Sánchez-Tilló et al. report opposing roles for ZEB1 in KRAS- and BRAF-mutant colorectal carcinomas. The cover image shows colonic Alcian blue–positive goblet cells from a KrasG12D; Vil1Cre; Zeb1-deficient mouse.
Osteocytes express parathyroid hormone (PTH)/PTH-related protein (PTHrP) receptors and respond to the PTHrP analog abaloparatide (ABL) and to the PTH 1-34 fragment teriparatide (TPTD), which are used to treat osteoporosis. Several studies indicate overlapping but distinct skeletal responses to ABL or TPTD, but their effects on cortical bone may differ. Little is known about their differential effects on osteocytes. We compared cortical osteocyte and skeletal responses to ABL and TPTD in sham-operated and ovariectomized mice. Administered 7 weeks after ovariectomy for 4 weeks at a dose of 40 μg/kg/d, TPTD and ABL had similar effects on trabecular bone, but ABL showed stronger effects in cortical bone. In cortical osteocytes, both treatments decreased lacunar area, reflecting altered peri-lacunar remodeling favoring matrix accumulation. Osteocyte RNA-Seq revealed that several genes and pathways were altered by ovariectomy and affected similarly by TPTD and ABL. Notwithstanding, several signaling pathways were uniquely regulated by ABL. Thus, in mice, TPTD and ABL induced a positive osteocyte peri-lacunar remodeling balance, but ABL induced stronger cortical responses and affected the osteocyte transcriptome differently. We concluded that ABL affected the cortical osteocyte transcriptome in a manner subtly different from TPTD, resulting in more beneficial remodeling/modeling changes and homeostasis of the cortex.
Zhengtao Lv, Jiaming Zhang, Shuang Liang, Chenhe Zhou, Dorothy Hu, Daniel J. Brooks, Mary L. Bouxsein, Beate Lanske, Paul Kostenuik, Francesca Gori, Roland Baron
Germline de novo missense variants of the CACNA1D gene, encoding the pore-forming α1 subunit of Cav1.3 L-type Ca2+ channels (LTCCs), have been found in patients with neurodevelopmental and endocrine dysfunction, but their disease-causing potential is unproven. These variants alter channel gating, enabling enhanced Cav1.3 activity, suggesting Cav1.3 inhibition as a potential therapeutic option. Here we provide proof of the disease-causing nature of such gating-modifying CACNA1D variants using mice (Cav1.3AG) containing the A749G variant reported de novo in a patient with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and intellectual impairment. In heterozygous mutants, native LTCC currents in adrenal chromaffin cells exhibited gating changes as predicted from heterologous expression. The A749G mutation induced aberrant excitability of dorsomedial striatum–projecting substantia nigra dopamine neurons and medium spiny neurons in the dorsal striatum. The phenotype observed in heterozygous mutants reproduced many of the abnormalities described within the human disease spectrum, including developmental delay, social deficit, and pronounced hyperactivity without major changes in gross neuroanatomy. Despite an approximately 7-fold higher sensitivity of A749G-containing channels to the LTCC inhibitor isradipine, oral pretreatment over 2 days did not rescue the hyperlocomotion. Cav1.3AG mice confirm the pathogenicity of the A749G variant and point toward a pathogenetic role of altered signaling in the dopamine midbrain system.
Nadine J. Ortner, Anupam Sah, Enrica Paradiso, Josef Shin, Strahinja Stojanovic, Niklas Hammer, Maria Haritonova, Nadja T. Hofer, Andrea Marcantoni, Laura Guarina, Petronel Tuluc, Tamara Theiner, Florian Pitterl, Karl Ebner, Herbert Oberacher, Emilio Carbone, Nadia Stefanova, Francesco Ferraguti, Nicolas Singewald, Jochen Roeper, Jörg Striessnig
Somatic gain-of-function mutations in the L-type calcium channel CaV1.3 (CACNA1D gene) cause adrenal aldosterone-producing adenomas and micronodules. De novo germline mutations are found in a syndrome of primary aldosteronism, seizures, and neurologic abnormalities (PASNA) as well as in autism spectrum disorder. Using CRISPR/Cas9, we here generated mice with a Cacna1d gain-of-function mutation found in both adenomas and PASNA syndrome (Cacna1dIle772Met/+). These mice show reduced body weight and increased mortality from weaning to approximately 100 days of age. Male mice do not breed, likely due to neuromotor impairment, and the offspring of female mice die perinatally, likely due to lack of maternal care. Mice generated by in vitro fertilization showed elevated intracellular calcium in the aldosterone-producing zona glomerulosa, an elevated aldosterone/renin ratio, and persistently elevated serum aldosterone on a high-salt diet as signs of primary aldosteronism. Anesthesia with ketamine and xylazine induced tonic-clonic seizures. Neurologic abnormalities included hyperlocomotion, impaired performance in the rotarod test, impaired nest building, and slight changes in social behavior. Intracellular calcium in the zona glomerulosa, aldosterone levels, and rotarod performance responded to treatment with the calcium channel blocker isradipine, with implications for the therapy of patients with aldosterone-producing lesions and with PASNA syndrome.
