Secondary lymphedema is a common postcancer treatment complication, but the underlying pathological processes are poorly understood and no curative treatment exists. To investigate lymphedema pathomechanisms, a top-down approach was applied, using genomic data and validating the role of a single target. RNA sequencing of lymphedematous mouse skin indicated upregulation of many T cell–related networks, and indeed depletion of CD4+ cells attenuated lymphedema. The significant upregulation of Foxp3, a transcription factor specifically expressed by regulatory T cells (Tregs), along with other Treg-related genes, implied a potential role of Tregs in lymphedema. Indeed, increased infiltration of Tregs was identified in mouse lymphedematous skin and in human lymphedema specimens. To investigate the role of Tregs during disease progression, loss-of-function and gain-of-function studies were performed. Depletion of Tregs in transgenic mice with Tregs expressing the primate diphtheria toxin receptor and green fluorescent protein (
Epameinondas Gousopoulos, Steven T. Proulx, Samia B. Bachmann, Jeannette Scholl, Dimitris Dionyssiou, Efterpi Demiri, Cornelia Halin, Lothar C. Dieterich, Michael Detmar
Hypertension is nearly universal yet poorly controlled in the elderly despite proven benefits of intensive treatment. Mice lacking mineralocorticoid receptors in smooth muscle cells (SMC-MR-KO) are protected from rising blood pressure (BP) with aging, despite normal renal function. Vasoconstriction is attenuated in aged SMC-MR-KO mice, thus they were used to explore vascular mechanisms that may contribute to hypertension with aging. MicroRNA (miR) profiling identified miR-155 as the most down-regulated miR with vascular aging in MR-intact but not SMC-MR-KO mice. The aging-associated decrease in miR-155 in mesenteric resistance vessels was associated with increased mRNA abundance of MR and of predicted miR-155 targets Cav1.2 (L-type calcium channel (LTCC) subunit) and angiotensin type-1 receptor (AgtR1). SMC-MR-KO mice lacked these aging-associated vascular gene expression changes. In HEK293 cells, MR repressed miR-155 promoter activity. In cultured SMCs, miR-155 decreased Cav1.2 and AgtR1 mRNA. Compared to MR-intact littermates, aged SMC-MR-KO mice had decreased systolic BP, myogenic tone, SMC LTCC current, mesenteric vessel calcium influx, LTCC-induced vasoconstriction and angiotensin II-induced vasoconstriction and oxidative stress. Restoration of miR-155 specifically in SMCs of aged MR-intact mice decreased Cav1.2 and AgtR1 mRNA and attenuated LTCC-mediated and angiotensin II-induced vasoconstriction and oxidative stress. Finally, in a trial of MR blockade in elderly humans, changes in serum miR-155 predicted the BP treatment response. Thus, SMC-MR regulation of miR-155, Cav1.2 and AgtR1 impacts vasoconstriction with aging. This novel mechanism identifies potential new treatment strategies and biomarkers to improve and individualize antihypertensive therapy in the elderly.
Jennifer J. DuPont, Amy McCurley, Ana P. Davel, Joseph McCarthy, Shawn B. Bender, Kwangseok Hong, Yan Yang, Jeung-Ki Yoo, Mark Aronovitz, Wendy E. Baur, Demetra D. Christou, Michael A. Hill, Iris Z. Jaffe
Cardiovascular progenitor cells (CPCs) expressing the ISL1-LIM–homeodomain transcription factor contribute developmentally to cardiomyocytes in all 4 chambers of the heart. Here, we show that ISL1-CPCs can be applied to myocardial regeneration following injury. We used a rapid 3D methylcellulose approach to form murine and human ISL1-CPC spheroids that engrafted after myocardial infarction in murine hearts, where they differentiated into cardiomyocytes and endothelial cells, integrating into the myocardium and forming new blood vessels. ISL1-CPC spheroid–treated mice exhibited reduced infarct area and increased blood vessel formation compared with control animals. Moreover, left ventricular (LV) contractile function was significantly better in mice transplanted with ISL1-CPCs 4 weeks after injury than that in control animals. These results provide proof-of-concept of a cardiac repair strategy employing ISL1-CPCs that, based on our previous lineage-tracing studies, are committed to forming heart tissue, in combination with a robust methylcellulose spheroid–based delivery approach.
Oscar Bartulos, Zhen Wu Zhuang, Yan Huang, Nicole Mikush, Carol Suh, Alda Bregasi, Lin Wang, William Chang, Diane S. Krause, Lawrence H. Young, Jordan S. Pober, Yibing Qyang
We have previously identified prohibitin (PHB) and annexin A2 (ANX2) as proteins interacting on the surface of vascular endothelial cells in white adipose tissue (WAT) of humans and mice. Here, we demonstrate that ANX2 and PHB also interact in adipocytes. Mice lacking ANX2 have normal WAT vascularization, adipogenesis, and glucose metabolism but display WAT hypotrophy due to reduced fatty acid uptake by WAT endothelium and adipocytes. By using cell culture systems in which ANX2/PHB binding is disrupted either genetically or through treatment with a blocking peptide, we show that fatty acid transport efficiency relies on this protein complex. We also provide evidence that the interaction between ANX2 and PHB mediates fatty acid transport from the endothelium into adipocytes. Moreover, we demonstrate that ANX2 and PHB form a complex with the fatty acid transporter CD36. Finally, we show that the colocalization of PHB and CD36 on adipocyte surface is induced by extracellular fatty acids. Together, our results suggest that an unrecognized biochemical interaction between ANX2 and PHB regulates CD36-mediated fatty acid transport in WAT, thus revealing a new potential pathway for intervention in metabolic diseases.
