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1.  A Role for IL-1 Receptor-Associated Kinase-M in Prostaglandin E2-Induced Immunosuppression Post-Bone Marrow Transplantation 
Following immune reconstitution, hematopoietic stem cell transplant patients often display reduced immune function and are especially susceptible to lung infections. In a mouse model of syngeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT), we previously reported that PGE2 is overproduced in lungs of BMT mice, significantly impairing host defense against Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This impairment in host defense post-BMT is also marked by diminished alveolar macrophage (AM) phagocytosis, bacterial killing, and production of TNF-α and cysteinyl leukotrienes. However, a mechanism by which overproduction of PGE2 suppresses pulmonary host defense post-BMT is unknown. As IL-1R–associated kinase (IRAK)-M is a known inhibitor of MyD88-dependent IL-1R/TLR signaling and macrophage function, we sought to determine whether IRAK-M is involved in PGE2-induced immunosuppression post-BMT. We found that IRAK-M expression is elevated 3.5-fold in BMT AMs relative to control AMs, and this is related to AM overproduction of PGE2. Furthermore, genetic ablation of IRAK-M in the bone marrow of BMT mice restores host defense against P. aeruginosa. Despite AM overproduction of PGE2 and elevated E prostanoid 2 receptor expression, AM phagocytosis, killing, and production of cysteinyl leukotrienes and TNF-α are restored in the absence of IRAK-M post-BMT. Also, treatment with PGE2 does not inhibit AM phagocytosis in the absence of IRAK-M. These data suggest that the absence of IRAK-M in the hematopoietic compartment post-BMT enhances pulmonary host defense and mitigates AM sensitivity to the inhibitory effects of PGE2. Therefore, strategies to limit IRAK-M elevation post-BMT may be efficacious in reducing patient susceptibility to infection.
PMCID: PMC4040537  PMID: 20439918
2.  PGE2-induced changes in alveolar macrophage scavenger receptor profiles differentially alter phagocytosis of P. aeruginosa and S. aureus post-bone marrow transplant 
The effectiveness of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation as a therapy for malignant and nonmalignant conditions is complicated by pulmonary infections. Using our syngeneic bone marrow transplant (BMT) mouse model, BMT mice with a reconstituted hematopoietic system displayed increased susceptibility to Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus. BMT alveolar macrophages (AMs) exhibited a defect in P. aeruginosa phagocytosis while S. aureus uptake was surprisingly enhanced. We hypothesized that the difference in phagocytosis was due to an altered scavenger receptor (SR) profile. Interestingly, MARCO expression was decreased while SR-AI/II was increased. To understand how these dysregulated SR profiles might affect macrophage function, CHO cells were transfected with SR-AI/II and phagocytosis assays revealed that SR-AI/II was important for S. aureus uptake but not P. aeruginosa. Conversely, AMs treated in vitro with soluble MARCO exhibited similar defects in P. aeruginosa internalization as BMT AMs. The 3'UTR of SR-AI contains a putative target region for miR-155 and miR-155 expression is decreased post-BMT. Anti-miR-155-transfected AMs exhibited an increase in SR-AI/II expression and S. aureus phagocytosis. Elevated PGE2 has been implicated in driving an impaired innate immune response post-BMT. In vitro treatment of AMs with PGE2 increased SR-AI/II, and decreased MARCO and miR-155. Despite a difference in phagocytic ability, BMT AMs harbor a killing defect to both P. aeruginosa and S. aureus. Thus, our data suggest that PGE2-driven alterations in scavenger receptor and miR-155 expression account for the differential phagocytosis of P. aeruginosa and S. aureus but impaired killing ultimately confers increased susceptibility to pulmonary infection.
PMCID: PMC3660503  PMID: 23630358
alveolar macrophage; transplantation; Staphylococcus aureus; Pseudomonas aeruginosa; scavenger receptors; lung
3.  COX-2 Expression is Upregulated by DNA Hypomethylation post-Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation1 
Hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) therapy is limited by pulmonary infections. Mice with fully reconstituted hematopoietic compartments, including alveolar macrophages (AMs), post-bone marrow transplantation (BMT) have impaired host defense against Gram negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Impaired innate immunity is related to increased production of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) by AMs. Cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 is the rate-limiting enzyme for synthesis of PGE2 from arachidonic acid, and COX-2 expression is elevated in AMs post-BMT. We hypothesized epigenetic mechanisms may be responsible for upregulation of COX-2 in AMs. Using bisulfite sequencing, we observed the 5’-untranslated region and exon 1 of the COX-2 gene is hypomethylated in the AMs of BMT mice compared to control. COX-2 expression was increased in primary AMs and in the AM cell line (MHS) following treatment with 5-aza-2-deoxycytidine (a methyltransferase inhibitor). Methylation by SssI methyltransferase of a 702 bp region of the COX-2 promoter including the beginning of exon 1 driving a luciferase reporter silenced luciferase expression. Because transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β1) is elevated in lungs post-BMT, we tested whether TGF-β1 could promote expression of COX-2 in a hypermethylated COX-2 vector, and observed TGF-β1 induced modest expression of COX-2, suggesting an ability to demethylate the promoter. Finally, BMTs performed with marrow from mice expressing a dominant negative form of the TGF-β receptor on CD11c-expressing cells (which includes AMs) demonstrated improved host defense and AM function. Our findings suggest impaired innate immunity and PGE2 elevation post-BMT are due to hypomethylation of the COX-2 gene which is at least partly regulated by TGF-β1.
