Toll-like receptors (TLRs) mediate host responses to bacterial gene products. As the airway epithelium is potentially exposed to many diverse inhaled bacteria, TLRs involved in defense of the airways must be broadly responsive, available at the exposed apical surface of the cells, and highly regulated to prevent activation following trivial encounters with bacteria. We demonstrate that TLR2 is enriched in caveolin-1–associated lipid raft microdomains presented on the apical surface of airway epithelial cells after bacterial infection. These receptor complexes include myeloid differentiation protein (MyD88), interleukin-1 receptor–activated kinase-1, and TNF receptor–associated factor 6. The signaling capabilities of TLR2 are amplified through its association with the asialoganglioside gangliotetraosylceramide (Galβ1,2GalNAcβ1,4Galβ1,4Glcβ1,1Cer), which has receptor function itself for many pulmonary pathogens. Ligation of either TLR2 or asialoGM1 by ligands with specificity for either receptor, by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, or by Staphylococcus aureus stimulates IL-8 production through activation of NF-κB, as mediated by TLR2 and MyD88. Thus, TLR2 in association with asialo-glycolipids presented within the context of lipid rafts provides a broadly responsive signaling complex at the apical surfaces of airway cells to initiate the host response to potential bacterial infection.
Grace Soong, Bharat Reddy, Sach Sokol, Robert Adamo, Alice Prince
While Crohn disease (CD) has been clearly identified as a Th1 inflammation, the immunopathogenesis of its counterpart inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis (UC), remains enigmatic. Here we show that lamina propria T (LPT) cells from UC patients produce significantly greater amounts of IL-13 (and IL-5) than control cells and little IFN-γ, whereas comparable cells from CD patients produce large amounts of IFN-γ and small amounts of IL-13. We then show that stimulation of UC LPT cells bearing an NK marker (CD161) with anti-CD2/anti-CD28 or with B cells expressing transfected CD1d induces substantial IL-13 production. While this provided firm evidence that the IL-13–producing cell is an NK T (NKT) cell, it became clear that this cell does not express invariant NKT cell receptors characteristic of most NKT cells since there was no increase in cells binding α-galactosylceramide–loaded tetramers, and α-galactosylceramide did not induce IL-13 secretion. Finally, we show that both human NKT cell lines as well as UC CD161+ LPT cells are cytotoxic for HT-29 epithelial cells and that this cytotoxicity is augmented by IL-13. These studies show that UC is associated with an atypical Th2 response mediated by nonclassical NKT cells producing IL-13 and having cytotoxic potential for epithelial cells.
Ivan J. Fuss, Frank Heller, Monica Boirivant, Francisco Leon, Masaru Yoshida, Stefan Fichtner-Feigl, Zhiqiong Yang, Mark Exley, Atsushi Kitani, Richard S. Blumberg, Peter Mannon, Warren Strober
Chronic intestinal inflammation, as seen in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), results from an aberrant and poorly understood mucosal immune response to the microbiota of the gastrointestinal tract in genetically susceptible individuals. Here we used serological expression cloning to identify commensal bacterial proteins that could contribute to the pathogenesis of IBD. The dominant antigens identified were flagellins, molecules known to activate innate immunity via Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5), and critical targets of the acquired immune system in host defense. Multiple strains of colitic mice had elevated serum anti-flagellin IgG2a responses and Th1 T cell responses to flagellin. In addition, flagellin-specific CD4+ T cells induced severe colitis when adoptively transferred into naive SCID mice. Serum IgG to these flagellins, but not to the dissimilar Salmonella muenchen flagellin, was elevated in patients with Crohn disease, but not in patients with ulcerative colitis or in controls. These results identify flagellins as a class of immunodominant antigens that stimulate pathogenic intestinal immune reactions in genetically diverse hosts and suggest new avenues for the diagnosis and antigen-directed therapy of patients with IBD.
Michael J. Lodes, Yingzi Cong, Charles O. Elson, Raodoh Mohamath, Carol J. Landers, Stephan R. Targan, Madeline Fort, Robert M. Hershberg
Current paradigms of peripheral B cell selection suggest that autoreactive B cells are controlled by clonal deletion, anergy, and developmental arrest. We report that changes to the human antibody repertoire likely resulting from these mechanisms both for a well-characterized autoreactivity from antibodies encoded by the VH4-34 gene and for other hallmarks of an autoreactive repertoire are apparent mainly for class-switched B cells and not for IgM germinal center, IgM memory, or IgM plasma cells. Other possible indicators of autoreactivity found selected with immunoglobulin class include JH6 gene segment usage, increased frequency of B cells with long third hypervariable regions, and distal Jκ gene segment bias. Of particular interest is the finding that B cells with these same characteristics are selected into the lineage of B cells that have undergone the unusual class switch from constant region Cμ to Cδ (Cδ-CS). The Cδ-CS population also displays an increased frequency of charged amino acids localized to the complementarity-determining regions, further suggesting autoreactivity, and evidence is presented that these B cells had undergone extensive receptor editing. Thus, the Cδ-CS lineage may be a “sink” for B cells harboring autoreactive specificities in normal humans. A model for a new tolerizing mechanism that could account for the Cδ-CS lineage is presented.
