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The gastric bacterium causes a persistent infection that is directly responsible for gastric ulcers and gastric cancer in some patients and protective against allergic and other immunological disorders in others. The two outcomes of the -host interaction can be modeled in mice that are infected as immunocompetent adults and as neonates, respectively. Here, we have investigated the contribution of the immunomodulator VacA to -specific local and systemic immune responses in both models. We found that neonatally infected mice are colonized at higher levels than mice infected as adults and fail to generate effector T-cell responses to the bacteria; rather, T-cell responses in neonatally infected mice are skewed toward Foxp3-positive (Foxp3) regulatory T cells that are neuropilin negative and express RORγt. We found these peripherally induced regulatory T cells (pTregs) to be enriched, in a VacA-dependent manner, not only in the gastric mucosa but also in the lungs of infected mice. Pulmonary pTreg accumulation was observed in mice that have been infected neonatally with wild-type but not in mice that have been infected as adults or mice infected with a VacA null mutant. Finally, we traced VacA to gastric lamina propria myeloid cells and show that it suppressed interleukin-23 (IL-23) expression by dendritic cells and induced IL-10 and TGF-β expression in macrophages. Taken together, the results are consistent with the idea that creates a tolerogenic environment through its immunomodulator VacA, which skews T-cell responses toward Tregs, favors persistence, and affects immunity at distant sites. has coexisted with humans for at least 60.000 years and has evolved persistence strategies that allow it to evade host immunity and colonize its host for life. The VacA protein is expressed by all strains and is required for high-level persistent infection in experimental mouse models. Here, we show that VacA targets myeloid cells in the gastric mucosa to create a tolerogenic environment that facilitates regulatory T-cell differentiation, while suppressing effector T-cell priming and functionality. Tregs that are induced in the periphery during infection can be found not only in the stomach but also in the lungs of infected mice, where they are likely to affect immune responses to allergens.
Copyright © 2019 Altobelli et al.
BACKGROUND & AIMS - There is controversy regarding the role of the type 2 immune response in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis (UC)-few data are available from treatment-naive patients. We investigated whether genes associated with a type 2 immune response in the intestinal mucosa are up-regulated in treatment-naive pediatric patients with UC compared with patients with Crohn's disease (CD)-associated colitis or without inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and whether expression levels are associated with clinical outcomes.
METHODS - We used a real-time reverse-transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction array to analyze messenger RNA (mRNA) expression patterns in rectal mucosal samples from 138 treatment-naive pediatric patients with IBD and macroscopic rectal disease, as well as those from 49 children without IBD (controls), enrolled in a multicenter prospective observational study from 2008 to 2012. Results were validated in real-time reverse-transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses of rectal RNA from an independent cohort of 34 pediatric patients with IBD and macroscopic rectal disease and 17 controls from Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.
RESULTS - We measured significant increases in mRNAs associated with a type 2 immune response (interleukin [IL]5 gene, IL13, and IL13RA2) and a type 17 immune response (IL17A and IL23) in mucosal samples from patients with UC compared with patients with colon-only CD. In a regression model, increased expression of IL5 and IL17A mRNAs distinguished patients with UC from patients with colon-only CD (P = .001; area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, 0.72). We identified a gene expression pattern in rectal tissues of patients with UC, characterized by detection of IL13 mRNA, that predicted clinical response to therapy after 6 months (odds ratio [OR], 6.469; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.553-26.94), clinical response after 12 months (OR, 6.125; 95% CI, 1.330-28.22), and remission after 12 months (OR, 5.333; 95% CI, 1.132-25.12).
CONCLUSIONS - In an analysis of rectal tissues from treatment-naive pediatric patients with IBD, we observed activation of a type 2 immune response during the early course of UC. We were able to distinguish patients with UC from those with colon-only CD based on increased mucosal expression of genes that mediate type 2 and type 17 immune responses. Increased expression at diagnosis of genes that mediate a type 2 immune response is associated with response to therapy and remission in pediatric patients with UC.
Copyright © 2017 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS - Idiopathic subglottic stenosis (iSGS) is a rare and devastating extrathoracic obstruction involving the lower laryngeal and upper tracheal airway. It arises without known antecedent injury or associated disease process. Persistent mucosal inflammation and a localized fibrotic response are hallmarks of the disease. Despite the initial clinical description of iSGS more than 40 year ago, there have been no substantive investigations into the pathogenesis of this enigmatic and progressive airway obstruction. In these studies, we present the initial characterization of the molecular pathogenesis underlying the fibrosing phenotype of iSGS.
METHODS - Utilizing 20 human iSGS and healthy control specimens, we applied histologic, immunohistochemical, molecular, and immunologic techniques.
RESULTS - We demonstrate significant activation of the canonical IL-23/IL-17A pathway in the tracheal mucosa of iSGS patients, as well as identify γδ T cells as the primary cellular source of IL-17A.
