The MEK1/2–ERK1/2 pathway has been implicated in regulating the inflammatory response to lung injury and infection, and pharmacologic MEK1/2 inhibitor compounds are reported to reduce detrimental inflammation in multiple animal models of disease, in part through modulation of leukocyte responses. However, the specific contribution of myeloid MEK1 in regulating acute lung injury (ALI) and its resolution remain unknown. Here, the role of myeloid Mek1 was investigated in a murine model of LPS-induced ALI (LPS-ALI) by genetic deletion using the Cre-floxed system (LysMCre × Mekfl), and human alveolar macrophages from healthy volunteers and patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) were obtained to assess activation of the MEK1/2–ERK1/2 pathway. Myeloid Mek1 deletion results in a failure to resolve LPS-ALI, and alveolar macrophages lacking MEK1 had increased activation of MEK2 and the downstream target ERK1/2 on day 4 of LPS-ALI. The clinical significance of these findings is supported by increased activation of the MEK1/2–ERK1/2 pathway in alveolar macrophages from patients with ARDS compared with alveolar macrophages from healthy volunteers. This study reveals a critical role for myeloid MEK1 in promoting resolution of LPS-ALI and controlling the duration of macrophage proinflammatory responses.
Matthew E. Long, Ke-Qin Gong, William E. Eddy, Joseph S. Volk, Eric D. Morrell, Carmen Mikacenic, T. Eoin West, Shawn J. Skerrett, Jean Charron, W. Conrad Liles, Anne M. Manicone
Immune activation is associated with increased risk of tuberculosis (TB) disease in infants. We performed a case control analysis to identify drivers of immune activation and disease risk. Among 49 infants who developed TB disease over the first two years of life, and 129 matched controls who remained healthy, we found the cytomegalovirus (CMV) stimulated IFNγ response at age 4-6 months to be associated with CD8+ T cell activation (Spearmans rho, P = 6 x 10-8). A CMV specific IFNγ response was also associated with increased risk of developing TB disease (Conditional Logistic Regression, P = 0.043, OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.02-4.83), and shorter time to TB diagnosis (Log Rank Mantel-Cox P = 0.037). CMV positive infants who developed TB disease had lower expression of natural killer cell associated gene signatures and a lower frequency of CD3−CD4−CD8− lymphocytes. We identified transcriptional signatures predictive of risk of TB disease among CMV ELISpot positive (AUROC 0.98, accuracy 92.57%) and negative (AUROC 0.9, accuracy 79.3%) infants; the CMV negative signature validated in an independent infant study (AUROC 0.71, accuracy 63.9%). Understanding and controlling the microbial drivers of T cell activation, such as CMV, could guide new strategies for prevention of TB disease in infants.
Julius Müller, Rachel Tanner, Magali Matsumiya, Margaret A. Snowden, Bernard Landry, Iman Satti, Stephanie A. Harris, Matthew K. O'Shea, Lisa Stockdale, Leanne Marsay, Agnieszka Chomka, Rachel Harrington-Kandt, Zita-Rose Manjaly Thomas, Elena Stylianou, Vivek Naranbhai, Stanley Kimbung Mbandi, Mark Hatherill, Gregory Hussey, Hassan Mahomed, Michele Tameris, J. Bruce McClain, Willem A. Hanekom, Thomas G. Evans, Thomas J. Scriba, Helen McShane, Helen A. Fletcher
Worldwide, over a billion people suffer from chronic liver diseases, which often lead to fibrosis and then cirrhosis. Treatments for fibrosis remain experimental, in part because no unifying mechanism has been identified that initiates liver fibrosis. Necroptosis has been implicated in multiple liver diseases. Here, we report that O-linked β-N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) modification protects against hepatocyte necroptosis and initiation of liver fibrosis. Decreased O-GlcNAc levels were seen in patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis and in mice with ethanol-induced liver injury. Liver-specific O-GlcNAc transferase–KO (OGT-LKO) mice exhibited hepatomegaly and ballooning degeneration at an early age and progressed to liver fibrosis and portal inflammation by 10 weeks of age. OGT-deficient hepatocytes underwent excessive necroptosis and exhibited elevated protein expression levels of receptor-interacting protein kinase 3 (RIPK3) and mixed lineage kinase domain-like (MLKL), which are key mediators of necroptosis. Furthermore, glycosylation of RIPK3 by OGT is associated with reduced RIPK3 protein stability. Taken together, these findings identify OGT as a key suppressor of hepatocyte necroptosis, and OGT-LKO mice may serve as an effective spontaneous genetic model of liver fibrosis.