Gabriel Stölting, Hoang An Dinh, Marina Volkert, Nicole Hellmig, Julia Schewe, Luise Hennicke, Eric Seidel, Herbert Oberacher, Junhui Zhang, Richard P. Lifton, Iris Urban, Melissa Long, Marion Rivalan, Timothy Nottoli, Ute I. Scholl
Glycolysis is highly enhanced in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cells; thus, glucose restrictions are imposed on nontumor cells in the PDAC tumor microenvironment (TME). However, little is known about how such glucose competition alters metabolism and confers phenotypic changes in stromal cells in the TME. Here, we report that cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) with restricted glucose availability utilize lactate from glycolysis-enhanced cancer cells as a fuel and exert immunosuppressive activity in the PDAC TME. The expression of lactate dehydrogenase A (LDHA), which regulates lactate production, was a poor prognostic factor for patients with PDAC, and LDHA depletion suppressed tumor growth in a CAF-rich murine PDAC model. Coculture of CAFs with PDAC cells revealed that most of the glucose was taken up by the tumor cells and that CAFs consumed lactate via monocarboxylate transporter 1 to enhance proliferation through the TCA cycle. Moreover, lactate-stimulated CAFs upregulated IL-6 expression and suppressed cytotoxic immune cell activity synergistically with lactate. Finally, the LDHA inhibitor FX11 reduced tumor growth and improved antitumor immunity in CAF-rich PDAC tumors. Our study provides insight regarding the crosstalk among tumor cells, CAFs, and immune cells mediated by lactate and offers therapeutic strategies for targeting LDHA enzymatic activity in PDAC cells.
Fumimasa Kitamura, Takashi Semba, Noriko Yasuda-Yoshihara, Kosuke Yamada, Akiho Nishimura, Juntaro Yamasaki, Osamu Nagano, Tadahito Yasuda, Atsuko Yonemura, Yilin Tong, Huaitao Wang, Takahiko Akiyama, Kazuki Matsumura, Norio Uemura, Rumi Itoyama, Luke Bu, Lingfeng Fu, Xichen Hu, Feng Wei, Kosuke Mima, Katsunori Imai, Hiromitsu Hayashi, Yo-ichi Yamashita, Yuji Miyamoto, Hideo Baba, Takatsugu Ishimoto
Despite being in the same pathway, mutations of KRAS and BRAF in colorectal carcinomas (CRCs) determine distinct progression courses. ZEB1 induces an epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and is associated with worse progression in most carcinomas. Using samples from patients with CRC, mouse models of KrasG12D and BrafV600E CRC, and a Zeb1-deficient mouse, we show that ZEB1 had opposite functions in KRAS- and BRAF-mutant CRCs. In KrasG12D CRCs, ZEB1 was correlated with a worse prognosis and a higher number of larger and undifferentiated (mesenchymal or EMT-like) tumors. Surprisingly, in BrafV600E CRC, ZEB1 was associated with better prognosis; fewer, smaller, and more differentiated (reduced EMT) primary tumors; and fewer metastases. ZEB1 was positively correlated in KRAS-mutant CRC cells and negatively in BRAF-mutant CRC cells with gene signatures for EMT, cell proliferation and survival, and ERK signaling. On a mechanistic level, ZEB1 knockdown in KRAS-mutant CRC cells increased apoptosis and reduced clonogenicity and anchorage-independent growth; the reverse occurred in BRAFV600E CRC cells. ZEB1 is associated with better prognosis and reduced EMT signature in patients harboring BRAF CRCs. These data suggest that ZEB1 can function as a tumor suppressor in BRAF-mutant CRCs, highlighting the importance of considering the KRAS/BRAF mutational background of CRCs in therapeutic strategies targeting ZEB1/EMT.
