Preeclampsia (PE) is a disorder of pregnancy that manifests as late gestational maternal hypertension and proteinuria and can be life-threatening to both the mother and baby. It is believed that abnormal placentation is responsible for the cascade of events leading to the maternal syndrome. Embryo implantation is critical to establishing a healthy pregnancy. Defective implantation can cause adverse “ripple effects,” leading to abnormal decidualization and placentation, retarded fetal development, and poor pregnancy outcomes, such as PE and fetal growth restriction. The precise mechanism(s) of implantation defects that lead to PE remain elusive. BPH/5 mice, which spontaneously develop the cardinal features of PE, show peri-implantation defects including upregulation of Cox2 and IL-15 at the maternal-fetal interface. This was associated with decreased decidual natural killer (dNK) cells, which have important roles in establishing placental perfusion. Interestingly, a single administration of a Cox2 inhibitor (celecoxib) during decidualization restrained Cox2 and IL-15 expression, restored dNK cell numbers, improved fetal growth, and attenuated late gestational hypertension in BPH/5 female mice. This study provides evidence that decidual overexpression of Cox2 and IL-15 may trigger the adverse pregnancy outcomes reflected in the preeclamptic syndrome, underscoring the idea that Cox2 inhibitor treatment is an effective strategy for the prevention of PE-associated fetal and maternal morbidity and mortality.
Jenny L. Sones, Jeeyeon Cha, Ashley K. Woods, Amanda Bartos, Christa Y. Heyward, Heinrich E. Lob, Catherine E. Isroff, Scott D. Butler, Stephanie E. Shapiro, Sudhansu K. Dey, Robin L. Davisson
The capacity of pancreatic β cells to maintain glucose homeostasis during chronic physiologic and immunologic stress is important for cellular and metabolic homeostasis. Insulin receptor substrate 2 (IRS2) is a regulated adapter protein that links the insulin and IGF1 receptors to downstream signaling cascades. Since strategies to maintain or increase IRS2 expression can promote β cell growth, function, and survival, we conducted a screen to find small molecules that can increase IRS2 mRNA in isolated human pancreatic islets. We identified 77 compounds, including 15 that contained a tricyclic core. To establish the efficacy of our approach, one of the tricyclic compounds, trimeprazine tartrate, was investigated in isolated human islets and in mouse models. Trimeprazine is a first-generation antihistamine that acts as a partial agonist against the histamine H1 receptor (H1R) and other GPCRs, some of which are expressed on human islets. Trimeprazine promoted CREB phosphorylation and increased the concentration of IRS2 in islets. IRS2 was required for trimeprazine to increase nuclear Pdx1, islet mass, β cell replication and function, and glucose tolerance in mice. Moreover, trimeprazine synergized with anti-CD3 Abs to reduce the progression of diabetes in NOD mice. Finally, it increased the function of human islet transplants in streptozotocin-induced (STZ-induced) diabetic mice. Thus, trimeprazine, its analogs, or possibly other compounds that increase IRS2 in islets and β cells without adverse systemic effects might provide mechanism-based strategies to prevent the progression of diabetes.
Alexandra Kuznetsova, Yue Yu, Jennifer Hollister-Lock, Lynn Opare-Addo, Aldo Rozzo, Marianna Sadagurski, Lisa Norquay, Jessica E. Reed, Ilham El Khattabi, Susan Bonner-Weir, Gordon C. Weir, Arun Sharma, Morris F. White
Despite the rare appearance of potent HIV-neutralizing mAbs in infected individuals requiring prolonged affinity maturation, little is known regarding this process in the majority of viremic individuals. HIV-infected individuals with chronic HIV viremia have elevated numbers of nonconventional tissue-like memory (TLM) B cells that predominate in blood over conventional resting memory (RM) B cells. Accordingly, we investigated affinity maturation in these 2 memory B cell populations. Analysis of IgG-expressing TLM B cells revealed a higher number of cell divisions compared with RM B cells; however, TLM B cells paradoxically displayed significantly lower frequencies of somatic hypermutation (SHM). To assess Ab reactivity in TLM and RM B cells, single-cell cloning was performed on HIV envelope CD4–binding site–sorted (CD4bs-sorted) B cells from 3 individuals with chronic HIV viremia. Several clonal families were present among the 127 cloned recombinant mAbs, with evidence of crosstalk between TLM and RM B cell populations that was largely restricted to non-VH4 families. Despite evidence of common origins, SHM frequencies were significantly decreased in TLM-derived mAbs compared with SHM frequencies in RM-derived mAbs. However, both cell populations had lower frequencies of SHMs than did broadly neutralizing CD4bs–specific mAbs. There was a significant correlation between SHM frequencies and the HIV-neutralizing capacities of the mAbs. Furthermore, HIV neutralization was significantly higher in the RM-derived mAbs compared with that seen in the TLM-derived mAbs, and both SHM frequencies and neutralizing capacity were lowest in TLM-derived mAbs with high polyreactivity. Thus, deficiencies in memory B cells that arise during chronic HIV viremia provide insight into the inadequacy of the Ab response in viremic individuals.
