TLRs are a family of receptors that mediate immune system pathogen recognition. In the respiratory system, TLR activation has both beneficial and deleterious effects in asthma. For example, clinical data indicate that TLR6 activation exerts protective effects in asthma. Here, we explored the mechanism or mechanisms through which TLR6 mediates this effect using mouse models of Aspergillus fumigatus–induced and house dust mite antigen–induced (HDM antigen–induced) chronic asthma. Tlr6–/– mice with fungal- or HDM antigen–induced asthma exhibited substantially increased airway hyperresponsiveness, inflammation, and remodeling compared with WT asthmatic groups. Surprisingly, whole-lung levels of IL-23 and IL-17 were markedly lower in Tlr6–/– versus WT asthmatic mice. Tlr6–/– DCs generated less IL-23 upon activation with lipopolysaccharide, zymosan, or curdlan. Impaired IL-23 generation in Tlr6–/– mice also corresponded with lower levels of expression of the pathogen-recognition receptor dectin-1 and expansion of Th17 cells both in vivo and in vitro. Exogenous IL-23 treatment of asthmatic Tlr6–/– mice restored IL-17A production and substantially reduced airway hyperresponsiveness, inflammation, and lung fungal burden compared with that in untreated asthmatic Tlr6–/– mice. Together, our data demonstrate that TLR6 activation is critical for IL-23 production and Th17 responses, which both regulate the allergic inflammatory response in chronic fungal-induced asthma. Thus, therapeutics targeting TLR6 activity might prove efficacious in the treatment of clinical asthma.
Ana Paula Moreira, Karen A. Cavassani, Ugur B. Ismailoglu, Rikki Hullinger, Michael P. Dunleavy, Darryl A. Knight, Steven L. Kunkel, Satoshi Uematsu, Shizuo Akira, Cory M. Hogaboam
Systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) is a potentially lethal condition, as it can progress to shock, multi-organ failure, and death. It can be triggered by infection, tissue damage, or hemorrhage. The role of tissue injury in the progression from SIRS to shock is incompletely understood. Here, we show that treatment of mice with concanavalin A (ConA) to induce liver injury triggered a G-CSF–dependent hepatic infiltration of CD11b+Gr-1+Ly6G+Ly6C+ immature myeloid cells that expressed the orphan receptor myeloid DAP12–associated lectin–1 (MDL-1; also known as CLEC5A). Activation of MDL-1 using dengue virus or an agonist MDL-1–specific antibody in the ConA-treated mice resulted in shock. The MDL-1+ cells were pathogenic, and in vivo depletion of MDL-1+ cells provided protection. Triggering MDL-1 on these cells induced production of NO and TNF-α, which were found to be elevated in the serum of treated mice and required for MDL-1–induced shock. Surprisingly, MDL-1–induced NO and TNF-α production required eNOS but not iNOS. Activation of DAP12, DAP10, Syk, PI3K, and Akt was critical for MDL-1–induced shock. In addition, Akt physically interacted with and activated eNOS. Therefore, triggering of MDL-1 on immature myeloid cells and production of NO and TNF-α may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of shock. Targeting the MDL-1/Syk/PI3K/Akt/eNOS pathway represents a potential new therapeutic strategy to prevent the progression of SIRS to shock.
Ricky Cheung, Fran Shen, Joseph H. Phillips, Mandy J. McGeachy, Daniel J. Cua, Paul G. Heyworth, Robert H. Pierce
Tregs not only keep immune responses to autoantigens in check, but also restrain those directed toward pathogens and the commensal microbiota. Control of peripheral immune homeostasis by Tregs relies on their capacity to accumulate at inflamed sites and appropriately adapt to their local environment. To date, the factors involved in the control of these aspects of Treg physiology remain poorly understood. Here, we show that the canonical Th2 transcription factor GATA3 is selectively expressed in Tregs residing in barrier sites including the gastrointestinal tract and the skin. GATA3 expression in both murine and human Tregs was induced upon TCR and IL-2 stimulation. Although GATA3 was not required to sustain Treg homeostasis and function at steady state, GATA3 played a cardinal role in Treg physiology during inflammation. Indeed, the intrinsic expression of GATA3 by Tregs was required for their ability to accumulate at inflamed sites and to maintain high levels of Foxp3 expression in various polarized or inflammatory settings. Furthermore, our data indicate that GATA3 limits Treg polarization toward an effector T cell phenotype and acquisition of effector cytokines in inflamed tissues. Overall, our work reveals what we believe to be a new facet in the complex role of GATA3 in T cells and highlights what may be a fundamental role in controlling Treg physiology during inflammation.
