Defective apoptotic death of activated macrophages has been implicated in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). However, the molecular signatures defining apoptotic resistance of RA macrophages are not fully understood. Here, global transcriptome profiling of RA macrophages revealed that the osmoprotective transcription factor nuclear factor of activated T cells 5 (NFAT5) critically regulates diverse pathologic processes in synovial macrophages including the cell cycle, apoptosis, and proliferation. Transcriptomic analysis of NFAT5-deficient macrophages revealed the molecular networks defining cell survival and proliferation. Proinflammatory M1-polarizing stimuli and hypoxic conditions were responsible for enhanced NFAT5 expression in RA macrophages. An in vitro functional study demonstrated that NFAT5-deficient macrophages were more susceptible to apoptotic death. Specifically, CCL2 secretion in an NFAT5-dependent fashion bestowed apoptotic resistance to RA macrophages in vitro. Injection of recombinant CCL2 into one of the affected joints of
Susanna Choi, Sungyong You, Donghyun Kim, Soo Youn Choi, H. Moo Kwon, Hyun-Sook Kim, Daehee Hwang, Yune-Jung Park, Chul-Soo Cho, Wan-Uk Kim
An intracellular complement system (ICS) has recently been described in immune and nonimmune human cells. This system can be activated in a convertase-independent manner from intracellular stores of the complement component C3. The source of these stores has not been rigorously investigated. In the present study, Western blotting identified a band corresponding to C3 in freshly isolated human peripheral blood cells that was absent in corresponding cell lines. One difference between native cells and cell lines was the time absent from a fluid-phase complement source; therefore, we hypothesized that loading C3 from plasma was a route of establishing intracellular C3 stores. We found that many types of human cells specifically internalized C3(H2O), the hydrolytic product of C3, and not native C3, from the extracellular milieu. Uptake was rapid, saturable, and sensitive to competition with unlabeled C3(H2O), indicating a specific mechanism of loading. Under steady-state conditions, approximately 80% of incorporated C3(H2O) was returned to the extracellular space. These studies identify an ICS recycling pathway for C3(H2O). The loaded C3(H2O) represents a source of C3a, and its uptake altered the cytokine profile of activated CD4+ T cells. Importantly, these results indicate that the impact of soluble plasma factors should be considered when performing in vitro studies assessing cellular immune function.
Michelle Elvington, M. Kathryn Liszewski, Paula Bertram, Hrishikesh S. Kulkarni, John P. Atkinson
Tissue inflammation is a key component of obesity-induced insulin resistance, with a variety of immune cell types accumulating in adipose tissue. Here, we have demonstrated increased numbers of B2 lymphocytes in obese adipose tissue and have shown that high-fat diet–induced (HFD-induced) insulin resistance is mitigated in B cell-deficient (Bnull) mice. Adoptive transfer of adipose tissue B2 cells (ATB2) from wild-type HFD donor mice into HFD Bnull recipients completely restored the effect of HFD to induce insulin resistance. Recruitment and activation of ATB2 cells was mediated by signaling through the chemokine leukotriene B4 (LTB4) and its receptor LTB4R1. Furthermore, the adverse effects of ATB2 cells on glucose homeostasis were partially dependent upon T cells and macrophages. These results demonstrate the importance of ATB2 cells in obesity-induced insulin resistance and suggest that inhibition of the LTB4/LTB4R1 axis might be a useful approach for developing insulin-sensitizing therapeutics.