PMCID: PMC3478470  PMID: 23008450
4.  Phagocytosis of unopsonized Pseudomonas aeruginosa by murine macrophages is a two-step process requiring glucose. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1992;90(3):1085-1092.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an important pulmonary pathogen in cystic fibrosis, but the means by which it evades host defenses is understood poorly. Macrophages (M phi) are critical in protecting the lung and mucosal surfaces against infection and may need to perform their functions in the absence of opsonins before the evolution of an inflammatory response. The purpose of the present study was to define factors that regulate the capacity of macrophages to mediate nonopsonic phagocytosis. Phagocytosis of unopsonized P. aeruginosa by murine peritoneal and pulmonary alveolar M phi s was absolutely dependent upon the presence of glucose; only D-mannose could substitute. Glucose-dependent phagocytosis appears to be selective for P. aeruginosa by M phi s; ingestion of unopsonized zymosan, opsonized P. aeruginosa, EIgG, and E (IgM)C occurred in the presence or absence of glucose as did-ingestion of unopsonized P. aeruginosa by polymorphonuclear leukocytes. M phi binding and phagocytosis of unopsonized P. aeruginosa appeared to occur by a mechanism independent of complement receptor 3 and mannose receptors. Phagocytosis of P. aeruginosa killed by tobramycin or Formalin was glucose dependent, suggesting that the glucose exerted its effects on the M phi rather than the bacteria. The predilection of P. aeruginosa for lower airway disease in patients with cystic fibrosis might be explained in part by the unique dependency upon glucose for M phi phagocytosis.
PMCID: PMC329968  PMID: 1522217
5.  Activation of synovial fibroblasts in rheumatoid arthritis: lack of expression of the tumour suppressor PTEN at sites of invasive growth and destruction 
Arthritis Research  1999;2(1):59-64.
In the present study, we searched for mutant PTEN transcripts in aggressive rheumatoid arthritis synovial fibroblasts (RA-SF) and studied the expression of PTEN in RA. By automated sequencing, no evidence for the presence of mutant PTEN transcripts was found. However, in situ hybridization on RA synovium revealed a distinct expression pattern of PTEN, with negligible staining in the lining layer but abundant expression in the sublining. Normal synovial tissue exhibited homogeneous staining for PTEN. In cultured RA-SF, only 40% expressed PTEN. Co-implantation of RA-SF and normal human cartilage into severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice showed only limited expression of PTEN, with no staining in those cells aggressively invading the cartilage. Although PTEN is not genetically altered in RA, these findings suggest that a lack of PTEN expression may constitute a characteristic feature of activated RA-SF in the lining, and may thereby contribute to the invasive behaviour of RA-SF by maintaining their aggressive phenotype at sites of cartilage destruction.
PTEN is a novel tumour suppressor which exhibits tyrosine phosphatase activity as well as homology to the cytoskeletal proteins tensin and auxilin. Mutations of PTEN have been described in several human cancers and associated with their invasiveness and metastatic properties. Although not malignant, rheumatoid arthritis synovial fibroblasts (RA-SF) exhibit certain tumour-like features such as attachment to cartilage and invasive growth. In the present study, we analyzed whether mutant transcripts of PTEN were present in RA-SF. In addition, we used in situ hybridization to study the expression of PTEN messenger (m)RNA in tissue samples of RA and normal individuals as well as in cultured RA-SF and in the severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mouse model of RA.
Synovial tissue specimens were obtained from seven patients with RA and from two nonarthritic individuals. Total RNA was isolated from synovial fibroblasts and after first strand complementary (c)DNA synthesis, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed to amplify a 1063 base pair PTEN fragment that encompassed the coding sequence of PTEN including the phosphatase domain and all mutation sites described so far. The PCR products were subcloned in Escherichia coli, and up to four clones were picked from each plate for automated sequencing. For in situ hybridization, digoxigenin-labelled PTEN-specific RNA probes were generated by in vitro transcription. For control in situ hybridization, a matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2-specific probe was prepared. To investigate the expression of PTEN in the absence of human macrophage or lymphocyte derived factors, we implanted RA-SF from three patients together with normal human cartilage under the renal capsule of SCID mice. After 60 days, mice were sacrificed, the implants removed and embedded into paraffin.
PCR revealed the presence of the expected 1063 base pair PTEN fragment in all (9/9) cell cultures (Fig. 1). No additional bands that could account for mutant PTEN variants were detected. Sequence analysis revealed 100% homology of all RA-derived PTEN fragments to those from normal SF as well as to the published GenBank sequence (accession number U93051). However, in situ hybridization demonstrated considerable differences in the expression of PTEN mRNA within the lining and the sublining layers of RA synovial membranes. As shown in Figure 2a, no staining was observed within the lining layer which has been demonstrated to mediate degradation of cartilage and bone in RA. In contrast, abundant expression of PTEN mRNA was found in the sublining of all RA synovial tissues (Figs 2a and b). Normal synovial specimens showed homogeneous staining for PTEN within the thin synovial membrane (Fig. 2c). In situ hybridization using the sense probe gave no specific staining (Fig. 2d). We also performed in situ hybridization on four of the seven cultured RA-SF and followed one cell line from the first to the sixth passage. Interestingly, only 40% of cultured RA-SF expressed PTEN mRNA (Fig. 3a), and the proportion of PTEN expressing cells did not change throughout the passages. In contrast, control experiments using a specific RNA probe for MMP-2 revealed mRNA expression by nearly all cultured cells (Fig. 3b). As seen before, implantation of RA-SF into the SCID mice showed considerable cartilage degradation. Interestingly, only negligible PTEN expression was found in those RA-SF aggressively invading the cartilage (Fig. 3c). In situ hybridization for MMP-2 showed abundant staining in these cells (Fig. 3d).
Although this study found no evidence for mutations of PTEN in RA synovium, the observation that PTEN expression is lacking in the lining layer of RA synovium as well as in more than half of cultured RA-SF is of interest. It suggests that loss of PTEN function may not exclusively be caused by genetic alterations, yet at the same time links the low expression of PTEN to a phenotype of cells that have been shown to invade cartilage aggressively.