Bichen Zhang, Min-Dian Li, Ruonan Yin, Yuyang Liu, Yunfan Yang, Kisha A. Mitchell-Richards, Jin Hyun Nam, Rui Li, Li Wang, Yasuko Iwakiri, Dongjun Chung, Marie E. Robert, Barbara E. Ehrlich, Anton M. Bennett, Jun Yu, Michael H. Nathanson, Xiaoyong Yang
X-linked reticulate pigmentary disorder (XLPDR, Mendelian Inheritance in Man #301220) is a rare syndrome characterized by recurrent infections and sterile multiorgan inflammation. The syndrome is caused by an intronic mutation in POLA1, the gene encoding the catalytic subunit of DNA polymerase-α (Pol-α), which is responsible for Okazaki fragment synthesis during DNA replication. Reduced POLA1 expression in this condition triggers spontaneous type I interferon expression, which can be linked to the autoinflammatory manifestations of the disease. However, the history of recurrent infections in this syndrome is as yet unexplained. Here we report that patients with XLPDR have reduced NK cell cytotoxic activity and decreased numbers of NK cells, particularly differentiated, stage V, cells (CD3–CD56dim). This phenotype is reminiscent of hypomorphic mutations in MCM4, which encodes a component of the minichromosome maintenance (MCM) helicase complex that is functionally linked to Pol-α during the DNA replication process. We find that POLA1 deficiency leads to MCM4 depletion and that both can impair NK cell natural cytotoxicity and show that this is due to a defect in lytic granule polarization. Altogether, our study provides mechanistic connections between Pol-α and the MCM complex and demonstrates their relevance in NK cell function.
Petro Starokadomskyy, Katelynn M. Wilton, Konrad Krzewski, Adam Lopez, Luis Sifuentes-Dominguez, Brittany Overlee, Qing Chen, Ann Ray, Aleksandra Gil-Krzewska, Mary Peterson, Lisa N. Kinch, Luis Rohena, Eyal Grunebaum, Andrew R. Zinn, Nick V. Grishin, Daniel D. Billadeau, Ezra Burstein
Inflammation may play a role in the link between high salt intake and its deleterious consequences. However, it is unknown whether salt can induce proinflammatory priming of monocytes and macrophages in humans. We investigated the effects of salt on monocytes and macrophages in vitro and in vivo by performing a randomized crossover trial in which 11 healthy human subjects adhered to a 2-week low-salt and high-salt diet. We demonstrate that salt increases monocyte expression of CCR2, a chemokine receptor that mediates monocyte infiltration in inflammatory diseases. In line with this, we show a salt-induced increase of plasma MCP-1, transendothelial migration of monocytes, and skin macrophage density after high-salt diet. Macrophages demonstrate signs of an increased proinflammatory phenotype after salt exposure, as represented by boosted LPS-induced cytokine secretion of IL-6, TNF, and IL-10 in vitro, and by increased HLA-DR expression and decreased CD206 expression on skin macrophages after high-salt diet. Taken together, our data open up the possibility for inflammatory monocyte and macrophage responses as potential contributors to the deleterious effects of high salt intake.
