IL-12 p40–related cytokines such as IL-12 p35/p40 heterodimer and IL-23 (p19/p40) are potent regulators of adaptive immune responses. Little is known, however, about the transcriptional regulation of the p40 gene in vivo. In an attempt toward this goal, we have generated transgenic mice expressing firefly luciferase under the control of the IL-12 p40 promoter. High constitutive transgene expression was found in the small intestine only, whereas little reporter gene activity was observed in other tissues. Within the small bowel, constitutive promoter activity was restricted to the terminal ileum and associated with high expression of p40 mRNA as well as p40 and IL-23 p19/p40 proteins. The cells constitutively producing IL-12 p40 were identified as CD8α and CD11b double-negative CD11c+ lamina propria dendritic cells (LPDCs) that represent a major cell population in the lamina propria of the small intestine, but not in the colon. FISH directly demonstrated the uptake of bacteria by a subset of LPDCs in the terminal ileum that was associated with p40 expression. Furthermore, little or no p40 protein expression in LPDCs was found in the terminal ileum of germfree mice, indicating a key role of the intestinal flora for constitutive p40 expression. In addition, analysis of transgenic mice with a mutated NF-κB target site in the p40 promoter showed a critical role of NF-κB for constitutive transgene expression. Our data reveal important functional differences between the mucosal immune systems of the small and large bowel in healthy mice and suggest that the high bacterial load in the terminal ileum activates p40 gene transcription in LPDCs through NF-κB. These data suggest a predisposition of the terminal ileum to develop chronic inflammatory responses through IL-23 and thus may provide a molecular explanation for the preferential clinical manifestation of Crohn disease in this part of the gut.
Christoph Becker, Stefan Wirtz, Manfred Blessing, Jaana Pirhonen, Dennis Strand, Oliver Bechthold, Julia Frick, Peter R. Galle, Ingo Autenrieth, Markus F. Neurath
CD1d is expressed on the surface of professional and nonprofessional APCs, including intestinal epithelial cells (IECs), for a role in the presentation of glycolipid-based antigens to subsets of T cells. The mechanisms that regulate CD1d expression in any cell type are unknown. To investigate the possibility that expression of CD1d is influenced by exogenous factors present within the intestinal lumen, CD1d expression was analyzed in several IEC lines after culturing in the presence of lumenal contents (LC) of the normal human intestine. Exposure of the colon-derived cell lines T84, HT-29, and Caco-2 to soluble LC resulted in a marked induction of CD1d expression as determined by RT-PCR, confocal microscopy, cell surface ELISA, and Western blot analysis. Similarly, exposure of human IECs to LC isolated from mice bred in both specific pathogen–free and germfree conditions also resulted in the induction of CD1d expression, with the maximum CD1d-inducing activity observed in the small intestine. Biochemical and biophysical characterization of the human CD1d-inducing activity identified heat shock protein 110 (Hsp110) as a major functional component of the LC that contributes to CD1d surface regulation, and immunolocalization studies revealed Hsp110 expression in subsets of human IECs in vivo. These data support the presence of a novel autocrine pathway of CD1d regulation by Hsp110.
Sean P. Colgan, Richard S. Pitman, Takashi Nagaishi, Atsushi Mizoguchi, Emiko Mizoguchi, Lloyd F. Mayer, Ling Shao, R. Balfour Sartor, John R. Subjeck, Richard S. Blumberg
Regulated recruitment and clearance of neutrophils (PMN) is the hallmark of competent host defense and resolution of inflammation. We now report that IFN-γ controls PMN infiltration and modulates IL-6 signaling through its soluble receptor (sIL-6R) to promote their apoptosis and clearance. Induction of peritoneal inflammation in IFN-γ–deficient (IFN-γ–/–) mice emphasized that the initial rate of PMN recruitment was impaired. This defect in PMN recruitment was also associated with the suppressed intraperitoneal expression of IL-1β and IL-6. Reconstitution of IFN-γ signaling restored the rate of PMN infiltration and IL-6 levels and was accompanied by normalization of PMN-activating CXC chemokine expression. To test whether local IL-6 signaling modulated PMN recruitment, inflammation was induced in IFN-γ–/– and IL-6–/– mice and cytokine signaling adapted by intraperitoneal sIL-6R–IL-6 fusion protein (HYPER-IL-6) or IFN-γ. Although HYPER-IL-6 attenuated PMN influx in IFN-γ–/– mice, IFN-γ had no effect on PMN infiltration in IL-6–/– mice. Examination of the leukocyte infiltrate from IFN-γ–/–, IL-6–/–, and wild-type mice showed that apoptosis was aberrant in the absence of IFN-γ and IL-6 as a result of impaired sIL-6R signaling. These data emphasize a pivotal role for IFN-γ in regulating innate immunity through control of both the recruitment and clearance phases of PMN trafficking.