It has been proposed that the tyrosine phosphatase activity of PTEN is responsible for its tumour suppressor activity by counteracting the actions of protein tyrosine kinases. As some studies have demonstrated an upregulation of tyrosine kinase activity in RA synovial cells, it might be speculated that the lack of PTEN expression in aggressive RA-SF contributes to the imbalance of tyrosine kinases and phosphatases in this disease. However, the extensive amino-terminal homology of the predicted protein to the cytoskeletal proteins tensin and auxilin suggests a complex regulatory function involving cellular adhesion molecules and phosphatase-mediated signalling. The tyrosine phosphatase TEP1 has been shown to be identical to the protein encoded by PTEN, and gene transcription of TEP1 has been demonstrated to be downregulated by transforming growth factor (TGF)-β. Therefore, it could be hypothesized that TGF-β might be responsible for the downregulation of PTEN. However, the expression of TGF-β is not restricted to the lining but found throughout the synovial tissue in RA. Moreover, in our study the percentage of PTEN expressing RA-SF remained stable for six passages in culture, whereas molecules that are cytokine-regulated in vivo frequently change their expression levels when cultured over several passages. Also, cultured RA-SF that were implanted into SCID mice and deeply invaded the cartilage did not show significant expression of PTEN after 60 days. The drop in the percentage of PTEN expressing cells from the original cell cultures to the SCID mouse implants is of interest as this observation goes along with data from previous studies that have shown the prominent expression of activation-related molecules in the SCID mice implants that in vivo are found predominantly in the lining layer. Therefore, our data point to endogenous mechanisms rather than to the influence of exogenous human cytokines or factors in the downregulation of PTEN. Low expression of PTEN may belong to the features that distinguish between the activated phenotype of RA-SF and the sublining, proliferating but nondestructive cells.
PMCID: PMC17804  PMID: 11219390
rheumatoid arthritis; synovial membrane; fibroblasts; PTEN tumour suppressor; severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mouse model; cartilage destruction; in situ hybridization
6.  PTEN Activates the Actin Depolymerization Factor Cofilin-1 During PGE2-Mediated Inhibition of Fungal Phagocytosis 
Science Signaling  2012;5(210):ra12.
Macrophage ingestion of Candida albicans requires recognition by multiple receptors and activation of diverse signaling programs. Synthesis of the lipid mediator prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and generation of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) also accompany this process. Here we characterized the mechanisms underlying PGE2-mediated inhibition of phagocytosis and of F-actin polymerization in response to ingestion of C. albicans. PGE2 suppressed macrophage phagocytosis and F-actin content through E-series prostanoid 2 and 4 receptors, cAMP, and activation of types I and II protein kinase A, but not guanine nucleotide exchange protein activated by cAMP. Dephosphorylation and activation of the actin depolymerizing factor cofilin-1 was necessary for these inhibitory effects of PGE2. Unexpectedly, cofilin-1 activation by PGE2 was mediated by the protein phosphatase activity of PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10), with which it directly associated. Because PGE2 overproduction accompanies many immunosuppressed states, the PTEN-dependent pathway described here may contribute to impaired antifungal defenses.
PMCID: PMC3400468  PMID: 22317922
7.  Strategic nonmyeloablative conditioning: CD154:CD40 co-stimulatory blockade at primary BMT promotes engraftment for secondary BMT after engraftment failure1 
There is an increased risk of failure of engraftment following nonmyeloablative conditioning. Sensitization resulting from failed bone marrow transplantation (BMT) remains a major challenge for secondary BMT. Approaches to allow successful retransplantation would have significant benefits for BMT candidates living with chronic diseases. We used a mouse model to investigate the effect of preparative regimens at primary BMT on outcome for secondary BMT. We found that conditioning with TBI or recipient T-cell lymphodepletion at primary BMT did not promote successful secondary BMT. In striking contrast, successful secondary BMT could be achieved in mice conditioned with anti-CD154 co-stimulatory molecule blockade at first BMT. Blockade of CD154 alone or combined with T-cell depletion inhibits generation of the humoral immune response after primary BMT as evidenced by abrogation of production of anti-donor Abs. The humoral barrier is dominant in sensitization resulting from failed BMT, as almost all CFSE-labeled donor cells were killed at 0.5 and 3 hr in sensitized recipients in in vivo cytotoxicity assay, reflecting antibody-mediated cytotoxicity. CD154:CD40 co-stimulatory blockade used at primary BMT promotes allogeneic engraftment in secondary BMT after engraftment failure at first BMT. The prevention of generation of anti-donor Abs at primary BMT is critical for successful secondary BMT.
PMCID: PMC2767528  PMID: 18941252
8.  Defective Pulmonary Innate Immune Responses Post-Stem Cell Transplantation; Review and Results from One Model System 
Infectious pulmonary complications limit the success of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) as a therapy for malignant and non-malignant disorders. Susceptibility to pathogens in both autologous and allogeneic HSCT recipients persists despite successful immune reconstitution. As studying the causal effects of these immune defects in the human population can be limiting, a bone marrow transplant (BMT) mouse model can be used to understand the defect in mounting a productive innate immune response post-transplantation. When syngeneic BMT is performed, this system allows the study of BMT-induced alterations in innate immune cell function that are independent of the confounding effects of immunosuppressive therapy and graft-versus-host disease. Studies from several laboratories, including our own show that pulmonary susceptibility to bacterial infections post-BMT are largely due to alterations in the lung alveolar macrophages. Changes in these cells post-BMT include cytokine and eicosanoid dysregulations, scavenger receptor alterations, changes in micro RNA profiles, and alterations in intracellular signaling molecules that limit bacterial phagocytosis and killing. The changes that occur highlight mechanisms that promote susceptibility to infections commonly afflicting HSCT recipients and provide insight into therapeutic targets that may improve patient outcomes post-HSCT.
PMCID: PMC3662877  PMID: 23745124
pulmonary complications; hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; eicosanoids; alveolar macrophage; polymorphonuclear leukocytes; scavenger receptors; microRNA; prostaglandins E
9.  Alveolar Macrophage–mediated Killing of Pneumocystis carinii f. sp. muris Involves Molecular Recognition by the Dectin-1 β-Glucan Receptor 
The Journal of Experimental Medicine  2003;198(11):1677-1688.