Elizabeth A. Wohlfert, John R. Grainger, Nicolas Bouladoux, Joanne E. Konkel, Guillaume Oldenhove, Carolina Hager Ribeiro, Jason A. Hall, Ryoji Yagi, Shruti Naik, Ravikiran Bhairavabhotla, William E. Paul, Remy Bosselut, Gang Wei, Keji Zhao, Mohamed Oukka, Jinfang Zhu, Yasmine Belkaid
CD8+ T cells are a key component of the adaptive immune response to viral infection. An inadequate CD8+ T cell response is thought to be partly responsible for the persistent chronic infection that arises following infection with HIV. It is therefore critical to identify ways to define what constitutes an adequate or inadequate response. IFN-γ production has been used as a measure of T cell function, but the relationship between cytokine production and the ability of a cell to lyse virus-infected cells is not clear. Moreover, the ability to assess multiple CD8+ T cell functions with single-cell resolution using freshly isolated blood samples, and subsequently to recover these cells for further functional analyses, has not been achieved. As described here, to address this need, we have developed a high-throughput, automated assay in 125-pl microwells to simultaneously evaluate the ability of thousands of individual CD8+ T cells from HIV-infected patients to mediate lysis and to produce cytokines. This concurrent, direct analysis enabled us to investigate the correlation between immediate cytotoxic activity and short-term cytokine secretion. The majority of in vivo primed, circulating HIV-specific CD8+ T cells were discordant for cytolysis and cytokine secretion, notably IFN-γ, when encountering cognate antigen presented on defined numbers of cells. Our approach should facilitate determination of signatures of functional variance among individual effector CD8+ T cells, including those from mucosal samples and those induced by vaccines.
Navin Varadarajan, Boris Julg, Yvonne J. Yamanaka, Huabiao Chen, Adebola O. Ogunniyi, Elizabeth McAndrew, Lindsay C. Porter, Alicja Piechocka-Trocha, Brenna J. Hill, Daniel C. Douek, Florencia Pereyra, Bruce D. Walker, J. Christopher Love
T cells recognize antigens via their cell surface TCR and are classified as either αβ or γδ depending on the variable chains in their TCR, α and β or γ and δ, respectively. Both αβ and γδ TCRs also contain several invariant chains, including CD3δ, which support surface TCR expression and transduce the TCR signal. Mutations in variable chains would be expected to affect a single T cell lineage, while mutations in the invariant chains would affect all T cells. Consistent with this, all CD3δ-deficient patients described to date showed a complete block in T cell development. However, CD3δ-KO mice have an αβ T cell–specific defect. Here, we report 2 unrelated cases of SCID with a selective block in αβ but not in γδ T cell development, associated with a new splicing mutation in the CD3D gene. The patients’ T cells showed reduced CD3D transcripts, CD3δ proteins, surface TCR, and early TCR signaling. Their lymph nodes showed severe T cell depletion, recent thymus emigrants in peripheral blood were strongly decreased, and the scant αβ T cells were oligoclonal. T cell–dependent B cell functions were also impaired, despite the presence of normal B cell numbers. Strikingly, despite the specific loss of αβ T cells, surface TCR expression was more reduced in γδ than in αβ T cells. Analysis of individuals with this CD3D mutation thus demonstrates the contrasting CD3δ requirements for αβ versus γδ T cell development and TCR expression in humans and highlights the diagnostic and clinical relevance of studying both TCR isotypes when a T cell defect is suspected.
