miR-29 Sustains B Cell Survival and Controls Terminal Differentiation via Regulation of PI3K Signaling
The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling cascade downstream of the B cell receptor (BCR) signalosome is essential for B cell maturation. Proper signaling strength is maintained through the PI3K negative regulator phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN). Although a role for microRNA (miRNA)-dependent control of the PTEN-PI3K axis has been described, the contribution of individual miRNAs to the regulation of this crucial signaling modality in mature B lymphocytes remains to be elucidated. Our analyses reveal that ablation of miR-29 specifically in B lymphocytes results in an increase in PTEN expression and dampening of the PI3K pathway in mature B cells. This dysregulation has a profound impact on the survival of B lymphocytes and results in increased class switch recombination and decreased plasma cell differentiation. Furthermore, we demonstrate that ablation of one copy of Pten is sufficient to ameliorate the phenotypes associated with miR-29 loss. Our data suggest a critical role for the miR-29-PTEN-PI3K regulatory axis in mature B lymphocytes.
Current Status and Future Directions in Graft-Versus-Host Disease Prevention Following Allogeneic Blood and Marrow Transplantation in Adults
Graft-versus-host disease (GvHD) in its acute and chronic forms continues to represent a significant barrier to the success and wide-applicability of blood and marrow transplantation as a potentially curative treatment modality for a number of benign and malignant blood conditions. Presently, calcineurin inhibitor (CNI)-based regimens remain the most commonly used prevention strategy, although post-transplant cyclophosphamide is emerging as an alternative approach, and is providing a backbone for innovative CNI-free combinations. In this paper, we review the current strategies used for the prevention of GvHD, and highlight some of the developing and promising combinations.
STAT3 Dysregulation in Mature T and NK Cell Lymphomas
Abstract: T cell lymphomas comprise a distinct class of non-Hodgkin's lymphomas, which include mature T and natural killer (NK) cell neoplasms. While each malignancy within this group is characterized by unique clinicopathologic features, dysregulation in the Janus tyrosine family of kinases/Signal transducer and activator of transcription (JAK/STAT) signaling pathway, specifically aberrant STAT3 activation, is a common feature among these lymphomas. The mechanisms driving dysregulation vary among T cell lymphoma subtypes and include activating mutations in upstream kinases or STAT3 itself, formation of oncogenic kinases which drive STAT3 activation, loss of negative regulators of STAT3, and the induction of a pro-tumorigenic inflammatory microenvironment. Constitutive STAT3 activation has been associated with the expression of targets able to increase pro-survival signals and provide malignant fitness. Patients with dysregulated STAT3 signaling tend to have inferior clinical outcomes, which underscores the importance of STAT3 signaling in malignant progression. Targeting of STAT3 has shown promising results in pre-clinical studies in T cell lymphoma lines, ex-vivo primary malignant patient cells, and in mouse models of disease. However, targeting this pleotropic pathway in patients has proven difficult. Here we review the recent contributions to our understanding of the role of STAT3 in T cell lymphomagenesis, mechanisms driving STAT3 activation in T cell lymphomas, and current efforts at targeting STAT3 signaling in T cell malignancies.
Skin Associated Staphylococcus Aureus Contributes to Disease Progression in CTCL [Meeting Abstract]
RGC-32 regulates reactive astrocytosis and extracellular matrix deposition in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis
Extracellular matrix (ECM) deposition in active demyelinating multiple sclerosis (MS) lesions may impede axonal regeneration and can modify immune reactions. Response gene to complement (RGC)-32 plays an important role in the mediation of TGF-Î² downstream effects, but its role in gliosis has not been investigated. To gain more insight into the role played by RGC-32 in gliosis, we investigated its involvement in TGF-Î²-induced ECM expression and the upregulation of the reactive astrocyte markers Î±-smooth muscle actin (Î±-SMA) and nestin. In cultured neonatal rat astrocytes, collagens I, IV, and V, fibronectin, Î±-SMA, and nestin were significantly induced by TGF-Î² stimulation, and RGC-32 silencing resulted in a significant reduction in their expression. Using astrocytes isolated from RGC-32 knock-out (KO) mice, we found that the expression of TGF-Î²-induced collagens I, IV, and V, fibronectin, and Î±-SMA was significantly reduced in RGC-32 KO mice when compared with wild-type (WT) mice. SIS3 inhibition of Smad3 phosphorylation was also associated with a significant reduction in RGC-32 nuclear translocation and TGF-Î²-induced collagen I expression. In addition, during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), RGC-32 KO mouse astrocytes displayed an elongated, bipolar phenotype, resembling immature astrocytes and glial progenitors whereas those from WT mice had a reactive, hypertrophied phenotype. Taken together, our data demonstrate that RGC-32 plays an important role in mediating TGF-Î²-induced reactive astrogliosis in EAE. Therefore, RGC-32 may represent a new target for therapeutic intervention in MS.
RGC-32 Promotes Th17 Cell Differentiation and Enhances Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis
Th17 cells play a critical role in autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Response gene to complement (RGC)-32 is a cell cycle regulator and a downstream target of TGF-Î² that mediates its profibrotic activity. In this study, we report that RGC-32 is preferentially upregulated during Th17 cell differentiation. RGC-32-/- mice have normal Th1, Th2, and regulatory T cell differentiation but show defective Th17 differentiation in vitro. The impaired Th17 differentiation is associated with defects in IFN regulatory factor 4, B cell-activating transcription factor, retinoic acid-related orphan receptor Î³t, and SMAD2 activation. In vivo, RGC-32-/- mice display an attenuated experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis phenotype accompanied by decreased CNS inflammation and reduced frequency of IL-17- and GM-CSF-producing CD4+ T cells. Collectively, our results identify RGC-32 as a novel regulator of Th17 cell differentiation in vitro and in vivo and suggest that RGC-32 is a potential therapeutic target in multiple sclerosis and other Th17-mediated autoimmune diseases.
