We used a subclone of a rabbit genomic clone for collagenase that cross-hybridizes with human synovial cell messenger RNA (mRNA) to identify a human collagenase complementary DNA (cDNA) clone. The human cDNA clone is 2.1 kilobases (kb) and selects a mRNA transcript of approximately the same size from primary cultures of rheumatoid synovial cells that produce collagenase, but no mRNA is selected from control (nonproducing) synovial fibroblasts. Restriction enzyme analysis and DNA sequence data indicate that our cDNA clone is full length and that it is identical to that recently described for human skin fibroblast collagenase. The cDNA clone identified a single collagenase gene of approximately 17 kb from blots of human genomic DNA. The identity of human skin and synovial cell collagenase and the ubiquity of this enzyme and of its substrates, the interstitial collagens types I, II, and III, imply that common mechanisms controlling collagenolysis throughout the human body may be operative in both normal and disease states.
Rheumatoid arthritis synovial fibroblasts (RASF) are key players in synovial pathophysiology and are therefore examined extensively in various experimental approaches. We evaluated, whether passaging during culture and freezing has effects on gene expression and cell proliferation.
RASF were passaged for up to 8 passages. RNA was isolated after each passage and cDNA arrays were performed to evaluate the RNA expression pattern during passaging. In addition, doubling time of the cells was also measured.
From passages 2-4, mRNA expression did not change significantly. Gene expression in RASF started to change in passages 5-6 with 7-10% differentially expressed genes. After passages 7-8, more than 10% of the genes were differentially expressed. The doubling rate was constant for up to 5 passages and decreased after passages 6-8. After freezing, gene expression of the second passage is comparable to gene expression prior to freezing.
The results of this study show, that experiments, which examine gene expression of RASF and shall reflect or imitate an in vivo situation, should be limited to early culture passages to avoid cell culture effects. It is not necessary to stop culturing SF after a few passages, but to keep the problems of cell culture in mind to avoid false positive results. Especially, when large-scale screening methods on mRNA level are used. Of note, freezing does not affect gene expression substantially.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease with a high prevalence and substantial socioeconomic burden. Despite intense research efforts, its aetiology and pathogenesis remain poorly understood. To identify novel genes and/or cellular pathways involved in the pathogenesis of the disease, we utilized a well-recognized tumour necrosis factor-driven animal model of this disease and performed high-throughput expression profiling with subtractive cDNA libraries and oligonucleotide microarray hybridizations, coupled with independent statistical analysis. This twin approach was validated by a number of different methods in other animal models of arthritis as well as in human patient samples, thus creating a unique list of disease modifiers of potential therapeutic value. Importantly, and through the integration of genetic linkage analysis and Gene Ontology–assisted functional discovery, we identified the gelsolin-driven synovial fibroblast cytoskeletal rearrangements as a novel pathophysiological determinant of the disease.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic destructive disease that affects 1–3% of the general population, exacting substantial personal, social, and economic costs. Current treatments alleviate the symptoms and offer immediate relief for many patients but do not cure the disease. While the cause of the disease remains poorly understood, the completion of the Human Genome Project and the emergence of functional genomics and high-throughput technologies offer intriguing new possibilities. For example, expression profiling creates a molecular fingerprint of the disease status by quantifying the expression levels of thousand of genes simultaneously. Similarly, reverse genetics (the genetic modification of a particular gene in search of its function) allow for the creation of animal models of disease. To discover novel genes and/or cellular pathways involved in the development of the disease, the authors used two methods in an animal model of RA for large-scale expression profiling. They identified a large number of genes and molecular processes that are deregulated in the disease. Using this information, the authors described pathophysiologic determinants of RA and created a unique list of disease modifiers of potential therapeutic value.
The main histological change in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the villous proliferation of synovial lining cells, an important source of cytokines and chemokines, which are associated with inflammation. The aim of this study was to evaluate gene expression in the microdissected synovial lining cells of RA patients, using those of osteoarthritis (OA) patients as the control.
Samples were obtained during total joint replacement from 11 RA and five OA patients. Total RNA from the synovial lining cells was derived from selected specimens by laser microdissection (LMD) for subsequent cDNA microarray analysis. In addition, the expression of significant genes was confirmed immunohistochemically.