Juana Gil, Elena M. Busto, Beatriz Garcillán, Carmen Chean, Maria Cruz García-Rodríguez, Andrea Díaz-Alderete, Joaquín Navarro, Jesús Reiné, Angeles Mencía, Dolores Gurbindo, Cristina Beléndez, Isabel Gordillo, Marlena Duchniewicz, Kerstin Höhne, Félix García-Sánchez, Eduardo Fernández-Cruz, Eduardo López-Granados, Wolfgang W.A. Schamel, Miguel A. Moreno-Pelayo, María J. Recio, José R. Regueiro
Immune cells are key regulators of neoplastic progression, which is often mediated through their release of cytokines. Inflammatory cytokines such as IL-6 exert tumor-promoting activities by driving growth and survival of neoplastic cells. However, whether these cytokines also have a role in recruiting mediators of adaptive anticancer immunity has not been investigated. Here, we report that homeostatic trafficking of tumor-reactive CD8+ T cells across microvascular checkpoints is limited in tumors despite the presence of inflammatory cytokines. Intravital imaging in tumor-bearing mice revealed that systemic thermal therapy (core temperature elevated to 39.5°C ± 0.5°C for 6 hours) activated an IL-6 trans-signaling program in the tumor blood vessels that modified the vasculature such that it could support enhanced trafficking of CD8+ effector/memory T cells (Tems) into tumors. A concomitant decrease in tumor infiltration by Tregs during systemic thermal therapy resulted in substantial enhancement of Tem/Treg ratios. Mechanistically, IL-6 produced by nonhematopoietic stromal cells acted cooperatively with soluble IL-6 receptor–α and thermally induced gp130 to promote E/P-selectin– and ICAM-1–dependent extravasation of cytotoxic T cells in tumors. Parallel increases in vascular adhesion were induced by IL-6/soluble IL-6 receptor–α fusion protein in mouse tumors and patient tumor explants. Finally, a causal link was established between IL-6–dependent licensing of tumor vessels for Tem trafficking and apoptosis of tumor targets. These findings suggest that the unique IL-6–rich tumor microenvironment can be exploited to create a therapeutic window to boost T cell–mediated antitumor immunity and immunotherapy.
Daniel T. Fisher, Qing Chen, Joseph J. Skitzki, Jason B. Muhitch, Lei Zhou, Michelle M. Appenheimer, Trupti D. Vardam, Emily L. Weis, Jessica Passanese, Wan-Chao Wang, Sandra O. Gollnick, Mark W. Dewhirst, Stefan Rose-John, Elizabeth A. Repasky, Heinz Baumann, Sharon S. Evans
Mast cell degranulation is important in the pathogenesis of anaphylaxis and allergic disorders. Many animal venoms contain components that can induce mast cell degranulation, and this has been thought to contribute to the pathology and mortality caused by envenomation. However, we recently reported evidence that mast cells can enhance the resistance of mice to the venoms of certain snakes and that mouse mast cell–derived carboxypeptidase A3 (CPA3) can contribute to this effect. Here, we investigated whether mast cells can enhance resistance to the venom of the Gila monster, a toxic component of that venom (helodermin), and the structurally similar mammalian peptide, vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP). Using 2 types of mast cell–deficient mice, as well as mice selectively lacking CPA3 activity or the chymase mouse mast cell protease-4 (MCPT4), we found that mast cells and MCPT4, which can degrade helodermin, can enhance host resistance to the toxicity of Gila monster venom. Mast cells and MCPT4 also can limit the toxicity associated with high concentrations of VIP and can reduce the morbidity and mortality induced by venoms from 2 species of scorpions. Our findings support the notion that mast cells can enhance innate defense by degradation of diverse animal toxins and that release of MCPT4, in addition to CPA3, can contribute to this mast cell function.
Mitsuteru Akahoshi, Chang Ho Song, Adrian M. Piliponsky, Martin Metz, Andrew Guzzetta, Magnus Åbrink, Susan M. Schlenner, Thorsten B. Feyerabend, Hans-Reimer Rodewald, Gunnar Pejler, Mindy Tsai, Stephen J. Galli
Pneumococcal meningitis is the most common and severe form of bacterial meningitis. Fatality rates are substantial, and long-term sequelae develop in about half of survivors. Disease outcome has been related to the severity of the proinflammatory response in the subarachnoid space. The complement system, which mediates key inflammatory processes, has been implicated as a modulator of pneumococcal meningitis disease severity in animal studies. Additionally, SNPs in genes encoding complement pathway proteins have been linked to susceptibility to pneumococcal infection, although no associations with disease severity or outcome have been established. Here, we have performed a robust prospective nationwide genetic association study in patients with bacterial meningitis and found that a common nonsynonymous complement component 5 (C5) SNP (rs17611) is associated with unfavorable disease outcome. C5 fragment levels in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients with bacterial meningitis correlated with several clinical indicators of poor prognosis. Consistent with these human data, C5a receptor–deficient mice with pneumococcal meningitis had lower CSF wbc counts and decreased brain damage compared with WT mice. Adjuvant treatment with C5-specific monoclonal antibodies prevented death in all mice with pneumococcal meningitis. Thus, our results suggest C5-specific monoclonal antibodies could be a promising new antiinflammatory adjuvant therapy for pneumococcal meningitis.
