn
The heterogeneity of human hematopoietic stem (HSCs) and progenitor cells (HPCs) under stress conditions such as ex vivo expansion is poorly understood. Here we report that the frequencies of SCID repopulating cells (SRCs) were greatly decreased in cord blood（CB）CD34+ HSCs and HPCs upon ex vivo culture. Transcriptome analysis and metabolic profiling demonstrated that mitochondrial oxidative stress of human CB HSCs and HPCs notably increased along with loss of stemness. Limiting dilution analysis (LDA) revealed that functional human HSCs were enriched in cell populations with low levels of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (mitoROS) during ex vivo culture. Using single cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) analysis of mitoROS low cell population, we demonstrated that functional HSCs were substantially enriched in the Adhesion G protein-coupled receptor G1 positive (ADGRG1+) population of CD34+CD133+ CB cells upon ex vivo expansion stress. GSEA analysis revealed that HSC signature genes including MSI2 and MLLT3 are enriched in CD34+CD133+ ADGRG1+ CB HSCs. Our study reveals that ADGRG1 enriches for functional human HSCs under oxidative stress during ex vivo culture, which can be a reliable target for drug screening of agonists of HSC expansion.
Yandan Chen, Shuyi Fang, Qingwei Ding, Rongzhen Jiang, Jiefeng He, Qin Wang, Yuting Jin, Xinxin Huang, Sheng Liu, Maegan Capitano, Thao Trinh, Yincheng Teng, Qingyou Meng, Jun Wan, Hal Broxmeyer, Bin Guo
Glioblastoma (GBM) remains among the deadliest of human malignancies, and the emergence of the cancer stem cell (CSC) phenotype represents a major challenge to durable treatment response. Because the environmental and lifestyle factors that impact CSC populations are not clear, we sought to understand the consequences of diet on CSC enrichment. We evaluated disease progression in mice fed an obesity-inducing high-fat diet (HFD) versus a low-fat, control diet. HFD resulted in hyper-aggressive disease accompanied by CSC enrichment and shortened survival. HFD drove intracerebral accumulation of saturated fats, which inhibited the production of the cysteine metabolite and gasotransmitter, hydrogen sulfide (H2S). H2S functions principally through protein S-sulfhydration and regulates multiple programs including bioenergetics and metabolism. Inhibition of H2S increased proliferation and chemotherapy resistance, whereas treatment with H2S donors led to death of cultured GBM cells and stasis of GBM tumors in vivo. Syngeneic GBM models and GBM patient specimens present an overall reduction in protein S-sulfhydration, primarily associated with proteins regulating cellular metabolism. These findings provide clear evidence that diet modifiable H2S signaling serves to suppress GBM by restricting metabolic fitness, while its loss triggers CSC enrichment and disease acceleration. Interventions augmenting H2S bioavailability concurrent with GBM standard of care may improve outcomes for GBM patients.
Daniel J. Silver, Gustavo A. Roversi, Nazmin Bithi, Sabrina Z. Wang, Katie M. Troike, Chase K.A. Neumann, Grace K. Ahuja, Ofer Reizes, J. Mark Brown, Christopher Hine, Justin D. Lathia