The 14 519 genes detected by cDNA microarray were used to compare gene expression levels in synovial lining cells from RA with those from OA patients. Cluster analysis indicated that RA cells, including low- and high-expression subgroups, and OA cells were stored in two main clusters. The molecular activity of RA was statistically consistent with its clinical and histological activity. Expression levels of signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1), interferon regulatory factor 1 (IRF1), and the chemokines CXCL9, CXCL10, and CCL5 were statistically significantly higher in the synovium of RA than in that of OA. Immunohistochemically, the lining synovium of RA, but not that of OA, clearly expressed STAT1, IRF1, and chemokines, as was seen in microarray analysis combined with LMD.
Our findings indicate an important role for lining synovial cells in the inflammatory and proliferative processes of RA. Further understanding of the local signalling in structural components is important in rheumatology.
To construct a hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) subtracted cDNA library to find differentially expressed genes in normal mice and mice infected with Schistosoma japonicum (S. japonicum). Suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH) was used. The cDNA fragments of normal mouse were compared to those of schistosoma-infected mice to find differentially expressed genes. Then differentially expressed cDNA fragments were directly inserted into T/A cloning vector to set up the subtractive library. Amplification of the library was carried out with transformation of DH5α. The amplified library contained more than 400 positive bacterial clones, which were then hybridized with forward and backward subtracted probes for differential screening. One hundred positive bacterial clones were randomly selected for sequencing and BLAST analysis. Finally, virtual Northern Blot confirmed such differential expression. The subtracted cDNA library of differentially expressed genes of HSCs was constructed successfully, the library is efficient and lays foundation for screening and cloning new and specific genes of schistosomiasis.
Schistosomiasis japonica; Suppression subtractive hybridization; Differential expression
Objectives: To define the pathogenesis of pigmented villonodular synovitis (PVNS), by searching for highly expressed genes in primary synovial cells from patients with PVNS.
Methods: A combination of subtraction cloning and Southern colony hybridisation was used to detect highly expressed genes in PVNS in comparison with rheumatoid synovial cells. Northern hybridisation was performed to confirm the differential expression of the humanin gene in PVNS. Expression of the humanin peptide was analysed by western blotting and immunohistochemistry. Electron microscopic immunohistochemistry was performed to investigate the distribution of this peptide within the cell.
Results: 68 highly expressed genes were identified in PVNS. Humanin genes were strongly expressed in diffuse-type PVNS, but were barely detected in nodular-type PVNS, rheumatoid arthritis, or osteoarthritis. Humanin peptide was identified in synovium from diffuse-type PVNS, and most of the positive cells were distributed in the deep layer of the synovial tissue. Double staining with anti-humanin and anti-heat shock protein 60 showed that humanin was expressed mainly in mitochondria. Electron microscopy disclosed immunolocalisation of this peptide, predominantly around dense iron deposits within the siderosome.
Conclusions: Increased expression of the humanin peptide in mitochondria and siderosomes is characteristic of synovial cells from diffuse-type PVNS. Humanin is an anti-apoptotic peptide which is encoded in the mitochondrial genome. Present findings suggest that mitochondrial dysfunction may be the principal factor in pathogenesis of diffuse-type PVNS and that humanin peptide may play a part in the neoplastic process in this form of PVNS.
One of the salient pathological features of rheumatoid arthritis is synovial cell proliferation with bone erosion. Despite extensive investigation, the factors essential for synovial cell proliferation remain to be identified. Recent studies suggest that human T cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV-I) may play an important role in synovial overgrowth observed in patients with one type of chronic inflammatory synovitis. In order to confirm and extend these observations, we have established synovial cell clones (SCCs) from three HTLV-I carriers who demonstrated synovial overgrowth but were otherwise asymptomatic. HTLV-I proviral DNA randomly integrated into the cellular genome was present in 20-30% of SCCs. The SCCs carrying HTLV-I proviral DNA and expressing the tax gene exhibited high levels of proliferative potential. HTLV-I was found to function as a transcriptional trans-activator in these SCCs. Moreover, transfection of the tax expression plasmid into SCCs resulted in the same phenotype of increased proliferation and cytokine expression as exhibited by HTLV-I provirus-carrying and tax-expressing SCCs. These data suggest that tax plays a critical role not only in leukemogenesis but also in synovial overgrowth in humans.