Eliane F.E. Wenstedt, Sanne G.S. Verberk, Jeffrey Kroon, Annette E. Neele, Jeroen Baardman, Nike Claessen, Özge T. Pasaoglu, Emma Rademaker, Esmee M. Schrooten, Rosa D. Wouda, Menno P.J. de Winther, Jan Aten, Liffert Vogt, Jan Van den Bossche
Lysosomes are at the epicenter of cellular processes critical for inflammasome activation in macrophages. Inflammasome activation and IL-1β secretion are implicated in myocardial infarction (MI) and resultant heart failure; however, little is known about how macrophage lysosomes regulate these processes. In mice subjected to cardiac ischemia/reperfusion (IR) injury and humans with ischemic cardiomyopathy, we observed evidence of lysosomal impairment in macrophages. Inducible macrophage-specific overexpression of transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master regulator of lysosome biogenesis (Mϕ-TFEB), attenuated postinfarction remodeling, decreased abundance of proinflammatory macrophages, and reduced levels of myocardial IL-1β compared with controls. Surprisingly, neither inflammasome suppression nor Mϕ-TFEB–mediated attenuation of postinfarction myocardial dysfunction required intact ATG5-dependent macroautophagy (hereafter termed “autophagy”). RNA-seq of flow-sorted macrophages postinfarction revealed that Mϕ-TFEB upregulated key targets involved in lysosomal lipid metabolism. Specifically, inhibition of the TFEB target, lysosomal acid lipase, in vivo abrogated the beneficial effect of Mϕ-TFEB on postinfarction ventricular function. Thus, TFEB reprograms macrophage lysosomal lipid metabolism to attenuate remodeling after IR, suggesting an alternative paradigm whereby lysosome function affects inflammation.
Ali Javaheri, Geetika Bajpai, Antonino Picataggi, Smrithi Mani, Layla Foroughi, Hosannah Evie, Attila Kovacs, Carla J. Weinheimer, Krzystztof Hyrc, Qingli Xiao, Andrea Ballabio, Jin-Moo Lee, Scot J. Matkovich, Babak Razani, Joel D. Schilling, Kory J. Lavine, Abhinav Diwan
Pulmonary drug delivery presents a unique opportunity to target lower airway inflammation, which is often characterized by the massive recruitment of neutrophils from blood. However specific therapies are lacking that can modulate airway neutrophil function, and difficult challenges must be overcome to achieve therapeutic efficacy against pulmonary inflammation, notably drug hydrophobicity, mucociliary and macrophage-dependent clearance, and high extracellular protease burden. Here, we present a multi-stage, aerodynamically favorable delivery platform that uses extracellular proteolysis to its advantage in order to deliver nanoparticle-embedded hydrophobic drugs to neutrophils within the lower airways. Our design consists in a self-regulated nanoparticle-in-microgel system, in which microgel activation is triggered by extracellular elastase (degranulated by inflammatory neutrophils), and nanoparticles are loaded with Nexinhib20, a potent neutrophil degranulation inhibitor. Successful in vivo delivery of Nexinhib20 to the airways and into neutrophils promoted resolution of the inflammatory response by dampening neutrophil recruitment and degranulation, pro-inflammatory cytokine production in both airway and systemic compartments, as well as the presence of neutrophil-derived pathological extracellular vesicles in the lung fluid. Our findings showcase a new platform that overcomes challenges in pulmonary drug delivery and allows customization to match the proteolytic footprint of given diseases.
Joscelyn C Mejías, Osric A Forrest, Camilla Margaroli, David A. Frey Rubio, Liliana Viera, Jindong Li, Xin Xu, Amit Gaggar, Rabindra Tirouvanziam, Krishnendu Roy
Efferocytosis, or phagocytic clearance of dead/dying cells by brain-resident microglia and/or infiltrating macrophages, is instrumental for inflammation resolution and restoration of brain homeostasis after stroke. Here, we identify the signal transducer and activator of transcription 6/arginase1 (STAT6/Arg1) signaling axis as a potentially novel mechanism that orchestrates microglia/macrophage responses in the ischemic brain. Activation of STAT6 was observed in microglia/macrophages in the ischemic territory in a mouse model of stroke and in stroke patients. STAT6 deficiency resulted in reduced clearance of dead/dying neurons, increased inflammatory gene signature in microglia/macrophages, and enlarged infarct volume early after experimental stroke. All of these pathological changes culminated in an increased brain tissue loss and exacerbated long-term functional deficits. Combined in vivo analyses using BM chimeras and in vitro experiments using microglia/macrophage-neuron cocultures confirmed that STAT6 activation in both microglia and macrophages was essential for neuroprotection. Adoptive transfer of WT macrophages into STAT6-KO mice reduced accumulation of dead neurons in the ischemic territory and ameliorated brain infarction. Furthermore, decreased expression of Arg1 in STAT6–/– microglia/macrophages was responsible for impairments in efferocytosis and loss of antiinflammatory modality. Our study suggests that efferocytosis via STAT6/Arg1 modulates microglia/macrophage phenotype, accelerates inflammation resolution, and improves stroke outcomes.