Rachel M. McLoughlin, Janusz Witowski, Rachel L. Robson, Thomas S. Wilkinson, Suzanne M. Hurst, Anwen S. Williams, John D. Williams, Stefan Rose-John, Simon A. Jones, Nicholas Topley
IL-13 is an important mediator of inflammation and remodeling. We hypothesized that adenosine accumulation, alterations in adenosine receptors, and adenosine–IL-13 autoinduction are critical events in IL-13–induced pathologies. To test this, we characterized the effects of IL-13 overexpression on the levels of adenosine, adenosine deaminase (ADA) activity, and adenosine receptors in the murine lung. We also determined whether adenosine induced IL-13 in lungs from ADA-null mice. IL-13 induced an inflammatory and remodeling response that caused respiratory failure and death. During this response, IL-13 caused a progressive increase in adenosine accumulation, inhibited ADA activity and mRNA accumulation, and augmented the expression of the A1, A2B, and A3 but not the A2A adenosine receptors. ADA enzyme therapy diminished the IL-13–induced increase in adenosine, inhibited IL-13–induced inflammation, chemokine elaboration, fibrosis, and alveolar destruction, and prolonged the survival of IL-13–transgenic animals. In addition, IL-13 was strongly induced by adenosine in ADA-null mice. These findings demonstrate that adenosine and adenosine signaling contribute to and influence the severity of IL-13–induced tissue responses. They also demonstrate that IL-13 and adenosine stimulate one another in an amplification pathway that may contribute to the nature, severity, progression, and/or chronicity of IL-13 and/or Th2-mediated disorders.
Michael R. Blackburn, Chun G. Lee, Hays W.J. Young, Zhou Zhu, Janci L. Chunn, Min Jong Kang, Suman K. Banerjee, Jack A. Elias
Galectin-3 is a member of a large family of animal lectins. This protein is expressed abundantly by macrophages, but its function in this cell type is not well understood. We have studied the effect of galectin-3 gene targeting on phagocytosis, a major function of macrophages. Compared with wild-type macrophages, galectin-3–deficient (gal3–/–) cells exhibited reduced phagocytosis of IgG-opsonized erythrocytes and apoptotic thymocytes in vitro. In addition, gal3–/– mice showed attenuated phagocytic clearance of apoptotic thymocytes by peritoneal macrophages in vivo. These mice also exhibited reduced IgG-mediated phagocytosis of erythrocytes by Kupffer cells in a murine model of autoimmune hemolytic anemia. Additional experiments indicate that extracellular galectin-3 does not contribute appreciably to the phagocytosis-promoting function of this protein. Confocal microscopic analysis of macrophages containing phagocytosed erythrocytes revealed localization of galectin-3 in phagocytic cups and phagosomes. Furthermore, gal3–/– macrophages exhibited a lower degree of actin rearrangement upon Fcγ receptor crosslinkage. These results indicate that galectin-3 contributes to macrophage phagocytosis through an intracellular mechanism. Thus, galectin-3 may play an important role in both innate and adaptive immunity by contributing to phagocytic clearance of microorganisms and apoptotic cells.
Hideki Sano, Daniel K. Hsu, John R. Apgar, Lan Yu, Bhavya B. Sharma, Ichiro Kuwabara, Shozo Izui, Fu-Tong Liu
Alzheimer disease (AD) is characterized by the progressive deposition of the 42-residue amyloid β protein (Aβ) in brain regions serving memory and cognition. In animal models of AD, immunization with Aβ results in the clearance of Aβ deposits from the brain. However, a trial of vaccination with synthetic human Aβ1–42 in AD resulted in the development of meningoencephalitis in some patients. We measured cellular immune responses to Aβ in middle-aged and elderly healthy subjects and in patients with AD. A significantly higher proportion of healthy elderly subjects and patients with AD had strong Aβ-reactive T cell responses than occurred in middle-aged adults. The immunodominant Aβ epitopes in humans resided in amino acids 16–33. Epitope mapping enabled the identification of MHC/T cell receptor (TCR) contact residues. The occurrence of intrinsic T cell reactivity to the self-antigen Aβ in humans has implications for the design of Aβ vaccines, may itself be linked to AD susceptibility and course, and appears to be associated with the aging process.
Alon Monsonego, Victor Zota, Arnon Karni, Jeffery I. Krieger, Amit Bar-Or, Gal Bitan, Andrew E. Budson, Reisa Sperling, Dennis J. Selkoe, Howard L. Weiner
The development and mechanisms of tolerance to allergens are poorly understood. Using the murine low zone tolerance (LZT) model, where contact hypersensitivity (CHS) is prevented by repeated topical low-dose applications of contact allergens, we show that LZT induction is IL-10 dependent. IL-10 is required for the generation of LZT effector cells, that is, CD8+ regulatory T cells. Only T cells from tolerized IL-10+/+ mice or IL-10–/– mice reconstituted with IL-10 during LZT induction adoptively transferred LZT to naive mice and prevented CHS, whereas T cells from IL-10–/– mice failed to do so. The IL-10 required for normal LZT development is derived from lymph node CD4+ T cells, the only skin or lymph node cell population found to produce relevant amounts of IL-10 after tolerization. CD4+ T cells derived from IL-10+/+ mice, but not from IL-10–/– mice, allowed the induction of LZT in adoptively transferred T cell–deficient mice. Interestingly, IL-10 injections during tolerization greatly enhanced LZT responses in normal mice. Thus, the generation of CD8+ LZT effector T cells by CD4+ regulatory T cells via IL-10 may be a promising target of strategies aimed at preventing contact allergies and other harmful immune responses.
