Latest issue: January 12, 2017


Recently published

Abstract

HIV-1 persistence in latent reservoirs during antiretroviral therapy (ART) is the main obstacle to virus eradication. To date, there is no marker that adequately identifies latently infected CD4+ T cells in vivo. Using a well-established ex vivo model, we generated latently infected CD4+ T cells and identified interferon-induced transmembrane protein 1 (IFITM1), a transmembrane antiviral factor, as being overexpressed in latently infected cells. By targeting IFITM1, we showed the efficient and specific killing of a latently infected cell line and CD4+ T cells from ART-suppressed patients through antibody-dependent cytolysis. We hypothesize that IFITM1 could mark natural reservoirs, identifying an immune target for killing of latently infected cells. These novel insights could be explored to develop clinical therapeutic approaches to effectively eradicate HIV-1.

Authors

Rui André Saraiva Raposo, Miguel de Mulder Rougvie, Dominic Paquin-Proulx, Phillip M. Brailey, Vinicius D. Cabido, Paul M. Zdinak, Allison S. Thomas, Szu-han Huang, Greta A. Beckerle, Richard B. Jones, Douglas F. Nixon

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Abstract

Functional intestines are composed of cell types from all 3 primary germ layers and are generated through a highly orchestrated and serial developmental process. Directed differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) has been shown to yield gut-specific cell types; however, these structures do not reproduce critical functional interactions between cell types of different germ layers. Here, we developed a simple protocol for the generation of mature functional intestinal organoids from hPSCs under xenogeneic-free conditions. The stem cell–derived gut organoids produced here were found to contain distinct types of intestinal cells, including enterocytes, goblet cells, Paneth cells, and enteroendocrine cells, that were derived from all 3 germ layers; moreover, they demonstrated intestinal functions, including peptide absorption, and showed innervated bowel movements in response to stimulation with histamine and anticholinergic drugs. Importantly, the gut organoids obtained using this xenogeneic-free system could be stably maintained in culture for prolonged periods and were successfully engrafted in vivo. Our xenogeneic-free approach for generating gut organoids from hPSCs provides a platform for studying human intestinal diseases and for pharmacological testing.

Authors

Hajime Uchida, Masakazu Machida, Takumi Miura, Tomoyuki Kawasaki, Takuya Okazaki, Kengo Sasaki, Seisuke Sakamoto, Noriaki Ohuchi, Mureo Kasahara, Akihiro Umezawa, Hidenori Akutsu

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Abstract

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, and pain relief with opioid-like drugs is a commonly used therapeutic for osteoarthritic patients. Recent studies published by our group showed that the kappa opioid receptor (KOR) is highly expressed during human development in joint-forming cells. However, the precise role of this receptor in the skeletal system remains elusive. The main aim of the current study was to investigate the role of KOR signaling in synovial and cartilaginous tissues in pathological conditions. Our data demonstrate that KOR null mice exhibit accelerated cartilage degeneration after injury when compared with WT mice. Activation of KOR signaling increased the expression of anabolic enzymes and inhibited cartilage catabolism and degeneration in response to proinflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α. In addition, selective KOR agonists increased joint lubrication via the activation of cAMP/CREB signaling in chondrocytes and synovial cells. Taken together, these results demonstrate direct effects of KOR agonists on cartilage and synovial cells and reveals a protective effect of KOR signaling against cartilage degeneration after injury. In addition to pain control, local administration of dynorphin or other KOR agonist represents an attractive therapeutic approach in patients with early stages of osteoarthritis.

Authors

Ling Wu, Shu Zhang, Ruzanna Shkhyan, Siyoung Lee, Francesca Gullo, Claire D. Eliasberg, Frank A. Petrigliano, Kai Ba, Jing Wang, Yunfeng Lin, Denis Evseenko

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Abstract

Tumor cells are thought to evade immune surveillance through interaction with immune cells. Much recent attention has focused on the modification of immune responses as a basis for new cancer treatments. SIRPα is an Ig superfamily protein that inhibits phagocytosis in macrophages upon interaction with its ligand CD47 expressed on the surface of target cells. Here, we show that SIRPα is highly expressed in human renal cell carcinoma and melanoma. Furthermore, an anti-SIRPα Ab that blocks the interaction with CD47 markedly suppressed tumor formation by renal cell carcinoma or melanoma cells in immunocompetent syngeneic mice. This inhibitory effect of the Ab appeared to be mediated by dual mechanisms: direct induction of Ab-dependent cellular phagocytosis of tumor cells by macrophages and blockade of CD47-SIRPα signaling that negatively regulates such phagocytosis. The antitumor effect of the Ab was greatly attenuated by selective depletion not only of macrophages but also of NK cells or CD8+ T cells. In addition, the anti-SIRPα Ab also enhances the inhibitory effects of Abs against CD20 and programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) on tumor formation in mice injected with SIRPα-nonexpressing tumor cells. Anti-SIRPα Abs thus warrant further study as a potential new therapy for a broad range of cancers.

