Human hepatocyte PNPLA3-148M exacerbates rapid non-alcoholic fatty liver disease development in chimeric mice
Advanced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a rapidly emerging global health problem associated with pre-disposing genetic polymorphisms, most strikingly an isoleucine to methionine substitution in patatin-like phospholipase domain-containing protein 3 (PNPLA3-I148M). Here, we study how human hepatocytes with PNPLA3 148I and 148M variants engrafted in the livers of broadly immunodeficient chimeric mice respond to hypercaloric diets. As early as four weeks, mice developed dyslipidemia, impaired glucose tolerance, and steatosis with ballooning degeneration selectively in the human graft, followed by pericellular fibrosis after eight weeks of hypercaloric feeding. Hepatocytes with the PNPLA3-148M variant, either from a homozygous 148M donor or overexpressed in a 148I donor background, developed microvesicular and severe steatosis with frequent ballooning degeneration, resulting in more active steatohepatitis than 148I hepatocytes. We conclude that PNPLA3-148M in human hepatocytes exacerbates NAFLD. These models will facilitate mechanistic studies into human genetic variant contributions to advanced fatty liver diseases.
Etiology, Pathogenesis, Diagnosis, and Practical Implications of Hepatocellular Neoplasms
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), a major global contributor of cancer death, usually arises in a background of chronic liver disease, as a result of molecular changes that deregulate important signal transduction pathways. Recent studies have shown that certain molecular changes of hepatocarcinogenesis are associated with clinicopathologic features and prognosis, suggesting that subclassification of HCC is practically useful. On the other hand, subclassification of hepatocellular adenomas (HCAs), a heterogenous group of neoplasms, has been well established on the basis of genotype-phenotype correlations. Histologic examination, aided by immunohistochemistry, is the gold standard for the diagnosis and subclassification of HCA and HCC, while clinicopathologic correlation is essential for best patient management. Advances in clinico-radio-pathologic correlation have introduced a new approach for the diagnostic assessment of lesions arising in advanced chronic liver disease by imaging (LI-RADS). The rapid expansion of knowledge concerning the molecular pathogenesis of HCC is now starting to produce new therapeutic approaches through precision oncology. This review summarizes the etiology and pathogenesis of HCA and HCC, provides practical information for their histologic diagnosis (including an algorithmic approach), and addresses a variety of frequently asked questions regarding the diagnosis and practical implications of these neoplasms.
Pulmonary Pathology of End-Stage COVID-19 Disease in Explanted Lungs and Outcomes After Lung Transplantation
OBJECTIVES/OBJECTIVE:Patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection may develop end-stage lung disease requiring lung transplantation. We report the clinical course, pulmonary pathology with radiographic correlation, and outcomes after lung transplantation in three patients who developed chronic respiratory failure due to postacute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection. METHODS:A retrospective histologic evaluation of explanted lungs due to coronavirus disease 2019 was performed. RESULTS:None of the patients had known prior pulmonary disease. The major pathologic findings in the lung explants were proliferative and fibrotic phases of diffuse alveolar damage, interstitial capillary neoangiogenesis, and mononuclear inflammation, specifically macrophages, with varying numbers of T and B lymphocytes. The fibrosis varied from early collagen deposition to more pronounced interstitial collagen deposition; however, pulmonary remodeling with honeycomb change was not present. Other findings included peribronchiolar metaplasia, microvascular thrombosis, recanalized thrombi in muscular arteries, and pleural adhesions. No patients had either recurrence of SARS-CoV-2 infection or allograft rejection following transplant at this time. CONCLUSIONS:The major pathologic findings in the lung explants of patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection suggest ongoing fibrosis, prominent macrophage infiltration, neoangiogenesis, and microvascular thrombosis. Characterization of pathologic findings could help develop novel management strategies.
Quantifying cerebrospinal fluid dynamics: A review of human neuroimaging contributions to CSF physiology and neurodegenerative disease
Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), predominantly produced in the ventricles and circulating throughout the brain and spinal cord, is a key protective mechanism of the central nervous system (CNS). Physical cushioning, nutrient delivery, metabolic waste, including protein clearance, are key functions of the CSF in humans. CSF volume and flow dynamics regulate intracranial pressure and are fundamental to diagnosing disorders including normal pressure hydrocephalus, intracranial hypotension, CSF leaks, and possibly Alzheimer's disease (AD). The ability of CSF to clear normal and pathological proteins, such as amyloid-beta (AÎ²), tau, alpha synuclein and others, implicates it production, circulation, and composition, in many neuropathologies. Several neuroimaging modalities have been developed to probe CSF fluid dynamics and better relate CSF volume and flow to anatomy and clinical conditions. Approaches include 2-photon microscopic techniques, MRI (tracer-based, gadolinium contrast, endogenous phase-contrast), and dynamic positron emission tomography (PET) using existing approved radiotracers. Here, we discuss CSF flow neuroimaging, from animal models to recent clinical-research advances, summarizing current endeavors to quantify and map CSF flow with implications towards pathophysiology, new biomarkers, and treatments of neurological diseases.