Ester Sánchez-Tilló, Leire Pedrosa, Ingrid Vila, Yongxu Chen, Balázs Győrffy, Lidia Sánchez-Moral, Laura Siles, Juan J. Lozano, Anna Esteve-Codina, Douglas S. Darling, Miriam Cuatrecasas, Antoni Castells, Joan Maurel, Antonio Postigo
The histone demethylase JMJD2A/KDM4A facilitates prostate cancer development, yet how JMJD2A function is regulated has remained elusive. Here, we demonstrate that SET7/9-mediated methylation on 6 lysine residues modulated JMJD2A. Joint mutation of these lysine residues suppressed JMJD2A’s ability to stimulate the MMP1 matrix metallopeptidase promoter upon recruitment by the ETV1 transcription factor. Mutation of just 3 methylation sites (K505, K506, and K507) to arginine residues (3xR mutation) was sufficient to maximally reduce JMJD2A transcriptional activity and also decreased its binding to ETV1. Introduction of the 3xR mutation into DU145 prostate cancer cells reduced in vitro growth and invasion and also severely compromised tumorigenesis. Consistently, the 3xR genotype caused transcriptome changes related to cell proliferation and invasion pathways, including downregulation of MMP1 and the NPM3 nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin gene. NPM3 downregulation phenocopied and its overexpression rescued, to a large degree, the 3xR mutation in DU145 cells, suggesting that NPM3 was a seminal downstream effector of methylated JMJD2A. Moreover, we found that NPM3 was overexpressed in prostate cancer and might be indicative of disease aggressiveness. SET7/9-mediated lysine methylation of JMJD2A may aggravate prostate tumorigenesis in a manner dependent on NPM3, implying that the SET7/9→JMJD2A→NPM3 axis could be targeted for therapy.
Ruicai Gu, Tae-Dong Kim, Hoogeun Song, Yuan Sui, Sook Shin, Sangphil Oh, Ralf Janknecht
Abnormal macrophage polarization is generally present in autoimmune diseases. Overwhelming M1 macrophage activation promotes the continuous progression of inflammation, which is one of the reasons for the development of autoimmune diseases. However, the underlying mechanism is still unclear. Here we explore the function of Regulatory factor X1 (RFX1) in macrophage polarization by constructing colitis and lupus-like mouse models. Both in vivo and in vitro experiments confirmed that RFX1 can promote M1 and inhibit M2 macrophage polarization. Furthermore, we found that RFX1 promoted DNA demethylation of macrophage polarization–related genes by increasing APOBEC3A/Apobec3 expression. We identified a potential RFX1 inhibitor, adenosine diphosphate (ADP), providing a potential strategy for treating autoimmune diseases.
Shuang Yang, Pei Du, Haobo Cui, Meiling Zheng, Wei He, Xiaofei Gao, Zhi Hu, Sujie Jia, Qianjin Lu, Ming Zhao
Albuminuria and podocyte injury are the key cellular events in the progression of diabetic nephropathy (DN). Acetyl-CoA synthetase 2 (ACSS2) is a nucleocytosolic enzyme responsible for the regulation of metabolic homeostasis in mammalian cells. This study aimed to investigate the possible roles of ACSS2 in kidney injury in DN. We constructed an ACSS2-deleted mouse model to investigate the role of ACSS2 in podocyte dysfunction and kidney injury in diabetic mouse models. In vitro, podocytes were chosen and transfected with ACSS2 siRNA and ACSS2 inhibitor and treated with high glucose. We found that ACSS2 expression was significantly elevated in the podocytes of patients with DN and diabetic mice. ACSS2 upregulation promoted phenotype transformation and inflammatory cytokine expression while inhibiting podocytes’ autophagy. Conversely, ACSS2 inhibition improved autophagy and alleviated podocyte injury. Furthermore, ACSS2 epigenetically activated raptor expression by histone H3K9 acetylation, promoting activation of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) pathway. Pharmacological inhibition or genetic depletion of ACSS2 in the streptozotocin-induced diabetic mouse model greatly ameliorated kidney injury and podocyte dysfunction. To conclude, ACSS2 activation promoted podocyte injury in DN by raptor/mTORC1-mediated autophagy inhibition.
Jian Lu, Xue Qi Li, Pei Pei Chen, Jia Xiu Zhang, Liang Liu, Gui Hua Wang, Xiao Qi Liu, Ting Ting Jiang, Meng Ying Wang, Wen Tao Liu, Xiong Zhong Ruan, Kun Ling Ma
Host cytosolic sensing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) RNA by the RIG-I–like receptor (RLR) family perturbs innate immune control within macrophages; however, a distinct role of MDA5, a member of the RLR family, in M. tuberculosis pathogenesis has yet to be fully elucidated. To further define the role of MDA5 in M. tuberculosis pathogenesis, we evaluated M. tuberculosis intracellular growth and innate immune responses in WT and Mda5–/– macrophages. Transfection of M. tuberculosis RNA strongly induced proinflammatory cytokine production in WT macrophages, which was abrogated in Mda5–/– macrophages. M. tuberculosis infection in macrophages induced MDA5 protein expression, accompanied by an increase in MDA5 activation as assessed by multimer formation. IFN-γ–primed Mda5–/– macrophages effectively contained intracellular M. tuberculosis proliferation to a markedly greater degree than WT macrophages. Further comparisons of WT versus Mda5–/– macrophages revealed that during M. tuberculosis infection MDA5 contributed to IL-1β production and inflammasome activation and that loss of MDA5 led to a substantial increase in autophagy. In the mouse TB model, loss of MDA5 conferred host survival benefits with a concomitant reduction in M. tuberculosis bacillary burden. These data reveal that loss of MDA5 is host protective during M. tuberculosis infection in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that M. tuberculosis exploits MDA5 to subvert immune containment.