Authors

Tadahiko Yanagita, Yoji Murata, Daisuke Tanaka, Sei-ichiro Motegi, Eri Arai, Edwin Widyanto Daniwijaya, Daisuke Hazama, Ken Washio, Yasuyuki Saito, Takenori Kotani, Hiroshi Ohnishi, Per-Arne Oldenborg, Noel Verjan Garcia, Masayuki Miyasaka, Osamu Ishikawa, Yae Kanai, Takahide Komori, Takashi Matozaki

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: A radiation-attenuated Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) sporozoite (SPZ) malaria vaccine, PfSPZ Vaccine, protected 6 of 6 subjects (100%) against homologous Pf (same strain as in the vaccine) controlled human malaria infection (CHMI) 3 weeks after 5 doses administered intravenously. The next step was to assess protective efficacy against heterologous Pf (different from Pf in the vaccine), after fewer doses, and at 24 weeks.

METHODS: The trial assessed tolerability, safety, immunogenicity, and protective efficacy of direct venous inoculation (DVI) of 3 or 5 doses of PfSPZ Vaccine in non-immune subjects.

RESULTS: Three weeks after final immunization, 5 doses of 2.7 × 105 PfSPZ protected 12 of 13 recipients (92.3% [95% CI: 48.0, 99.8]) against homologous CHMI and 4 of 5 (80.0% [10.4, 99.5]) against heterologous CHMI; 3 doses of 4.5 × 105 PfSPZ protected 13 of 15 (86.7% [35.9, 98.3]) against homologous CHMI. Twenty-four weeks after final immunization, the 5-dose regimen protected 7 of 10 (70.0% [17.3, 93.3]) against homologous and 1 of 10 (10.0% [–35.8, 45.6]) against heterologous CHMI; the 3-dose regimen protected 8 of 14 (57.1% [21.5, 76.6]) against homologous CHMI. All 22 controls developed Pf parasitemia. PfSPZ Vaccine was well tolerated, safe, and easy to administer. No antibody or T cell responses correlated with protection.

CONCLUSIONS: We have demonstrated for the first time to our knowledge that PfSPZ Vaccine can protect against a 3-week heterologous CHMI in a limited group of malaria-naive adult subjects. A 3-dose regimen protected against both 3-week and 24-week homologous CHMI (87% and 57%, respectively) in this population. These results provide a foundation for developing an optimized immunization regimen for preventing malaria.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02215707.

FUNDING: Support was provided through the US Army Medical Research and Development Command, Military Infectious Diseases Research Program, and the Naval Medical Research Center’s Advanced Medical Development Program.

Authors

Judith E. Epstein, Kristopher M. Paolino, Thomas L. Richie, Martha Sedegah, Alexandra Singer, Adam J. Ruben, Sumana Chakravarty, April Stafford, Richard C. Ruck, Abraham G. Eappen, Tao Li, Peter F. Billingsley, Anita Manoj, Joana C. Silva, Kara Moser, Robin Nielsen, Donna Tosh, Susan Cicatelli, Harini Ganeshan, Jessica Case, Debbie Padilla, Silas Davidson, Lindsey Garver, Elizabeth Saverino, Tooba Murshedkar, Anusha Gunasekera, Patrick S. Twomey, Sharina Reyes, James E. Moon, Eric R. James, Natasha KC, Minglin Li, Esteban Abot, Arnel Belmonte, Kevin Hauns, Maria Belmonte, Jun Huang, Carlos Vasquez, Shon Remich, Mary Carrington, Yonas Abebe, Amy Tillman, Bradley Hickey, Jason Regules, Eileen Villasante, B. Kim Lee Sim, Stephen L. Hoffman

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) is required for thrombus formation. We previously demonstrated that glycosylated quercetin flavonoids such as isoquercetin inhibit PDI activity and thrombus formation in animal models, but whether extracellular PDI represents a viable anticoagulant target in humans and how its inhibition affects blood coagulation remain unknown.

METHODS: We evaluated effects of oral administration of isoquercetin on platelet-dependent thrombin generation in healthy subjects and patients with persistently elevated anti-phospholipid antibodies.