Innate immune mechanisms against Pneumocystis carinii, a frequent cause of pneumonia in immunocompromised individuals, are not well understood. Using both real time polymerase chain reaction as a measure of organism viability and fluorescent deconvolution microscopy, we show that nonopsonic phagocytosis of P. carinii by alveolar macrophages is mediated by the Dectin-1 β-glucan receptor and that the subsequent generation of hydrogen peroxide is involved in alveolar macrophage–mediated killing of P. carinii. The macrophage Dectin-1 β-glucan receptor colocalized with the P. carinii cyst wall. However, blockage of Dectin-1 with high concentrations of anti–Dectin-1 antibody inhibited binding and concomitant killing of P. carinii by alveolar macrophages. Furthermore, RAW 264.7 macrophages overexpressing Dectin-1 bound P. carinii at a higher level than control RAW cells. In the presence of Dectin-1 blockage, killing of opsonized P. carinii could be restored through FcγRII/III receptors. Opsonized P. carinii could also be efficiently killed in the presence of FcγRII/III receptor blockage through Dectin-1–mediated phagocytosis. We further show that Dectin-1 is required for P. carinii–induced macrophage inflammatory protein 2 production by alveolar macrophages. Taken together, these results show that nonopsonic phagocytosis and subsequent killing of P. carinii by alveolar macrophages is dependent upon recognition by the Dectin-1 β-glucan receptor.
PMCID: PMC2194130  PMID: 14657220
lung; leukocyte; innate; yeast; chemokine
10.  Induction of TGF-β1, Not Regulatory T Cells, Impairs Antiviral Immunity in the Lung following Bone Marrow Transplant 
Patients receiving hematopoietic stem cell transplantation or bone marrow transplantation (BMT) as therapy for various malignancies or autoimmune diseases have an increased risk for infectious complications posttransplant, especially in the lung. We have used BMT in mice and murine gammaherpesvirus, γHV-68, to study the efficacy of adaptive immune responses post-BMT. Five weeks posttransplant, mice have fully reconstituted their hematopoietic lineages in both the lung and periphery. When challenged with virus, however, BMT mice have a reduced ability to clear lytic virus from the lung. Defective viral control in BMT mice is not related to impaired leukocyte recruitment or defective APC function. Rather, BMT mice are characterized by defective CD4 cell proliferation, skewing of effector CD4 T cells from a Th1 to a Th17 phenotype, and an immunosuppressive lung environment at the time of infection that includes overexpression of TGF-β1 and PGE2 and increased numbers of regulatory T cells. Neither indomethacin treatment to block PG synthesis nor anti-CD25 depletion of regulatory T cells improved antiviral host defense post-BMT. Transplanting mice with transgenic bone marrow expressing a dominant-negative TGF-βRII under the permissive CD4 promoter created mice in which effector CD4 and CD8 cells were unresponsive to TGF-β1. Mice with TGF-β1–nonresponsive effector T cells had restored antiviral immunity and improved Th1 responses post-BMT. Thus, our results indicate that over-expression of TGF-β1 following myeloablative conditioning post-BMT results in impaired effector T cell responses to viral infection.
PMCID: PMC3314499  PMID: 20348421
11.  Prolonged impairment of very late activating antigen-mediated T cell proliferation via the CD3 pathway after T cell-depleted allogeneic bone marrow transplantation. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1994;94(2):481-488.
One of the major obstacles in allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (allo-BMT) is prolonged T cell dysfunction resulting in a variety of infectious complications in the months to years after hematologic engraftment. We previously showed that immobilized extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins such as fibronectin (FN), the CS-1 domain of FN, or collagen (CO) acted synergistically with immobilized anti-CD3 to induce T cell proliferation. In addition, the comitogenic effect of ECMs could be mimicked by immobilized mAb reactive with a common beta 1 chain (CD29) of very late activating (VLA) antigens which include ECM receptors. Since the interaction of T cells with ECMs appears to play an important role in the process of T cell reconstitution following allo-BMT, we examined the expression of VLA antigens (alpha 1-alpha 6, beta 1) and their functional roles in CD3-mediated T cell proliferation at various times after T cell depleted allo-BMT. VLA beta 1 as well as VLA alpha 4, alpha 5, and alpha 6 expression was lower than normal controls during the first 3 mo after allo-BMT and auto-BMT, whereas these expressions returned to normal levels by 4 mo after allo-BMT and auto-BMT. Although alpha 1 and alpha 2 were not expressed on lymphocytes from normal controls, these antigens were expressed on lymphocytes at the detectable levels (5-15%) from patients after allo-BMT and auto-BMT. Both CD29 and CD3 were expressed at normal levels on lymphocytes from patients > 3 mo after allo-BMT, whereas T cell interaction with ECM through VLA proteins or crosslinking of VLA beta 1 expressed by T cells with anti-CD29 mAb results in poor induction of CD3-mediated T cell proliferation for a prolonged period (> 1 yr) after allo-BMT. In contrast, T cell proliferation induced by crosslinking of anti-CD2 or anti-CD26 with anti-CD3 was almost fully recovered by 1 yr post-allo-BMT. After autologous BMT, impaired VLA-mediated T cell proliferation via the CD3 pathway after auto-BMT returned to normal levels within 1 yr despite no significant difference in CD3 and CD29 expression following either allo- or auto-BMT. The adhesion of T cells from post-allo-BMT patients to FN-coated plate was normal or increased compared to that of normal controls. Moreover, the induction of the tyrosine phosphorylation of pp105 protein by the ligation of VLA molecules was not impaired in allo-BMT patients. These results suggest that there are some other defects in the process of VLA-mediated signal transduction in such patients. Our results imply that disturbance of VLA function could explain, at least in part, the persistent immunoincompetent state after allo-BMT and may be involved in susceptibility to opportunistic infections after allo-BMT.
PMCID: PMC295109  PMID: 7518837
12.  Differences in phagocytosis and killing by alveolar macrophages from humans, rabbits, rats, and hamsters. 
Infection and Immunity  1982;36(2):504-509.