Synovial T cells in rheumatoid arthritis are highly differentiated and express a phenotype suggesting susceptibility to apoptosis (CD45RB dull, CD45RO bright, Bcl-2 low, Bax high, Fas high). However, no evidence of T cell apoptosis was found in synovial fluid from any of 28 patients studied. In contrast, synovial fluid from 10 patients with crystal arthritis showed substantial levels of T cell apoptosis. The failre of apoptosis was not an intrinsic property of rheumatoid synovial T cells, as they showed rapid spontaneous apoptosis on removal from the joint. Synovial T cells from rheumatoid arthritis and gout patients could be rescued from spontaneous apoptosis in vitro either by IL-2R gamma chain signaling cytokines (which upregulate Bcl-2 and Bcl-XL) or by interaction with synovial fibroblasts (which upregulates Bcl-xL but not Bcl-2). The phenotype of rheumatoid synovial T cells ex vivo (Bcl-2 low, Bcl-xL high) suggested a fibroblast-mediated mechanism in vivo. This was confirmed by in vitro culture of synovial T cells with fibroblasts which maintained the Bcl-xL high Bcl-2 low phenotype. Synovial T cells from gout patients were Bcl-2 low Bcl-xL low and showed clear evidence of apoptosis in vivo. Inhibition experiments suggested that an integrin-ligand interaction incorporating the Arg-Gly-Asp motif is involved in fibroblast-mediated synovial T cell survival. We propose that environmental blockade of cell death resulting from interaction with stromal cells is a major factor in the persistent T cell infiltration of chronically inflamed rheumatoid synovium.
A characteristic feature of rheumatoid arthritis is hyperplasia of the synovial lining cells and fibroblasts, the source of tissue-degrading mediators, in association with the appearance and persistence of lymphocytes in affected joints. Diseased synovial tissue obtained at arthroscopy from 10 of 12 rheumatoid arthritis patients was found to release a factor(s) that could stimulate quiescent fibroblasts to proliferate in vitro. Mononuclear cells isolated from this synovial tissue and from the synovial fluid spontaneously produced fibroblast- activating factor(s) (FAF). In contrast, synovial tissue from patients with noninflammatory joint disease did not release FAF. By gel filtration, FAF was detected in two peaks (40,000 and 15,000 mol wt) that were consistent with the previously described peripheral blood T lymphocyte- and monocyte-derived factors with identical activity. The mononuclear cells were predominantly OKT3+/Leu-1+ T lymphocytes and OKM1+ cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage that expressed HLA-DR antigens, suggesting prior activation of these cells. Mononuclear cells isolated from the peripheral blood of these patients did not spontaneously secrete FAF. Lymphocytes and monocytes from the site of synovial inflammation appear to be activated in situ to produce factors that may contribute to the hyperplasia and overgrowth of the synovial membrane in rheumatoid arthritis.
Accumulating evidence implicates a central role for synovial T cells in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis, but the activation pathways that drive proliferation and effector function of these cells are not known. We have recently generated a novel monoclonal antibody against a rheumatoid synovial T cell line that recognizes an antigen termed UM4D4 (CDw60). This antigen is expressed on a minority of peripheral blood T cells, and represents the surface component of a distinct pathway of human T cell activation. The current studies were performed to examine the expression and function of UM4D4 on T cells obtained from synovial fluid and synovial membranes of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and other forms of inflammatory joint disease. The UM4D4 antigen is expressed at high surface density on about three-fourths of synovial fluid T cells and on a small subset of synovial fluid natural killer cells; in synovial tissue it is present on more than 90% of T cells in lymphoid aggregates, and on approximately 50% of T cells in stromal infiltrates In addition, UM4D4 is expressed in synovial tissue on a previously undescribed population of HLA-DR/DP-negative non-T cells with a dendritic morphology. Anti-UM4D4 was co-mitogenic for both RA and non-RA synovial fluid mononuclear cells, and induced IL-2 receptor expression. The UM4D4/CDw60 antigen may represent a functional activation pathway for synovial compartment T cells, which could play an important role in the pathogenesis of inflammatory arthritis.
