The gap-junction inhibitor carbenoxolone suppresses the differentiation of Th17 cells through inhibition of IL-23 expression in antigen presenting cells.
ABSTRACT Carbenoxolone (CBX) is a widely used gap-junction inhibitor. We have previously shown that treatment with CBX significantly delayed the onset of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). However, the mechanism by which CBX delays the onset of EAE remains to be elucidated. Here, we show that CBX specifically inhibits the production of IL-23 by dendritic cells (DCs) and microglia in vitro. CBX treatment significantly reduced the population of Th17 cells in EAE mice. Furthermore, CBX downregulated the expression of IL-23 p19 via increased production of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A). Thus, CBX may be an effective therapeutic strategy against Th17-mediated autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis.
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ABSTRACT: Multiple sclerosis is an inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system and is the most common cause of neurologic disability in young adults. Despite antiinflammatory or immunosuppressive therapy, most patients have progressive neurologic deterioration that may reflect axonal loss. We conducted pathological studies of brain tissues to define the changes in axons in patients with multiple sclerosis. Brain tissue was obtained at autopsy from 11 patients with multiple sclerosis and 4 subjects without brain disease. Fourteen active multiple-sclerosis lesions, 33 chronic active lesions, and samples of normal-appearing white matter were examined for demyelination, inflammation, and axonal pathologic changes by immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy. Axonal transection, identified by the presence of terminal axonal ovoids, was detected in all 47 lesions and quantified in 18 lesions. Transected axons were a consistent feature of the lesions of multiple sclerosis, and their frequency was related to the degree of inflammation within the lesion. The number of transected axons per cubic millimeter of tissue averaged 11,236 in active lesions, 3138 at the hypocellular edges of chronic active lesions, 875 in the hypocellular centers of chronic active lesions, and less than 1 in normal-appearing white matter from the control brains. Transected axons are common in the lesions of multiple sclerosis, and axonal transection may be the pathologic correlate of the irreversible neurologic impairment in this disease.New England Journal of Medicine 02/1998; 338(5):278-85. · 51.66 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Glutamate excitotoxicity mediated by the AMPA/kainate type of glutamate receptors damages not only neurons but also the myelin-producing cell of the central nervous system, the oligodendrocyte. In multiple sclerosis, myelin, oligodendrocytes and some axons are lost as a result of an inflammatory attack on the central nervous system. Because glutamate is released in large quantities by activated immune cells, we expected that during inflammation in MS, glutamate excitotoxicity might contribute to the lesion. We addressed this by using the AMPA/kainate antagonist NBQX to treat mice sensitized for experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, a demyelinating model that mimics many of the clinical and pathologic features of multiple sclerosis. Treatment resulted in substantial amelioration of disease, increased oligodendrocyte survival and reduced dephosphorylation of neurofilament H, an indicator of axonal damage. Despite the clinical differences, treatment with NBQX had no effect on lesion size and did not reduce the degree of central nervous system inflammation. In addition, NBQX did not alter the proliferative activity of antigen-primed T cells in vitro, further indicating a lack of effect on the immune system. Thus, glutamate excitotoxicity seems to be an important mechanism in autoimmune demyelination, and its prevention with AMPA/kainate antagonists may prove to be an effective therapy for multiple sclerosis.Nature Medicine 01/2000; 6(1):67-70. · 22.86 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A novel sequence discovered in a computational screen appears distantly related to the p35 subunit of IL-12. This factor, which we term p19, shows no biological activity by itself; instead, it combines with the p40 subunit of IL-12 to form a novel, biologically active, composite cytokine, which we term IL-23. Activated dendritic cells secrete detectable levels of this complex. IL-23 binds to IL-12R beta 1 but fails to engage IL-12R beta 2; nonetheless, IL-23 activates Stat4 in PHA blast T cells. IL-23 induces strong proliferation of mouse memory (CD4(+)CD45Rb(low)) T cells, a unique activity of IL-23 as IL-12 has no effect on this cell population. Similar to IL-12, human IL-23 stimulates IFN-gamma production and proliferation in PHA blast T cells, as well as in CD45RO (memory) T cells.Immunity 12/2000; 13(5):715-25. · 19.80 Impact Factor