We previously demonstrated that altered zinc homeostasis is an important feature of pediatric sepsis, thus raising the possibility of zinc supplementation as a therapeutic strategy in sepsis. Herein we tested the hypothesis that prophylactic zinc supplementation would be beneficial in a murine model of peritoneal sepsis.
Murine model of sepsis (intraperitoneal fecal slurry injection).
Basic science research laboratory.
C57BL/6 male mice.
Intraperitoneal fecal slurry injection, with or without zinc supplementation (10 mg/kg of intraperitoneal zinc gluconate for 3 days prior to CLP).
Survival over 3 days following CLP, markers of inflammation, bacterial load studies, and immuno-phenotyping studies.
Zinc-supplemented mice demonstrated a significant survival advantage compared to control (non-supplemented) mice. Zinc-supplemented mice also demonstrated moderate reductions of inflammation and immune activation. The survival advantage primarily correlated with reduced in vivo bacterial load in zinc-supplemented mice, compared to controls. In addition, peritoneal macrophages harvested from zinc-supplemented mice demonstrated a significantly enhanced phagocytosis capacity for E. coli and S. aureus, compared to peritoneal macrophages harvested from control mice.
Prophylactic zinc supplementation reduces bacterial load and is beneficial in a murine model of peritoneal sepsis.
Background. Secondary hospital-acquired fungal infections are common in critically-ill patients and mortality remains high despite antimicrobial therapy. Interleukin-7 (IL-7) is a potent immunotherapeutic agent that improves host immunity and has shown efficacy in bacterial and viral models of infection. This study examined the ability of IL-7, which is currently in multiple clinical trials (including hepatitis and human immunodeficiency virus), to improve survival in a clinically relevant 2-hit model of fungal sepsis.
Methods. Mice underwent cecal ligation and puncture to induce peritonitis. Four days later, surviving mice had intravenous injection with Candida albicans. Following Candida infection, mice were treated with IL-7 or saline control. The effect of IL-7 on host immunity and survival was recorded.
Results. IL-7 ameliorated the loss of immune effector cells and increased lymphocyte functions, including activation, proliferation, expression of adhesion molecules, and interferon-γ production. These beneficial effects of IL-7 were associated with an increase in global immunity as reflected by an enhanced delayed type hypersensitivity response and a 1.7-fold improvement in survival.
Conclusions. The present findings showing that IL-7 improves survival in fungal sepsis, together with its previously reported efficacy in bacterial and viral infectious models, further supports its use as a novel immunotherapeutic in sepsis.
The peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor alpha (PPARα) is a member of the nuclear receptor family with many important physiologic roles related to metabolism and inflammation. Previous research in pediatric patients with septic shock revealed that genes corresponding to the PPARα signaling pathway are significantly downregulated in a subgroup of children with more severe disease. In this study, PPARα expression analysis using whole blood derived RNA revealed that PPARα expression was decreased in patients with septic shock and that the magnitude of that decrement correlated with the severity of disease. In a mouse model of sepsis, induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP), knockout mice lacking PPARα had decreased survival compared to wild type animals. Plasma cytokine analysis demonstrated decreased levels of IL-1β, IL-6, IL-17, KC, MCP-1, MIP-2, and TNFα at 24 hours in PPARα knockout animals. Cell surface markers of activation on splenic dendritic cells, macrophages, and CD8 T-cells were reduced in PPARα null animals and the bacterial load in lung and splenic tissues was increased. These data indicate that reduced or absent PPARα expression confers a survival disadvantage in sepsis and that PPARα plays a role in maintaining appropriate immune functions during the sepsis response.