Phagocytosis and killing by alveolar macrophages from humans, rabbits, rats, and hamsters, were compared in vitro. In the absence of serum opsonins, human alveolar macrophages could phagocytize Staphylococcus aureus Cowan I (protein A positive), but not S. aureus EMS (protein A negative) or Pseudomonas aeruginosa MN. In contrast, rabbit, rat, and hamster alveolar macrophages did not phagocytize S. aureus Cowan I or other nonopsonized bacteria. Human alveolar macrophages, but not other species, stained positively with fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated protein A. When opsonized bacterial were studied, phagocytosis by human, rabbit, and hamster alveolar macrophages was found to be mediated by both Fc and C3 receptors. However, only Fc receptor-mediated phagocytosis of bacteria was demonstrated for rat alveolar macrophages. Differences were also found in the kinetics of bacterial killing by alveolar macrophages from different species. Human and rabbit alveolar macrophages rapidly killed opsonized S. aureus Cowan I. However, bacterial killing by hamster alveolar macrophages proceeded at a slower rate, and rat alveolar macrophages completely failed to kill S. aureus. These significant differences in the function of alveolar macrophages from four different species emphasize the need to document the appropriateness of animal models before using them to predict the biological activities of human alveolar macrophages.
PMCID: PMC351256  PMID: 6806190
13.  Suppression by human recombinant gamma interferon of in vitro macrophage nonopsonic and opsonic phagocytosis and killing. 
Infection and Immunity  1991;59(6):1893-1898.
Although gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) exerts profound effects on the state of activation of macrophages, its influence on receptor-mediated phagocytosis and killing of extracellular bacteria is poorly understood. Human monocytes cultured in the presence of human recombinant IFN-gamma exhibited an enhanced capacity to produce superoxide anion. Although these cells bound greater numbers of particles via Fc receptors, their capacity to phagocytose by these receptors or to bind or ingest particles via receptors for C3bi, mannose, or unopsonized Pseudomonas aeruginosa was substantially depressed in a dose-dependent fashion (0.1 to 1,000 U of IFN-gamma per ml). Macrophage phagocytosis of P. aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus opsonized with whole serum or with serum deficient in immunoglobulin or complement was also depressed. Macrophages cultured in the presence of IFN-gamma had a diminished capacity to kill both unopsonized and opsonized P. aeruginosa. We conclude that IFN-gamma inhibits macrophage nonopsonic and opsonic receptor-mediated phagocytosis and killing but enhances oxidative radical generation; its production may exacerbate host tissue damage during chronic infection with extracellular pathogens.
PMCID: PMC257939  PMID: 1645327
14.  Nonopsonic Phagocytosis of Zymosan and Mycobacterium kansasii by CR3 (CD11b/CD18) Involves Distinct Molecular Determinants and Is or Is Not Coupled with NADPH Oxidase Activation 
Infection and Immunity  2000;68(8):4736-4745.
Complement receptor type 3 (CR3) was initially described as an opsonic receptor. Subsequently, CR3-mediated lectin-sugar recognition mechanisms have been shown to play a major role in the nonopsonic phagocytosis of several pathogens, among them Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Little is known about the binding and signal transduction mechanisms operating during nonopsonic ingestion through CR3 of different microorganisms. In the present study, we used CHO cells stably transfected with CR3 to show that CR3 was able to mediate internalization of zymosan and pathogenic mycobacteria (Mycobacterium kansasii and Mycobacterium avium) but not that of nonpathogenic species (Mycobacterium smegmatis and Mycobacterium phlei). A combination of mannan and β-glucan inhibited the phagocytosis of zymosan but had no effect on M. kansasii ingestion. Among six monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) directed against the CD11b subunit of CR3 that decreased zymosan ingestion, only three inhibited M. kansasii phagocytosis. In particular, MAbs known to block the CR3 lectin site affected only internalization of zymosan. Using U937 macrophages, we observed that zymosan ingestion through CR3 induced superoxide production measured by cytochrome c reduction and by translocation of the NADPH oxidase cytosolic component p47phox to the phagosomal membrane, whereas phagocytosis of viable or heat-killed M. kansasii did not. Furthermore, lack of superoxide anion production during phagocytosis of M. kansasii was not due to inhibition of NADPH oxidase per se or superoxide anion scavenging. Together, our results indicate that (i) nonopsonic phagocytosis of zymosan and M. kansasii by CR3 implicates different molecular mechanisms involving multiple and distinct epitopes of CD11b and (ii) CR3 may transduce different cellular responses depending on the sites mediating nonopsonic phagocytosis.
PMCID: PMC98424  PMID: 10899880
15.  Specific immunosuppression by mixed chimerism with bone marrow transplantation after Staphylococcal Enterotoxin B pretreatment could prolong corneal allograft survival in mice 
Molecular Vision  2012;18:974-982.
We assessed the combined use of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin B (SEB) superantigen pre-treatment along with allogeneic bone marrow transplant (BMT) to induce immune suppression condition and inhibit corneal keratoplasty rejection in mice.
BALB/C (H-2d) mice were both BMT and corneal allografts donors and C57BL/6(H-2b) mice were recipients. Prior to BMT, recipients received single injections of either SEB, cyclophosphamide (CYP), or normal saline (NS). Allogenic corneal penetrating keratoplasty was performed 7 days after BMT. Bone marrow chimerisms in recipients (donor major histocompatibility complex-II H2-d) were determined on Days 14, 28, and 56 post-BMT. Recipient immune response was assessed by mixed lymphocyte reactions (MLR) using splenocytes from C57BL/6 mice as responders in co-culture with stimulator cells from C57BL/6 (isogeneic), BALB/C (allogeneic), or CBA/1(third party) mice. Cluster of differentiation 4 receptors positive (CD4+) and CD8+T cells in recipient mice were evaluated. Corneal graft survival was assessed using Kaplan–Meier survival curves.
