Dysregulated sensing of self nucleic acid is a leading cause of autoimmunity in multifactorial and monogenic diseases. Mutations in Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASp), a key regulator of cytoskeletal dynamics in immune cells, cause autoimmune manifestations and increased production of type-I interferons by innate cells. Here we show that complexes of self-DNA and autoantibodies (DNA-IC) contribute to elevated interferon levels via activation of the cGAS-STING pathway of cytosolic sensing. Mechanistically, lack of endosomal F-actin nucleation by WASp causes a delay in endolysosomal maturation and prolongs the transit time of ingested DNA-IC. Stalling in maturation-defective organelles facilitates leakage of DNA-IC into the cytosol, promoting activation of the TBK1-STING pathway. Genetic deletion of STING, STING and cGAS chemical inhibitors abolish interferon production and rescue systemic activation of interferon stimulated genes in vivo. These data unveil the contribution of cytosolic self-nucleic acid sensing in WAS and underscore the importance of WASp-mediated endosomal actin remodelling to prevent innate activation.
Giulia Maria Piperno, Asma Naseem, Giulia Silvestrelli, Roberto Amadio, Nicoletta Caronni, Karla Evelia Cervantes Luevano, Nalan Liv, Judith Klumperman, Andrea Colliva, Hashim Ali, Francesca Graziano, Philippe Benaroch, Hans Haecker, Richard N. Hanna, Federica Benvenuti
Purpose: There is a rapidly evolving portfolio of immune therapeutic modulators, but the relative incidence of immune targets in human gliomas is unknown. In order to prioritize available immune therapeutics, immune profiling across glioma grades was conducted followed by preclinical determinations of therapeutic effect in immune competent mice harboring gliomas. Methods: CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and CD11b+ myeloid cells were isolated from the blood of healthy donors and the blood and tumors of newly diagnosed and recurrent glioma patients and profiled for the expression of immune modulatory targets with an available therapeutic. Preclinical murine models of glioma were used to assess therapeutic efficacy of agents targeting the most frequently expressed immune targets. Immune effector function was analyzed in the setting of glioma induced immune suppression. Results: In glioma patients, the adenosine-CD73-CD39 immune suppressive pathway was most frequently expressed, followed by PD-1. CD73 expression was upregulated on immune cells by 2-hydroxygluterate in IDH1 mutant glioma patients. In multiple murine glioma models, including those that express CD73, adenosine receptor inhibitors demonstrated a modest therapeutic response; however, the addition of other inhibitors of the adenosine pathway did not further enhance this therapeutic effect. Although adenosine receptor inhibitors could recover immunological effector functions in T cells after the engagement of this pathway, immune recovery was impaired in the presence of gliomas, indicating that irreversible immune exhaustion limits the effectiveness of inhibitors of the adenosine pathway in glioma patients. Conclusions: This study illustrates vetting steps that should be considered prior to clinical trial implementation for immunotherapy resistant cancers including testing an agents ability to restore immunological function in the context of intended use.
Martina Ott, Karl-Heinz Tomaszowski, Anantha Marisetty, Ling-Yuan Kong, Jun Wei, Maya Duna, Katia Blumberg, Xiaorong Ji, Carmen B Jacobs, Gregory N. Fuller, Lauren A. Langford, Jason T. Huse, James P. Long, Jian Hu, Shulin Li, Jeffrey S. Weinberg, Sujit Prabhu, Raymond Sawaya, Sherise D. Ferguson, Ganesh Rao, Frederick F. Lang, Michael A. Curran, Amy B. Heimberger
TLR7 has been linked to the pathogenesis of glomerulonephritis, but its precise roles are not clear. In this study, we evaluated the roles of TLR7 in IgA nephropathy (IgAN). TLR7 proteins were abundant in CD19+ B cells infiltrated in the kidneys of patients with IgAN. The intensities of both intrarenal TLR7 and CD19 proteins were closely associated with kidney function (estimated glomerular filtration rate [eGFR] and serum creatinine concentration) and renal histopathology (tubular atrophy, leukocyte infiltration, tubulointerstitial fibrosis, and global glomerulosclerosis) in patients with IgAN. Meanwhile, TLR7 mRNA levels were significantly increased in peripheral blood B cells of patients with IgAN. TLR7+CD19+ B cells expressed inflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and IL-12) in kidneys and produced high levels of IgA1 and galactose deficient-IgA1 (Gd-IgA1) in peripheral blood of patients with IgAN. Mechanistically, TLR7 activated B cells to produce high levels of Gd-IgA1 via the TLR7-GALNT2 axis in IgAN. Protein levels of GALNT2 were increased by overexpression of TLR7, while they were reduced by TLR7 knockdown in B cells. GALNT2 overexpression augmented Gd-IgA1 production in B cells derived from patients with IgAN. Taken together, high TLR7 expression in B cells has dual roles in the development and progression of IgAN, by facilitating renal inflammation and Gd-IgA1 antibody synthesis.