pediatric sepsis; septic shock; PPARα; nuclear hormone receptors; bacterial load
Sepsis is a syndrome involving systemic inflammation as well as an infectious focus. Accordingly, the host immune response to sepsis involves complex leukocyte interplay that is incompletely understood. It is known that the immunoregulatory cytokine, IL-10, is rapidly expressed during the early stages of sepsis. In a murine model of sepsis, we sought to elucidate which leukocytes are early IL-10 producers. Using a novel IL-10 transcriptional reporter mouse, we observed that splenic leukocytes produced little IL-10. At the site of infection, peritoneal neutrophils produced the highest levels of IL-10 among leukocytes. Using cytokine antibody labeling, we further show that peritoneal neutrophils had high amounts of intracellular IL-10. We next depleted neutrophils and found a 40% decrease in peritoneal IL-10 levels. Altogether, this report demonstrates that among leukocytes, neutrophils are significant contributors of IL-10 at the site of infection during sepsis.
sepsis; inflammation; neutrophil; IL-10
A dysfunctional immune system is known to be part of the pathophysiology after burn trauma. However, reports that support this have used a variety of methods, with numerous variables, to induce thermal injury. We hypothesized that, all other parameters being equal, an injury infliction by a scald would yield different immunological responses than one inflicted by a flame. Here, we demonstrated that both burn methods produced a full-thickness burn, yet there was more of an increase in subdermal temperature, hematocrit, mortality, and serum IL-6 concentrations associated with the scald burn. On postinjury day 1, the scald-burned mice showed diminished lymphocyte numbers, interferon γ production, and lymphocyte T-bet expression as compared with sham- and flame-burned mice. On postburn day 8, spleens from both sets of thermally injured animals showed an increase in proinflammatory myeloid cells as compared with sham-burned mice. Furthermore, the T-cell numbers, T-bet expression, and phenotype were changed such that interferon γ production was higher in scald-burned mice than in sham- and flame-burned mice. Altogether, the data show that differential immunological phenotypes were observed depending on the thermal injury method used.
Thermal injury; spleen; T cell; macrophage; T-bet; IFN-γ
It is well established that the immune response to sepsis is mediated by leukocytes associated with the innate immune system. However, there is an emerging view that T lymphocytes can also mediate this response. Here, we observed a significant depletion of both CD4 and CD8 T cells in human patients after blunt trauma. To determine what effect the loss of these cells may have during a subsequent infection, we obtained CD4- and CD8-deficient mice and subjected them to cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). We observed that CD4 knockout (KO) mice showed increased CLP-induced mortality compared with CD8-deficient and wild-type (WT) mice especially within the first 30 h of injury. CD4 KO mice also exhibited significantly increased IL-6 concentrations after the CLP. The CD4 KO mice had an increased concentration of bacteremia as compared with WT mice. Antibiotic treatment decreased mortality in the CD4 KO mice as compared with no changes in the wild mice after CLP. Neutrophils isolated from septic CD4 KO mice showed decreased spontaneous oxidative burst compared with neutrophils taken from septic controls. We examined the role of IFN-γ by using mice deficient in this cytokine and found these mice to have significantly higher mortality as compared with WT mice. Finally, we detected a 2-fold increase in CD11b+ cells that exhibited intracellular IFN-γ staining in the peritoneum of WT mice after CLP. The data suggest that CD4+ cells may facilitate the early clearance of bacteria by regulating neutrophils function possibly through an IFN-γ–dependent mechanism.
Interferon-γ; neutrophils; bacteremia; cecal ligation and puncture
Recently, a single center study conducted by Oiva and coworkers and published in Critical Care demonstrated that phospho-specific whole blood flow cytometry could be used to assess activated signaling pathways in leukocytes isolated from pancreatitis patients. The authors demonstrated that this methodology had the potential to determine the current status of a patient's immune state. Although the experimental cohort was clinically homogeneous, the observed data were heterogeneous. Altogether, these results suggest that prior to administering immune-modulatory therapies in inflammatory diseases, it will be beneficial to first determine immune status. Rapid results from whole blood phospho-specific flow cytometry may allow for determination of immune status, improve early diagnosis, and provide a rational basis for immunomodulatory therapies.
