In idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), the fibroblast focus is a key histological feature representing active fibroproliferation. On standard 2D pathologic examination, fibroblast foci are considered small, distinct lesions, although they have been proposed to form a highly interconnected reticulum as the leading edge of a “wave” of fibrosis. Here, we characterized fibroblast focus morphology and interrelationships in 3D using an integrated micro-CT and histological methodology. In 3D, fibroblast foci were morphologically complex structures, with large variations in shape and volume (range, 1.3 × 104 to 9.9 × 107 μm3). Within each tissue sample numerous multiform foci were present, ranging from a minimum of 0.9 per mm3 of lung tissue to a maximum of 11.1 per mm3 of lung tissue. Each focus was an independent structure, and no interconnections were observed. Together, our data indicate that in 3D fibroblast foci form a constellation of heterogeneous structures with large variations in shape and volume, suggesting previously unrecognized plasticity. No evidence of interconnectivity was identified, consistent with the concept that foci represent discrete sites of lung injury and repair.
Mark G. Jones, Aurélie Fabre, Philipp Schneider, Francesco Cinetto, Giacomo Sgalla, Mark Mavrogordato, Sanjay Jogai, Aiman Alzetani, Ben G. Marshall, Katherine M.A. O’Reilly, Jane A. Warner, Peter M. Lackie, Donna E. Davies, David M. Hansell, Andrew G. Nicholson, Ian Sinclair, Kevin K. Brown, Luca Richeldi
The prevention of organ damage and early death in young adults is a major clinical concern in sickle cell disease (SCD). However, mechanisms that control adult progression of SCD during the transition from adolescence are poorly defined with no cognate prophylaxis. Here, we demonstrate in a longitudinal cohort of homozygous SCD (SS) mice a link between intravascular hemolysis, vascular inflammation, lung injury, and early death. Prophylactic Nrf2 activation in young SS mice stabilized intravascular hemolysis, reversed vascular inflammation, and attenuated lung edema in adulthood. Enhanced Nrf2 activation in endothelial cells in vitro concurred with the dramatic effect on vascular inflammation in the mice. BM chimeric SS mice lacking Nrf2 expression in nonhematopoietic tissues were created to dissect the role of nonerythroid Nrf2 in SCD progression. The SS chimeras developed severe intravascular hemolysis despite having erythroid Nrf2. In addition, they developed premature vascular inflammation and pulmonary edema and died younger than donor littermates with intact nonhematopoietic Nrf2. Our results reveal a dominant protective role for nonhematopoietic Nrf2 against tissue damage in both erythroid and nonerythroid tissues in SCD. Furthermore, we show that prophylactic augmentation of Nrf2-coordinated cytoprotection effectively impedes onset of the severe adult phenotype of SCD in mice.
Samit Ghosh, Chibueze A. Ihunnah, Rimi Hazra, Aisha L. Walker, Jason M. Hansen, David R. Archer, Amma T. Owusu-Ansah, Solomon F. Ofori-Acquah
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a fatal disease without any cure. Both human disease and animal models demonstrate dysregulated wound healing and unregulated fibrogenesis in a background of low-grade chronic T lymphocyte infiltration. Tissue-resident memory T cells (Trm) are emerging as important regulators of the immune microenvironment in response to pathogens, and we hypothesized that they might play a role in regulating the unremitting inflammation that promotes lung fibrosis. Herein, we demonstrate that lung-directed immunotherapy, in the form of i.n. vaccination, induces an antifibrotic T cell response capable of arresting and reversing lung fibrosis. In mice with established lung fibrosis, lung-specific T cell responses were able to reverse established pathology — as measured by decreased lung collagen, fibrocytes, and histologic injury — and improve physiologic function. Mechanistically, we demonstrate that this effect is mediated by vaccine-induced lung Trm. These data not only have implications for the development of immunotherapeutic regimens to treat IPF, but also suggest a role for targeting tissue-resident memory T cells to treat other tissue-specific inflammatory/autoimmune disorders.
Samuel L. Collins, Yee Chan-Li, MinHee Oh, Christine L. Vigeland, Nathachit Limjunyawong, Wayne Mitzner, Jonathan D. Powell, Maureen R. Horton
To elucidate the mechanisms for reverse LV remodeling, we generated a conditional (doxycycline [dox] off) transgenic mouse tetracycline transactivating factor–TRAF2 (tTA-TRAF2) that develops a dilated heart failure (HF) phenotype upon expression of a proinflammatory transgene, TNF receptor–associated factor 2 (TRAF2), and complete normalization of LV structure and function when the transgene is suppressed. tTA-TRAF2 mice developed a significant increase in LV dimension with decreased contractile function, which was completely normalized in the tTA-TRAF2 mice fed dox for 4 weeks (tTA-TRAF2dox4W). Normalization of LV structure and function was accompanied by partial normalization (~60%) of gene expression associated with incident HF. Similar findings were observed in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy who underwent reverse LV remodeling following mechanical circulatory support. Persistence of the HF gene program was associated with an exaggerated hypertrophic response and increased mortality in tTA-TRAF2dox4W mice following transaortic constriction (TAC). These effects were no longer observed following TAC in tTA-TRAF2dox8W, wherein there was a more complete (88%) reversal of the incident HF genes. These results demonstrate that reverse LV remodeling is associated with improvements in cardiac myocyte biology; however, the persistence of the abnormal HF gene program may be maladaptive following perturbations in hemodynamic loading conditions.