The overgrowth of synovial tissues is critical in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The expression of Synoviolin (SYN), an E3 ubiquitin ligase, is upregulated in arthritic synovial fibroblasts and is involved in the overgrowth of synovial cells during RA. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in the elevated SYN expression are not known. Here, we found that SYN expression is elevated in the synovial fibroblasts from mice with collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). The proinflammatory cytokines interleukin (IL)-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) induce SYN expression in mouse synovial fibroblasts. Cultivation of mouse synovial fibroblasts with IL-1β activates mitogen-activated protein kinases, including extra-cellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk), JNK (c-Jun N-terminal kinase), and p38, while only Erk-specific inhibitor blocks IL-1β-induced SYN expression. Expression of transcription factor ETS1 further enhances IL-1β-induced SYN expression. The dominant negative ETS1 mutant lacking the transcription activation domain inhibits SYN expression in a dose-dependent manner. The activation of both Erk1/2 and ETS1 is increased in the CIA synovial fibroblasts. Inhibition of Erk activation reduces ETS1 phosphorylation and SYN expression. Our data indicate that the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1β and TNF-α induce the overgrowth of synovial cells by upregulating SYN expression via the Erk1/-ETS1 pathway. These molecules or pathways could therefore be potential targets for the treatment of RA.
Overexpression of the antiapoptotic protein myeloid cell leukemia 1 (Mcl-1) in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) synovial fibroblasts is a major cause of their resistance to tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα)–induced apoptosis. This study was undertaken to evaluate the efficacy of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) in down-regulating Mcl-1 expression and its mechanism of RA synovial fibroblast sensitization to TNFα-induced apoptosis.
EGCG effects on cultured RA synovial fibroblast cell morphology, proliferation, and viability over 72 hours were determined by microscopy and a fluorescent cell enumeration assay. Caspase 3 activity was determined by a colorimetric assay. Western blotting was used to evaluate the apoptosis mediators poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), Mcl-1, Bcl-2, Akt, and nuclear translocation of NF-κB.
In RA synovial fibroblasts, EGCG (5–50 μM) inhibited constitutive and TNFα-induced Mcl-1 protein expression in a concentration- and time-dependent manner (P < 0.05). Importantly, EGCG specifically abrogated Mcl-1 expression in RA synovial fibroblasts and affected Mcl-1 expression to a lesser extent in osteoarthritis and normal synovial fibroblasts or endothelial cells. Inhibition of Mcl-1 by EGCG triggered caspase 3 activity in RA synovial fibroblasts, which was mediated via down-regulation of the TNFα-induced Akt and NF-κB pathways. Caspase 3 activation by EGCG also suppressed RA synovial fibroblast growth, and this effect was mimicked by Akt and NF-κB inhibitors. Interestingly, Mcl-1 degradation by EGCG sensitized RA synovial fibroblasts to TNFα-induced PARP cleavage and apoptotic cell death.
Our findings indicate that EGCG itself induces apoptosis and further sensitizes RA synovial fibroblasts to TNFα-induced apoptosis by specifically blocking Mcl-1 expression and, hence, may be of promising adjunct therapeutic value in regulating the invasive growth of synovial fibroblasts in RA.
Plasma cell infiltration of synovium is common in longstanding rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The mechanism(s) underlying synovial B cell proliferation remains unclear. One theory invokes nonspecific polyclonal stimuli; another implicates antigen as the driving force. Antigen-driven repertoires are characteristically enriched for related sets of V gene segments containing similar sequence in the antigen binding site (complementarity-determining regions; CDRs). To study the forces shaping B cell proliferation, we analyzed V kappa transcripts expressed in the synovium of an RA patient. We found Humkv325, a developmentally regulated V kappa III gene segment associated with autoantibody reactivity, in > 10% of randomly-chosen synovial C kappa cDNAs. Two sets of sequences contained identical charged amino acid residues at the V kappa-J kappa join, apparently due to N region addition. We generated "signature" oligonucleotides from these CDR3s and probed PCR amplified V kappa products from the synovium and PBLs of the same patient, and from PBLs and spleen of individuals without rheumatic disease. Significant expression of transcripts containing these unique CDR3 sequences occurred only in the patient's synovium. Thus, in this synovium there is expansion of a limited set of B cell clones expressing antigen receptors that bear evidence of antigen selection.
