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Drug hypersensitivity such as severe cutaneous adverse reactions (SCAR), including Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), could be life-threatening. Here, we enroll SCAR patients to investigate the T cell receptor (TCR) repertoire by next-generation sequencing. A public αβTCR is identified from the cytotoxic T lymphocytes of patients with carbamazepine-SJS/TEN, with its expression showing drug/phenotype-specificity and an bias for HLA-B*15:02. This public αβTCR has binding affinity for carbamazepine and its structural analogs, thereby mediating the immune response. Adoptive transfer of T cell expressing this public αβTCR to HLA-B*15:02 transgenic mice receiving oral administration of carbamazepine induces multi-organ injuries and symptoms mimicking SCAR, including hair loss, erythema, increase of inflammatory lymphocytes in the skin and blood, and liver and kidney dysfunction. Our results not only demonstrate an essential role of TCR in the immune synapse mediating SCAR, but also implicate potential clinical applications and development of therapeutics.
Excess dietary salt contributes to inflammation and hypertension via poorly understood mechanisms. Antigen presenting cells including dendritic cells (DCs) play a key role in regulating intestinal immune homeostasis in part by surveying the gut epithelial surface for pathogens. Previously, we found that highly reactive γ-ketoaldehydes or isolevuglandins (IsoLGs) accumulate in DCs and act as neoantigens, promoting an autoimmune-like state and hypertension. We hypothesized that excess dietary salt alters the gut microbiome leading to hypertension and this is associated with increased immunogenic IsoLG-adduct formation in myeloid antigen presenting cells. To test this hypothesis, we performed fecal microbiome analysis and measured blood pressure of healthy human volunteers with salt intake above or below the American Heart Association recommendations. We also performed 16S rRNA analysis on cecal samples of mice fed normal or high salt diets. In humans and mice, high salt intake was associated with changes in the gut microbiome reflecting an increase in Firmicutes, Proteobacteria and genus Prevotella bacteria. These alterations were associated with higher blood pressure in humans and predisposed mice to vascular inflammation and hypertension in response to a sub-pressor dose of angiotensin II. Mice fed a high salt diet exhibited increased intestinal inflammation including the mesenteric arterial arcade and aorta, with a marked increase in the B7 ligand CD86 and formation of IsoLG-protein adducts in CD11c+ myeloid cells. Adoptive transfer of fecal material from conventionally housed high salt-fed mice to germ-free mice predisposed them to increased intestinal inflammation and hypertension. These findings provide novel insight into the mechanisms underlying inflammation and hypertension associated with excess dietary salt and may lead to interventions targeting the microbiome to prevent and treat this important disease.
Unchecked collaboration between islet-reactive T and B lymphocytes drives type 1 diabetes (T1D). In the healthy setting, CD8 T regulatory cells (Tregs) terminate ongoing T-B interactions. We determined that specific CD8 Tregs from NOD mice lack suppressive function, representing a previously unreported regulatory cell deficit in this T1D-prone strain. NOD mice possess 11-fold fewer Ly-49 CD8 Tregs than nonautoimmune mice, a deficiency that worsens as NOD mice age toward diabetes and leaves them unable to regulate CD4 T follicular helper cells. As IL-15 is required for Ly-49 CD8 Treg development, we determined that NOD macrophages inadequately -present IL-15. Despite reduced IL-15 -presentation, NOD Ly-49 CD8 Tregs can effectively transduce IL-15-mediated survival signals when they are provided. Following stimulation with an IL-15/IL-15Ra superagonist complex, Ly-49 CD8 Tregs expanded robustly and became activated to suppress the Ag-specific Ab response. IL-15/IL-15Ra superagonist complex-activated CD8CD122 T cells also delayed diabetes transfer, indicating the presence of an underactivated CD8 T cell subset with regulatory capacity against late stage T1D. We identify a new cellular contribution to anti-islet autoimmunity and demonstrate the correction of this regulatory cell deficit. Infusion of IL-15-activated CD8 Tregs may serve as an innovative cellular therapy for the treatment of T1D.
Copyright © 2019 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.
A cell therapy platform permitting long-term delivery of peptide hormones in vivo would be a significant advance for patients with hormonal deficiencies. Here we report the utility of antigen-specific T lymphocytes as a regulatable peptide delivery platform for in vivo therapy. piggyBac transposon modification of murine cells with luciferase allows us to visualize T cells after adoptive transfer. Vaccination stimulates long-term T-cell engraftment, persistence, and transgene expression enabling detection of modified cells up to 300 days after adoptive transfer. We demonstrate adoptive transfer of antigen-specific T cells expressing erythropoietin (EPO) elevating the hematocrit in mice for more than 20 weeks. We extend our observations to human T cells demonstrating inducible EPO production from Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) antigen-specific T lymphocytes. Our results reveal antigen-specific T lymphocytes to be an effective delivery platform for therapeutic molecules such as EPO in vivo, with important implications for other diseases that require peptide therapy.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW - We review the cardiovascular toxicities associated with cancer immune therapies and discuss the cardiac manifestations, potential mechanisms, and management strategies.