Wei Cai, Xuejiao Dai, Jie Chen, Jingyan Zhao, Mingyue Xu, Lili Zhang, Boyu Yang, Wenting Zhang, Marcelo Rocha, Toshimasa Nakao, Julia Kofler, Yejie Shi, R. Anne Stetler, Xiaoming Hu, Jun Chen
Platelet inositol hexakisphosphate kinase 1 (IP6K1) has been shown to control systemic inflammation. Herein, we examined if platelets and IP6K1 regulate pancreatic tissue injury via formation of NETs in experimental models of acute pancreatitis (AP) in mice. By use of electron microscopy abundant NET formation was observed in the inflamed pancreas. These NETs contained numerous microparticles (MP) expressing CD41 or Mac-1. Platelet depletion reduced deposition of NET-MP complexes in the inflamed pancreas. Circulating platelet-neutrophil aggregates (PNA) were increased and inhibition of P-selectin not only disrupted PNA formation but also reduced NETs formation in the inflamed pancreas. NETs depleted of MPs had lower capacity to provoke amylase secretion and STAT-3 phosphorylation in acinar cells. Taurocholate-induced NETs formation, inflammation and tissue damage in the pancreas were decreased in IP6K1-deficient mice. Thrombin stimulation of mixtures of wild-type platelets and neutrophils resulted in NETs formation but not when IP6K1-deficient platelets were incubated with wild-type neutrophils. Polyphosphate rescue restored thrombin-induced NET formation in mixtures of IP6K1-deficient platelets and wild-type neutrophils. Platelet IP6K1 regulates NET-MP complex formation in the pancreas of mice during induction of AP. Targeting platelet IP6K1 might useful to decrease NET-dependent pancreatic tissue inflammation and tissue injury in patients with AP.
Raed Madhi, Milladur Rahman, Dler Taha, Johan Linders, Mohammed Merza, Yongzhi Wang, Matthias Mörgelin, Henrik Thorlacius
Islet transplantation can restore lost glycemic control in type 1 diabetes subjects, but is restricted in its clinical application by limiting supplies of islets and the need for heavy immune suppression to prevent rejection. TNFAIP3, encoding the ubiquitin editing enzyme A20, regulates the activation of immune cells by raising NF-κB signalling thresholds. Here we show that increasing A20 expression in allogeneic islet grafts resulted in permanent survival for approximately 45% of recipients, and > 80% survival when combined with subtherapeutic rapamycin. Allograft survival was dependent upon regulatory T cells, was antigen-specific and grafts showed reduced expression of inflammatory factors. Transplantation of islets with A20 containing a loss-of-function variant (I325N) resulted in increased RIPK1 ubiquitination and NF-κB signalling, graft hyper-inflammation and acute allograft rejection. Overexpression of A20 in human islets potently reduced expression of inflammatory mediators with no impact on glucose stimulated insulin secretion. Therapeutic administration of A20 raises inflammatory signalling thresholds to favour immune tolerance and promotes islet allogeneic survival. Clinically this would allow for reduced immunosuppression and support the use of alternate islet sources.
Nathan W. Zammit, Stacey N. Walters, Karen L. Seeberger, Philip J. O’Connell, Gregory S. Korbutt, Shane T. Grey
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