CXC chemokines mediate hepatic inflammation and injury following ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). More recently, signaling through CXC chemokine receptor-2 (CXCR2) was shown to delay liver recovery and repair after I/R injury. The chemokine receptor, CXCR1 shares ligands with CXCR2, yet nothing is known about its potential role in liver pathology. In the present study, we examined the role of CXCR1 in the injury and recovery responses to I/R using a murine model. CXCR1 expression was undetectable in livers of sham-operated mice. However, after ischemia CXCR1 expression increased 24 hours of reperfusion and was maximal after 96 hours of reperfusion. CXCR1 expression was localized largely to hepatocytes. In order to assess the function of CXCR1, CXCR2-/- mice were treated with the CXCR1/CXCR2 antagonist, repertaxin. Prophylactic treatment with repertaxin had no effect on acute inflammation or liver injury. However, when repertaxin was administered 24 hours post-reperfusion there was a significant increase in hepatocellular injury and a delay in recovery compared to control-treated mice. CXCR1-/- mice also demonstrated delayed recovery and regeneration after I/R when compared to wild-type mice. In vitro, hepatocytes from CXCR2-/- mice that were stimulated to express CXCR1 showed increased proliferation in response to ligand. Hepatocyte proliferation was decreased in CXCR1-/- mice in vivo.
This is the first report to show that CXCR1 expression is induced in hepatocytes after injury. Furthermore, the data suggest that CXCR1 has divergent effects from CXCR2 and appears to facilitate repair and regenerative responses after I/R injury.
chemokines; chemokine receptors; liver repair; hepatocyte proliferation; regeneration
The sepsis syndrome represents an improper immune response to infection and is associated with unacceptably high rates of mortality and morbidity. The interactions between T cells and the innate immune system while combating sepsis are poorly understood. In this report, we observed that treatment with the potent, antiapoptotic cytokine interleukin-7 (IL-7) accelerated neutrophil recruitment and improved bacterial clearance. We first determined that T cells were necessary for the previously observed IL-7-mediated enhanced survival. Next, IL-7 increased Bcl-2 expression in T cells isolated from septic mice as early as 3 h following treatment. This treatment resulted in increased gamma interferon (IFN-γ) and IP-10 production within the septic peritoneum together with local and systemic increases of IL-17 in IL-7-treated mice. We further demonstrate that the increase in IL-17 was largely due to increased recruitment and production by γδ T cells, which express CXCR3. Consistent with increased IL-17 production, IL-7 treatment increased CXCL1/KC production, neutrophil recruitment, and bacterial clearance. Significantly, end-organ tissue injury was not significantly different between vehicle- and IL-7-treated mice. Collectively, these data illustrate that IL-7 can mediate the cross talk between Th1 and Th17 lymphocytes during sepsis such that neutrophil recruitment and bacterial clearance is improved while early tissue injury is not increased. All together, these observations may underlay novel potential therapeutic targets to improve the host immune response to sepsis.
Sepsis describes a complex clinical syndrome that results from an infection, setting off a cascade of systemic inflammatory responses that can lead to multiple organ failure and death. Leptin is a 16 kDa adipokine that, among its multiple known effects, is involved in regulating immune function. Here we demonstrate that leptin deficiency in ob/ob mice leads to higher mortality and more severe organ damage in a standard model of sepsis in mice (cecal ligation and puncture, CLP). Moreover, systemic leptin replacement improved the immune response to CLP. Based on the molecular mechanisms of leptin regulation of energy metabolism and reproductive function, we hypothesized that leptin acts in the central nervous system (CNS) to efficiently coordinate peripheral immune defense in sepsis. We now report that leptin signaling in the brain increases survival during sepsis in leptin-deficient as well as in wild-type mice and that endogenous CNS leptin action is required for an adequate systemic immune response. These findings reveal the existence of a relevant neuroendocrine control of systemic immune defense, and suggest a possible therapeutic potential for leptin analogues in infectious disease.