Intrahepatic microbes govern liver immunity by programming NKT cells
The gut microbiome shapes local and systemic immunity. The liver is presumed to be a protected sterile site. As such, a hepatic microbiome has not been examined. Here, we showed a liver microbiome in mice and humans that is distinct from the gut and is enriched in Proteobacteria. It undergoes dynamic alterations with age and is influenced by the environment and host physiology. Fecal microbial transfer experiments revealed that the liver microbiome is populated from the gut in a highly selective manner. Hepatic immunity is dependent on the microbiome, specifically Bacteroidetes species. Targeting Bacteroidetes with oral antibiotics reduced hepatic immune cells by ~90%, prevented APC maturation, and mitigated adaptive immunity. Mechanistically, our findings are consistent with presentation of Bacteroidetes-derived glycosphingolipids to NKT cells promoting CCL5 signaling, which drives hepatic leukocyte expansion and activation, among other possible host-microbe interactions. Collectively, we reveal a microbial - glycosphingolipid - NKT - CCL5 axis that underlies hepatic immunity.
Decreased CSF clearance and increased brain amyloid in Alzheimer's disease
BACKGROUND:F-THK5117, we previously reported that the ventricular CSF clearance of the PET tracer was reduced in AD and associated with elevated brain AÎ² levels. METHODS:C-PiB to estimate CSF clearance calculated from early dynamic PET frames in 9 normal controls and 15 AD participants. RESULTS:F-THK5351) and brain AÎ² load (râ€‰=â€‰â€‰-â€‰0.64, nâ€‰=â€‰24, pâ€‰<â€‰0.01). With a larger sample size, we extended our observations to show that reduced CSF clearance is associated with reductions in cortical thickness and cognitive performance. CONCLUSIONS:Overall, the findings support the hypothesis that failed CSF clearance is a feature of AD that is related to AÎ² deposition and to the pathology of AD. Longitudinal studies are needed to determine whether failed CSF clearance is a predictor of progressive amyloidosis or its consequence.
Lymphoepithelioma-like neoplasm of the biliary tract with 'probable low malignant potential'
AIMS/OBJECTIVE:Lymphoepithelioma-like carcinomas (LELCs) are uncommon epithelial cancers characteristically showing two distinct components consisting of malignant epithelial cells and prominent dense lymphoid infiltrate. Hepatic LELCs consist of two types, the lymphoepithelioma-like hepatocellular carcinoma and lymphoepithelioma-like cholangiocarcinoma (LEL-CCA), with the latter being strongly associated with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). METHODS AND RESULTS/RESULTS:We present a series of three cases of intrahepatic biliary EBV-associated LEL tumours in which the biliary epithelial component showed a distinctly benign appearance, instead of the usual malignant epithelial features of a typical CCA or EBV-associated LEL-CCA. In the lesions, the biliary epithelium showed interconnecting glands or cords of cells. All had a very low proliferation (Ki-67) index. Immunohistochemistry for IDH1 and TP53 performed on two cases was negative and molecular tests for EGFR and KRAS gene mutations performed on one were negative. Prognosis was very good in all three cases, with patients alive with no evidence of disease 24-62 months after surgery. Intriguingly, all three cases had co-infection of HBV and EBV. These cases are also discussed in the context of the 63 cases of LEL-CCA available in the literature, with a focus on epidemiology, clinicopathological features and potential research interests. CONCLUSIONS:Based on the distinct clinicopathological features and unique survival benefits, we believe these tumours represent the benign end of the spectrum of EBV-associated lymphoepithelial biliary carcinomas. Whether these tumours require a revision of the current nomenclature to 'lymphoepithelioma-like neoplasm of the biliary tract with probable low malignant potential' will require more detailed analysis with larger case-series.
A Novel Glucocorticoid and Androgen Receptor Modulator Reduces Viral Entry and Innate Immune Inflammatory Responses in the Syrian Hamster Model of SARS-CoV-2 Infection
Despite significant research efforts, treatment options for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) remain limited. This is due in part to a lack of therapeutics that increase host defense to the virus. Replication of SARS-CoV-2 in lung tissue is associated with marked infiltration of macrophages and activation of innate immune inflammatory responses that amplify tissue injury. Antagonists of the androgen (AR) and glucocorticoid (GR) receptors have shown efficacy in models of COVID-19 and in clinical studies because the cell surface proteins required for viral entry, angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and the transmembrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2), are transcriptionally regulated by these receptors. We postulated that the GR and AR modulator, PT150, would reduce infectivity of SARS-CoV-2 and prevent inflammatory lung injury in the Syrian golden hamster model of COVID-19 by down-regulating expression of critical genes regulated through these receptors. Animals were infected intranasally with 2.5 Ã— 104 TCID50/ml equivalents of SARS-CoV-2 (strain 2019-nCoV/USA-WA1/2020) and PT150 was administered by oral gavage at 30 and 100 mg/Kg/day for a total of 7 days. Animals were examined at 3, 5 and 7 days post-infection (DPI) for lung histopathology, viral load and production of proteins regulating the progression of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Results indicated that oral administration of PT150 caused a dose-dependent decrease in replication of SARS-CoV-2 in lung, as well as in expression of ACE2 and TMPRSS2. Lung hypercellularity and infiltration of macrophages and CD4+ T-cells were dramatically decreased in PT150-treated animals, as was tissue damage and expression of IL-6. Molecular docking studies suggest that PT150 binds to the co-activator interface of the ligand-binding domain of both AR and GR, thereby acting as an allosteric modulator and transcriptional repressor of these receptors. Phylogenetic analysis of AR and GR revealed a high degree of sequence identity maintained across multiple species, including humans, suggesting that the mechanism of action and therapeutic efficacy observed in Syrian hamsters would likely be predictive of positive outcomes in patients. PT150 is therefore a strong candidate for further clinical development for the treatment of COVID-19 across variants of SARS-CoV-2.
Evidence for Continuity of Interstitial Spaces Within and Outside the Human Lung [Meeting Abstract]
Evidence for Continuity of the Interstitium Through the Gynecologic Tract [Meeting Abstract]