Nuoyan Zheng, Kaifeng Xie, Hongjian Ye, Yu Dong, Bing Wang, Ning Luo, Jinjin Fan, Jiaqing Tan, Wei Chen, Xueqing Yu
Current management of childhood leukemia is tailored based on disease risk determined by clinical features at presentation. Whether properties of the host immune response impact disease risk and outcome is not known. Here we combine mass cytometry, single cell genomics and functional studies to characterize the bone marrow immune environment in children with B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and acute myelogenous leukemia at presentation. T cells in leukemia marrow demonstrate evidence of chronic immune activation and exhaustion/dysfunction, with attrition of naïve T cells and TCF1+ stem-like memory T cells and accumulation of terminally-differentiated effector T cells. Marrow-infiltrating natural killer cells also exhibit evidence of dysfunction, particularly in myeloid leukemia. Properties of immune cells identified distinct immune phenotype-based clusters correlating with disease risk in acute lymphoblastic leukemia. High-risk immune signatures were associated with expression of stem-like genes on tumor cells. These data provide a comprehensive assessment of the immune landscape of childhood leukemias and identify targets potentially amenable to therapeutic intervention. These studies also suggest that properties of the host response with depletion of naïve T cells and accumulation of terminal-effector T cells may contribute to the biologic basis of disease risk. Properties of immune microenvironment identified here may also impact optimal application of immune therapies, including T cell-redirection approaches in childhood leukemia.
Jithendra Kini Bailur, Samuel S. McCachren, Katherine E. Pendleton, Juan C. Vasquez, Hong S. Lim, Alyssa Duffy, Deon Doxie, Akhilesh Kaushal, Connor J.R. Foster, Deborah DeRyckere, Sharon M. Castellino, Melissa L. Kemp, Peng Qiu, Madhav Dhodapkar, Kavita Dhodapkar
Clostridioides difficile is a leading cause of nosocomial infection responsible for significant morbidity and mortality with limited options for therapy. Secreted C. difficile toxin B (TcdB) is a major contributor to disease pathology and select TcdB-specific Abs may protect against disease recurrence. However, the high frequency of recurrence suggests that the memory B cell response, essential for new Ab production following C. difficile re-exposure, is insufficient. We therefore isolated TcdB-specific memory B cells from individuals with a history of C. difficile infection and performed single-cell deep sequencing of their Ab genes. Herein, we report that TcdB-specific memory B cell-encoded antibodies showed somatic hypermutation but displayed limited isotype class switch. Memory B cell-encoded monoclonal antibodies generated from the gene sequences revealed low to moderate affinity for TcdB and a limited ability to neutralize TcdB. These findings indicate that memory B cells are an important factor in C. difficile disease recurrence.