Sepsis is a highly lethal disorder characterized by widespread apoptosis-induced depletion of immune cells and the development of a profound immunosuppressive state. IL-7 is a potent antiapoptotic cytokine that enhances immune effector cell function and is essential for lymphocyte survival. In this study, recombinant human IL-7 (rhIL-7) efficacy and potential mechanisms of action were tested in a murine peritonitis model. Studies at two independent laboratories showed that rhIL-7 markedly improved host survival, blocked apoptosis of CD4 and CD8 T cells, restored IFN-γ production, and improved immune effector cell recruitment to the infected site. Importantly, rhIL-7 also prevented a hallmark of sepsis (i.e., the loss of delayed-type hypersensitivity), which is an IFN-γ– and T cell-dependent response. Mechanistically, rhIL-7 significantly increased the expression of the leukocyte adhesion markers LFA-1 and VLA-4, consistent with its ability to improve leukocyte function and trafficking to the infectious focus. rhIL-7 also increased the expression of CD8. The potent antiapoptotic effect of rhIL-7 was due to increased Bcl-2, as well as to a dramatic decrease in sepsis-induced PUMA, a heretofore unreported effect of IL-7. If additional animal studies support its efficacy in sepsis and if current clinical trials continue to confirm its safety in diverse settings, rhIL-7 should be strongly considered for clinical trials in sepsis.
The long pentraxin-3 (PTX3) is a key component of the humoral arm of the innate immune system. PTX3 is produced locally in response to pro-inflammatory stimuli. To investigate PTX3 levels and its use as a biomarker in patients with systemic inflammation, we developed a solid-phase enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay based on novel anti-PTX3 monoclonal antibodies detecting PTX3 with high sensitivity. The assay was applied on 261 consecutive patients admitted to an intensive care unit prospectively monitored with the systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS). 100 blood donors were included as controls. PTX3 levels were elevated in patients (median = 71.3 ng/ml) compared with the controls (median = 0 ng/ml) (Mann-Whitney, p<0.0001). ROC analysis showed that PTX3 levels were significantly specific (85.0%) and sensitive (89.1%) to discriminate between healthy controls and patients (area under the curve (AUC) 0.922 (95% CI 0.892 to 0.946, p<0.0001)). Higher levels of PTX3 were associated with the development of sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock (p = 0.0001). The serum levels of PTX3 correlated significantly with SAPS2 score (Spearman's rho 0.28, p<0.0001). Patients with high levels of PTX3 at admission did have a higher 90 day mortality rate than patients with the 25% lowest levels (Cox regression analysis, hazard ratio 3.0, p = 0.0009). In conclusion, we have established a highly sensitive and robust assay for measurement of PTX3 and found that its serum concentrations correlated with disease severity and mortality in patients with SIRS and sepsis.
Leukocyte function can be modulated through the cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2R). Using a cecal ligation and puncture (CLP) model of sepsis, we examined the role of the CB2R during the immune response to an overwhelming infection. CB2R-knock out (KO) mice showed decreased survival as compared with wild-type mice. CB2R-KO mice also had increased serum IL-6 and bacteremia. Twenty-four hours after CLP, the CB2R-deficient mice had increased lung injury. Additionally, CB2R-deficiency led to increased neutrophil recruitment, decreased neutrophil activation, and decreased p38 activity at the site of infection. Consistent with a novel role for CB2R in sepsis, CB2R-agonist treatment in wild-type mice increased the mean survival time in response to CLP. Treatment with CB2R-agonist also decreased serum IL-6 levels, bacteremia, and damage to the lungs compared with vehicle-treated mice. Finally, the CB2R agonist decreased neutrophil recruitment, while increasing neutrophil activation and p38 activity at the site of infection compared with vehicle-treated mice. These data suggest that CB2R is a critical regulator of the immune response to sepsis and may be a novel therapeutic target.