Flower opening is an event accompanied by morphological changes in petals which include elongation, expansion, and outward-curving. Petal cell growth is a fundamental process that underlies such phenomena, but its molecular mechanism remains largely unknown. Suppression subtractive hybridization was performed between petals during the early elongation period (stage 1) and during the opening period (stage 5) in carnation flowers and a pair of subtraction libraries abundant in differentially expressed genes was constructed at each stage. 393 cDNA clones picked up by differential screening out of 1728 clones were sequenced and 235 different cDNA fragments were identified, among which 211 did not match any known nucleotide sequence of carnation genes in the databases. BLASTX search of nucleotide sequences revealed that putative functions of the translational products can be classified into several categories including transcription, signalling, cell wall modification, lipid metabolism, and transport. Open reading frames of 15 selected genes were successfully determined by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE). Time-course analysis of these genes by real-time RT-PCR showed that transcript levels of several genes correlatively fluctuate in petals of opening carnation flowers, suggesting an association with the morphological changes by elongation or curving. Based on the results, it is suggested that the growth of carnation petals is controlled by co-ordinated gene expression during the progress of flower opening. In addition, the possible roles of some key genes in the initiation of cell growth, the construction of the cell wall and cuticle, and transport across membranes were discussed.
Carnation; flower opening; gene expression; petal cell growth; suppression subtractive hybridization
A novel method combining elements of suppression subtractive hybridization with high throughput differential screening permits the efficient and rapid cloning of rarely transcribed differentially expressed genes. The experimental strategy virtually excludes the possibility of isolating false positive clones. The potential of the method is demonstrated by the isolation of 625 differentially expressed cDNAs from the metastatic adenocarcinoma cell line Bsp73-ASML when subtracted from its non-metastatic counterpart Bsp73-1AS. Northern analysis of 72 randomly selected clones demonstrated that 68 were differentially expressed with respect to Bsp73-ASML, indicating a true positive rate of 94%. Additionally, a large proportion of these clones represented rare transcripts as determined by the exposure time required to detect a signal. Sequence data indicated that of the 625 clones obtained, 92 clones scored perfect or near perfect matches with already known genes. Two hundred and eighty one clones scored between 60 and 95% homology to known human and mouse genes, whereas 252 clones scored no match with any sequences in the public databases. The method we describe is ideally suited whenever subtle changes in gene expression profiles need to be determined.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory autoimmune disease of unclear etiology. This study was conducted to identify critical factors involved in the synovial hyperplasia in RA pathology. We applied cDNA microarray analysis to profile the gene expressions of RA fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLSs) from patients with RA. We found that the MLN51 (metastatic lymph node 51) gene, identified in breast cancer, is remarkably upregulated in the hyperactive RA FLSs. However, growth-retarded RA FLSs passaged in vitro expressed small quantities of MLN51. MLN51 expression was significantly enhanced in the FLSs when the growth-retarded FLSs were treated with granulocyte – macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) or synovial fluid (SF). Anti-GM-CSF neutralizing antibody blocked the MLN51 expression even though the FLSs were cultured in the presence of SF. In contrast, GM-CSF in SFs existed at a significant level in the patients with RA (n = 6), in comparison with the other inflammatory cytokines, IL-1β and TNF-α. Most RA FLSs at passage 10 or more recovered from their growth retardation when cultured in the presence of SF. The SF-mediated growth recovery was markedly impaired by anti-GM-CSF antibody. Growth-retarded RA FLSs recovered their proliferative capacity after treatment with GM-CSF in a dose-dependent manner. However, MLN51 knock-down by siRNA completely blocked the GM-CSF/SF-mediated proliferation of RA FLSs. Taken together, our results imply that MLN51, induced by GM-CSF, is important in the proliferation of RA FLSs in the pathogenesis of RA.
Type A synovial lining cells have been shown to contain lysozyme in their lysosomes. This might be phagocytosed because synovial fluid contains lysozyme originating from tissue macrophages and articular cartilage but in arthritides, in particular, from neutrophils. In situ hybridisation with 35S labelled cDNA was used to detect mRNA for lysozyme over synovial lining in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. No hybridisation was found with lactoferrin cDNA, which was used as a negative control. Computer search against the EMBL gene bank (release 14) did not show any significant cross hybridisation to a known sequence. In cytological specimens 35S-cDNA:mRNA hybrids were observed in positive but not in negative control cells. The presence of lysozyme and its mRNA suggests that type A synovial lining cells are of mononuclear phagocyte lineage.