Wei Ying, Joshua Wollam, Jachelle M. Ofrecio, Gautam Bandyopadhyay, Dalila El Ouarrat, Yun Sok Lee, Da Young Oh, Pingping Li, Olivia Osborn, Jerrold M. Olefsky
Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells have been highly successful in treating hematological malignancies, including acute and chronic lymphoblastic leukemia. However, treatment of solid tumors using CAR T cells has been largely unsuccessful to date, partly because of tumor-induced immunosuppressive mechanisms, including adenosine production. Previous studies have shown that adenosine generated by tumor cells potently inhibits endogenous antitumor T cell responses through activation of adenosine 2A receptors (A2ARs). Herein, we have observed that CAR activation resulted in increased A2AR expression and suppression of both murine and human CAR T cells. This was reversible using either A2AR antagonists or genetic targeting of A2AR using shRNA. In 2 syngeneic HER2+ self-antigen tumor models, we found that either genetic or pharmacological targeting of the A2AR profoundly increased CAR T cell efficacy, particularly when combined with PD-1 blockade. Mechanistically, this was associated with increased cytokine production of CD8+ CAR T cells and increased activation of both CD8+ and CD4+ CAR T cells. Given the known clinical relevance of the CD73/adenosine pathway in several solid tumor types, and the initiation of phase I trials for A2AR antagonists in oncology, this approach has high translational potential to enhance CAR T cell efficacy in several cancer types.
Paul A. Beavis, Melissa A. Henderson, Lauren Giuffrida, Jane K. Mills, Kevin Sek, Ryan S. Cross, Alexander J. Davenport, Liza B. John, Sherly Mardiana, Clare Y. Slaney, Ricky W. Johnstone, Joseph A. Trapani, John Stagg, Sherene Loi, Lev Kats, David Gyorki, Michael H. Kershaw, Phillip K. Darcy
Elevated expression of the chemokine receptor CCR4 in tumors is associated with poor prognosis in several cancers. Here, we have determined that CCR4 was highly expressed in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC) biopsies and observed abnormal levels of CCR4 ligands in RCC patient plasma. An antagonistic anti-CCR4 antibody had antitumor activity in the RENCA mouse model of RCC. CCR4 inhibition did not reduce the proportion of infiltrating leukocytes in the tumor microenvironment but altered the phenotype of myeloid cells, increased NK cell and Th1 cytokine levels, and reduced immature myeloid cell infiltrate and blood chemokine levels. In spite of prominent changes in the myeloid compartment, the anti-CCR4 antibody did not affect RENCA tumors in T cell–deficient mice, and treatment with an anti–class II MHC antibody abrogated its antitumor activity. We concluded that the effects of the anti-CCR4 antibody required the adaptive immune system and CD4+ T cells. Moreover, CCL17-induced IFN-γ production was reduced when Th1-polarized normal CD4+ T cells were exposed to the CCR4 ligand, evidencing the involvement of CCR4 in Th1/Th2 regulation. The anti-CCR4 antibody, alone or in combination with other immune modulators, is a potential treatment approach to human solid cancers with high levels of CCR4-expressing tumor-infiltrating leukocytes and abnormal plasma CCR4 ligand levels.
Chiara Berlato, Moddasar N. Khan, Tiziana Schioppa, Richard Thompson, Eleni Maniati, Anne Montfort, Maryam Jangani, Monica Canosa, Hagen Kulbe, Urs B. Hagemann, Alexander R. Duncan, Laura Fletcher, Robert W. Wilkinson, Thomas Powles, Sergio A. Quezada, Frances R. Balkwill
MicroRNAs (miRs) are tightly regulated in the immune system, and aberrant expression of miRs often results in hematopoietic malignancies and autoimmune diseases. Previously, it was suggested that elevated levels of miR-27 in T cells isolated from patients with multiple sclerosis facilitate disease progression by inhibiting Th2 immunity and promoting pathogenic Th1 responses. Here we have demonstrated that, although mice with T cell–specific overexpression of miR-27 harbor dysregulated Th1 responses and develop autoimmune pathology, these disease phenotypes are not driven by miR-27 in effector T cells in a cell-autonomous manner. Rather, dysregulation of Th1 responses and autoimmunity resulted from a perturbed Treg compartment. Excessive miR-27 expression in murine T cells severely impaired Treg differentiation. Moreover, Tregs with exaggerated miR-27–mediated gene regulation exhibited diminished homeostasis and suppressor function in vivo. Mechanistically, we determined that miR-27 represses several known as well as previously uncharacterized targets that play critical roles in controlling multiple aspects of Treg biology. Collectively, our data show that miR-27 functions as a key regulator in Treg development and function and suggest that proper regulation of miR-27 is pivotal to safeguarding Treg-mediated immunological tolerance.