Eric Meffre, Aaron Louie, Jason Bannock, Leo J.Y. Kim, Jason Ho, Cody C. Frear, Lela Kardava, Wei Wang, Clarisa M. Buckner, Yimeng Wang, Olivia R. Fankuchen, Kathleen R. Gittens, Tae-Wook Chun, Yuxing Li, Anthony S. Fauci, Susan Moir
Ab-producing plasma cells (PCs) serve as key participants in countering pathogenic challenges as well as being contributors to autoimmune and malignant disorders. Thus far, only a limited number of PC–specific markers have been identified. The characterization of the unique variable lymphocyte receptor (VLR) Abs that are made by evolutionarily distant jawless vertebrates prompted us to investigate whether VLR Abs could detect novel PC antigens that have not been recognized by conventional Abs. Here, we describe a monoclonal lamprey Ab, VLRB MM3, that was raised against primary multiple myeloma cells. VLRB MM3 recognizes a unique epitope of the CD38 ectoenzyme that is present on plasmablasts and PCs from healthy individuals and on most, but not all, multiple myelomas. Binding by the VLRB MM3 Ab coincides with CD38 dimerization and NAD glycohydrolase activity. Our data demonstrate that the lamprey VLRB MM3 Ab is a unique reagent for the identification of plasmablasts and PCs, with potential applications in the diagnosis and therapeutic intervention of PC or autoimmune disorders.
Cuiling Yu, Yanling Liu, Justin Tze Ho Chan, Jiefei Tong, Zhihua Li, Mengyao Shi, Dariush Davani, Marion Parsons, Srijit Khan, Wei Zhan, Shuya Kyu, Eyal Grunebaum, Paolo Campisi, Evan J. Propst, David L. Jaye, Suzanne Trudel, Michael F. Moran, Mario Ostrowski, Brantley R. Herrin, F. Eun-Hyung Lee, Ignacio Sanz, Max D. Cooper, Götz R.A. Ehrhardt
Progressive HIV-1 infection leads to both profound immune suppression and pathologic inflammation in the majority of infected individuals. While adaptive immune dysfunction, as evidenced by CD4+ T cell depletion and exhaustion, has been extensively studied, less is known about the functional capacity of innate immune cell populations in the context of HIV-1 infection. Given the broad susceptibility to opportunistic infections and the dysregulated inflammation observed in progressive disease, we hypothesized that there would be significant changes in the innate cellular responses. Using a cohort of patients with multiple samplings before and after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation, we demonstrated increased responses to innate immune stimuli following viral suppression, as measured by the production of inflammatory cytokines. Plasma viral load itself had the strongest association with this change in innate functional capacity. We further identified epigenetic modifications in the
Eileen P. Scully, Ainsley Lockhart, Wilfredo Garcia-Beltran, Christine D. Palmer, Chelsey Musante, Eric Rosenberg, Todd M. Allen, J. Judy Chang, Ronald J. Bosch, Marcus Altfeld
The 2p15p16.1 microdeletion syndrome has a core phenotype consisting of intellectual disability, microcephaly, hypotonia, delayed growth, common craniofacial features, and digital anomalies. So far, more than 20 cases of 2p15p16.1 microdeletion syndrome have been reported in the literature; however, the size of the deletions and their breakpoints vary, making it difficult to identify the candidate genes. Recent reports pointed to 4 genes (
Hani Bagheri, Chansonette Badduke, Ying Qiao, Rita Colnaghi, Iga Abramowicz, Diana Alcantara, Christopher Dunham, Jiadi Wen, Robert S. Wildin, Malgorzata J.M. Nowaczyk, Jennifer Eichmeyer, Anna Lehman, Bruno Maranda, Sally Martell, Xianghong Shan, Suzanne M.E. Lewis, Mark O’Driscoll, Cheryl Y. Gregory-Evans, Evica Rajcan-Separovic
FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3–targeted (FLT3-targeted) therapies have shown initial promise for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) expressing FLT3-activating mutations; however, resistance emerges rapidly. Furthermore, limited options exist for the treatment of FLT3-independent AML, demonstrating the need for novel therapies that reduce toxicity and improve survival. MERTK receptor tyrosine kinase is overexpressed in 80% to 90% of AMLs and contributes to leukemogenesis. Here, we describe MRX-2843, a type 1 small-molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitor that abrogates activation of both MERTK and FLT3 and their downstream effectors. MRX-2843 treatment induces apoptosis and inhibits colony formation in AML cell lines and primary patient samples expressing MERTK and/or FLT3-ITD, with a wide therapeutic window compared with that of normal human cord blood cells. In murine orthotopic xenograft models, once-daily oral therapy prolonged survival 2- to 3-fold over that of vehicle-treated controls. Additionally, MRX-2843 retained activity against quizartinib-resistant FLT3-ITD–mutant proteins with clinically relevant alterations at the D835 or F691 loci and prolonged survival in xenograft models of quizartinib-resistant AML. Together, these observations validate MRX-2843 as a translational agent and support its clinical development for the treatment of AML.
Katherine A. Minson, Catherine C. Smith, Deborah DeRyckere, Clara Libbrecht, Alisa B. Lee-Sherick, Madeline G. Huey, Elisabeth A. Lasater, Gregory D. Kirkpatrick, Michael A. Stashko, Weihe Zhang, Craig T. Jordan, Dmitri Kireev, Xiaodong Wang, Stephen V. Frye, H. Shelton Earp, Neil P. Shah, Douglas K. Graham
We report the discovery of a claudin-low molecular subtype of high-grade bladder cancer that shares characteristics with the homonymous subtype of breast cancer. Claudin-low bladder tumors were enriched for multiple genetic features including increased rates of
Jordan Kardos, Shengjie Chai, Lisle E. Mose, Sara R. Selitsky, Bhavani Krishnan, Ryoichi Saito, Michael D. Iglesia, Matthew I. Milowsky, Joel S. Parker, William Y. Kim, Benjamin G. Vincent