The main limitation in performing genome-wide gene-expression profiling is the assay of low-expression genes. Approaches with high throughput and high sensitivity for assaying low-expression transcripts are urgently needed for functional genomic studies. Combination of the suppressive subtractive hybridization (SSH) and cDNA microarray techniques using the subtracted cDNA clones as probes printed on chips has greatly improved the efficiency for fishing out the differentially expressed clones and has been used before. However, it remains tedious and inefficient sequencing works for identifying genes including the great number of redundancy in the subtracted amplicons, and sacrifices the original advantages of high sensitivity of SSH in profiling low-expression transcriptomes.
We modified the previous combination of SSH and microarray methods by directly using the subtracted amplicons as targets to hybridize the pre-made cDNA microarrays (named as "SSH/microarray"). mRNA prepared from three pairs of hepatoma and non-hepatoma liver tissues was subjected to the SSH/microarray assays, as well as directly to regular cDNA microarray assays for comparison. As compared to the original SSH and microarray combination assays, the modified SSH/microarray assays allowed for much easier inspection of the subtraction efficiency and identification of genes in the subtracted amplicons without tedious and inefficient sequencing work. On the other hand, 5015 of the 9376 genes originally filtered out by the regular cDNA microarray assays because of low expression became analyzable by the SSH/microarray assays. Moreover, the SSH/microarray assays detected about ten times more (701 vs. 69) HCC differentially expressed genes (at least a two-fold difference and P < 0.01), particularly for those with rare transcripts, than did the regular cDNA microarray assays. The differential expression was validated in 9 randomly selected genes in 18 pairs of hepatoma/non-hepatoma liver tissues using quantitative RT-PCR. The SSH/microarray approaches resulted in identifying many differentially expressed genes implicated in the regulation of cell cycle, cell death, signal transduction and cell morphogenesis, suggesting the involvement of multi-biological processes in hepato-carcinogenesis.
The modified SSH/microarray approach is a simple but high-sensitive and high-efficient tool for differentially profiling the low-expression transcriptomes. It is most adequate for applying to functional genomic studies.
Glucocorticoids and cyclic AMP exert dramatic effects on the proliferation and viability of murine T lymphocytes through unknown mechanisms. To identify gene products which might be involved in glucocorticoid-induced responses in lymphoid cells, we constructed a lambda cDNA library prepared from murine thymoma WEHI-7TG cells treated for 5 h with glucocorticoids and forskolin. The library was screened with a subtracted cDNA probe enriched for sequences induced by the two drugs, and cDNA clones representing 11 different inducible genes were isolated. The pattern of expression in BALB/c mouse tissues was examined for each cDNA clone. We have identified two clones that hybridized to mRNAs detected exclusively in the thymus. Other clones were identified that demonstrated tissue-specific gene expression in heart, brain, brain and thymus, or lymphoid tissue (spleen and thymus). The kinetics of induction by dexamethasone and forskolin were examined for each gene. The majority of the cDNA clones hybridized to mRNAs that were regulated by glucocorticoids and forskolin, two were regulated only by glucocorticoids, and three hybridized to mRNAs that required both drugs for induction. Inhibition of protein synthesis by cycloheximide resulted in the induction of all mRNAs that were inducible by glucocorticoids. Preliminary sequence analysis of four of the 11 cDNAs suggests that two cDNAs represent previously undescribed genes while two others correspond to the mouse VL30 retrovirus-like element and the mouse homolog of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan core protein.
Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) have been identified as important morphogens with pleiotropic functions in regulating the development, homeostasis and repair of various tissues. The aim of this study was to characterize the expression of BMPs in synovial tissues under normal and arthritic conditions. Synovial tissue from normal donors (ND) and from patients with osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) were analyzed for BMP expression by using microarray hybridization. Differential expression of BMP-4 and BMP-5 was validated by semiquantitative RT-PCR, in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Activity of arthritis was determined by routine parameters for systemic inflammation, by histological scoring of synovitis and by semiquantitative RT-PCR of IL-1β, TNF-α, stromelysin and collagenase I in synovial tissue. Expression of BMP-4 and BMP-5 mRNA was found to be significantly decreased in synovial tissue of patients with RA in comparison with ND by microarray analysis (p < 0.0083 and p < 0.0091). Validation by PCR confirmed these data in RA (p < 0.002) and also revealed a significant decrease in BMP-4 and BMP-5 expression in OA compared with ND (p < 0.015). Furthermore, histomorphological distribution of both morphogens as determined by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry showed a dominance in the lining layer of normal tissues, whereas chronically inflamed tissue from patients with RA revealed BMP expression mainly scattered across deeper layers. In OA, these changes were less pronounced with variable distribution of BMPs in the lining and sublining layer. BMP-4 and BMP-5 are expressed in normal synovial tissue and were found decreased in OA and RA. This may suggest a role of distinct BMPs in joint homeostasis that is disturbed in inflammatory and degenerative joint diseases. In comparison with previous reports, these data underline the complex impact of these factors on homeostasis and remodeling in joint physiology and pathology.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is characterized by the recruitment of leukocytes and the accumulation of inflammatory mediators within the synovial compartment. Release of the chemokine CCL18 has been widely attributed to antigen-presenting cells, including macrophages and dendritic cells. This study investigates the production of CCL18 in polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN), the predominant cell type recruited into synovial fluid (SF). Microarray analysis, semiquantitative and quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction identified SF PMN from patients with RA as a novel source for CCL18 in diseased joints. Highly upregulated expression of other chemokine genes was observed for CCL3, CXCL8 and CXCL10, whereas CCL21 was downregulated. The chemokine receptor genes were differentially expressed, with upregulation of CXCR4, CCRL2 and CCR5 and downregulation of CXCR1 and CXCR2. In cell culture experiments, expression of CCL18 mRNA in blood PMN was induced by tumor necrosis factor α, whereas synthesis of CCL18 protein required additional stimulation with a combination of IL-10 and vitamin D3. In comparison, recruited SF PMN from patients with RA were sensitized for CCL18 production, because IL-10 alone was sufficient to induce CCL18 release. These results suggest a release of the T cell-attracting CCL18 by PMN when recruited to diseased joints. However, its production is tightly regulated at the levels of mRNA expression and protein synthesis.
BACKGROUND: Identification of differentially expressed genes between normal and diseased states is an area of intense current medical research that can lead to the discovery of new therapeutic targets. However, isolation of differentially expressed genes by subtraction often suffers from unreported contamination of the resulting subtraction library with clones containing DNA sequences not from the original RNA samples. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Subtraction using cDNA representational difference analysis (RDA) was performed on human B cells from normal or common variable immunodeficiency patients. The material remaining after the subtraction was cloned and individual clones were sequenced. The sequence of one clone with similarity to integrases (ILG1, integrase-like gene-1) was used to obtain the full length cDNA sequence and as a probe for the presence of this sequence in RNA or genomic DNA samples. RESULTS: After five rounds of cDNA RDA, 23.3% of the clones from the resulting subtraction library contained Escherichia coli DNA. In addition, three clones contained the sequence of a new integrase, ILG1. The full length cDNA sequence of ILG1 exhibits prokaryotic, but not eukaryotic, features. At the DNA level, ILG1 is not similar to any known gene. At the protein level, ILG1 has 58% similarity to integrases from the cryptic P4 bacteriophage family (S clade). The catalytic domain of ILG1 contains the conserved features found in site-specific recombinases. The critical residues that form the catalytic active site pocket are conserved, including the highly conserved R-H-R-Y hallmark of these recombinases. Interestingly, ILG1 was not present in the original B cell populations. By probing genomic DNA, ILG1 could only be detected in the E. coli TOP10F' strain used in our laboratory for molecular cloning, but not in any of its precursor strains, including TOP10. Furthermore, bacteria cultured from the mouth of the laboratory worker who performed cDNA RDA were also positive for ILG1. CONCLUSIONS: In the course of our studies using cDNA RDA, we have isolated and identified ILG1, a likely active site-specific recombinase and new member of the bacteriophage P4 family of integrases. This family of integrases is implicated in the horizontal DNA transfer of pathogenic genes between bacterial species, such as those found in pathogenic strains of E. coli, Shigella, Yersinia, and Vibrio cholera. Using ILG1 as a marker of our laboratory E. coli strain TOP10F', our evidence suggests that contaminating bacterial DNA in our subtraction experiment is due to this laboratory bacterial strain, which colonized exposed surfaces of the laboratory worker. Thus, identification of differentially expressed genes between normal and diseased states could be dramatically improved by using extra precaution to prevent bacterial contamination of samples.