Leilani O. Cruz, Somaye Sadat Hashemifar, Cheng-Jang Wu, Sunglim Cho, Duc T. Nguyen, Ling-Li Lin, Aly Azeem Khan, Li-Fan Lu
Chronic immune activation, immunosuppression, and T cell exhaustion are hallmarks of HIV infection, yet the mechanisms driving these processes are unclear. Chronic activation can be a driving force in immune exhaustion, and type I interferons (IFN-I) are emerging as critical components underlying ongoing activation in HIV infection. Here, we have tested the effect of blocking IFN-I signaling on T cell responses and virus replication in a murine model of chronic HIV infection. Using HIV-infected humanized mice, we demonstrated that in vivo blockade of IFN-I signaling during chronic HIV infection diminished HIV-driven immune activation, decreased T cell exhaustion marker expression, restored HIV-specific CD8 T cell function, and led to decreased viral replication. Antiretroviral therapy (ART) in combination with IFN-I blockade accelerated viral suppression, further decreased viral loads, and reduced the persistently infected HIV reservoir compared with ART treatment alone. Our data suggest that blocking IFN-I signaling in conjunction with ART treatment can restore immune function and may reduce viral reservoirs during chronic HIV infection, providing validation for IFN-I blockade as a potential therapy for HIV infection.
Anjie Zhen, Valerie Rezek, Cindy Youn, Brianna Lam, Nelson Chang, Jonathan Rick, Mayra Carrillo, Heather Martin, Saro Kasparian, Philip Syed, Nicholas Rice, David G. Brooks, Scott G. Kitchen
Human NK cell deficiencies are rare yet result in severe and often fatal disease, particularly as a result of viral susceptibility. NK cells develop from hematopoietic stem cells, and few monogenic errors that specifically interrupt NK cell development have been reported. Here we have described biallelic mutations in
Emily M. Mace, Venetia Bigley, Justin T. Gunesch, Ivan K. Chinn, Laura S. Angelo, Matthew A. Care, Sheetal Maisuria, Michael D. Keller, Sumihito Togi, Levi B. Watkin, David F. LaRosa, Shalini N. Jhangiani, Donna M. Muzny, Asbjørg Stray-Pedersen, Zeynep Coban Akdemir, Jansen B. Smith, Mayra Hernández-Sanabria, Duy T. Le, Graham D. Hogg, Tram N. Cao, Aharon G. Freud, Eva P. Szymanski, Sinisa Savic, Matthew Collin, Andrew J. Cant, Richard A. Gibbs, Steven M. Holland, Michael A. Caligiuri, Keiko Ozato, Silke Paust, Gina M. Doody, James R. Lupski, Jordan S. Orange
MHC class I–associated peptides (MAPs) define the immune self for CD8+ T lymphocytes and are key targets of cancer immunosurveillance. Here, the goals of our work were to determine whether the entire set of protein-coding genes could generate MAPs and whether specific features influence the ability of discrete genes to generate MAPs. Using proteogenomics, we have identified 25,270 MAPs isolated from the B lymphocytes of 18 individuals who collectively expressed 27 high-frequency HLA-A,B allotypes. The entire MAP repertoire presented by these 27 allotypes covered only 10% of the exomic sequences expressed in B lymphocytes. Indeed, 41% of expressed protein-coding genes generated no MAPs, while 59% of genes generated up to 64 MAPs, often derived from adjacent regions and presented by different allotypes. We next identified several features of transcripts and proteins associated with efficient MAP production. From these data, we built a logistic regression model that predicts with good accuracy whether a gene generates MAPs. Our results show preferential selection of MAPs from a limited repertoire of proteins with distinctive features. The notion that the MHC class I immunopeptidome presents only a small fraction of the protein-coding genome for monitoring by the immune system has profound implications in autoimmunity and cancer immunology.