Volatile anesthetics are known to have immunomodulatory effects in conditions of organ injury. A recent study in an experimental sepsis model has shown remarkably improved survival when mice were exposed to volatile anesthetics. In the present study, we show that hexafluoroisopropanol – a water-soluble primary sevoflurane metabolite – has beneficial effects on the overall survival in a murine model of cecal ligation and puncture. Seven-day survival as well as tissue damage markers including transaminases and high mobility group box protein-1 were assessed as measures of end organ damage. In animals undergoing cecal ligation and puncture procedure hexafluoroisopropanol conditioning - but not late postconditioning 24 hours after sepsis induction - significantly increased survival rate (17% vs. 77%, p = 0.037) and attenuated secretion of organ damage markers. This study shows survival benefits by administration of the metabolite of a volatile anesthetic. If successfully translated, hexafluoroisopropanol might offer interesting therapeutic opportunities in the future treatment of abdominal sepsis.
Sepsis is a difficult condition to treat and is associated with a high mortality rate. Sepsis is known to cause a marked depletion of lymphocytes, although the function of different lymphocyte subsets in the response to sepsis is unclear. γδ T cells are found largely in epithelial-rich tissues, and previous studies of γδ T cells in models of sepsis have yielded divergent results. In the present study, we examined the function of γδ T cells during sepsis in mice using cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). Mice deficient in γδ T cells had decreased survival times and increased tissue damage after CLP compared with wild-type mice. Furthermore, bacterial load was increased in γδ T cell-deficient mice, yet antibiotic treatment did not change mortality. Additionally, we found that recruitment of neutrophils and myeloid suppressor cells to the site of infection was diminished in γδ T cell-deficient mice. Finally, we found that circulating levels of IFN-γ were increased, and systemic levels of IL-10 were decreased in γδ T cell-deficient mice after CLP compared with wild-type mice. γδ T cell-deficient mice also had increased intestinal permeability after CLP compared with wild-type mice. Neutralization of IFN-γ abrogated the increase in intestinal permeability in γδ T cell-deficient mice. The intestines taken from γδ T cell-deficient mice had decreased myeloperoxidase yet had increased tissue damage as compared with wild-type mice. Collectively, our data suggest that γδ T cells modulate the response to sepsis and may be a potential therapeutic target.
IFN-γ; intestine; myeloid suppressor cells; neutrophils; bacteremia
It is well known that complement system C5a is excessively activated during the onset of sepsis. However, it is unclear whether C5a can regulate dentritic cells (DCs) to stimulate adaptive immune cells such as Th1 and Th17 in sepsis.
Sepsis was induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). CLP-induced sepsis was treated with anti-C5a or IL-12. IL-12+DC, IFNγ+Th1, and IL-17+Th17 cells were analyzed by flow cytometry. IL-12 was measured by ELISA.
Our studies here showed that C5a induced IL-12+DC cell migration from the peritoneal cavity to peripheral blood and lymph nodes. Furthermore, IL-12+DC cells induced the expansion of pathogenic IFNγ+Th1 and IL-17+Th17 cells in peripheral blood and lymph nodes. Moreover, IL-12, secreted by DC cells in the peritoneal cavity, is an important factor that prevents the development of sepsis.
Our data suggests that C5a regulates IL-12+DC cell migration to induce pathogenic Th1 and Th17 cells in sepsis.
The co-inhibitory immune receptor carcinoembryonic antigen-related cell-adhesion molecule 1 (CEACAM1) and its self-ligand CEACAM1 can suppress T cell function. Suppression of T cell function in sepsis is well documented. Late-onset neonatal sepsis in VLBW-infants was associated with an increased percentage CEACAM1 positive CD4+ T-cells. Meningococcal septic shock in children was associated with increased serum soluble CEACAM1. In conclusion our data demonstrate increased surface expression of the co-inhibitory immune receptor CEACAM1 in late-onset neonatal sepsis in VLBW-infants, and increased circulating soluble CEACAM1 in children with meningococcal sepsis. Increased T-cell CEACAM1 expression and increased circulating soluble CEACAM1 may contribute to sepsis-associated immune suppression.