Synovial biomarker analysis in rheumatoid arthritis can be used to evaluate drug effect in clinical trials of novel therapeutic agents. Previous studies of synovial gene expression for these studies have mainly relied on histological methods including immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization. To increase the reliability of mRNA measurements on small synovial tissue samples, we developed and validated real time quantitative PCR (Q-PCR) methods on biopsy specimens. RNA was isolated from synovial tissue and cDNA was prepared. Cell-based standards were prepared from mitogen-stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Real time PCR was performed using TaqMan chemistry to quantify gene expression relative to the cell-based standard. Application of the cellular standard curve method markedly reduced intra- and inter-assay variability and corrected amplification efficiency errors compared with the C(t) method. The inter-assay coefficient of variation was less than 25% over time. Q-PCR methods were validated by demonstrating increased expression of IL-1β and IL-6 expression in rheumatoid arthritis synovial samples compared with osteoarthritis synovium. Based on determinations of sampling error and coefficient of variation, twofold differences in gene expression in serial biopsies can be detected by assaying approximately six synovial tissue biopsies from 8 to 10 patients. These data indicate that Q-PCR is a reliable method for determining relative gene expression in small synovial tissue specimens. The technique can potentially be used in serial biopsy studies to provide insights into mechanism of action and therapeutic effect of new anti-inflammatory agents.
arthritis; biomarker; rheumatoid; synovium
OBJECTIVE: To define the mechanisms whereby methotrexate (MTX) manifests its effects in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. METHODS: T and B cells from peripheral blood and rheumatoid synovial tissues, synovial adherent cells, and the human fibrosarcoma cell line HT1080 and its mutant (defective in an enzyme in the nucleotide salvage pathway) were tested for clonal growth when cultured with MTX. Normal human fibroblasts and those with a deficiency in a salvage pathway were cultured with MTX in the presence or absence of purine and pyrimidine bases. RESULTS: Clonal growth of T and B cells, but not synovial cells, was inhibited by clinically relevant concentrations of MTX. Slowly proliferating fibroblast lines were resistant to MTX, whereas their rapidly proliferating counterparts were not. However, mutant fibroblast lines deficient in a salvage pathway were sensitive to MTX despite slow proliferation. Similarly, while skin fibroblasts were resistant to MTX, germline mutant fibroblasts deficient in a salvage pathway were sensitive to small concentrations of MTX. CONCLUSION: T and B lymphocytes, but not synovial cells, may be the target of MTX in vivo. Resistance to MTX may be associated with slow proliferation and the ability to synthesise nucleotides via salvage pathways. MTX can inhibit proliferation of even slowly growing cells by restricting the supply of nucleotides obtained via a salvage pathway, by removal of purine and pyrimidine bases, or by inducing a deficiency in a salvage pathway. It may be possible to manipulate the therapeutic effect of MTX by adjusting the amounts of purines and pyrimidines available to the cells in vivo.
Legume-rhizobium symbiosis is a complex process that is regulated in the host plant cell through gene expression network. Many nodulin genes that are upregulated during different stages of nodulation have been identified in leguminous herbs. However, no nodulin genes in woody legume trees, such as black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia), have yet been reported.
To identify the nodulin genes involved in R. pseudoacacia-Mesorhizobium amorphae CCNWGS0123 symbiosis, a suppressive subtractive hybridization approach was applied to reveal profiling of differentially expressed genes and two subtracted cDNA libraries each containing 600 clones were constructed. Then, 114 unigenes were identified from forward SSH library by differential screening and the putative functions of these translational products were classified into 13 categories. With a particular interest in regulatory genes, twenty-one upregulated genes encoding potential regulatory proteins were selected based on the result of reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis. They included nine putative transcription genes, eight putative post-translational regulator genes and four membrane protein genes. The expression patterns of these genes were further analyzed by quantitative RT-PCR at different stages of nodule development.
The data presented here offer the first insights into the molecular foundation underlying R. pseudoacacia–M. amorphae symbiosis. A number of regulatory genes screened in the present study revealed a high level of regulatory complexity (transcriptional, post-transcriptional, translational and post-translational) that is likely essential to develop symbiosis. In addition, the possible roles of these genes in black locust nodulation are discussed.