Marcus Maurer, Wolfgang Seidel-Guyenot, Martin Metz, Juergen Knop, Kerstin Steinbrink
Griscelli syndrome (GS) is a rare autosomal recessive disorder that associates hypopigmentation, characterized by a silver-gray sheen of the hair and the presence of large clusters of pigment in the hair shaft, and the occurrence of either a primary neurological impairment or a severe immune disorder. Two different genetic forms, GS1 and GS2, respectively, account for the mutually exclusive neurological and immunological phenotypes. Mutations in the gene encoding the molecular motor protein Myosin Va (MyoVa) cause GS1 and the dilute mutant in mice, whereas mutations in the gene encoding the small GTPase Rab27a are responsible for GS2 and the ashen mouse model. We herein present genetic and functional evidence that a third form of GS (GS3), whose expression is restricted to the characteristic hypopigmentation of GS, results from mutation in the gene that encodes melanophilin (Mlph), the ortholog of the gene mutated in leaden mice. We also show that an identical phenotype can result from the deletion of the MYO5A F-exon, an exon with a tissue-restricted expression pattern. This spectrum of GS conditions pinpoints the distinct molecular pathways used by melanocytes, neurons, and immune cells in secretory granule exocytosis, which in part remain to be unraveled.
Gaël Ménasché, Chen Hsuan Ho, Ozden Sanal, Jérôme Feldmann, Ilhan Tezcan, Fügen Ersoy, Anne Houdusse, Alain Fischer, Geneviève de Saint Basile
It has been shown that osteopontin (OPN) plays a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). However, the molecular mechanism of OPN action is yet to be elucidated. Splenic monocytes obtained from arthritic mice exhibited a significant capacity for cell migration toward thrombin-cleaved OPN but not toward full-length OPN. Migratory monocytes expressed α9 and α4 integrins. Since cleavage of OPN by thrombin exposes the cryptic epitope recognized by α9 and α4 integrins, we investigated the role of the cryptic epitope SLAYGLR in a murine RA model by using a specific antibody (M5) reacting to SLAYGLR sequence. The M5 antibody could abrogate monocyte migration toward the thrombin-cleaved form of OPN. Importantly, M5 antibody could inhibit the proliferation of synovium, bone erosion, and inflammatory cell infiltration in arthritic joints. Thus, we demonstrated that a cryptic epitope, the SLAYGLR sequence of murine OPN, is critically involved in the pathogenesis of a murine model of RA.
Nobuchika Yamamoto, Fumihiko Sakai, Shigeyuki Kon, Junko Morimoto, Chiemi Kimura, Harumi Yamazaki, Ikuko Okazaki, Nobuo Seki, Takashi Fujii, Toshimitsu Uede
The generation of Ig-secreting cells (ISCs) from memory B cells requires interactions between antigen-specific (Ag-specific) B cells, T cells, and dendritic cells. This process must be strictly regulated to ensure sufficient humoral immunity while avoiding production of pathogenic autoantibodies. BAFF, a member of the TNF family, is a key regulator of B cell homeostasis. BAFF exerts its effect by binding to three receptors — transmembrane activator of and CAML interactor (TACI), B cell maturation antigen (BCMA), and BAFF receptor (BAFF-R). To elucidate the contribution of BAFF to the differentiation of B cells into ISCs, we tracked the fate of human memory B cells stimulated with BAFF or CD40L. BAFF and CD40L significantly increased the overall number of surviving B cells. This was achieved via distinct mechanisms. CD40L induced proliferation of nondifferentiated blasts, while BAFF prevented apoptosis of ISCs without enhancing proliferation. The altered responsiveness of activated memory B cells to CD40L and BAFF correlated with changes in surface phenotype such that expression of CD40 and BAFF-R were reduced on ISCs while BCMA was induced. These results suggest BAFF may enhance humoral immunity in vivo by promoting survival of ISCs via a BCMA-dependent mechanism. These findings have wide-ranging implications for the treatment of human immunodeficiencies as well as autoimmune diseases.
Danielle T. Avery, Susan L. Kalled, Julia I. Ellyard, Christine Ambrose, Sarah A. Bixler, Marilyn Thien, Robert Brink, Fabienne Mackay, Philip D. Hodgkin, Stuart G. Tangye