Periodontal diseases are inflammatory processes that occur following the influx of neutrophils into the periodontal tissues in response to the subgingival bacterial biofilm. Current literature suggests that while neutrophils are protective and prevent bacterial infections, they also appear to contribute to damage of the periodontal tissues. In the present study we compare the gene expression profile changes in neutrophils as they migrate from the circulation into the oral tissues in patients with chronic periodontits and matched healthy subjects. We hypothesized that oral neutrophils in periodontal disease patients will display a disease specific transcriptome that differs from the oral neutrophil of healthy subjects.
Venous blood and oral rinse samples were obtained from healthy subjects and chronic periodontitis patients for neutrophil isolation. mRNA was isolated from the neutrophils, and gene expression microarray analysis was completed. Results were confirmed for specific genes of interest by qRT-PCR and Western Blot analysis.
Results and Discussion
Chronic periodontitis patients presented with increased recruitment of neutrophils to the oral cavity. Gene expression analysis revealed differences in the expression levels of genes from several biological pathways. Using hierarchical clustering analysis, we found that the apoptosis network was significantly altered in patients with chronic inflammation in the oral cavity, with up-regulation of pro-survival members of the Bcl-2 family and down-regulation of pro-apoptosis members in the same compartment. Additional functional analysis confirmed that the percentages of viable neutrophils are significantly increased in the oral cavity of chronic periodontitis patients.
Oral neutrophils from patients with periodontal disease displayed an altered transcriptome following migration into the oral tissues. This resulted in a pro-survival neutrophil phenotype in chronic periodontitis patients when compared with healthy subjects, resulting in a longer-lived neutrophil. This is likely to impact the severity and length of the inflammatory response in this oral disease.
The rapid development in septic patients of features of marked immunosuppression associated with increased risk of nosocomial infections and mortality represents the rational for the initiation of immune targeted treatments in sepsis. However, as there is no clinical sign of immune dysfunctions, the current challenge is to develop biomarkers that will help clinicians identify the patients that would benefit from immunotherapy and monitor its efficacy. Using an in vitro model of endotoxin tolerance (ET), a pivotal feature of sepsis-induced immunosuppression in monocytes, we identified using gene expression profiling by microarray a panel of transcripts associated with the development of ET which expression was restored after immunostimulation with interferon-gamma (IFN-γ). These results were confirmed by qRT-PCR. Importantly, this short-list of markers was further evaluated in patients. Of these transcripts, six (TNFAIP6, FCN1, CXCL10, GBP1, CXCL5 and PID1) were differentially expressed in septic patients’ blood compared to healthy blood upon ex vivo LPS stimulation and were restored by IFN-γ. In this study, by combining a microarray approach in an in vitro model and a validation in clinical samples, we identified a panel of six new transcripts that could be used for the identification of septic patients eligible for IFNg therapy. Along with the previously identified markers TNFa, IL10 and HLA-DRA, the potential value of these markers should now be evaluated in a larger cohort of patients. Upon favorable results, they could serve as stratification tools prior to immunostimulatory treatment and to monitor drug efficacy.
Sepsis patients may die either from an overwhelming systemic immune response and/or from an immunoparalysis-associated lack of anti-bacterial immune defence. We hypothesized that bacterial superantigen-activated T cells may be prevented from contribution into anti-bacterial response due to the inhibition of their effector functions by the hypoxia inducible transcription factor (HIF-1α) in inflamed and hypoxic areas.
Using the Cre-lox-P-system we generated mice with a T–cell targeted deletion of the HIF-1α gene and analysed them in an in vivo model of bacterial sepsis. We show that deletion of the HIF-1α gene leads to higher levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, stronger anti-bacterial effects and much better survival of mice. These effects can be at least partially explained by significantly increased NF-κB activation in TCR activated HIF-1 α deficient T cells.
T cells can be recruited to powerfully contribute to anti-bacterial response if they are relieved from inhibition by HIF-1α in inflamed and hypoxic areas. Our experiments uncovered the before unappreciated reserve of anti-bacterial capacity of T cells and suggest novel therapeutic anti-pathogen strategies based on targeted deletion or inhibition of HIF-1 α in T cells.