RECENT FINDINGS - The recent advances in cancer immune therapy with immune checkpoint inhibitors and adoptive cell transfer have improved clinical outcomes in numerous cancers. The rising use of cancer immune therapy will lead to a higher incidence in immune-related adverse events. Recent studies have highlighted several reports of severe cases of acute cardiotoxic events with immune therapy including fulminant myocarditis. We believe that immune-mediated myocarditis is a driving mechanism behind these cardiovascular toxicities and requires vigilant screening and prompt management with corticosteroids and immune-modulating drugs, especially with combination immune therapies. While the incidence of serious cardiovascular toxicities with immune therapy appears low, these can be life-threatening especially when manifesting as acute immune-mediated myocarditis. Further collaborative studies are needed to effectively identify, characterize, and manage these events.
Adoptive transfer of gene modified T cells provides possible immunotherapy for patients with cancers refractory to other treatments. We have previously used the non-viral piggyBac transposon system to gene modify human T cells for potential immunotherapy. However, these previous studies utilized adoptive transfer of modified human T cells to target cancer xenografts in highly immunodeficient (NOD-SCID) mice that do not recapitulate an intact immune system. Currently, only viral vectors have shown efficacy in permanently gene-modifying mouse T cells for immunotherapy applications. Therefore, we sought to determine if piggyBac could effectively gene modify mouse T cells to target cancer cells in a mouse cancer model. We first demonstrated that we could gene modify cells to express murine interleukin-12 (p35/p40 mIL-12), a transgene with proven efficacy in melanoma immunotherapy. The OT-I melanoma mouse model provides a well-established T cell mediated immune response to ovalbumin (OVA) positive B16 melanoma cells. B16/OVA melanoma cells were implanted in wild type C57Bl6 mice. Mouse splenocytes were isolated from C57Bl6 OT-I mice and were gene modified using piggyBac to express luciferase. Adoptive transfer of luciferase-modified OT-I splenocytes demonstrated homing to B16/OVA melanoma tumors in vivo. We next gene-modified OT-I cells to express mIL-12. Adoptive transfer of mIL-12-modified mouse OT-I splenocytes delayed B16/OVA melanoma tumor growth in vivo compared to control OT-I splenocytes and improved mouse survival. Our results demonstrate that the piggyBac transposon system can be used to gene modify splenocytes and mouse T cells for evaluating adoptive immunotherapy strategies in immunocompetent mouse tumor models that may more directly mimic immunotherapy applications in humans.
Sepsis is a major cause of neonatal mortality and morbidity worldwide. A recent report suggested that murine neonatal host defense against infection could be compromised by immunosuppressive CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes. We examined the impact of CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes on murine neonatal mortality to endotoxin challenge or polymicrobial sepsis and characterized circulating CD71(+) erythroid (CD235a(+)) cells in human neonates. Adoptive transfer or an Ab-mediated reduction in neonatal CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes did not alter murine neonatal survival to endotoxin challenge or polymicrobial sepsis challenge. Ex vivo immunosuppression of stimulated adult CD11b(+) cells was not limited to neonatal splenocytes; it also occurred with adult and neonatal bone marrow. Animals treated with anti-CD71 Ab showed reduced splenic bacterial load following bacterial challenge compared with isotype-treated mice. However, adoptive transfer of enriched CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes to CD71(+)-reduced animals did not reduce bacterial clearance. Human CD71(+)CD235a(+) cells were common among cord blood mononuclear cells and were shown to be reticulocytes. In summary, a lack of effect on murine survival to polymicrobial sepsis following adoptive transfer or diminution of CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes under these experimental conditions suggests that the impact of these cells on neonatal infection risk and progression may be limited. An unanticipated immune priming effect of anti-CD71 Ab treatment, rather than a reduction in immunosuppressive CD71(+) erythroid splenocytes, was likely responsible for the reported enhanced bacterial clearance. In humans, the well-described rapid decrease in circulating reticulocytes after birth suggests that they may have a limited role in reducing inflammation secondary to microbial colonization.
Copyright © 2015 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.
BACKGROUND & AIMS - Tumor necrosis factor receptor 2 (TNFR2, Tnfrsf1b) regulates multiple aspects of immune function, but little is known about its role in the immunopathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). We investigated whether TNFR2 restricts the activity of specific immune cell subtypes to protect against the development of colitis in mice.