Hillary Pearson, Tariq Daouda, Diana Paola Granados, Chantal Durette, Eric Bonneil, Mathieu Courcelles, Anja Rodenbrock, Jean-Philippe Laverdure, Caroline Côté, Sylvie Mader, Sébastien Lemieux, Pierre Thibault, Claude Perreault
Epidermal keratinocytes form a structural and immune barrier that is essential for skin homeostasis. However, the mechanisms that regulate epidermal barrier function are incompletely understood. Here we have found that keratinocyte-specific deletion of the gene encoding RAB guanine nucleotide exchange factor 1 (RABGEF1, also known as RABEX-5) severely impairs epidermal barrier function in mice and induces an allergic cutaneous and systemic phenotype. RABGEF1-deficient keratinocytes exhibited aberrant activation of the intrinsic IL-1R/MYD88/NF-κB signaling pathway and MYD88-dependent abnormalities in expression of structural proteins that contribute to skin barrier function. Moreover, ablation of MYD88 signaling in RABGEF1-deficient keratinocytes or deletion of
Thomas Marichal, Nicolas Gaudenzio, Sophie El Abbas, Riccardo Sibilano, Oliwia Zurek, Philipp Starkl, Laurent L. Reber, Dimitri Pirottin, Jinah Kim, Pierre Chambon, Axel Roers, Nadine Antoine, Yuko Kawakami, Toshiaki Kawakami, Fabrice Bureau, See-Ying Tam, Mindy Tsai, Stephen J. Galli
The transcription factor NR4A3 (also known as NOR-1) is a member of the
Kiwon Park, Zbigniew Mikulski, Goo-Young Seo, Aleksander Y. Andreyev, Paola Marcovecchio, Amy Blatchley, Mitchell Kronenberg, Catherine C. Hedrick
Chronic inflammation in visceral adipose tissue (VAT) precipitates the development of cardiometabolic disorders. Although changes in T cell function associated with visceral obesity are thought to affect chronic VAT inflammation, the specific features of these changes remain elusive. Here, we have determined that a high-fat diet (HFD) caused a preferential increase and accumulation of CD44hiCD62LloCD4+ T cells that constitutively express PD-1 and CD153 in a B cell–dependent manner in VAT. These cells possessed characteristics of cellular senescence and showed a strong activation of
Kohsuke Shirakawa, Xiaoxiang Yan, Ken Shinmura, Jin Endo, Masaharu Kataoka, Yoshinori Katsumata, Tsunehisa Yamamoto, Atsushi Anzai, Sarasa Isobe, Naohiro Yoshida, Hiroshi Itoh, Ichiro Manabe, Miho Sekai, Yoko Hamazaki, Keiichi Fukuda, Nagahiro Minato, Motoaki Sano
Natural killer (NK) cells can have potent antileukemic activity following haplo-mismatched, T cell–depleted stem cell transplantations for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), but they are not successful in eradicating de novo AML. Here, we have used a mouse model of de novo AML to elucidate the mechanisms by which AML evades NK cell surveillance. NK cells in leukemic mice displayed a marked reduction in the cytolytic granules perforin and granzyme B. Further, as AML progressed, we noted the selective loss of an immature subset of NK cells in leukemic mice and in AML patients. This absence was not due to elimination by cell death or selective reduction in proliferation, but rather to the result of a block in NK cell differentiation. Indeed, NK cells from leukemic mice and humans with AML showed lower levels of TBET and EOMES, transcription factors that are critical for terminal NK cell differentiation. Further, the microRNA miR-29b, a regulator of T-bet and EOMES, was elevated in leukemic NK cells. Finally, deletion of miR-29b in NK cells reversed the depletion of this NK cell subset in leukemic mice. These results indicate that leukemic evasion of NK cell surveillance occurs through miR-mediated dysregulation of lymphocyte development, representing an additional mechanism of immune escape in cancer.
