Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) reside in the bone marrow. Stress signals from cancer and other conditions promote HSPC mobilization into circulation and subsequent homing to tissue microenvironments. HSPC infiltration into tissue microenvironments can influence disease progression; notably, in cancer, HSPCs encourage tumor growth. Here we have uncovered a mutually exclusive distribution of EPHB4 receptors in bone marrow sinusoids and ephrin B2 ligands in hematopoietic cells. We determined that signaling interactions between EPHB4 and ephrin B2 control HSPC mobilization from the bone marrow. In mice, blockade of the EPHB4/ephrin B2 signaling pathway reduced mobilization of HSPCs and other myeloid cells to the circulation. EPHB4/ephrin B2 blockade also reduced HSPC infiltration into tumors as well as tumor progression in murine models of melanoma and mammary cancer. These results identify EPHB4/ephrin B2 signaling as critical to HSPC mobilization from bone marrow and provide a potential strategy for reducing cancer progression by targeting the bone marrow.
Hyeongil Kwak, Ombretta Salvucci, Roberto Weigert, Jorge L. Martinez-Torrecuadrada, Mark Henkemeyer, Michael G. Poulos, Jason M. Butler, Giovanna Tosato
Arterial blood pressure is controlled by vasodilatory factors such as nitric oxide (NO) that are released from the endothelium under the influence of fluid shear stress exerted by flowing blood. Flow-induced endothelial release of ATP and subsequent activation of Gq/G11–coupled purinergic P2Y2 receptors have been shown to mediate fluid shear stress–induced stimulation of NO formation. However, the mechanism by which fluid shear stress initiates these processes is unclear. Here, we have shown that the endothelial mechanosensitive cation channel PIEZO1 is required for flow-induced ATP release and subsequent P2Y2/Gq/G11–mediated activation of downstream signaling that results in phosphorylation and activation of AKT and endothelial NOS. We also demonstrated that PIEZO1-dependent ATP release is mediated in part by pannexin channels. The PIEZO1 activator Yoda1 mimicked the effect of fluid shear stress on endothelial cells and induced vasorelaxation in a PIEZO1-dependent manner. Furthermore, mice with induced endothelium-specific PIEZO1 deficiency lost the ability to induce NO formation and vasodilation in response to flow and consequently developed hypertension. Together, our data demonstrate that PIEZO1 is required for the regulation of NO formation, vascular tone, and blood pressure.
ShengPeng Wang, Ramesh Chennupati, Harmandeep Kaur, Andras Iring, Nina Wettschureck, Stefan Offermanns
Certain secretory proteins are known to be critical for maintaining the stemness of stem cells through autocrine signaling. However, the processes underlying the biogenesis, maturation, and secretion of these proteins remain largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that many secretory proteins produced by hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) undergo exosomal maturation and release that is controlled by vacuolar protein sorting protein 33b (VPS33B). Deletion of
Hao Gu, Chiqi Chen, Xiaoxin Hao, Conghui Wang, Xiaocui Zhang, Zhen Li, Hongfang Shao, Hongxiang Zeng, Zhuo Yu, Li Xie, Fangzhen Xia, Feifei Zhang, Xiaoye Liu, Yaping Zhang, Haishan Jiang, Jun Zhu, Jiangbo Wan, Chun Wang, Wei Weng, Jingjing Xie, Minfang Tao, Cheng Cheng Zhang, Junling Liu, Guo-Qiang Chen, Junke Zheng
Neuronal oscillations at beta frequencies (20–50 Hz) in the cortico-basal ganglia circuits have long been the leading theory for bradykinesia, the slow movements that are cardinal symptoms in Parkinson’s disease (PD). The beta oscillation theory helped to drive a frequency-based design in the development of deep brain stimulation therapy for PD. However, in contrast to this theory, here we have found that bradykinesia can be completely dissociated from beta oscillations in rodent models. Instead, we observed that bradykinesia is causatively regulated by the burst-firing pattern of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) in a feed-forward, or efferent-only, mechanism. Furthermore, STN burst-firing and beta oscillations are two independent mechanisms that are regulated by different NMDA receptors in STN. Our results shift the understanding of bradykinesia pathophysiology from an interactive oscillatory theory toward a feed-forward mechanism that is coded by firing patterns. This distinct mechanism may improve understanding of the fundamental concepts of motor control and enable more selective targeting of bradykinesia-specific mechanisms to improve PD therapy.