RESULTS: Following oral administration of 1,000 mg isoquercetin to healthy adults, the measured peak plasma quercetin concentration (9.2 μM) exceeded its IC50 for inhibition of PDI by isoquercetin in vitro (2.5 ± 0.4 μM). Platelet-dependent thrombin generation decreased by 51% in the healthy volunteers compared with baseline (P = 0.0004) and by 64% in the anti-phospholipid antibody cohort (P = 0.015) following isoquercetin ingestion. To understand how PDI affects thrombin generation, we evaluated substrates of PDI identified using an unbiased mechanistic-based substrate trapping approach. These studies identified platelet factor V as a PDI substrate. Isoquercetin blocked both platelet factor Va and thrombin generation with an IC50 of ~5 μM. Inhibition of PDI by isoquercetin ingestion resulted in a 53% decrease in the generation of platelet factor Va (P = 0.001). Isoquercetin-mediated inhibition was reversed with addition of exogenous factor Va.

CONCLUSION: These studies show that oral administration of isoquercetin inhibits PDI activity in plasma and diminishes platelet-dependent thrombin generation predominantly by blocking the generation of platelet factor Va. These pharmacodynamic and mechanistic observations represent an important step in the development of a novel class of antithrombotic agents targeting PDI.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: Clinicaltrials.gov (NCT01722669)

FUNDING: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (U54 HL112302) and Quercegen Pharma

Authors

Jack D. Stopa, Donna Neuberg, Maneka Puligandla, Bruce Furie, Robert Flaumenhaft, Jeffrey I. Zwicker

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Abstract

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a common heart disease with a prevalence of 1 in 500 in the general population. Several mutations in genes encoding cardiac proteins have been found in HCM patients, but these changes do not predict occurrence or prognosis and the molecular mechanisms underlying HCM remain largely elusive. Here we show that cardiac expression of vacuolar protein sorting 34 (Vps34) is reduced in a subset of HCM patients. In a mouse model, muscle-specific loss of Vps34 led to HCM-like manifestations and sudden death. Vps34-deficient hearts exhibited abnormal histopathologies, including myofibrillar disarray and aggregates containing αB-crystallin (CryAB). These features result from a block in the ESCRT-mediated proteolysis that normally degrades K63-polyubiquitinated CryAB. CryAB deposition was also found in myocardial specimens from a subset of HCM patients whose hearts showed decreased Vps34. Our results identify disruption of the previously unknown Vps34-CryAB axis as a potentially novel etiology of HCM.

Authors

Hirotaka Kimura, Satoshi Eguchi, Junko Sasaki, Keiji Kuba, Hiroki Nakanishi, Shunsuke Takasuga, Masakazu Yamazaki, Akiteru Goto, Hiroyuki Watanabe, Hiroshi Itoh, Yumiko Imai, Akira Suzuki, Noboru Mizushima, Takehiko Sasaki

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Abstract

Mechanical complications of myocardial infarction (MI) are often fatal. Little is known about endogenous factors that predispose to myocardial rupture after MI. Ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase (CD39) could be a critical mediator of propensity to myocardial rupture after MI due to its role in modulating inflammation and thrombosis. Using a model of permanent coronary artery ligation, rupture was virtually abrogated in cd39–/– mice versus cd39+/+ controls, with elevated fibrin and collagen deposition and marked neutrophil and macrophage influx. Macrophages were found to display increased surface expression of CD301 and CD206, marking a reparative phenotype, driven by increased extracellular ATP and IL-4 in the infarcted myocardium of cd39–/– mice. A myeloid-specific CD39-knockout mouse also demonstrated protection from rupture, with an attenuated rupture phenotype, suggesting that complete ablation of CD39 provides the greatest degree of protection in this model. Absence of CD39, either globally or in a myeloid lineage–restricted fashion, skews the phenotype toward alternatively activated (reparative) macrophage infiltration following MI. These studies reveal a previously unrecognized and unexpected role of endogenous CD39 to skew macrophage phenotype and promote a propensity to myocardial rupture after MI.

Authors

Nadia R. Sutton, Takanori Hayasaki, Matthew C. Hyman, Anuli C. Anyanwu, Hui Liao, Danica Petrovic-Djergovic, Linda Badri, Amy E. Baek, Natalie Walker, Keigo Fukase, Yogendra Kanthi, Scott H. Visovatti, Ellen L. Horste, Jessica J. Ray, Sascha N. Goonewardena, David J. Pinsky