CONCLUSION - Our results suggest that aberrant mucosal immune activation is a component in of the pathogenesis of iSGS. Most critically, our work offers new targets for future therapeutic intervention.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE - NA Laryngoscope, 126:E356-E361, 2016.
© 2016 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Idiopathic aplastic anemia (AA) is an immune-mediated and serious form of bone marrow failure. Akin to other autoimmune diseases, we have previously shown that in AA regulatory T cells (Tregs) are reduced in number and function. The aim of this study was to further characterize Treg subpopulations in AA and investigate the potential correlation between specific Treg subsets and response to immunosuppressive therapy (IST) as well as their in vitro expandability for potential clinical use. Using mass cytometry and an unbiased multidimensional analytical approach, we identified 2 specific human Treg subpopulations (Treg A and Treg B) with distinct phenotypes, gene expression, expandability, and function. Treg B predominates in IST responder patients, has a memory/activated phenotype (with higher expression of CD95, CCR4, and CD45RO within FOXP3(hi), CD127(lo) Tregs), expresses the interleukin-2 (IL-2)/STAT5 pathway and cell-cycle commitment genes. Furthermore, in vitro-expanded Tregs become functional and take on the characteristics of Treg B. Collectively, this study identifies human Treg subpopulations that can be used as predictive biomarkers for response to IST in AA and potentially other autoimmune diseases. We also show that Tregs from AA patients are IL-2-sensitive and expandable in vitro, suggesting novel therapeutic approaches such as low-dose IL-2 therapy and/or expanded autologous Tregs and meriting further exploration.
Activating NRAS mutations are found in 15% to 20% of melanomas. Immune therapies have become a mainstay in advanced melanoma treatment. We sought to evaluate whether tumor genotype (e.g., NRAS mutations) correlates with benefit from immune therapy in melanoma. We identified 229 patients with melanoma treated with immune therapies [IL2, ipilimumab, or anti-programmed cell death-1/ligand-1 (PD-1/PD-L1)] at three centers and compared clinical outcomes following immune therapy for patients with or without NRAS mutations. Of the 229 patients with melanoma, 60 had NRAS mutation, 53 had BRAF mutation, and 116 had NRAS/BRAF wild type. The NRAS-mutant cohort had superior or a trend to superior outcomes compared with the other cohorts in terms of response to first-line immune therapy (28% vs. 16%, P = 0.04), response to any line of immune therapy (32% vs. 20%, P = 0.07), clinical benefit (response + stable disease lasting ≥ 24 weeks; 50% vs. 31%, P < 0.01), and progression-free survival (median, 4.1 vs. 2.9 months, P = 0.09). Benefit from anti-PD-1/PD-L1 was particularly marked in the NRAS cohort (clinical benefit rate 73% vs. 35%). In an independent group of patient samples, NRAS-mutant melanoma had higher PD-L1 expression (although not statistically significant) compared with other genotypes (8/12 vs. 9/20 samples with ≥ 1% expression; 6/12 vs. 6/20 samples with ≥ 5% expression), suggesting a potential mechanism for the clinical results. This retrospective study suggests that NRAS mutations in advanced melanoma correlate with increased benefit from immune-based therapies compared with other genetic subtypes. If confirmed by prospective studies, this may be explained in part by high rates of PD-L1 expression.
©2015 American Association for Cancer Research.
Treg dysfunction is associated with a variety of inflammatory diseases. Treg populations are defined by expression of the oligomeric transcription factor FOXP3 and inability to produce IL-2, a cytokine required for T cell maintenance and survival. FOXP3 activity is regulated post-translationally by histone/protein acetyltransferases and histone/protein deacetylases (HDACs). Here, we determined that HDAC3 mediates both the development and function of the two main Treg subsets, thymus-derived Tregs and induced Tregs (iTregs). We determined that HDAC3 and FOXP3 physically interact and that HDAC3 expression markedly reduces Il2 promoter activity. In murine models, conditional deletion of Hdac3 during thymic Treg development restored Treg production of IL-2 and blocked the suppressive function of Tregs. HDAC3-deficient mice died from autoimmunity by 4-6 weeks of age; however, injection of WT FOXP3+ Tregs prolonged survival. Adoptive transfer of Hdac3-deficient Tregs, unlike WT Tregs, did not control T cell proliferation in naive mice and did not prevent allograft rejection or colitis. HDAC3 also regulated the development of iTregs, as HDAC3-deficient conventional T cells were not converted into iTregs under polarizing conditions and produced large amounts of IL-2, IL-6, and IL-17. We conclude that HDAC3 is essential for the normal development and suppressive functions of thymic and peripheral FOXP3+ Tregs.