Ahmad Salameh, Alexes C. Daquinag, Daniela I. Staquicini, Zhiqiang An, Katherine A. Hajjar, Renata Pasqualini, Wadih Arap, Mikhail G. Kolonin
Pulmonary arterial (PA) stiffness is associated with increased mortality in patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH); however, the role of PA stiffening in the pathogenesis of PH remains elusive. Here, we show that distal vascular matrix stiffening is an early mechanobiological regulator of experimental PH. We identify cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) suppression and corresponding reduction in prostaglandin production as pivotal regulators of stiffness-dependent vascular cell activation. Atomic force microscopy microindentation demonstrated early PA stiffening in experimental PH and human lung tissue. Pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMC) grown on substrates with the stiffness of remodeled PAs showed increased proliferation, decreased apoptosis, exaggerated contraction, enhanced matrix deposition, and reduced COX-2–derived prostanoid production compared with cells grown on substrates approximating normal PA stiffness. Treatment with a prostaglandin I2 analog abrogated monocrotaline-induced PA stiffening and attenuated stiffness-dependent increases in proliferation, matrix deposition, and contraction in PASMC. Our results suggest a pivotal role for early PA stiffening in PH and demonstrate the therapeutic potential of interrupting mechanobiological feedback amplification of vascular remodeling in experimental PH.
Fei Liu, Christina Mallarino Haeger, Paul B. Dieffenbach, Delphine Sicard, Izabela Chrobak, Anna Maria F. Coronata, Margarita M. Suárez Velandia, Sally Vitali, Romain A. Colas, Paul C. Norris, Aleksandar Marinković, Xiaoli Liu, Jun Ma, Chase D. Rose, Seon-Jin Lee, Suzy A.A. Comhair, Serpil C. Erzurum, Jacob D. McDonald, Charles N. Serhan, Stephen R. Walsh, Daniel J. Tschumperlin, Laura E. Fredenburgh
Reperfusion injury can exacerbate tissue damage in ischemic stroke, but little is known about the mechanisms linking ROS to stroke severity. Here, we tested the hypothesis that protein methionine oxidation potentiates NF-κB activation and contributes to cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury. We found that overexpression of methionine sulfoxide reductase A (MsrA), an antioxidant enzyme that reverses protein methionine oxidation, attenuated ROS-augmented NF-κB activation in endothelial cells, in part, by protecting against the oxidation of methionine residues in the regulatory domain of calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). In a murine model, MsrA deficiency resulted in increased NF-κB activation and neutrophil infiltration, larger infarct volumes, and more severe neurological impairment after transient cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury. This phenotype was prevented by inhibition of NF-κB or CaMKII. MsrA-deficient mice also exhibited enhanced leukocyte rolling and upregulation of E-selectin, an endothelial NF-κB–dependent adhesion molecule known to contribute to neurovascular inflammation in ischemic stroke. Finally, bone marrow transplantation experiments demonstrated that the neuroprotective effect was mediated by MsrA expressed in nonhematopoietic cells. These findings suggest that protein methionine oxidation in nonmyeloid cells is a key mechanism of postischemic oxidative injury mediated by NF-κB activation, leading to neutrophil recruitment and neurovascular inflammation in acute ischemic stroke.
Sean X. Gu, Ilya O. Blokhin, Katina M. Wilson, Nirav Dhanesha, Prakash Doddapattar, Isabella M. Grumbach, Anil K. Chauhan, Steven R. Lentz
Endothelial cell (EC) insulin resistance and dysfunction, caused by diabetes, accelerates atherosclerosis. It is unknown whether specifically enhancing EC-targeted insulin action can decrease atherosclerosis in diabetes. Accordingly, overexpressing insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS1) in the endothelia of
Kyoungmin Park, Akira Mima, Qian Li, Christian Rask-Madsen, Pingnian He, Koji Mizutani, Sayaka Katagiri, Yasutaka Maeda, I-Hsien Wu, Mogher Khamaisi, Simone Rordam Preil, Ernesto Maddaloni, Ditte Sørensen, Lars Melholt Rasmussen, Paul L. Huang, George L. King
We recently discovered that endothelial Nogo-B, a membrane protein of the ER, regulates vascular function by inhibiting the rate-limiting enzyme, serine palmitoyltransferase (SPT), in de novo sphingolipid biosynthesis. Here, we show that endothelium-derived sphingolipids, particularly sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P), protect the heart from inflammation, fibrosis, and dysfunction following pressure overload and that Nogo-B regulates this paracrine process. SPT activity is upregulated in banded hearts in vivo as well as in TNF-α–activated endothelium in vitro, and loss of Nogo removes the brake on SPT, increasing local S1P production. Hence, mice lacking Nogo-B, systemically or specifically in the endothelium, are resistant to the onset of pathological cardiac hypertrophy. Furthermore, pharmacological inhibition of SPT with myriocin restores permeability, inflammation, and heart dysfunction in Nogo-A/B–deficient mice to WT levels, whereas SEW2871, an S1P1 receptor agonist, prevents myocardial permeability, inflammation, and dysfunction in WT banded mice. Our study identifies a critical role of endothelial sphingolipid biosynthesis and its regulation by Nogo-B in the development of pathological cardiac hypertrophy and proposes a potential therapeutic target for the attenuation or reversal of this clinical condition.
Yi Zhang, Yan Huang, Anna Cantalupo, Paula S. Azevedo, Mauro Siragusa, Jacek Bielawski, Frank J. Giordano, Annarita Di Lorenzo
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
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