SEB pre-treatment induced higher levels of hematopoietic chimerism on Days 14, 28 and 56 post-BMT than did CYP or NS pre-treatment. Mean corneal allograft survival was significantly prolonged with group SEB-BMT (20.3±7.6 days) compared to group CYP-BMT (13.0±4.0 days) and NS-BMT (9.0±2.2 days). SEB-BMT mice splenocytes had diminished MLR responses compared to CYP-BMT or NS-BMT mice. CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in peripheral blood and spleens were significantly reduced in group SEB-BMT mice.
BMT after SEB pre-treatment could promote mixed chimerism, which inhibited allogeneic cornea transplant rejection. This should possibly relate to CD4+ and CD8+ T cell deletion and acquiring donor-specific immunosuppression.
PMCID: PMC3339037  PMID: 22550390
16.  δ-ALA-D activity is a reliable marker for oxidative stress in bone marrow transplant patients 
BMC Cancer  2009;9:138.
Bone marrow transplantation (BMT) is often used in the treatment of various diseases. Before BMT, patients are submitted to a conditioning regimen (CR), which consists of the administration of high doses of chemotherapy. The action of many cytostatic drugs involves the overproduction of reactive oxygen species, which together with inadequate antioxidant protection can lead to oxidative stress and this has been implicated in the etiology of various diseases. The objectives of this study were to look for evidence of oxidative stress and also to analyze δ-Aminolevulinato dehydratase (δ-ALA-D) activity as a possible marker of oxidative stress in autologous and allogeneic BMT patients.
Lipid peroxidation, vitamin C and thiol group levels as well as catalase, superoxide dismutase and δ-ALA-D activity were determined in 37 healthy controls, 13 patients undergoing autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation and 24 patients undergoing allogeneic BMT.
We found that patients presented signs of oxidative stress before they were submitted to BMT, during CR and up to 20 days after BMT. There was a decrease in enzymatic and non enzymatic antioxidant defenses, in δ-ALA-D activity, and an increase in lipoperoxidation in the blood of both patient groups.
This study has indicated that autologous and allogeneic BMT are associated with oxidative stress. Moreover, blood δ-ALA-D activity seems to be an additional biomarker of oxidative stress in BMT patients.
PMCID: PMC2694815  PMID: 19426494
17.  Yersinia pseudotuberculosis inhibits Fc receptor-mediated phagocytosis in J774 cells. 
Infection and Immunity  1995;63(8):3117-3124.
Nonopsonized as well as immunoglobulin-G (IgG)-opsonized Yersinia pseudotuberculosis resists phagocytic uptake by the macrophage-like cell line J774 by a mechanism involving the plasmid-encoded proteins Yops. The tyrosine phosphatase YopH was of great importance for the antiphagocytic effect of the bacteria. YopH-negative mutants did not induce antiphagocytosis; instead, they were readily ingested, almost to the same extent as that of the translocation mutants YopB and YopD and the plasmid-cured strain. The bacterial determinant invasin was demonstrated to mediate phagocytosis of nonopsonized bacteria by these cells. In addition to inhibiting uptake of itself, Y. pseudotuberculosis also interfered with the phagocytic uptake of other types of prey: J774 cells that had been exposed to virulent Y. pseudotuberculosis exhibited a reduced capacity to ingest IgG-opsonized yeast particles. This effect was impaired when the bacterium-phagocyte interaction occurred in the presence of gentamicin, indicating a requirement for in situ bacterial protein synthesis. The Yersinia-mediated antiphagocytic effect on J774 cells was reversible: after 18 h in the presence of gentamicin, the phagocytic capacity of Yersinia-exposed J774 cells was completely restored. Inhibition of the uptake of IgG-opsonized yeast particles was dependent on the Yops in a manner similar to that seen for blockage of Yersinia phagocytosis. This similarity suggests that the pathogen affected a general phagocytic mechanism. Despite a marked reduction in the capacity to ingest IgG-opsonized yeast particles, no effect was observed on the binding of the prey. Taken together, these results demonstrate that Yop-mediated antiphagocytosis by Y. pseudotuberculosis affects regulatory functions downstream of the phagocytic receptor and thereby extends to other types of phagocytosis.
PMCID: PMC173425  PMID: 7622239
18.  HO-1 - STAT3 Axis in Mouse Liver Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury: Regulation of TLR4 Innate Responses Through PI3K/PTEN Signaling 
Journal of hepatology  2011;56(2):359-366.
Signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), a key mediator of anti-inflammatory cytokine signaling, is essential for heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1)-induced cytoprotection. The phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/phosphatase and tensin homolog delete on chromosome 10 (PTEN) pathways regulate diverse innate immune responses. This study was designed to investigate the role of STAT3 in the regulation of PI3K/PTEN cascade after HO-1 induction in a mouse model of innate immune-dominated liver ischemia/reperfusion injury (IRI).
Mice subjected to Ad-HO-1 transfer were resistant to liver IRI, and this cytoprotective effect correlated with increased intrahepatic PI3K/Akt and diminished PTEN expression. In contrast, mice undergoing adjunctive Ad-HO-1 treatment and STAT3 knockdown (siRNA) remained susceptible to IR-mediated local inflammatory response and hepatocellular damage. Consistent with decreased cell apoptosis and inhibited TLR4 expression after PI3K/Akt activation, treatment with specific PI3k inhibitor increased local inflammation and recreated liver IRI despite Ad-HO-1 gene transfer. Parallel in vitro studies with bone marrow derived-macrophages have confirmed that HO-1 - STAT3 axis-induced PI3K/Akt negatively regulated PTEN expression in TLR4-dependent fashion.
These findings underscore the role of HO-1 induced STAT3 in modulating PI3K/PTEN in liver IRI cascade. Activating PI3K/Akt provides negative feedback mechanism for TLR4-driven inflammation. Identifying molecular pathways of STAT3 modulation in the innate immune system provides the rationale for novel therapeutic approaches for the management of liver inflammation and IRI in transplant patients.