SIRT1 as a potential biomarker of response to treatment with glatiramer acetate in multiple sclerosis
SIRT1, a NAD dependent histone and protein deacetylase, is a member of the histone deacetylase class III family. We previously showed that SIRT1 mRNA expression is significantly lower in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients during relapses than in stable patients. We have now investigated SIRT1 as a possible biomarker to predict relapse as well as responsiveness to glatiramer acetate (GA) treatment in relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) patients. Over the course of 2years, a cohort of 15 GA-treated RRMS patients were clinically monitored using the Expanded Disability Status Scale and assessed for MS relapses. Blood samples collected from MS patients were analyzed for levels of SIRT1 and histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9) acetylation and dimethylation. During relapses, MS patients had a lower expression of SIRT1 mRNA than did stable MS patients. In addition, there was a significant decrease in H3K9 dimethylation (H3K9me2) during relapses in MS patients when compared to stable patients (p=0.01). Responders to GA treatment had significantly higher SIRT1 mRNA (p=0.01) and H3K9me2 levels than did non-responders (p=0.018). Receiver operating characteristic analysis was used to assess the predictive power of SIRT1 and H3K9me2 as putative biomarkers: for SIRT1 mRNA, the predictive value for responsiveness to GA treatment was 70% (p=0.04) and for H3K9me2 was 71% (p=0.03). Our data suggest that SIRT1 and H3K9me2 could serve as potential biomarkers for evaluating patients' responsiveness to GA therapy in order to help guide treatment decisions in MS.
RGC-32 as a potential biomarker of relapse and response to treatment with glatiramer acetate in multiple sclerosis
Currently there is critical need for the identification of reliable biomarkers to help guide clinical management of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. We investigated the combined roles of Response Gene to Complement 32 (RGC-32), FasL, CDC2, AKT, and IL-21 as possible biomarkers of relapse and response to glatiramer acetate (GA) treatment in relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) patients. Over the course of 2 years, a cohort of 15 GA-treated RRMS patients was clinically monitored and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were collected at 0, 3, 6, and 12 months. Target gene mRNA expression was measured in patients' isolated PBMCs by real-time qRT-PCR. Compared to stable MS patients, those with acute relapses exhibited decreased expression of RGC-32 (p<0.0001) and FasL (p<0.0001), increased expression of IL-21 (p=0.04), but no change in CDC2 or AKT. Compared to non-responders, responders to GA treatment showed increased expression of RGC-32 (p<0.0001) and FasL (p<0.0001), and decreased expression of IL-21 (p=0.02). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was used to assess the predictive accuracy of each putative biomarker. The probability of accurately detecting relapse was 90% for RGC-32, 88% for FasL, and 75% for IL-21. The probability of accurately detecting response to GA was 85% for RGC-32, 90% for FasL, and 85% for IL-21. Our data suggest that RGC-32, FasL, and IL-21 could serve as potential biomarkers for the detection of MS relapse and response to GA therapy.
RGC-32 is a novel regulator of the T-lymphocyte cell cycle
We have previously shown that RGC-32 is involved in cell cycle regulation in vitro. To define the in vivo role of RGC-32, we generated RGC-32 knockout mice. These mice developed normally and did not spontaneously develop overt tumors. To assess the effect of RGC-32 deficiency on cell cycle activation in T cells, we determined the proliferative rates of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells from the spleens of RGC-32(-/-) mice, as compared to wild-type (WT, RGC-32(+/+)) control mice. After stimulation with anti-CD3/anti-CD28, CD4(+) T cells from RGC-32(-/-) mice displayed a significant increase in [(3)H]-thymidine incorporation when compared to WT mice. In addition, both CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells from RGC-32(-/-) mice displayed a significant increase in the proportion of proliferating Ki67(+) cells, indicating that in T cells, RGC-32 has an inhibitory effect on cell cycle activation induced by T-cell receptor/CD28 engagement. Furthermore, Akt and FOXO1 phosphorylation induced in stimulated CD4(+) T-cells from RGC-32(-/-) mice were significantly higher, indicating that RGC-32 inhibits cell cycle activation by suppressing FOXO1 activation. We also found that IL-2 mRNA and protein expression were significantly increased in RGC-32(-/-) CD4(+) T cells when compared to RGC-32(+/+) CD4(+) T cells. In addition, the effect of RGC-32 on the cell cycle and IL-2 expression was inhibited by pretreatment of the samples with LY294002, indicating a role for phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K). Thus, RGC-32 is involved in controlling the cell cycle of T cells in vivo, and this effect is mediated by IL-2 in a PI3K-dependent fashion.
Role of SIRT1 in autoimmune demyelination and neurodegeneration
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a demyelinating disease characterized by chronic inflammation of the central nervous system, in which many factors can act together to influence disease susceptibility and progression. SIRT1 is a member of the histone deacetylase class III family of proteins and is an NAD(+)-dependent histone and protein deacetylase. SIRT1 can induce chromatin silencing through the deacetylation of histones and plays an important role as a key regulator of a wide variety of cellular and physiological processes including DNA damage, cell survival, metabolism, aging, and neurodegeneration. It has gained a lot of attention recently because many studies in animal models of demyelinating and neurodegenerative diseases have shown that SIRT1 induction can ameliorate the course of the disease. SIRT1 expression was found to be decreased in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells of MS patients during relapses. SIRT1 represents a possible biomarker of relapses and a potential new target for therapeutic intervention in MS. Modulation of SIRT1 may be a valuable strategy for treating or preventing MS and neurodegenerative central nervous system disorders.