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Abstract

A SNP identified as rs548234, which is found in PRDM1, the gene that encodes BLIMP1, is a risk allele associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). BLIMP1 expression was reported to be decreased in women with the PRDM1 rs548234 risk allele compared with women with the nonrisk allele in monocyte-derived DCs (MO-DCs). In this study, we demonstrate that BLIMP1 expression is regulated by the binding of Kruppel-like factor 4 (KLF4) to the risk SNP. KLF4 is highly expressed in MO-DCs but undetectable in B cells, consistent with the lack of altered expression of BLIMP1 in B cells from risk SNP carriers. Female rs548234 risk allele carriers, but not nonrisk allele carriers, exhibited decreased levels of BLIMP1 in MO-DCs, showing that the regulatory function of KLF4 is influenced by the risk allele. In addition, KLF4 directly recruits histone deacetylases (HDAC4, HDAC6, and HDAC7), established negative regulators of gene expression. Finally, the knock down of KLF4 expression reversed the inhibitory effects of the risk SNP on promoter activity and BLIMP1 expression. Therefore, the binding of KLF4 and the subsequent recruitment of HDACs represent a mechanism for reduced BLIMP1 expression in MO-DCs bearing the SLE risk allele rs548234.

Authors

Su Hwa Jang, Helen Chen, Peter K. Gregersen, Betty Diamond, Sun Jung Kim

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Abstract

Approximately 50% of high-grade serous ovarian cancers (HGSOCs) have defects in genes involved in homologous recombination (HR) (i.e., BRCA1/2). Preclinical models to optimize therapeutic strategies for HR-deficient (HRD) HGSOC are lacking. We developed a preclinical platform for HRD HGSOCs that includes primary tumor cultures, patient-derived xenografts (PDXs), and molecular imaging. Models were characterized by immunohistochemistry, targeted sequencing, and reverse-phase protein array analysis. We also tested PDX tumor response to PARP, CHK1, and ATR inhibitors. Fourteen orthotopic HGSOC PDX models with BRCA mutations (BRCAMUT) were established with a 93% success rate. The orthotopic PDX model emulates the natural progression of HGSOC, including development of a primary ovarian tumor and metastasis to abdominal viscera. PDX response to standard chemotherapy correlated to that demonstrated in the patient. Pathogenic mutations and HGSOC markers were preserved after multiple mouse passages, indicating retention of underlying molecular mechanisms of carcinogenesis. A BRCA2MUT PDX with high p-CHK1 demonstrated a similar delay of tumor growth in response to PARP, CHK1, and ATR inhibitors. A poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor radiotracer correlated with PARP1 activity and showed response to PARP inhibition in the BRCA2MUT PDX model. In summary, the orthotopic HGSOC PDX represents a robust and reliable model to optimize therapeutic strategies for BRCAMUT HGSOC.

Authors

Erin George, Hyoung Kim, Clemens Krepler, Brandon Wenz, Mehran Makvandi, Janos L. Tanyi, Eric Brown, Rugang Zhang, Patricia Brafford, Stephanie Jean, Robert H. Mach, Yiling Lu, Gordon B. Mills, Meenhard Herlyn, Mark Morgan, Xiaochen Zhang, Robert Soslow, Ronny Drapkin, Neil Johnson, Ying Zheng, George Cotsarelis, Katherine L. Nathanson, Fiona Simpkins

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Abstract

In patients with sickle cell disease (SCD), the polymerization of intraerythrocytic hemoglobin S promotes downstream vaso-occlusive events in the microvasculature. While vaso-occlusion is known to occur in the lung, often in the context of systemic vaso-occlusive crisis and the acute chest syndrome, the pathophysiological mechanisms that incite lung injury are unknown. We used intravital microscopy of the lung in transgenic humanized SCD mice to monitor acute vaso-occlusive events following an acute dose of systemic lipopolysaccharide sufficient to trigger events in SCD but not control mice. We observed cellular microembolism of precapillary pulmonary arteriolar bottlenecks by neutrophil-platelet aggregates. Blood from SCD patients was next studied under flow in an in vitro microfluidic system. Similar to the pulmonary circulation, circulating platelets nucleated around arrested neutrophils, translating to a greater number and duration of neutrophil-platelet interactions compared with normal human blood. Inhibition of platelet P-selectin with function-blocking antibody attenuated the neutrophil-platelet interactions in SCD patient blood in vitro and resolved pulmonary arteriole microembolism in SCD mice in vivo. These results establish the relevance of neutrophil-platelet aggregate formation in lung arterioles in promoting lung vaso-occlusion in SCD and highlight the therapeutic potential of targeting platelet adhesion molecules to prevent acute chest syndrome.