The development of hyperglycemia and the use of early parenteral feeding are associated with poor outcomes in critically ill patients. We therefore examined the impact of exogenous glucose administration on the integrated metabolic function of endotoxemic mice using our recently developed frequently sampled intravenous glucose tolerance test (FSIVGTT). We next extended our findings using a cecal ligation and puncture (CLP) sepsis model administered early parenteral glucose support.
Male C57BL/6J mice, 8-12 weeks, were instrumented with chronic indwelling arterial and venous catheters. Endotoxemia was initiated with intra-arterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 1 mg/kg) in the presence of saline or glucose infusion (100 µL/hr), and an FSIVGTT was performed after five hours. In a second experiment, catheterized mice underwent CLP and the impact of early parenteral glucose administration on glucose homeostasis and mortality was assessed over 24 hrs.
And MAIN RESULTS: Administration of LPS alone did not impair metabolic function, whereas glucose administration alone induced an insulin sensitive state. In contrast, LPS and glucose combined caused marked glucose intolerance and insulin resistance and significantly impaired pancreatic insulin secretion. Similarly, CLP mice receiving parenteral glucose developed fulminant hyperglycemia within 18 hrs (all > 600 mg/dl) associated with increased systemic cytokine release and 40% mortality, whereas CLP alone (85 ± 2 mg/dL) or sham mice receiving parenteral glucose (113 ± 3 mg/dL) all survived and were not hyperglycemic. Despite profound hyperglycemia, plasma insulin in the CLP glucose-infused mice (3.7 ± 1.2 ng/ml) was not higher than sham glucose infused mice (2.1 ± 0.3 ng/ml).
The combination of parenteral glucose support and the systemic inflammatory response in the acute phase of sepsis induces profound insulin resistance and impairs compensatory pancreatic insulin secretion, leading to the development of fulminant hyperglycemia.
In sepsis, the vitamin D active metabolite 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D) may play a crucial role by its action to produce cathelicidin and improve endothelial barrier function, such that a deficiency in 1,25(OH)2D is associated with poor outcome. To test our hypothesis, we performed analysis of stored plasma samples from a prospective observational study in 91 patients with sepsis, age of 59.1+/−2.0 years, 52.7% females, and 11.0% deaths at 30 days. Vitamin D status, including 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D), 1,25(OH)2D, 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (24,25(OH)2D), and parathyroid hormone (PTH), were measured daily over 3 days after hospital admission. At baseline, 1,25(OH)2D was significantly different between survivors vs. non-survivors. But there was no significant difference in 25(OH)D, 24,25(OH)2D, and PTH. In a multivariable binomial logistic regression model, age, total calcium and 1,25(OH)2D were significant predictors of 30-day mortality. Kaplan Meier analysis showed that patients with mean 1,25(OH)2D measured over 3 days of < = 13.6 pg/mL had 57.1% 30-day survival compared to 91.7% in patients with 1,25 (OH)2D level >13.6 pg/mL (p<0.01). From repeated measures regression analysis, there was significant increase in 1,25(OH)2D for increases in 25(OH)D in both survivors and non-survivors. However, compared to survivors, the low 25(OH)D in non-survivors was insufficient to account for the larger decrease in 1,25(OH)2D, indicating a dysfunctional 1α-hydroxylase. Additionally, there was a significant negative correlation between PTH and 1,25(OH)2D in both survivors and non-survivors, suggesting a severe impairment in the effect of PTH to increase renal 1α-hydroxylase activity. In conclusion, low 1,25(OH)2D levels are associated with increased 30-day mortality in sepsis patients, likely due to impaired 25(OH)D hydroxylation and PTH insensitivity. Our data also suggest that the active metabolite 1,25(OH)2D may be an important therapeutic target in the design of sepsis clinical trials.
Patients admitted to the intensive care unit with alcohol use disorders have increased morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this study was to determine how chronic alcohol ingestion alters the host response to sepsis in mice.