Bethany L. Mundy-Bosse, Steven D. Scoville, Li Chen, Kathleen McConnell, Hsiaoyin C. Mao, Elshafa H. Ahmed, Nicholas Zorko, Sophia Harvey, Jordan Cole, Xiaoli Zhang, Stefan Costinean, Carlo M. Croce, Karilyn Larkin, John C. Byrd, Sumithira Vasu, William Blum, Jianhua Yu, Aharon G. Freud, Michael A. Caligiuri
The rising success of cancer immunotherapy has produced immense interest in defining the clinical contexts that may benefit from this therapeutic approach. To this end, there is a need to ascertain how the therapeutic modulation of intrinsic cancer cell programs influences the anticancer immune response. For example, the role of autophagy as a tumor cell survival and metabolic fitness pathway is being therapeutically targeted in ongoing clinical trials that combine cancer therapies with antimalarial drugs for the treatment of a broad spectrum of cancers, many of which will likely benefit from immunotherapy. However, our current understanding of the interplay between autophagy and the immune response remains incomplete. Here, we have evaluated how autophagy inhibition impacts the antitumor immune response in immune-competent mouse models of melanoma and mammary cancer. We observed equivalent levels of T cell infiltration and function within autophagy-competent and -deficient tumors, even upon treatment with the anthracycline chemotherapeutic doxorubicin. Similarly, we found equivalent T cell responses upon systemic treatment of tumor-bearing mice with antimalarial drugs. Our findings demonstrate that antitumor adaptive immunity is not adversely impaired by autophagy inhibition in these models, allowing for the future possibility of combining autophagy inhibitors with immunotherapy in certain clinical contexts.
Hanna Starobinets, Jordan Ye, Miranda Broz, Kevin Barry, Juliet Goldsmith, Timothy Marsh, Fanya Rostker, Matthew Krummel, Jayanta Debnath
Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) affect over 5 million individuals in the industrialized world, with an increasing incidence rate worldwide. IBD also predisposes affected individuals to development of colorectal cancer, which is a leading cause of cancer-related deaths in adults. Mutations in genes encoding molecules in the IL-33 signaling pathway are associated with colitis and colitis-associated cancer (CAC), but how IL-33 modulates gut homeostasis is unclear. Here, we have shown that
Ankit Malik, Deepika Sharma, Qifan Zhu, Rajendra Karki, Clifford S. Guy, Peter Vogel, Thirumala-Devi Kanneganti
The adoptive transfer of T cells that have been genetically modified to express a CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) is effective for treating human B cell malignancies. However, the persistence of functional CD19 CAR T cells causes sustained depletion of endogenous CD19+ B cells and hypogammaglobulinemia. Thus, there is a need for a mechanism to ablate transferred T cells after tumor eradication is complete to allow recovery of normal B cells. Previously, we developed a truncated version of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFRt) that is coexpressed with the CAR on the T cell surface. Here, we show that targeting EGFRt with the IgG1 monoclonal antibody cetuximab eliminates CD19 CAR T cells both early and late after adoptive transfer in mice, resulting in complete and permanent recovery of normal functional B cells, without tumor relapse. EGFRt can be incorporated into many clinical applications to regulate the survival of gene-engineered cells. These results support the concept that EGFRt represents a promising approach to improve safety of cell-based therapies.
Paulina J. Paszkiewicz, Simon P. Fräßle, Shivani Srivastava, Daniel Sommermeyer, Michael Hudecek, Ingo Drexler, Michel Sadelain, Lingfeng Liu, Michael C. Jensen, Stanley R. Riddell, Dirk H. Busch
Alterations in the apoptosis of immune cells have been associated with autoimmunity. Here, we have identified a homozygous missense mutation in the gene encoding the base excision repair enzyme Nei endonuclease VIII-like 3 (
Michel J. Massaad, Jia Zhou, Daisuke Tsuchimoto, Janet Chou, Haifa Jabara, Erin Janssen, Salomé Glauzy, Brennan G. Olson, Henner Morbach, Toshiro K. Ohsumi, Klaus Schmitz, Markianos Kyriacos, Jennifer Kane, Kumiko Torisu, Yusaku Nakabeppu, Luigi D. Notarangelo, Eliane Chouery, Andre Megarbane, Peter B. Kang, Eman Al-Idrissi, Hasan Aldhekri, Eric Meffre, Masayuki Mizui, George C. Tsokos, John P. Manis, Waleed Al-Herz, Susan S. Wallace, Raif S. Geha
Little is known about the role of mTOR signaling in plasma cell differentiation and function. Furthermore, for reasons not understood, mTOR inhibition reverses antibody-associated disease in a murine model of systemic lupus erythematosus. Here, we have demonstrated that induced B lineage–specific deletion of the gene encoding RAPTOR, an essential signaling adaptor for rapamycin-sensitive mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1), abrogated the generation of antibody-secreting plasma cells in mice. Acute treatment with rapamycin recapitulated the effects of RAPTOR deficiency, and both strategies led to the ablation of newly formed plasma cells in the spleen and bone marrow while also obliterating preexisting germinal centers. Surprisingly, although perturbing mTOR activity caused a profound decline in serum antibodies that were specific for exogenous antigen or DNA, frequencies of long-lived bone marrow plasma cells were unaffected. Instead, mTORC1 inhibition led to decreased expression of immunoglobulin-binding protein (BiP) and other factors needed for robust protein synthesis. Consequently, blockade of antibody synthesis was rapidly reversed after termination of rapamycin treatment. We conclude that mTOR signaling plays critical but diverse roles in early and late phases of antibody responses and plasma cell differentiation.