C. Korin Bullen, Alok K. Singh, Stefanie Krug, Shichun Lun, Preeti Thakur, Geetha Srikrishna, William R. Bishai
Sialidosis is an ultra-rare multisystemic lysosomal disease caused by mutations in the neuraminidase 1 (NEU1) gene. The severe type II form of the disease manifests with a prenatal/infantile or juvenile onset, bone abnormalities, severe neuropathology, and visceromegaly. A subset of these patients present with nephrosialidosis, characterized by abrupt onset of fulminant glomerular nephropathy. We studied the pathophysiological mechanism of the disease in 2 NEU1-deficient mouse models, a constitutive Neu1-knockout, Neu1ΔEx3, and a conditional phagocyte-specific knockout, Neu1Cx3cr1ΔEx3. Mice of both strains exhibited terminal urinary retention and severe kidney damage with elevated urinary albumin levels, loss of nephrons, renal fibrosis, presence of storage vacuoles, and dysmorphic mitochondria in the intraglomerular and tubular cells. Glycoprotein sialylation in glomeruli, proximal distal tubules, and distal tubules was drastically increased, including that of an endocytic reabsorption receptor megalin. The pool of megalin bearing O-linked glycans with terminal galactose residues, essential for protein targeting and activity, was reduced to below detection levels. Megalin levels were severely reduced, and the protein was directed to lysosomes instead of the apical membrane. Together, our results demonstrated that desialylation by NEU1 plays a crucial role in processing and cellular trafficking of megalin and that NEU1 deficiency in sialidosis impairs megalin-mediated protein reabsorption.
Ikhui Kho, Ekaterina P. Demina, Xuefang Pan, Irene Londono, Christopher W. Cairo, Luisa Sturiale, Angelo Palmigiano, Angela Messina, Domenico Garozzo, Roth-Visal Ung, Fabrice Mac-Way, Éric Bonneil, Pierre Thibault, Mathieu Lemaire, Carlos R. Morales, Alexey V. Pshezhetsky
Factor-inhibiting HIF (FIH) is an asparagine hydroxylase that acts on hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs) to control cellular adaptation to hypoxia. FIH is expressed in several tumor types, but its impact in tumor progression remains largely unexplored. We observed that FIH was expressed on human lung cancer tissue. Deletion of FIH in mouse and human lung cancer cells resulted in an increased glycolytic metabolism, consistent with increased HIF activity. FIH-deficient lung cancer cells exhibited decreased proliferation. Analysis of RNA-Seq data confirmed changes in the cell cycle and survival and revealed molecular pathways that were dysregulated in the absence of FIH, including the upregulation of angiomotin (Amot), a key component of the Hippo tumor suppressor pathway. We show that FIH-deficient tumors were characterized by higher immune infiltration of NK and T cells compared with FIH competent tumor cells. In vivo studies demonstrate that FIH deletion resulted in reduced tumor growth and metastatic capacity. Moreover, high FIH expression correlated with poor overall survival in non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Our data unravel FIH as a therapeutic target for the treatment of lung cancer.
Ana García-del Río, Endika Prieto-Fernández, Leire Egia-Mendikute, Asier Antoñana-Vildosola, Borja Jimenez-Lasheras, So Young Lee, Adrián Barreira-Manrique, Samanta Romina Zanetti, Ander de Blas, Paloma Velasco-Beltrán, Alexandre Bosch, Ana M. Aransay, Asis Palazon
A better understanding of the epitopes most relevant for antibody-mediated protection against tuberculosis (TB) remains a major knowledge gap. We have shown that human polyclonal IgG against the Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) surface glycan arabinomannan (AM) and related lipoarabinomannan (LAM) is protective against TB. To investigate the impact of AM epitope recognition and Fcγ receptor (FcγR) binding on antibody functions against M. tuberculosis, we isolated a high-affinity human monoclonal antibody (mAb; P1AM25) against AM and showed its binding to oligosaccharide (OS) motifs we previously found to be associated with in vitro functions of human polyclonal anti-AM IgG. Human IgG1 P1AM25, but not 2 other high-affinity human IgG1 anti-AM mAbs reactive with different AM OS motifs, enhanced M. tuberculosis phagocytosis by macrophages and reduced intracellular growth in an FcγR-dependent manner. P1AM25 in murine IgG2a, but neither murine IgG1 nor a non–FcγR-binding IgG, given intraperitoneally prior to and after aerosolized M. tuberculosis infection, was protective in C57BL/6 mice. Moreover, we demonstrated the protective efficacy of human IgG1 P1AM25 in passive transfer with M. tuberculosis–infected FcγR-humanized mice. These data enhance our knowledge of the important interplay between both antibody epitope specificity and Fc effector functions in the defense against M. tuberculosis and could inform development of vaccines against TB.