Nai-Ying Zheng, Kenneth Wilson, Xiaojian Wang, Angela Boston, Grant Kolar, Stephen M. Jackson, Yong-Jun Liu, Virginia Pascual, J. Donald Capra, Patrick C. Wilson
The ability of autoreactive T cells to provoke autoimmune disease is well documented. The finding that immunization with attenuated autoreactive T cells (T cell vaccination, or TCV) can induce T cell–dependent inhibition of autoimmune responses has opened the possibility that regulatory T cells may be harnessed to inhibit autoimmune disease. Progress in the clinical application of TCV, however, has been slow, in part because the underlying mechanism has remained clouded in uncertainty. We have investigated the molecular basis of TCV-induced disease resistance in two murine models of autoimmunity: herpes simplex virus-1 (KOS strain)–induced herpes stromal keratitis and murine autoimmune diabetes in non-obese diabetic (NOD) mice. We find that the therapeutic effects of TCV depend on activation of suppressive CD8 cells that specifically recognize Qa-1–bound peptides expressed by autoreactive CD4 cells. We clarify the molecular interaction between Qa-1 and self peptides that generates biologically active ligands capable of both inducing suppressive CD8 cells and targeting them to autoreactive CD4 cells. These studies suggest that vaccination with peptide-pulsed cells bearing the human equivalent of murine Qa-1 (HLA-E) may represent a convenient and effective clinical approach to cellular therapy of autoimmune disease.
Vily Panoutsakopoulou, Katharina M. Huster, Nami McCarty, Evan Feinberg, Rijian Wang, Kai W. Wucherpfennig, Harvey Cantor
Studies of B cell antigen receptors (BCRs) expressed by leukemic lymphocytes from patients with B cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) suggest that B lymphocytes with some level of BCR structural restriction become transformed. While analyzing rearranged VHDJH and VLJL genes of 25 non–IgM-producing B-CLL cases, we found five IgG+ cases that display strikingly similar BCRs (use of the same H- and L-chain V gene segments with unique, shared heavy chain third complementarity-determining region [HCDR3] and light chain third complementarity-determining region [LCDR3] motifs). These H- and L-chain characteristics were not identified in other B-CLL cases or in normal B lymphocytes whose sequences are available in the public databases. Three-dimensional modeling studies suggest that these BCRs could bind the same antigenic epitope. The structural features of the B-CLL BCRs resemble those of mAb’s reactive with carbohydrate determinants of bacterial capsules or viral coats and with certain autoantigens. These findings suggest that the B lymphocytes that gave rise to these IgG+ B-CLL cells were selected for this unique BCR structure. This selection could have occurred because the precursors of the B-CLL cells were chosen for their antigen-binding capabilities by antigen(s) of restricted nature and structure, or because the precursors derived from a B cell subpopulation with limited BCR heterogeneity, or both.
Fabio Ghiotto, Franco Fais, Angelo Valetto, Emilia Albesiano, Shiori Hashimoto, Mariella Dono, Hideyuki Ikematsu, Steven L. Allen, Jonathan Kolitz, Kanti R. Rai, Marco Nardini, Anna Tramontano, Manlio Ferrarini, Nicholas Chiorazzi
Regulatory T (TR) cells consist of phenotypically and functionally distinct CD4+ and CD8+ T cell subsets engaged both in maintaining self-tolerance and in preventing anti–non-self effector responses (microbial, tumor, transplant, and so on) that may be harmful to the host. Here we propose that the proinflammatory function of virus-specific memory effector CCR7–CD8+ T cells, which are massively recruited in the liver, are inefficient (in terms of IFN-γ production) in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection because of the concomitant presence of virus-specific CCR7–CD8+ TR cells producing considerable amounts of IL-10. These CD8+ TR cells are antigen specific, as they can be stimulated by HCV epitopes and suppress T cell responses that are in turn restored by the addition of neutralizing anti–IL-10. This study provides for the first time to our knowledge direct evidence of the existence of virus-specific CD8+ TR cells that infiltrate the livers of patients with chronic HCV infection, identifies IL-10 as a soluble inhibitory factor mediating suppression, and suggests that these cells play a pivotal role in controlling hepatic effector CD8+ T cell responses.