Derek D. Jones, Brian T. Gaudette, Joel R. Wilmore, Irene Chernova, Alexandra Bortnick, Brendan M. Weiss, David Allman
Scleroderma is a group of skin-fibrosing diseases for which there are no effective treatments. A feature of the skin fibrosis typical of scleroderma is atrophy of the dermal white adipose tissue (DWAT). Adipose tissue contains adipose-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (ADSCs) that have regenerative and reparative functions; however, whether DWAT atrophy in fibrosis is accompanied by ADSC loss is poorly understood, as are the mechanisms that might maintain ADSC survival in fibrotic skin. Here, we have shown that DWAT ADSC numbers were reduced, likely because of cell death, in 2 murine models of scleroderma skin fibrosis. The remaining ADSCs showed a partial dependence on dendritic cells (DCs) for survival. Lymphotoxin β (LTβ) expression in DCs maintained ADSC survival in fibrotic skin by activating an LTβ receptor/β1 integrin (LTβR/β1 integrin) pathway on ADSCs. Stimulation of LTβR augmented the engraftment of therapeutically injected ADSCs, which was associated with reductions in skin fibrosis and improved skin function. These findings provide insight into the effects of skin fibrosis on DWAT ADSCs, identify a DC-ADSC survival axis in fibrotic skin, and suggest an approach for improving mesenchymal stromal cell therapy in scleroderma and other diseases.
Jennifer J. Chia, Tong Zhu, Susan Chyou, Dragos C. Dasoveanu, Camila Carballo, Sha Tian, Cynthia M. Magro, Scott Rodeo, Robert F. Spiera, Nancy H. Ruddle, Timothy E. McGraw, Jeffrey L. Browning, Robert Lafyatis, Jessica K. Gordon, Theresa T. Lu
Rush desensitization (DS) is a widely used and effective clinical strategy for the rapid inhibition of IgE-mediated anaphylactic responses. However, the cellular targets and underlying mechanisms behind this process remain unclear. Recent studies have implicated mast cells (MCs) as the primary target cells for DS. Here, we developed a murine model of passive anaphylaxis with demonstrated MC involvement and an in vitro assay to evaluate the effect of DS on MCs. In contrast with previous reports, we determined that functional IgE remains on the cell surface of desensitized MCs following DS. Despite notable reductions in MC degranulation following DS, the high-affinity IgE receptor FcεRI was still capable of transducing signals in desensitized MCs. Additionally, we found that displacement of the actin cytoskeleton and its continued association with FcεRI impede the capacity of desensitized MCs to evoke the calcium response that is essential for MC degranulation. Together, these findings suggest that reduced degranulation responses in desensitized MCs arise from aberrant actin remodeling, providing insights that may lead to improvement of DS treatments for anaphylactic responses.
W.X. Gladys Ang, Alison M. Church, Mike Kulis, Hae Woong Choi, A. Wesley Burks, Soman N. Abraham