Mice were randomized to receive either alcohol or water for 12 weeks and then subjected to cecal ligation and puncture. Mice were sacrificed 24 hours post-operatively or followed seven days for survival.
Septic alcohol-fed mice had a significantly higher mortality than septic water-fed mice (74% vs. 41%, p = 0.01). This was associated with worsened gut integrity in alcohol-fed mice with elevated intestinal epithelial apoptosis, decreased crypt proliferation and shortened villus length. Further, alcohol-fed mice had higher intestinal permeability with decreased ZO-1 and occludin protein expression in the intestinal tight junction. The frequency of splenic and bone marrow CD4+ T cells was similar between groups; however, splenic CD4+ T cells in septic alcohol-fed mice had a marked increase in both TNF and IFN-γ production following ex vivo stimulation. Neither the frequency nor function of CD8+ T cells differed between alcohol-fed and water-fed septic mice. NK cells were decreased in both the spleen and bone marrow of alcohol-fed septic mice. Pulmonary myeloperoxidase levels and BAL levels of G-CSF and TFG-β were higher in alcohol-fed mice. Pancreatic metabolomics demonstrated increased acetate, adenosine, xanthine, acetoacetate, 3-hydroxybutyrate and betaine in alcohol-fed mice and decreased cytidine, uracil, fumarate, creatine phosphate, creatine, and choline. Serum and peritoneal cytokines were generally similar between alcohol-fed and water-fed mice, and there were no differences in bacteremia, lung wet to dry weight, or pulmonary, liver or splenic histology.
When subjected to the same septic insult, mice with chronic alcohol ingestion have increased mortality. Alterations in intestinal integrity, the host immune response, and pancreatic metabolomics may help explain this differential response.
Anandamide (AEA) is the prominent member of the endocannabinoid family and its biological action is mediated through the binding to both type-1 (CB1) and type-2 (CB2) cannabinoid receptors (CBR). The presence of AEA and CBR in the gastrointestinal tract highlighted their pathophysiological role in several gut diseases, including celiac disease. Here, we aimed to investigate the expression of CBR at transcriptional and translational levels in the duodenal mucosa of untreated celiac patients, celiac patients on a gluten-free diet for at least 12 months and control subjects. Also biopsies from treated celiac patients cultured ex vivo with peptic-tryptic digest of gliadin were investigated. Our data show higher levels of both CB1 and CB2 receptors during active disease and normal CBR levels in treated celiac patients. In conclusion, we demonstrate an up-regulation of CB1 and CB2 mRNA and protein expression, that points to the therapeutic potential of targeting CBR in patients with celiac disease.
Radiation combined injury (CI) is a radiation injury (RI) combined with other types of injury, which generally leads to greater mortality than RI alone. A spectrum of specific, time-dependent pathophysiological changes is associated with CI. Of these changes, the massive release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, severe hematopoietic and gastrointestinal losses and bacterial sepsis are important treatment targets to improve survival. Ciprofloxacin (CIP) is known to have immunomodulatory effect besides the antimicrobial activity. The present study reports that CIP ameliorated pathophysiological changes unique to CI that later led to major mortality. B6D2F1/J mice received CI on day 0, by RI followed by wound trauma, and were treated with CIP (90 mg/kg p.o., q.d. within 2 h after CI through day 10). At day 10, CIP treatment not only significantly reduced pro-inflammatory cytokine and chemokine concentrations, including interleukin-6 (IL-6) and KC (i.e., IL-8 in human), but it also enhanced IL-3 production compared to vehicle-treated controls. Mice treated with CIP displayed a greater repopulation of bone marrow cells. CIP also limited CI-induced apoptosis and autophagy in ileal villi, systemic bacterial infection, and IgA production. CIP treatment led to LD0/10 compared to LD20/10 for vehicle-treated group after CI. Given the multiple beneficial activities of CIP shown in our experiments, CIP may prove to be a useful therapeutic drug for CI.