Veli K. Topkara, Kari T. Chambers, Kai-Chien Yang, Huei-Ping Tzeng, Sarah Evans, Carla Weinheimer, Attila Kovacs, Jeffrey Robbins, Philip Barger, Douglas L. Mann
IL-1β is a well-established inducer of both insulin resistance and impaired pancreatic islet function. Despite this, findings examining IL-1 receptor deficiency or antagonism in in vivo animal models, as well as in clinical studies of type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients, have led to conflicting results, suggesting that the actions of IL-1β on glycemic control may be pleiotropic in nature. In the present work, we find that the ability of IL-1β to amplify glucose-stimulated insulin secretion from human islets correlates with donor BMI. Islets from obese donors are sensitized to the insulinotropic effects of this cytokine, whereas the stimulatory effects of IL-1β are lost in islets from obese T2D patients, suggesting a role for IL-1 signaling in islet compensation. Indeed, mice deficient in IL-1 receptor type I become glucose intolerant more rapidly than their WT littermates and have impaired secretory responses during the acute stages of inflammatory and metabolic stress induced by LPS and high-fat diet, respectively. IL-1β directly enhances β cell insulin secretion by increasing granule docking and soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment receptor (SNARE) complex formation at the plasma membrane. Together, our study highlights the importance of IL-1β signaling in islet compensation to metabolic and inflammatory stress.
Catherine Hajmrle, Nancy Smith, Aliya F. Spigelman, Xiaoqing Dai, Laura Senior, Austin Bautista, Mourad Ferdaoussi, Patrick E. MacDonald
BCR-ABL1+ B progenitor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph+ B-ALL) is an aggressive disease that frequently responds poorly to currently available therapies. Alterations in
Michelle L. Churchman, Kathryn Evans, Jennifer Richmond, Alissa Robbins, Luke Jones, Irina M. Shapiro, Jonathan A. Pachter, David T. Weaver, Peter J. Houghton, Malcolm A. Smith, Richard B. Lock, Charles G. Mullighan
Osteochondromas are common benign osteocartilaginous tumors in children and adolescents characterized by cartilage-capped bony projections on the surface of bones. These tumors often cause pain, deformity, fracture, and musculoskeletal dysfunction, and they occasionally undergo malignant transformation. The pathogenesis of osteochondromas remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that nuclear factor of activated T cells c1 and c2 (NFATc1 and NFATc2) suppress osteochondromagenesis through individual and combinatorial mechanisms. In mice, conditional deletion of NFATc1 in mesenchymal limb progenitors, Scleraxis-expressing (Scx-expressing) tendoligamentous cells, or postnatally in
Xianpeng Ge, Kelly Tsang, Lizhi He, Roberto A. Garcia, Joerg Ermann, Fumitaka Mizoguchi, Minjie Zhang, Bin Zhou, Bin Zhou, Antonios O. Aliprantis
Xenografting primary tumor cells allows modeling of the heterogeneous natures of malignant diseases and the influences of the tissue microenvironment. Here, we demonstrate that xenografting primary chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) B lymphocytes with activated autologous T cells into alymphoid mice results in considerable CLL B cell division and sizable T cell expansion. Nevertheless, most/all CD5+CD19+ cells are eventually lost, due in part to differentiation into antibody-secreting plasmablasts/plasma cells. CLL B cell differentiation is associated with isotype class switching and development of new
Piers E.M. Patten, Gerardo Ferrer, Shih-Shih Chen, Rita Simone, Sonia Marsilio, Xiao-Jie Yan, Zachary Gitto, Chaohui Yuan, Jonathan E. Kolitz, Jacqueline Barrientos, Steven L. Allen, Kanti R. Rai, Thomas MacCarthy, Charles C. Chu, Nicholas Chiorazzi
We recently identified a genome-wide genetic association of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) at 2p23 spanning the calpain 14 (
Benjamin P. Davis, Emily M. Stucke, M. Eyad Khorki, Vladislav A. Litosh, Jeffrey K. Rymer, Mark Rochman, Jared Travers, Leah C. Kottyan, Marc E. Rothenberg
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
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