Hemangi B. Shah, Kenneth Smith, Edgar J. Scott, II, Jason L. Larabee, Judith A. James, Jimmy D. Ballard, Mark L. Lang
Recent evidence shows that the naïve heart harbors a population of intravascular recirculating B cells that make close contact with the microvascular endothelium of the heart and arrest their transit as they pass through the heart. However, the timing of their appearance and their organ specificity remain unknown. To address this knowledge gap, we performed a systematic analysis of B cells isolated from the myocardium and other organs, from embryonic life to early adulthood. We found that B cells are present in the developing heart by day E13.5. The phenotype of myocardial B cells changed dynamically during development. While neonatal heart B cells were mostly CD11b+ and CD11b-CD21-CD23-, adult B cells were predominantly CD11b-CD21+CD23+. Histological analysis and intravital microscopy of lung and liver showed that organ-associated B cells in contact with the microvascular endothelium were not specific to the heart. Flow cytometric analysis of perfused hearts, livers, lungs and spleen at different developmental stages showed that the dynamic changes in B cell subpopulations observed in the heart during development mirrored changes observed in the spleen, peripheral blood and other organs. Single cell RNAseq analysis of B cells showed that myocardial-associated B cells were part of a larger population of organ-associated B cells that had a distinct gene expression profile. These findings broaden our understanding of the biology of myocardial-associated B cells and suggest that current models of the dynamics of naïve B cell during development are incomplete.
Cibele Rocha-Resende, Wei Yang, Wenjun Li, Daniel Kreisel, Luigi Adamo, Douglas Mann
Critical illness is accompanied by the release of large amounts of the anaphylotoxin, C5a. C5a suppresses antimicrobial functions of neutrophils which is associated with adverse outcomes. The signalling pathways that mediate C5a-induced neutrophil dysfunction are incompletely understood. Healthy donor neutrophils exposed to purified C5a demonstrated a prolonged defect (7 hours) in phagocytosis of Staphylococcus aureus. Phosphoproteomic profiling of 2712 phosphoproteins identified persistent C5a signalling and selective impairment of phagosomal protein phosphorylation on exposure to S. aureus. Notable proteins included early endosomal marker ZFYVE16 and V-ATPase proton channel component ATPV1G1. A novel assay of phagosomal acidification demonstrated C5a-induced impairment of phagosomal acidification which was recapitulated in neutrophils from critically ill patients. Examination of the C5a-impaired protein phosphorylation indicated a role for the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase VPS34 in phagosomal maturation. Inhibition of VPS34 impaired neutrophil phagosomal acidification and killing of S. aureus. This study provides a phosphoproteomic assessment of human neutrophil signalling in response to S. aureus and its disruption by C5a, identifying a defect in phagosomal maturation and new mechanisms of immune failure in critical illness.
Alexander J.T. Wood, Arlette M. Vassallo, Marie-Helene Ruchaud-Sparagano, Jonathan Scott, Carmelo Zinnato, Carmen Gonzalez-Tejedo, Kamal Kishore, Clive S. D’Santos, A. John Simpson, David K. Menon, Charlotte Summers, Edwin R. Chilvers, Klaus Okkenhaug, Andrew Conway Morris
Triple-negative breast cancers (TNBCs) are highly heterogeneous and aggressive, with high mortality rates. Although TNBC is typically more responsive to chemotherapy than other breast cancer subtypes, many patients develop chemo-resistance. The molecular processes contributing to chemo-resistance, and the roles of tumor cell-stromal crosstalk in establishing chemo-resistance are complex and largely unclear. Here we report molecular studies of paired TNBC patient-derived xenografts (PDX) established from patient biopsies before and after the development of chemo-resistance. Interestingly, the chemo-resistant model acquired a distinct KRASQ61R mutation that activates K-Ras. The chemo-resistant KRAS-mutant model showed gene expression and proteomic changes indicative of altered tumor cell metabolism. Specifically, KRAS-mutant PDXs exhibit increased redox ratios and decreased activation of AMPK, a protein involved in responding to metabolic homeostasis. Additionally, the chemo-resistant model exhibited increased immunosuppression including expression of CXCL1 and CXCL2, cytokines responsible for recruiting immunosuppressive leukocytes to tumors. Notably, chemo-resistant KRAS-mutant tumors harbored increased numbers of granulocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells (gMDSCs). Interestingly, previously established gene expression signatures of Ras/MAPK activity correlated with myeloid/neutrophil-recruiting CXCL1/2 expression and negatively with T-cell recruiting chemokines (CXCL9/10/11) across TNBC patients, even in the absence of KRAS mutations. Importantly, MEK inhibition induced tumor suppression in mice while simultaneously reversing metabolic and immunosuppressive phenotypes including chemokine production and gMDSC tumor recruitment in the chemo-resistant KRAS mutant tumors. These results suggest that Ras/MAPK pathway inhibitors may be effective in some breast cancer patients to reverse Ras/MAPK-driven tumor metabolism and immunosuppression, particularly in the setting of chemo-resistance.