METHODS - Tnfr2(-/-) mice were crossed with interleukin (Il) 10(-/-) mice, which spontaneously develop colitis, to generate Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice. Colonic tissues were collected from Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice along with Il10(-/-) mice (controls) and analyzed by flow cytometry and histology. Bone marrow was transplanted into Il10(-/-) and Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice from Il10(-/-) or Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) donors by intravenous injection. CD8(+) T cells were neutralized in Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice by intraperitoneal injection of anti-CD8 or isotype control antibodies. Colitis was induced in Rag2(-/-) mice by intravenous injections of naïve CD8(+) T cells isolated from C57BL/6 or Tnfr2(-/-) mice.
RESULTS - Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice spontaneously developed more severe colitis compared with Il10(-/-) controls, characterized by selective expansion of colonic CD8(+) T cells. Transplantation of TNFR2-deficient bone marrow resulted in significantly increased incidence and severity of colitis. Transcriptome analyses showed that the expression of genes regulated by TNFR2 were specific to CD8(+) T cells and included genes associated with risk for IBD. Depletion of CD8(+) T cells from Il10(-/-)Tnfr2(-/-) mice prevented colonic inflammation. Adoptive transfer of TNFR2-null naïve CD8(+) T cells compared with CD8(+) T cells from control mice increased the severity of colitis that developed in Rag2(-/-) mice.
CONCLUSIONS - TNFR2 protects mice from colitis by inhibiting the expansion of colonic CD8(+) T cells. TNFR2 regulates expression of genes that regulate CD8(+) T cells and have been associated with susceptibility to IBD. Disruption in TNFR2 signaling might therefore be associated with pathogenesis. Strategies to increase levels or activity of TNFR2 and thereby reduce the activity of CD8(+) T cells might be developed to treat IBD patients with CD8(+) T cell dysfunction.
Copyright © 2015 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
RATIONALE - Aortic stiffening commonly occurs in hypertension and further elevates systolic pressure. Hypertension is also associated with vascular inflammation and increased mechanical stretch. The interplay between inflammation, mechanical stretch, and aortic stiffening in hypertension remains undefined.
OBJECTIVE - Our aim was to determine the role of inflammation and mechanical stretch in aortic stiffening.
METHODS AND RESULTS - Chronic angiotensin II infusion caused marked aortic adventitial collagen deposition, as quantified by Masson trichrome blue staining and biochemically by hydroxyproline content, in wild-type but not in recombination activating gene-1-deficient mice. Aortic compliance, defined by ex vivo measurements of stress-strain curves, was reduced by chronic angiotensin II infusion in wild-type mice (P<0.01) but not in recombination activating gene-1-deficient mice (P<0.05). Adoptive transfer of T-cells to recombination activating gene-1-deficient mice restored aortic collagen deposition and stiffness to values observed in wild-type mice. Mice lacking the T-cell-derived cytokine interleukin 17a were also protected against aortic stiffening. In additional studies, we found that blood pressure normalization by treatment with hydralazine and hydrochlorothiazide prevented angiotensin II-induced vascular T-cell infiltration, aortic stiffening, and collagen deposition. Finally, we found that mechanical stretch induces the expression of collagen 1α1, 3α1, and 5a1 in cultured aortic fibroblasts in a p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase-dependent fashion, and that inhibition of p38 prevented angiotensin II-induced aortic stiffening in vivo. Interleukin 17a also induced collagen 3a1 expression via the activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase.
CONCLUSIONS - Our data define a pathway in which inflammation and mechanical stretch lead to vascular inflammation that promotes collagen deposition. The resultant increase in aortic stiffness likely further worsens systolic hypertension and its attendant end-organ damage.
The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), an essential serine/threonine kinase, functions in biochemically distinct multiprotein complexes, but little is known about roles of the complexes in B cells. The acutely rapamycin-sensitive mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) is defined by a core subunit Raptor, whereas mTORC2 lacks Raptor and, instead, has Rictor and SIN1 as distinct essential components. We now show that homeostasis and function of B cells require Rictor. Conditional deletion of Rictor before lymphoid specification impaired generation of mature follicular, marginal zone, and B1a B lymphocytes. Induced inactivation in adult mice caused cell-autonomous defects in B lymphoid homeostasis and antibody responses in vivo, along with affecting plasma cells in bone marrow. Survival of B lymphocytes depended on Rictor, which was vital for normal induction of prosurvival genes, suppression of proapoptotic genes, nuclear factor κB induction after B-cell receptor stimulation, and B-cell activating factor-induced nuclear factor κB2/p52 generation. Collectively, the findings provide evidence that mTOR signaling affects survival and proliferation of mature B lymphocytes, and establish Rictor as an important signal relay in B-cell homeostasis, fate, and functions.