Yanyan Liu, Tingting Chen, Yongqi Zhu, Aisha Furey, Todd L. Lowary, John Chan, Stylianos Bournazos, Jeffrey V. Ravetch, Jacqueline M. Achkar
Modulation of the immune response to initiate and halt the inflammatory process occurs both at the site of injury as well as systemically. Due to the evolving role of cellular metabolism in regulating cell fate and function, tendon injuries that undergo normal and aberrant repair were evaluated by metabolic profiling to determine its impact on healing outcomes. Metabolomics revealed an increasing abundance of the immunomodulatory metabolite itaconate within the injury site. Subsequent single-cell RNA-Seq and molecular and metabolomic validation identified a highly mature neutrophil subtype, not macrophages, as the primary producers of itaconate following trauma. These mature itaconate-producing neutrophils were highly inflammatory, producing cytokines that promote local injury fibrosis before cycling back to the bone marrow. In the bone marrow, itaconate was shown to alter hematopoiesis, skewing progenitor cells down myeloid lineages, thereby regulating systemic inflammation. Therapeutically, exogenous itaconate was found to reduce injury-site inflammation, promoting tenogenic differentiation and impairing aberrant vascularization with disease-ameliorating effects. These results present an intriguing role for cycling neutrophils as a sensor of inflammation induced by injury — potentially regulating immune cell production in the bone marrow through delivery of endogenously produced itaconate — and demonstrate a therapeutic potential for exogenous itaconate following tendon injury
Janna L. Crossley, Sonya Ostashevskaya-Gohstand, Stefano Comazzetto, Jessica S. Hook, Lei Guo, Neda Vishlaghi, Conan Juan, Lin Xu, Alexander R. Horswill, Gerta Hoxhaj, Jessica G. Moreland, Robert J. Tower, Benjamin Levi
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a systemic autoimmune disease with a dramatic sex bias, affecting 9 times more women than men. Activation of Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) by self-RNA is a central pathogenic process leading to aberrant production of type I interferon (IFN) in SLE, but the specific RNA molecules that serve as TLR7 ligands have not been defined. By leveraging gene expression data and the known sequence specificity of TLR7, we identified the female-specific X-inactive specific transcript (XIST) long noncoding RNA as a uniquely rich source of TLR7 ligands in SLE. XIST RNA stimulated IFN-α production by plasmacytoid DCs in a TLR7-dependent manner, and deletion of XIST diminished the ability of whole cellular RNA to activate TLR7. XIST levels were elevated in blood leukocytes from women with SLE compared with controls, correlated positively with disease activity and the IFN signature, and were enriched in extracellular vesicles released from dying cells in vitro. Importantly, XIST was not IFN inducible, suggesting that XIST is a driver, rather than a consequence, of IFN in SLE. Overall, our work elucidated a role for XIST RNA as a female sex–specific danger signal underlying the sex bias in SLE.
Jonathan D. Crawford, Hong Wang, Daniela Trejo-Zambrano, Raffaello Cimbro, C. Conover Talbot Jr., Mekha A. Thomas, Ashley M. Curran, Alexander A. Girgis, John T. Schroeder, Andrea Fava, Daniel W. Goldman, Michelle Petri, Antony Rosen, Brendan Antiochos, Erika Darrah
Follicular helper T (Tfh) cells have been implicated in controlling rejection after allogeneic kidney transplantation, but the precise subsets, origins, and functions of Tfh cells in this process have not been fully characterized. Here we show that a subset of effector Tfh cells marked by previous IL-21 production is potently induced during allogeneic kidney transplantation and is inhibited by immunosuppressive agents. Single-cell RNA-Seq revealed that these lymph node (LN) effector Tfh cells have transcriptional and clonal overlap with IL-21–producing kidney-infiltrating Tfh cells, implicating common origins and developmental trajectories. To investigate the precise functions of IL-21–producing effector Tfh cells in LNs and allografts, we used a mouse model to selectively eliminate these cells and assessed allogeneic B cell clonal dynamics using a single B cell culture system. We found that IL-21–producing effector Tfh cells were essential for transplant rejection by regulating donor-specific germinal center B cell clonal dynamics both systemically in the draining LN and locally within kidney grafts. Thus, IL-21–producing effector Tfh cells have multifaceted roles in Ab-mediated rejection after kidney transplantation by promoting B cell alloimmunity.