PMCID: PMC3444295  PMID: 21756853
19.  Novel role for surfactant protein A in gastrointestinal graft-versus-host disease 
Graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD) is a severe and frequent complication of allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT) that involves the gastrointestinal tract and lungs. The pathobiology of GVHD is complex and involves immune cell recognition of host antigens as foreign. We hypothesize a central role for the collectin surfactant protein A (SP-A) in regulating the development of GVHD after allogeneic BMT.
C57BL/6 (H2b; WT) and SP-A deficient mice on C57BL/6 background (H2b; SP-A−/−) mice underwent allogeneic (Allo) or syngeneic (Syn) BMT with cells from either C3HeB/FeJ (H2k; SP-A−/−alloBMT or WTalloBMT) or C57Bl/6 (H2b; SP-A−/−synBMT or WTsynBMT) mice. 5 weeks post BMT, mice were necropsied and lung and gastrointestinal (GI) tissue were analyzed.
SP-A−/−alloBMT or WTalloBMT had no significant differences in lung pathology however, SP-A−/−alloBMT mice developed marked features of GI GVHD including decreased body weight, increased tissue inflammation and lymphocytic infiltration. SP-A−/−alloBMT mice also had increased colon expression of IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α, and IFN-γ and as well as increased Th17 cells, and diminished regulatory T (Treg) cells.
Our results demonstrate the first evidence of a critical role for SP-A in modulating GI GVHD. In these studies, we demonstrate that mice deficient in SP-A that have undergone an alloBMT have a greater incidence of GI GVHD that is associated with increased Th17 cells and decreased Tregs. The results of these studies demonstrate that SP-A protects against the development of GI GVHD and establishes a role for SP-A in regulating the immune response in the GI tract.
PMCID: PMC3373011  PMID: 22508928
Graft-versus-host disease; Surfactant Protein A; Th17; Regulatory T cells
20.  The critical early proinflammatory events associated with idiopathic pneumonia syndrome in irradiated murine allogeneic recipients are due to donor T cell infusion and potentiated by cyclophosphamide. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1997;100(5):1015-1027.
We have hypothesized that lung damage occurring in the peri-bone marrow transplant (BMT) period is critical for the subsequent generation of idiopathic pneumonia syndrome (IPS), a major complication following human BMT. The proinflammatory events induced by a common pre-BMT conditioning regimen, cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan(R)) (Cy) and total body irradiation, were analyzed in a murine BMT model. Electron microscopy indicated that Cy exacerbated irradiation-induced epithelial cell injury as early as day 3 after BMT. Allogenicity was an important contributing factor to lung injury as measured by lung wet and dry weights and decreased specific lung compliance. The most significant pulmonary dysfunction was seen in mice receiving both allogeneic T cells and Cy conditioning. IPS was associated with an influx of T cells, macrophages, and neutrophils early post-BMT. Hydroxyproline levels were not increased, indicating that the injury was not fibrotic early post-BMT. As early as 2 h after chemoradiation, host macrophages increased in number in the lung parenchyma. Continued increases in macrophages occurred if splenic T cells were administered with the donor graft. The expression of costimulatory B7 molecules correlated with macrophage numbers. Frequencies of cells expressing mRNA for the inflammatory proteins TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, and TGFbeta were increased. Cy accelerated the upregulation of TGFbeta and increase in host macrophages. The exacerbation of macrophage activation and severity of IPS was dependent on allogeneic T cells, implicating immune-mediated mechanisms as critical to the outcome of IPS. This demonstration of early injury after BMT indicates the need for very early therapeutic intervention before lung damage becomes profound and irreversible.
PMCID: PMC508276  PMID: 9276718
21.  Noninvasive Tracking of Donor Cell Homing by Near-Infrared Fluorescence Imaging Shortly after Bone Marrow Transplantation 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(6):e11114.
Many diseases associated with bone marrow transplantation (BMT) are caused by transplanted hematopoietic cells, and the onset of these diseases occurs after homing of donor cells in the initial phase after BMT. Noninvasive observation of donor cell homing shortly after transplantation is potentially valuable for improving therapeutic outcomes of BMT by diagnosing the early stages of these diseases.
Methodology/Principal Findings
Freshly harvested near-infrared fluorescence-labeled cells were noninvasively observed for 24 h after BMT using a photon counting device to track their homing process. In a congenic BMT model, the homing of Alexa Fluor 750-labeled donor cells in the tibia was detected less than 1 h after BMT. In addition, subsequent cell distribution in an intraBM BMT model was successfully monitored for the first time using this method. In the allogeneic BMT model, T-cell depletion decreased the near-infrared fluorescence (NIRF) signals of the reticuloendothelial system.
This approach in several murine BMT models revealed that the transplanted cells homed within 24 h after transplantation. NIRF labeling is useful for tracking transplanted cells in the initial phase after BMT, and this approach can contribute to in vivo studies aimed at improving the therapeutic outcomes of BMT.
PMCID: PMC2885427  PMID: 20559437
22.  Pten loss in the bone marrow leads to G-CSF–mediated HSC mobilization 
The Journal of Experimental Medicine  2013;210(11):2337-2349.
Loss of the phosphatase and tumor suppressor gene PTEN induces G-CSF production in myeloid and stromal cells, thereby promoting HSCs mobilization from the bone marrow to the spleen and the initiation of lethal leukemia.
The phosphatase and tumor suppressor PTEN inhibits the phosphoinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway and plays a key role in cell growth, proliferation, survival, and migration. Pten conditional deletion using MxCre or Scl-CreERT leads to splenomegaly and leukemia formation, which occurs after the relocation of normal hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) from the bone marrow to the spleen. Unexpectedly, dormant HSCs in the bone marrow do not enter the cell cycle upon Pten loss, they do not lose self-renewal activity, and they are not exhausted. Instead, Pten deficiency causes an up-regulation of the PI3K pathway in myeloid cells, but not in HSCs. Strikingly, myeloid cells secrete high levels of G-CSF upon Pten loss, leading to the mobilization of HSCs from the bone marrow and accumulation in the spleen. After deletion of Pten in mice lacking G-CSF, the splenomegaly, myeloproliferative disease, and splenic HSC accumulation are rescued. Our data show that although PTEN has little if any role in normal HSCs, it is essential to prevent overt G-CSF production by myeloid and stromal cells which otherwise causes HSCs to relocate to the spleen followed by lethal leukemia initiation.