T cell receptor (TCR) signals can elicit full activation with acquisition of effector functions or a state of anergy. Here, we ask whether microRNAs affect the interpretation of TCR signaling. We find that Dicer-deficient CD4 T cells fail to correctly discriminate between activating and anergy-inducing stimuli and produce IL-2 in the absence of co-stimulation. Excess IL-2 production by Dicer-deficient CD4 T cells was sufficient to override anergy induction in WT T cells and to restore inducible Foxp3 expression in Il2-deficient CD4 T cells. Phosphorylation of Akt on S473 and of S6 ribosomal protein was increased and sustained in Dicer-deficient CD4 T cells, indicating elevated mTOR activity. The mTOR components Mtor and Rictor were posttranscriptionally deregulated, and the microRNAs Let-7 and miR-16 targeted the Mtor and Rictor mRNAs. Remarkably, returning Mtor and Rictor to normal levels by deleting one allele of Mtor and one allele of Rictor was sufficient to reduce Akt S473 phosphorylation and to reduce co-stimulation-independent IL-2 production in Dicer-deficient CD4 T cells. These results show that microRNAs regulate the expression of mTOR components in T cells, and that this regulation is critical for the modulation of mTOR activity. Hence, microRNAs contribute to the discrimination between T cell activation and anergy.
© 2014 Marcais et al.
Oxidative damage and inflammation are both implicated in the genesis of hypertension; however, the mechanisms by which these stimuli promote hypertension are not fully understood. Here, we have described a pathway in which hypertensive stimuli promote dendritic cell (DC) activation of T cells, ultimately leading to hypertension. Using multiple murine models of hypertension, we determined that proteins oxidatively modified by highly reactive γ-ketoaldehydes (isoketals) are formed in hypertension and accumulate in DCs. Isoketal accumulation was associated with DC production of IL-6, IL-1β, and IL-23 and an increase in costimulatory proteins CD80 and CD86. These activated DCs promoted T cell, particularly CD8+ T cell, proliferation; production of IFN-γ and IL-17A; and hypertension. Moreover, isoketal scavengers prevented these hypertension-associated events. Plasma F2-isoprostanes, which are formed in concert with isoketals, were found to be elevated in humans with treated hypertension and were markedly elevated in patients with resistant hypertension. Isoketal-modified proteins were also markedly elevated in circulating monocytes and DCs from humans with hypertension. Our data reveal that hypertension activates DCs, in large part by promoting the formation of isoketals, and suggest that reducing isoketals has potential as a treatment strategy for this disease.
Innate immune responses are critical for mucosal immunity. Here we describe an innate lymphocyte population, iCD8α cells, characterized by expression of CD8α homodimers. iCD8α cells exhibit innate functional characteristics such as the capacity to engulf and kill bacteria. Development of iCD8α cells depends on expression of interleukin-2 receptor γ chain (IL-2Rγc), IL-15, and the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class Ib protein H2-T3, also known as the thymus leukemia antigen or TL. While lineage tracking experiments indicated that iCD8α cells have a lymphoid origin, their development was independent of the transcriptional suppressor Id2, suggesting that these cells do not belong to the family of innate lymphoid cells. Finally, we identified cells with a similar phenotype in humans, which were profoundly depleted in newborns with necrotizing enterocolitis. These findings suggest a critical role of iCD8α cells in immune responses associated with the intestinal epithelium.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND AIMS - To develop a treatment option for Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph(+)ALL) resistant to tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), we evaluated the anti-leukemic activity of T cells non-virally engineered to express a CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptor (CAR).
METHODS - A CD19.CAR gene was delivered into mononuclear cells from 10 mL of blood of healthy donors through the use of piggyBac-transposons and the 4-D Nucleofector System. Nucleofected cells were stimulated with CD3/CD28 antibodies, magnetically selected for the CD19.CAR, and cultured in interleukin-15-containing serum-free medium with autologous feeder cells for 21 days. To evaluate their cytotoxic potency, we co-cultured CAR T cells with seven Ph(+)ALL cell lines including three TKI-resistant (T315I-mutated) lines at an effector-to-target ratio of 1:5 or lower without cytokines.
RESULTS - We obtained ∼1.3 × 10(8) CAR T cells (CD4(+), 25.4%; CD8(+), 71.3%), co-expressing CD45RA and CCR7 up to ∼80%. After 7-day co-culture, CAR T cells eradicated all tumor cells at the 1:5 and 1:10 ratios and substantially reduced tumor cell numbers at the 1:50 ratio. Kinetic analysis revealed up to 37-fold proliferation of CAR T cells during a 20-day culture period in the presence of tumor cells. On exposure to tumor cells, CAR T cells transiently and reproducibly upregulated the expression of transgene as well as tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand and interleukin-2.
CONCLUSIONS - We generated a clinically relevant number of CAR T cells from 10 mL of blood through the use of piggyBac-transposons, a 4D-Nulcleofector, and serum/xeno/tumor cell/virus-free culture system. CAR T cells exhibited marked cytotoxicity against Ph(+)ALL regardless of T315I mutation. PiggyBac-mediated CD19-specific T-cell therapy may provide an effective, inexpensive and safe option for drug-resistant Ph(+)ALL.
Copyright © 2014 International Society for Cellular Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.