Hengcheng Zhang, Cecilia B. Cavazzoni, Manuel A. Podestà, Elsa D. Bechu, Garyfallia Ralli, Pragya Chandrakar, Jeong-Mi Lee, Ismail Sayin, Stefan G. Tullius, Reza Abdi, Anita S. Chong, Bruce R. Blazar, Peter T. Sage
Cellular senescence and biliary fibrosis are prototypical features of obliterative cholangiopathies, such as primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC). Telomere dysfunction can lead to senescence either through telomere erosion or damaged telomeres. Our goal was to investigate a mechanistic relationship between telomere damage and biliary fibrosis in PSC. Telomere attrition was observed in the bile ducts of patients with PSC along with a reduction in telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) expression, compared with that in normal livers. Similarly, liver tissue from mouse models of biliary fibrosis showed telomere attrition with increased damage at telomeres measured as telomere-associated foci (TAF). Cellular models of senescence induction increased the TAF in cholangiocytes. This coincided with decreased TERT expression and increased senescence, which was rescued by modulating TERT levels. Epigenetic analysis revealed increased acquisition of repressive histone methylation at the TERT promoter, which correlated with decreased TERT transcription. Cholangiocyte-selective deletion of TERT in mice exacerbated fibrosis, whereas androgen therapy toward telomerase rescued liver fibrosis and liver function in a genetic mouse model of PSC. Our results demonstrate a mechanistic role for telomere dysfunction in cellular senescence and fibrosis that characterize PSC. This suggests that PSC may be, in part, a telomere biology disorder, and identifies TERT as a potential therapeutic target.
Nidhi Jalan-Sakrikar, Abid Anwar, Usman Yaqoob, Can Gan, Anthony B. Lagnado, Alexander Q. Wixom, Diana Jurk, Robert C. Huebert
Aged skin is prone to viral infections, but the mechanisms responsible for this immunosenescent immune risk are unclear. We observed that aged murine and human skin expressed reduced levels of antiviral proteins (AVPs) and circadian regulators, including Bmal1 and Clock. Bmal1 and Clock were found to control rhythmic AVP expression in skin, and such circadian control of AVPs was diminished by disruption of immune cell IL-27 signaling and deletion of Bmal1/Clock genes in mouse skin, as well as siRNA-mediated knockdown of CLOCK in human primary keratinocytes. We found that treatment with the circadian-enhancing agents nobiletin and SR8278 reduced infection of herpes simplex virus 1 in epidermal explants and human keratinocytes in a BMAL1/CLOCK-dependent manner. Circadian-enhancing treatment also reversed susceptibility of aging murine skin and human primary keratinocytes to viral infection. These findings reveal an evolutionarily conserved and age-sensitive circadian regulation of cutaneous antiviral immunity, underscoring circadian restoration as an antiviral strategy in aging populations.
Stephen J. Kirchner, Vivian Lei, Paul T. Kim, Meera Patel, Jessica L. Shannon, David Corcoran, Dalton Hughes, Diana K. Waters, Kafui Dzirasa, Detlev Erdmann, Jörn Coers, Amanda S. MacLeod, Jennifer Y. Zhang
Many autoimmune diseases (AIDs) are characterized by the persistence of autoreactive B cell responses, which have been directly implicated in disease pathogenesis. How and why these cells are generated or how they are maintained for years is largely unknown. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is among the most common AIDs and is characterized by autoantibodies recognizing proteins with posttranslational modifications (PTMs). This PTM-directed autoreactive B cell compartment is ill defined. Here, we visualized the B cell response against the three main types of PTM antigens implicated in RA by spectral flow cytometry. Our results showed extensive cross-reactivity of PTM-directed B cells against all three PTM antigens (citrulline, homocitrulline, and acetyllysine). Unsupervised clustering revealed several distinct memory B cell (mBC) populations. PTM-directed cells clustered with the most recently activated class-switched mBC phenotype, with high CD80, low CD24, and low CD21 expression. Notably, patients also harbored large fractions of PTM-directed plasmablasts (PBs). Both PTM-directed mBCs and PBs showed high expression of CXCR3, a receptor for chemokines present in abundance in arthritic joints. Together, our data provide detailed insight into the biology of B cell autoreactivity and its remarkable, seemingly exhaustless persistence in a prominent human AID.