Ming-Kai Pan, Sheng-Han Kuo, Chun-Hwei Tai, Jyun-You Liou, Ju-Chun Pei, Chia-Yuan Chang, Yi-Mei Wang, Wen-Chuan Liu, Tien-Rei Wang, Wen-Sung Lai, Chung-Chin Kuo
Current chemotherapies for T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) efficiently reduce tumor mass. Nonetheless, disease relapse attributed to survival of preleukemic stem cells (pre-LSCs) is associated with poor prognosis. Herein, we provide direct evidence that pre-LSCs are much less chemosensitive to existing chemotherapy drugs than leukemic blasts because of a distinctive lower proliferative state. Improving therapies for T-ALL requires the development of strategies to target pre-LSCs that are absolutely dependent on their microenvironment. Therefore, we designed a robust protocol for high-throughput screening of compounds that target primary pre-LSCs maintained in a niche-like environment, on stromal cells that were engineered for optimal NOTCH1 activation. The multiparametric readout takes into account the intrinsic complexity of primary cells in order to specifically monitor pre-LSCs, which were induced here by the
Bastien Gerby, Diogo F.T. Veiga, Jana Krosl, Sami Nourreddine, Julianne Ouellette, André Haman, Geneviève Lavoie, Iman Fares, Mathieu Tremblay, Véronique Litalien, Elizabeth Ottoni, Milena Kosic, Dominique Geoffrion, Joël Ryan, Paul S. Maddox, Jalila Chagraoui, Anne Marinier, Josée Hébert, Guy Sauvageau, Benjamin H. Kwok, Philippe P. Roux, Trang Hoang
Cellular identity in metazoan organisms is frequently established through lineage-specifying transcription factors, which control their own expression through transcriptional positive feedback, while antagonizing the developmental networks of competing lineages. Here, we have uncovered a distinct positive feedback loop that arises from the reciprocal stabilization of the tyrosine kinase ABL and the transcriptional coactivator TAZ. Moreover, we determined that this loop is required for osteoblast differentiation and embryonic skeletal formation. ABL potentiated the assembly and activation of the RUNX2-TAZ master transcription factor complex that is required for osteoblastogenesis, while antagonizing PPARγ-mediated adipogenesis. ABL also enhanced TAZ nuclear localization and the formation of the TAZ-TEAD complex that is required for osteoblast expansion. Last, we have provided genetic data showing that regulation of the ABL-TAZ amplification loop lies downstream of the adaptor protein 3BP2, which is mutated in the craniofacial dysmorphia syndrome cherubism. Our study demonstrates an interplay between ABL and TAZ that controls the mesenchymal maturation program toward the osteoblast lineage and is mechanistically distinct from the established model of lineage-specific maturation.
Yoshinori Matsumoto, Jose La Rose, Oliver A. Kent, Melany J. Wagner, Masahiro Narimatsu, Aaron D. Levy, Mitchell H. Omar, Jiefei Tong, Jonathan R. Krieger, Emily Riggs, Yaryna Storozhuk, Julia Pasquale, Manuela Ventura, Behzad Yeganeh, Martin Post, Michael F. Moran, Marc D. Grynpas, Jeffrey L. Wrana, Giulio Superti-Furga, Anthony J. Koleske, Ann Marie Pendergast, Robert Rottapel
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
Interactions between multiple myeloma (MM) cells and the BM microenvironment play a critical role in bortezomib (BTZ) resistance. However, the mechanisms involved in these interactions are not completely understood. We previously showed that expression of CYP26 in BM stromal cells maintains a retinoic acid–low (RA-low) microenvironment that prevents the differentiation of normal and malignant hematopoietic cells. Since a low secretory B cell phenotype is associated with BTZ resistance in MM and retinoid signaling promotes plasma cell differentiation and Ig production, we investigated whether stromal expression of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase CYP26 modulates BTZ sensitivity in the BM niche. CYP26-mediated inactivation of RA within the BM microenvironment prevented plasma cell differentiation and promoted a B cell–like, BTZ-resistant phenotype in human MM cells that were cocultured on BM stroma. Moreover, paracrine Hedgehog secretion by MM cells upregulated stromal CYP26 and further reinforced a protective microenvironment. These results suggest that crosstalk between Hedgehog and retinoid signaling modulates BTZ sensitivity in the BM niche. Targeting these pathological interactions holds promise for eliminating minimal residual disease in MM.