Daniele Accapezzato, Vittorio Francavilla, Marino Paroli, Marco Casciaro, Lucia Valeria Chircu, Agostino Cividini, Sergio Abrignani, Mario U. Mondelli, Vincenzo Barnaba
The prevailing paradigm is that in human rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the accumulation of monocytes and T cells in the joint, mediated in part by such CC chemokine receptors (CCRs) as CCR2 and CCR5, respectively, plays a central role in disease pathogenesis. To further validate this paradigm, we conducted proof-of-principle studies and tested the hypothesis that gene inactivation of Ccr2 or Ccr5 will ameliorate experimental RA. Contrary to our expectations, we found that in two well-established murine models of experimental RA, CCR2 expression in the hematopoietic cell compartment served as a negative regulator of autoantibody production as well as arthritic disease onset, severity, and resolution. In contrast, the RA phenotype in Ccr5-null mice was similar to that of WT mice. Remarkably, the collagen-induced arthritis phenotype of Ccr2–/– mice mimicked closely that of severe human RA, including production of rheumatoid factor, enhanced T cell production, and monocyte/macrophage accumulation in the joints. Our findings demonstrate an essential protective role of CCR2 expression in RA, indicate the existence of alternative receptors responsible for monocyte/macrophage accumulation to inflamed joints, and emphasize the need to clarify carefully the complex effects of the chemokine system in RA before they can be considered as therapeutic targets.
Marlon P. Quinones, Sunil K. Ahuja, Fabio Jimenez, Jason Schaefer, Edgar Garavito, Arun Rao, George Chenaux, Robert L. Reddick, William A. Kuziel, Seema S. Ahuja
While much experimental data shows that vaccination efficiently inhibits a subsequent challenge by a transplantable tumor, its ability to inhibit the progress of autochthonous preneoplastic lesions is virtually unknown. In this article, we show that a combined DNA and cell vaccine persistently inhibits such lesions in a murine HER-2/neu mammary carcinogenesis model. At 10 weeks of age, all of the ten mammary gland samples from HER-2/neu–transgenic mice displayed foci of hyperplasia that progressed to invasive tumors. Vaccination with plasmids coding for the transmembrane and extracellular domain of rat p185neu followed by a boost with rp185neu+ allogeneic cells secreting IFN-γ kept 48% of mice tumor free. At 22 weeks, their mammary glands were indistinguishable from those of 10-week-old untreated mice. Furthermore, the transcription patterns of the two sets of glands coincided. Of the 12,000 genes analyzed, 17 were differentially expressed and related to the antibody response. The use of B cell knockout mice as well as the concordance of morphologic and gene expression data demonstrated that the Ab response is the main mechanism facilitating tumor growth arrest. This finding suggests that a new way can be found to secure the immunologic control of the progression of HER-2/neu preneoplastic lesions.
Elena Quaglino, Simona Rolla, Manuela Iezzi, Michela Spadaro, Piero Musiani, Carla De Giovanni, Pier Luigi Lollini, Stefania Lanzardo, Guido Forni, Remo Sanges, Stefania Crispi, Pasquale De Luca, Raffaele Calogero, Federica Cavallo
IκB proteins play an important role in regulating NF-κB induction following a diverse range of environmental injuries. Studies evaluating IκBβ knock-in mice (AKBI), in which the IκBα gene is replaced by the IκBβ cDNA, have uncovered divergent properties of IκBα and IκBβ that influence their ability to activate hepatic NF-κB and subsequent downstream proinflammatory processes in a stimulus-specific manner. While AKBI mice demonstrated identical levels of hepatic NF-κB activation in response to endotoxin, a significantly reduced level of hepatic NF-κB activation was observed in AKBI mice after liver ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. This reduced level of NF-κB activation in AKBI mice after liver I/R also correlated with decreased induction of serum TNF-α, reduced hepatic inflammation, and increased survival. In contrast, no differences in any of these indicators were observed between AKBI mice and WT littermates after a lethal injection of LPS. Molecular studies suggest that the specificity of IκBα, but not IκBβ, to properly regulate NF-κB induction during the acute phase of I/R injury is due to injury context–specific activation of c-Src and subsequent tyrosine phosphorylation of IκBα on Tyr42. These results demonstrate that IκBα and IκBβ play unique injury context–specific roles in activating NF-κB–mediated proinflammatory responses and suggest that strategies aimed at inhibiting IκBα gene expression may be of potential therapeutic benefit in hepatic I/R injury.
Chenguang Fan, Qiang Li, Yulong Zhang, Xiaoming Liu, Meihui Luo, Duane Abbott, Weihong Zhou, John F. Engelhardt