Derek A. Franklin, Joe T. Sharick, Paula I. Gonzalez-Ericsson, Violeta Sanchez, Phillip Dean, Susan R. Opalenik, Stefano Cairo, Jean-Gabriel Judde, Michael T. Lewis, Jenny C. Chang, Melinda E. Sanders, Rebecca S. Cook, Melissa C. Skala, Jennifer Bordeaux, Jehovana Orozco Bender, Christine A. Vaupel, Gary Geiss, Douglas Hinerfeld, Justin M. Balko
M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M3R) is one of the autoantigens associated with Sjögren’s syndrome (SS) and is localized in exocrine glands where disease specific inflammation occurs. The inflammatory lesion is characterized by infiltration of CD4+ T cells, including clonally expanded Th17 cells. We undertook this study to identify circulating M3R specific Th17 cells, and to determine functional properties of those cells. Using ELISpot method, we identified M3R reactive Th17 cells in the peripheral blood of patients with primary SS (pSS). Among examined 10 pSS, 10 healthy subjects (HS), and 5 IgG4-related disease (IgG4-RD) patients, M3R reactive IL-17 secreting cells were significantly increased in five pSS patients specifically. The commonest T cell epitope, which was analyzed and confirmed by co-culture of isolated CD4+ T cells with antigen presenting cells plus M3R peptides in vitro, was peptide 83-95 of M3R. Peptide recognition was partly in HLA DR restricted manner, confirmed by blocking assay. M3R reactive Th17 cells positivity correlated with higher titers of anti-M3R antibodies, whose systemic disease activity score tended to be higher. Our studies highlight the role of tissue specific autoantigen derived circulating Th17 cells in pSS, for which further work might lead to antigen specific targeted therapy.
Saori Abe, Hiroto Tsuboi, Hanae Kudo, Hiromitsu Asashima, Yuko Ono, Fumika Honda, Hiroyuki Takahashi, Mizuki Yagishita, Shinya Hagiwara, Yuya Kondo, Isao Matsumoto, Takayuki Sumida
Macrolide antibiotics exert anti-inflammatory effects; however, little is known regarding their immunomodulatory mechanisms. In this study, using two distinct mouse models of mucosal inflammatory disease (LPS-induced acute lung injury and ligature-induced periodontitis), we demonstrated that the anti-inflammatory action of erythromycin (ERM) is mediated through upregulation of the secreted homeostatic protein DEL-1. Consistent with the anti-neutrophil recruitment action of endothelial cell-derived DEL-1, ERM inhibited neutrophil infiltration in the lungs and the periodontium in a DEL-1-dependent manner. Whereas ERM (but not other antibiotics such as josamycin and penicillin) protected against lethal pulmonary inflammation and inflammatory periodontal bone loss, these protective effects of ERM were abolished in Del1-deficient mice. By interacting with the growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHSR) and activating JAK2 in human lung microvascular endothelial cells, ERM induced C/EBPβ-dependent DEL-1 transcription, which was mediated by MAPK p38. Moreover, ERM reversed IL-17-induced inhibition of DEL-1 transcription, in a manner that was not only dependent on JAK2 but also on PI3K/AKT signaling. As DEL-1 levels are severely reduced in inflammatory conditions and with aging, the ability of ERM to upregulate DEL-1 may be a novel approach for the treatment of inflammatory and aging-related diseases.
Tomoki Maekawa, Hikaru Tamura, Hisanori Domon, Takumi Hiyoshi, Toshihito Isono, Daisuke Yonezawa, Naoki Hayashi, Naoki Takahashi, Koichi Tabeta, Takeyasu Maeda, Masataka Oda, Athanasios Ziogas, Vasileia Ι. Alexaki, Triantafyllos Chavakis, Yutaka Terao, George Hajishengallis
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