Salvador Alonso, Daniela Hernandez, Yu-ting Chang, Christian D. Gocke, Megan McCray, Ravi Varadhan, William H. Matsui, Richard J. Jones, Gabriel Ghiaur
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
Interactions of diet, gut microbiota, and host genetics play important roles in the development of obesity and insulin resistance. Here, we have investigated the molecular links between gut microbiota, insulin resistance, and glucose metabolism in 3 inbred mouse strains with differing susceptibilities to metabolic syndrome using diet and antibiotic treatment. Antibiotic treatment altered intestinal microbiota, decreased tissue inflammation, improved insulin signaling in basal and stimulated states, and improved glucose metabolism in obesity- and diabetes-prone C57BL/6J mice on a high-fat diet (HFD). Many of these changes were reproduced by the transfer of gut microbiota from antibiotic-treated donors to germ-free or germ-depleted mice. These physiological changes closely correlated with changes in serum bile acids and levels of the antiinflammatory bile acid receptor Takeda G protein–coupled receptor 5 (TGR5) and were partially recapitulated by treatment with a TGR5 agonist. In contrast, antibiotic treatment of HFD-fed, obesity-resistant 129S1 and obesity-prone 129S6 mice did not improve metabolism, despite changes in microbiota and bile acids. These mice also failed to show a reduction in inflammatory gene expression in response to the TGR5 agonist. Thus, changes in bile acid and inflammatory signaling, insulin resistance, and glucose metabolism driven by an HFD can be modified by antibiotic-induced changes in gut microbiota; however, these effects depend on important interactions with the host’s genetic background and inflammatory potential.
Shiho Fujisaka, Siegfried Ussar, Clary Clish, Suzanne Devkota, Jonathan M. Dreyfuss, Masaji Sakaguchi, Marion Soto, Masahiro Konishi, Samir Softic, Emrah Altindis, Ning Li, Georg Gerber, Lynn Bry, C. Ronald Kahn
Rapid impulse propagation in the heart is a defining property of pectinated atrial myocardium (PAM) and the ventricular conduction system (VCS) and is essential for maintaining normal cardiac rhythm and optimal cardiac output. Conduction defects in these tissues produce a disproportionate burden of arrhythmic disease and are major predictors of mortality in heart failure patients. Despite the clinical importance, little is known about the gene regulatory network that dictates the fast conduction phenotype. Here, we have used signal transduction and transcriptional profiling screens to identify a genetic pathway that converges on the NRG1-responsive transcription factor ETV1 as a critical regulator of fast conduction physiology for PAM and VCS cardiomyocytes.
Akshay Shekhar, Xianming Lin, Fang-Yu Liu, Jie Zhang, Huan Mo, Lisa Bastarache, Joshua C. Denny, Nancy J. Cox, Mario Delmar, Dan M. Roden, Glenn I. Fishman, David S. Park
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
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
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
A vast number of cancer genes are transcription factors that drive tumorigenesis as oncogenic fusion proteins. Although the direct targeting of transcription factors remains challenging, therapies aimed at oncogenic fusion proteins are attractive as potential treatments for cancer. There is particular interest in targeting the oncogenic PAX3-FOXO1 fusion transcription factor, which induces alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma (aRMS), an aggressive cancer of skeletal muscle cells for which patient outcomes remain dismal. In this work, we have defined the interactome of PAX3-FOXO1 and screened 60 candidate interactors using siRNA-mediated depletion to identify candidates that affect fusion protein activity in aRMS cells. We report that chromodomain helicase DNA binding protein 4 (CHD4), an ATP-dependent chromatin remodeler, acts as crucial coregulator of PAX3-FOXO1 activity. CHD4 interacts with PAX3-FOXO1 via short DNA fragments. Together, they bind to regulatory regions of PAX3-FOXO1 target genes. Gene expression analysis suggested that CHD4 coregulatory activity is essential for a subset of PAX3-FOXO1 target genes. Depletion of CHD4 reduced cell viability of fusion-positive but not of fusion-negative RMS in vitro, which resembled loss of PAX3-FOXO1. It also caused specific regression of fusion-positive xenograft tumors in vivo. Therefore, this work identifies CHD4 as an epigenetic coregulator of PAX3-FOXO1 activity, providing rational evidence for CHD4 as a potential therapeutic target in aRMS.