Bianca Woehrl, Matthijs C. Brouwer, Carmen Murr, Sebastiaan G.B. Heckenberg, Frank Baas, Hans W. Pfister, Aeilko H. Zwinderman, B. Paul Morgan, Scott R. Barnum, Arie van der Ende, Uwe Koedel, Diederik van de Beek
Cancer immunotherapeutic approaches induce tumor-specific immune responses, in particular CTL responses, in many patients treated. However, such approaches are clinically beneficial to only a few patients. We set out to investigate one possible explanation for the failure of CTLs to eliminate tumors, specifically, the concept that this failure is not dependent on inhibition of T cell function. In a previous study, we found that in mice, myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) are a source of the free radical peroxynitrite (PNT). Here, we show that pre-treatment of mouse and human tumor cells with PNT or with MDSCs inhibits binding of processed peptides to tumor cell–associated MHC, and as a result, tumor cells become resistant to antigen-specific CTLs. This effect was abrogated in MDSCs treated with a PNT inhibitor. In a mouse model of tumor-associated inflammation in which the antitumor effects of antigen-specific CTLs are eradicated by expression of IL-1β in the tumor cells, we determined that therapeutic failure was not caused by more profound suppression of CTLs by IL-1β–expressing tumors than tumors not expressing this proinflammatory cytokine. Rather, therapeutic failure was a result of the presence of PNT. Clinical relevance for these data was suggested by the observation that myeloid cells were the predominant source of PNT in human lung, pancreatic, and breast cancer samples. Our data therefore suggest what we believe to be a novel mechanism of MDSC-mediated tumor cell resistance to CTLs.
Tangying Lu, Rupal Ramakrishnan, Soner Altiok, Je-In Youn, Pingyan Cheng, Esteban Celis, Vladimir Pisarev, Simon Sherman, Michael B. Sporn, Dmitry Gabrilovich
B cell activation factor of the TNF family (BAFF) is a potent B cell survival factor. BAFF overexpressing transgenic mice (BAFF-Tg mice) exhibit features of autoimmune disease, including B cell hyperplasia and hypergammaglobulinemia, and develop fatal nephritis with age. However, basal serum IgA levels are also elevated, suggesting that the pathology in these mice may be more complex than initially appreciated. Consistent with this, we demonstrate here that BAFF-Tg mice have mesangial deposits of IgA along with high circulating levels of polymeric IgA that is aberrantly glycosylated. Renal disease in BAFF-Tg mice was associated with IgA, because serum IgA was highly elevated in nephritic mice and BAFF-Tg mice with genetic deletion of IgA exhibited less renal pathology. The presence of commensal flora was essential for the elevated serum IgA phenotype, and, unexpectedly, commensal bacteria–reactive IgA antibodies were found in the blood. These data illustrate how excess B cell survival signaling perturbs the normal balance with the microbiota, leading to a breach in the normal mucosal-peripheral compartmentalization. Such breaches may predispose the nonmucosal system to certain immune diseases. Indeed, we found that a subset of patients with IgA nephropathy had elevated serum levels of a proliferation inducing ligand (APRIL), a cytokine related to BAFF. These parallels between BAFF-Tg mice and human IgA nephropathy may provide a new framework to explore connections between mucosal environments and renal pathology.
Douglas D. McCarthy, Julie Kujawa, Cheryl Wilson, Adrian Papandile, Urjana Poreci, Elisa A. Porfilio, Lesley Ward, Melissa A.E. Lawson, Andrew J. Macpherson, Kathy D. McCoy, York Pei, Lea Novak, Jeannette Y. Lee, Bruce A. Julian, Jan Novak, Ann Ranger, Jennifer L. Gommerman, Jeffrey L. Browning