Sanne Reijm, Joanneke C. Kwekkeboom, Nienke J. Blomberg, Jolien Suurmond, Diane van der Woude, René E.M. Toes, Hans U. Scherer
BACKGROUND The locus coeruleus (LC) is the primary source of norepinephrine in the brain and regulates arousal and sleep. Animal research shows that it plays important roles in the transition between sleep and wakefulness, and between slow wave sleep and rapid eye movement sleep (REMS). It is unclear, however, whether the activity of the LC predicts sleep variability in humans.METHODS We used 7-Tesla functional MRI, sleep electroencephalography (EEG), and a sleep questionnaire to test whether the LC activity during wakefulness was associated with sleep quality in 33 healthy younger (~22 years old; 28 women, 5 men) and 19 older (~61 years old; 14 women, 5 men) individuals.RESULTS We found that, in older but not in younger participants, higher LC activity, as probed during an auditory attentional task, was associated with worse subjective sleep quality and with lower power over the EEG theta band during REMS. The results remained robust even when accounting for the age-related changes in the integrity of the LC.CONCLUSION These findings suggest that LC activity correlates with the perception of the sleep quality and an essential oscillatory mode of REMS, and we found that the LC may be an important target in the treatment of sleep- and age-related diseases.FUNDING This work was supported by Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique (FRS-FNRS, T.0242.19 & J. 0222.20), Action de Recherche Concertée – Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles (ARC SLEEPDEM 17/27-09), Fondation Recherche Alzheimer (SAO-FRA 2019/0025), ULiège, and European Regional Development Fund (Radiomed & Biomed-Hub).
Ekaterina Koshmanova, Alexandre Berger, Elise Beckers, Islay Campbell, Nasrin Mortazavi, Roya Sharifpour, Ilenia Paparella, Fermin Balda, Christian Berthomier, Christian Degueldre, Eric Salmon, Laurent Lamalle, Christine Bastin, Maxime Van Egroo, Christophe Phillips, Pierre Maquet, Fabienne Collette, Vincenzo Muto, Daphne Chylinski, Heidi I.L. Jacobs, Puneet Talwar, Siya Sherif, Gilles Vandewalle
Superficial erythematous cutaneous vascular malformations are assumed to be blood vascular in origin, but cutaneous lymphatic malformations can contain blood and appear red. Management may be different and so an accurate diagnosis is important. Cutaneous malformations were investigated through 2D histology and 3D whole-mount histology. Two lesions were clinically considered as port-wine birthmarks and another 3 lesions as erythematous telangiectasias. The aims were (i) to demonstrate that cutaneous erythematous malformations including telangiectasia can represent a lymphatic phenotype, (ii) to determine if lesions represent expanded but otherwise normal or malformed lymphatics, and (iii) to determine if the presence of erythrocytes explained the red color. Microscopy revealed all lesions as lymphatic structures. Port-wine birthmarks proved to be cystic lesions, with nonuniform lymphatic marker expression and a disconnected lymphatic network suggesting a lymphatic malformation. Erythematous telangiectasias represented expanded but nonmalformed lymphatics. Blood within lymphatics appeared to explain the color. Blood-lymphatic shunts could be detected in the erythematous telangiectasia. In conclusion, erythematous cutaneous capillary lesions may be lymphatic in origin but clinically indistinguishable from blood vascular malformations. Biopsy is advised for correct phenotyping and management. Erythrocytes are the likely explanation for color accessing lymphatics through lympho-venous shunts.
René Hägerling, Malou Van Zanten, Rose Yinghan Behncke, Sascha Ulferts, Nils R. Hansmeier, Bruno Märkl, Christian Witzel, Bernard Ho, Vaughan Keeley, Katie Riches, Sahar Mansour, Kristiana Gordon, Pia Ostergaard, Peter S. Mortimer
Hereditary spherocytosis (HS) is the most common, nonimmune, hereditary, chronic hemolytic anemia after hemoglobinopathies. The genetic defects in membrane function causing HS lead to perturbation of the RBC metabolome, with altered glycolysis. In mice genetically lacking protein 4.2 (4.2–/–; Epb42), a murine model of HS, we showed increased expression of pyruvate kinase (PK) isoforms in whole and fractioned RBCs in conjunction with abnormalities in the glycolytic pathway and in the glutathione (GSH) system. Mitapivat, a PK activator, metabolically reprogrammed 4.2–/– mouse RBCs with amelioration of glycolysis and the GSH cycle. This resulted in improved osmotic fragility, reduced phosphatidylserine positivity, amelioration of RBC cation content, reduction of Na/K/Cl cotransport and Na/H-exchange overactivation, and decrease in erythroid vesicles release in vitro. Mitapivat treatment significantly decreased erythrophagocytosis and beneficially affected iron homeostasis. In mild-to-moderate HS, the beneficial effect of splenectomy is still controversial. Here, we showed that splenectomy improves anemia in 4.2–/– mice and that mitapivat is noninferior to splenectomy. An additional benefit of mitapivat treatment was lower expression of markers of inflammatory vasculopathy in 4.2–/– mice with or without splenectomy, indicating a multisystemic action of mitapivat. These findings support the notion that mitapivat treatment should be considered for symptomatic HS.