Maria Böhm, Marco Wachtel, Joana G. Marques, Natalie Streiff, Dominik Laubscher, Paolo Nanni, Kamel Mamchaoui, Raffaella Santoro, Beat W. Schäfer
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes (T2D), but whether NAFLD plays a causal role in the pathogenesis of T2D is uncertain. One proposed mechanism linking NAFLD to hepatic insulin resistance involves diacylglycerol-mediated (DAG-mediated) activation of protein kinase C-ε (PKCε) and the consequent inhibition of insulin receptor (INSR) kinase activity. However, the molecular mechanism underlying PKCε inhibition of INSR kinase activity is unknown. Here, we used mass spectrometry to identify the phosphorylation site Thr1160 as a PKCε substrate in the functionally critical INSR kinase activation loop. We hypothesized that Thr1160 phosphorylation impairs INSR kinase activity by destabilizing the active configuration of the INSR kinase, and our results confirmed this prediction by demonstrating severely impaired INSR kinase activity in phosphomimetic T1160E mutants. Conversely, the INSR T1160A mutant was not inhibited by PKCε in vitro. Furthermore, mice with a threonine-to-alanine mutation at the homologous residue Thr1150 (
Max C. Petersen, Anila K. Madiraju, Brandon M. Gassaway, Michael Marcel, Ali R. Nasiri, Gina Butrico, Melissa J. Marcucci, Dongyan Zhang, Abudukadier Abulizi, Xian-Man Zhang, William Philbrick, Stevan R. Hubbard, Michael J. Jurczak, Varman T. Samuel, Jesse Rinehart, Gerald I. Shulman
The regulatory roles of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) in transcriptional coactivators are still largely unknown. Here, we have shown that the peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor γ (PPARγ) coactivator α (PGC-1α, encoded by
Jianyin Long, Shawn S. Badal, Zengchun Ye, Yin Wang, Bernard A. Ayanga, Daniel L. Galvan, Nathanael H. Green, Benny H. Chang, Paul A. Overbeek, Farhad R. Danesh
Although necrosis and necroinflammation are central features of many liver diseases, the role of programmed necrosis in the context of inflammation-dependent hepatocellular death remains to be fully determined. Here, we have demonstrated that the pseudokinase mixed lineage kinase domain–like protein (MLKL), which plays a key role in the execution of receptor-interacting protein (RIP) kinase–dependent necroptosis, is upregulated and activated in human autoimmune hepatitis and in a murine model of inflammation-dependent hepatitis. Using genetic and pharmacologic approaches, we determined that hepatocellular necrosis in experimental hepatitis is driven by an MLKL-dependent pathway that occurs independently of RIPK3. Moreover, we have provided evidence that the cytotoxic activity of the proinflammatory cytokine IFN-γ in hepatic inflammation is strongly connected to induction of MLKL expression via activation of the transcription factor STAT1. In summary, our results reveal a pathway for MLKL-dependent programmed necrosis that is executed in the absence of RIPK3 and potentially drives the pathogenesis of severe liver diseases.
Claudia Günther, Gui-Wei He, Andreas E. Kremer, James M. Murphy, Emma J. Petrie, Kerstin Amann, Peter Vandenabeele, Andreas Linkermann, Christopher Poremba, Ulrike Schleicher, Christin Dewitz, Stefan Krautwald, Markus F. Neurath, Christoph Becker, Stefan Wirtz
Tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) can influence ovarian cancer growth, migration, and metastasis, but the detailed mechanisms underlying ovarian cancer metastasis remain unclear. Here, we have shown a strong correlation between TAM-associated spheroids and the clinical pathology of ovarian cancer. Further, we have determined that TAMs promote spheroid formation and tumor growth at early stages of transcoelomic metastasis in an established mouse model for epithelial ovarian cancer. M2 macrophage–like TAMs were localized in the center of spheroids and secreted EGF, which upregulated αMβ2 integrin on TAMs and ICAM-1 on tumor cells to promote association between tumor cells and TAM. Moreover, EGF secreted by TAMs activated EGFR on tumor cells, which in turn upregulated VEGF/VEGFR signaling in surrounding tumor cells to support tumor cell proliferation and migration. Pharmacological blockade of EGFR or antibody neutralization of ICAM-1 in TAMs blunted spheroid formation and ovarian cancer progression in mouse models. These findings suggest that EGF secreted from TAMs plays a critical role in promoting early transcoelomic metastasis of ovarian cancer. As transcoelomic metastasis is also associated with many other cancers, such as pancreatic and colon cancers, our findings uncover a mechanism for TAM-mediated spheroid formation and provide a potential target for the treatment of ovarian cancer and other transcoelomic metastatic cancers.
Mingzhu Yin, Xia Li, Shu Tan, Huanjiao Jenny Zhou, Weidong Ji, Stefania Bellone, Xiaocao Xu, Haifeng Zhang, Alessandro D. Santin, Ge Lou, Wang Min