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author:("butel, Björn")
1.  Therapy with Plasma Purified Alpha1-Antitrypsin (Prolastin®) Induces Time-Dependent Changes in Plasma Levels of MMP-9 and MPO 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(1):e0117497.
The common Z mutation (Glu342Lys) of α1-antitrypsin (A1AT) results in the polymerization and intracellular retention of A1AT protein. The concomitant deficiency of functional A1AT predisposes PiZZ subjects to early onset emphysema. Clinical studies have implied that, among the biomarkers associated with emphysema, matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) is of particular importance. Increased plasma MMP-9 levels are proposed to predict the decline of lung function as well as greater COPD exacerbations in A1AT deficiency-associated emphysema. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of A1AT therapy (Prolastin) on plasma MMP-9 and myeloperoxidase (MPO) levels. In total 34 PiZZ emphysema patients were recruited: 12 patients without and 22 with weekly intravenous (60 mg/kg body weight) A1AT therapy. The quantitative analysis of A1AT, MMP-9 and MPO was performed in serum and in supernatants of blood neutrophils isolated from patients before and after therapy. Patients with Prolastin therapy showed significantly lower serum MMP-9 and MPO levels than those without therapy. However, parallel analysis revealed that a rapid infusion of Prolastin is accompanied by a transient elevation of plasma MMP-9 and MPO levels. Experiments with freshly isolated blood neutrophils confirmed that therapy with Prolastin causes transient MMP-9 and MPO release. Prolastin induced the rapid release of MMP-9 and MPO when added directly to neutrophil cultures and this reaction was associated with the presence of IgA in A1AT preparation. Our data support the conclusion that changes in plasma levels of MMP-9 and MPO mirror the effect of Prolastin on blood neutrophils.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0117497
PMCID: PMC4311911  PMID: 25635861
2.  Imbalance in distribution of functional autologous regulatory T cells in rheumatoid arthritis 
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases  2007;66(9):1151-1156.
Objectives
Regulatory T cells (Tregs) exert their anti‐inflammatory activity predominantly by cell contact‐dependent mechanisms. A study was undertaken to investigate the regulatory capacity of autologous peripheral blood Tregs in contact with synovial tissue cell cultures, and to evaluate their presence in peripheral blood, synovial tissue and synovial fluid of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Methods
44 patients with RA and 5 with osteoarthritis were included in the study. The frequency of interferon (IFN)γ‐secreting cells was quantified in synovial tissue cell cultures, CD3‐depleted synovial tissue cell cultures, synovial tissue cultures co‐cultured with autologous CD4+ and with CD4+CD25+ peripheral blood T cells by ELISPOT. Total CD3+, Th1 polarised and Tregs were quantified by real‐time PCR for CD3ε, T‐bet and FoxP3 mRNA, and by immunohistochemistry for FoxP3 protein.
Results
RA synovial tissue cell cultures exhibited spontaneous expression of IFNγ which was abrogated by depletion of CD3+ T cells and specifically reduced by co‐culture with autologous peripheral blood Treg. The presence of Treg in RA synovitis was indicated by FoxP3 mRNA expression and confirmed by immunohistochemistry. The amount of FoxP3 transcripts, however, was lower in the synovial membrane than in peripheral blood or synovial fluid. The T‐bet/FoxP3 ratio correlated with both a higher grade of synovial tissue lymphocyte infiltration and higher disease activity.
Conclusion
This study has shown, for the first time in human RA, the efficacy of autologous Tregs in reducing the inflammatory activity of synovial tissue cell cultures ex vivo, while in the synovium FoxP3+ Tregs of patients with RA are reduced compared with peripheral blood and synovial fluid. This local imbalance of Th1 and Treg may be responsible for repeated rheumatic flares and thus will be of interest as a target for future treatments.
doi:10.1136/ard.2006.068320
PMCID: PMC1955165  PMID: 17392348

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