Alessandro Matte, Anand B. Wilson, Federica Gevi, Enrica Federti, Antonio Recchiuti, Giulia Ferri, Anna Maria Brunati, Mario Angelo Pagano, Roberta Russo, Christophe Leboeuf, Anne Janin, Anna Maria Timperio, Achille Iolascon, Elisa Gremese, Lenny Dang, Narla Mohandas, Carlo Brugnara, Lucia De Franceschi
BACKGROUND. Oxidized apolipoprotein B (oxLDL) and oxidized ApoA-I (oxHDL) are proatherogenic. Their prognostic value for assessing high-risk plaques by coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) is missing.METHODS. In a prospective, observational study, 306 participants with cardiovascular disease (CVD) had extensive lipoprotein profiling. Proteomics analysis was performed on isolated oxHDL, and atherosclerotic plaque assessment was accomplished by quantitative CCTA.RESULTS. Patients were predominantly White, overweight men (58.5%) on statin therapy (43.5%). Increase in LDL-C, ApoB, small dense LDL-C (P < 0.001 for all), triglycerides (P = 0.03), and lower HDL function were observed in the high oxLDL group. High oxLDL associated with necrotic burden (NB; β = 0.20; P < 0.0001) and fibrofatty burden (FFB; β = 0.15; P = 0.001) after multivariate adjustment. Low oxHDL had a significant reverse association with these plaque characteristics. Plasma oxHDL levels better predicted NB and FFB after adjustment (OR, 2.22; 95% CI, 1.27–3.88, and OR, 2.80; 95% CI, 1.71–4.58) compared with oxLDL and HDL-C. Interestingly, oxHDL associated with fibrous burden (FB) change over 3.3 years (β = 0.535; P = 0.033) when compared with oxLDL. Combined Met136 mono-oxidation and Trp132 dioxidation of HDL showed evident association with coronary artery calcium score (r = 0.786; P < 0.001) and FB (r = 0.539; P = 0.012) in high oxHDL, whereas Met136 mono-oxidation significantly associated with vulnerable plaque in low oxHDL.CONCLUSION. Our findings suggest that the investigated oxidized lipids are associated with high-risk coronary plaque features and progression over time in patients with CVD.TRIAL REGISTRATION. ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01621594.FUNDING. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at the NIH Intramural Research Program.
Alexander V. Sorokin, Christin G. Hong, Angel M. Aponte, Elizabeth M. Florida, Jingrong Tang, Nidhi Patel, Irina N. Baranova, Haiou Li, Philip M. Parel, Vicky Chen, Sierra R. Wilson, Emily L. Ongstad, Anna Collén, Martin P. Playford, Thomas L. Eggerman, Marcus Y. Chen, Kazuhiko Kotani, Alexander V. Bocharov, Alan T. Remaley
Retinoic acid receptor (RAR) signaling is essential for mammalian kidney development but, in the adult kidney, is restricted to occasional collecting duct epithelial cells. We now show that there is widespread reactivation of RAR signaling in proximal tubular epithelial cells (PTECs) in human sepsis-associated acute kidney injury (AKI) and in mouse models of AKI. Genetic inhibition of RAR signaling in PTECs protected against experimental AKI but was unexpectedly associated with increased expression of the PTEC injury marker Kim1. However, the protective effects of inhibiting PTEC RAR signaling were associated with increased Kim1-dependent apoptotic cell clearance, or efferocytosis, and this was associated with dedifferentiation, proliferation, and metabolic reprogramming of PTECs. These data demonstrate the functional role that reactivation of RAR signaling plays in regulating PTEC differentiation and function in human and experimental AKI.
Min Yang, Lauren N. Lopez, Maya Brewer, Rachel Delgado, Anna Menshikh, Kelly Clouthier, Yuantee Zhu, Thitinee Vanichapol, Haichun Yang, Raymond C. Harris, Leslie Gewin, Craig R. Brooks, Alan J. Davidson, Mark de Caestecker