Authors

Margaret F. Bennewitz, Maritza A. Jimenez, Ravi Vats, Egemen Tutuncuoglu, Jude Jonassaint, Gregory J. Kato, Mark T. Gladwin, Prithu Sundd

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Abstract

Oxidation of calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (ox-CaMKII) by ROS has been associated with asthma. However, the contribution of ox-CaMKII to the development of asthma remains to be fully characterized. Here, we tested the effect of ox-CaMKII on IgE-mediated mast cell activation in an allergen-induced mouse model of asthma using oxidant-resistant CaMKII MMVVδ knockin (MMVVδ) mice. Compared with WT mice, the allergen-challenged MMVVδ mice displayed less airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and inflammation. These MMVVδ mice exhibited reduced levels of ROS and diminished recruitment of mast cells to the lungs. OVA-activated bone marrow–derived mast cells (BMMCs) from MMVVδ mice showed a significant inhibition of ROS and ox-CaMKII expression. ROS generation was dependent on intracellular Ca2+ concentration in BMMCs. Importantly, OVA-activated MMVVδ BMMCs had suppressed degranulation, histamine release, leukotriene C4, and IL-13 expression. Adoptive transfer of WT, but not MMVVδ, BMMCs, reversed the alleviated AHR and inflammation in allergen-challenged MMVVδ mice. The CaMKII inhibitor KN-93 significantly suppressed IgE-mediated mast cell activation and asthma. These studies support a critical but previously unrecognized role of ox-CaMKII in mast cells that promotes asthma and suggest that therapies to reduce ox-CaMKII may be a novel approach for asthma.

Authors

Jingjing Qu, Danh C. Do, Yufeng Zhou, Elizabeth Luczak, Wayne Mitzner, Mark E. Anderson, Peisong Gao

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Abstract

Optical imaging methods have been developed to measure lymphatic function in skin; however, the lymphatic system of many organs is not accessible to this technology. Since lymphatic transport of macromolecules from any organ proceeds to the blood circulation, we aimed to develop a method that can measure lymphatic function by monitoring the fluorescence in a superficial vein of an interstitially injected tracer. We selected a 40-kDa PEGylated near-infrared dye conjugate, as it showed lymphatic system–specific uptake and extended circulation in blood. Lymphatic transport to blood from subcutaneous tissue required a transit time before signal enhancement was seen in blood followed by a steady rise in signal over time. Increased lymphatic transport was apparent in awake mice compared with those under continuous anesthesia. The methods were validated in K14-VEGFR-3-Fc and K14-VEGF-C transgenic mice with loss and gain of lymphatic function, respectively. Reduced lymphatic transport to blood was also found in aged mice. The technique was also able to measure lymphatic transport from the peritoneal cavity, a location not suitable for optical imaging. The method is a promising, simple approach for assessment of lymphatic function and for monitoring of therapeutic regimens in mouse models of disease and may have potential for clinical translation.

Authors

Steven T. Proulx, Qiaoli Ma, Diana Andina, Jean-Christophe Leroux, Michael Detmar

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Abstract

Peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor–δ (PPARD) is upregulated in many major human cancers, but the role that its expression in cancer cells has in metastasis remains poorly understood. Here, we show that specific PPARD downregulation or genetic deletion of PPARD in cancer cells significantly repressed metastasis in various cancer models in vivo. Mechanistically, PPARD promoted angiogenesis via interleukin 8 in vivo and in vitro. Analysis of transcriptome profiling of HCT116 colon cancer cells with or without genetic deletion of PPARD and gene expression patterns in The Cancer Genome Atlas colorectal adenocarcinoma database identified novel pro-metastatic genes (GJA1, VIM, SPARC, STC1, SNCG) as PPARD targets. PPARD expression in cancer cells drastically affected epithelial-mesenchymal transition, migration, and invasion, further underscoring its necessity for metastasis. Clinically, high PPARD expression in various major human cancers (e.g., colorectal, lung, breast) was associated with significantly reduced metastasis-free survival. Our results demonstrate that PPARD, a druggable protein, is an important molecular target in metastatic cancer.

Authors

Xiangsheng Zuo, Weiguo Xu, Min Xu, Rui Tian, Micheline J. Moussalli, Fei Mao, Xiaofeng Zheng, Jing Wang, Jeffrey S. Morris, Mihai Gagea, Cathy Eng, Scott Kopetz, Dipen M. Maru, Asif Rashid, Russell Broaddus, Daoyan Wei, Mien-Chie Hung, Anil K. Sood, Imad Shureiqi

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About JCI Insight

The American Society for Clinical Investigation and Journal of Clinical Investigation are pleased to launch JCI Insight, a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to biomedical research, ranging from preclinical to clinical studies. Headed by Editor in Chief Howard Rockman, JCI Insight provides the research community with a broad forum to publish well-executed, high-quality, and insightful research articles across biomedical specialties.