PMCID: PMC3804947  PMID: 24127490
The Prostate  2010;71(8):791-800.
Phosphatase homologue of tensin (PTEN) is the most commonly mutated gene in prostate cancer. Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are known to promote differentiation and inhibit proliferation. Previously published reports from other organ systems led us to investigate a mechanistic relationship between PTEN and BMP signaling in prostate epithelial cells.
We analyzed growth rate and PTEN expression in E6, BPH-1 and C4-2B prostate epithelial cells treated with BMP-4. We also treated doxacyclin-inducible PTEN-C4-2B cells with BMP-4 and doxacyclin to determine the effect of BMP on growth and PTEN expression in conditions of increasing PTEN expression. We determined the dependency of BMP-mediated growth inhibition via siRNA knockdown of PTEN expression and BMP treatment. We determined PTEN protein stability by determining the effect of BMP-4 on PTEN protein at time points after treatment with cyclohexamide, a translation inhibitor.
We found that BMP-4 induces PTEN in E6 and BPH-1 cells and reduces proliferation. Knockdown of PTEN attenuated the growth-inhibiting effects of BMP-4 in these cells. BMP-4 had no effect in PTEN negative-C4-2B cells, but doxacyclin-driven PTEN C4-2B cells responded to BMP-4 with enhanced PTEN and growth inhibition. BMP-4 also increased PTEN protein stability.
BMP signaling induces PTEN expression and sustains PTEN protein expression resulting in inhibition of prostate epithelial cell growth. These data are the first to identify a mechanistic linkage between BMP signaling and PTEN in the prostate, both of which are independently identified as tumor suppressors and suggest possible coordinate dysregulation in prostate cancer.
PMCID: PMC3043153  PMID: 21456062
Prostate; epithelium; bone-morphogenetic protein; phosphatase homologue of tensin analogue; protein stability
24.  Stromal cell populations in necropsy bone marrow sections from allogeneic marrow recipients and non-transplant patients. 
Journal of Clinical Pathology  1993;46(7):611-616.
AIMS--To compare the numbers of alkaline phosphatase positive reticulum cells (AL-RC) and macrophages in bone marrow transplant (BMT) recipients with numbers in normal subjects and to look for correlations with clinical features. METHODS--Sections of femoral marrow were obtained at necropsy from 18 BMT recipients and nine normal subjects who had died suddenly. AL-RC were visualised through their endogenous alkaline phosphatase activity. Macrophages were stained by an immunocytochemical technique using the antibody EBM/11 (CD68) and through their endogenous acid phosphatase activity. The numbers of stained cells were counted and expressed as a percentage of total nucleated cells. RESULTS--In both sets of marrow tissue, more macrophages stained for CD68 than for acid phosphatase, indicating macrophage heterogeneity. The percentage value for CD68 positive macrophages was higher among the transplant recipients (p < 0.01). At least in part this was caused by a reduction in haemopoietic cell numbers. Percentage values for acid phosphatase and alkaline phosphatase positive cells did not differ between the two groups. To exclude the effect of changes in marrow cellularity, stromal cell ratios were compared. The AL-RC: CD68 and acid phosphatase:CD68 ratios were both lower in BMT recipients, indicating that after BMT either the absolute number of AL-RC and acid phosphatase cells decreases, or CD68 cells increase, or there is a combination of the two. There was no correlation between the number of each cell type and cell dose given at transplantation, time after transplantation, presence of graft versus host disease or infection, marrow erythroid:myeloid ratio, or peripheral white cell count. The ratio of AL-RC to macrophages in our intact marrow was 0.43, considerably higher than that reported in cultured marrow. CONCLUSIONS--AL-RC and acid phosphatase positive cells may be most important for supporting haemopoiesis and their reduction after BMT may contribute to depression of haemopoiesis. CD68 positive cells include macrophages with a wide variety of functions and these may be increased in response to marrow damage.
PMCID: PMC501387  PMID: 8157745
25.  Prostaglandin E2 Inhibits Fibroblast Migration by E-Prostanoid 2 Receptor–Mediated Increase in PTEN Activity 
An increased migratory phenotype exists in lung fibroblasts derived from patients with fibroproliferative lung disease. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) suppresses fibroblast migration, but the receptor(s) and mechanism(s) mediating this action are unknown. Our data confirm that treatment of human lung fibroblasts with PGE2 inhibits migration. Similar effects of butaprost, an E-prostanoid (EP) 2 receptor–specific ligand, implicate the EP2 receptor in migration-inhibitory signaling. Further, migration in fibroblasts deficient for the EP2 receptor cannot be inhibited by PGE2 or butaprost, confirming the central role of EP2 in mediating these effects. Our previous data suggested that phosphatase and tensin homolog on chromosome ten (PTEN), a phosphatase that opposes the actions of phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K), may be important in regulating lung fibroblast motility. We now report that both PGE2 and butaprost increase PTEN phosphatase activity, without a concomitant increase in PTEN protein levels. This contributes to EP2-mediated migration inhibition, because migration in PTEN-null fibroblasts is similarly unaffected by EP2 receptor signaling. Increased PTEN activity in response to EP2 stimulation is associated with decreased tyrosine phosphorylation on PTEN, a mechanism known to regulate enzyme activity. Collectively, these data describe the novel mechanistic finding that PGE2, via the EP2 receptor, decreases tyrosine phosphorylation on PTEN, resulting in increased PTEN enzyme activity and inhibition of fibroblast migration.
PMCID: PMC1965457  PMID: 15539459
fibroblast; eicosanoid; phosphatase; cell migration

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