[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Anemia of inflammation (AI) is commonly observed in chronic inflammatory states and may hinder patient recovery and survival. Induction of hepcidin, mediated by interleukin-6, leads to iron-restricted erythropoiesis and anemia. Several translational studies have been directed at neutralizing hepcidin overexpression as a therapeutic strategy against AI. However, additional hepcidin-independent mechanisms contribute to AI, which are likely mediated by a direct effect of inflammatory cytokines on erythropoiesis. In this study, we utilized wild-type, hepcidin-knockout (Hamp-KO) and interleukin-6-knockout (IL-6-KO) mice as models of AI. AI was induced with heat-killed Brucella abortus (BA). The distinct roles of iron metabolism and inflammation triggered by interleukin-6 and hepcidin were investigated. BA-treated wild-type mice showed increased expression of hepcidin and inflammatory cytokines, as well as transitory suppression of erythropoiesis and shortened red blood cell lifespan, all of which contributed to the severe anemia of these mice. In contrast, BA-treated Hamp-KO or IL-6-KO mice showed milder anemia and faster recovery compared to normal mice. Moreover, they exhibited different patterns in the development and resolution of anemia, supporting the notion that interleukin-6 and hepcidin play distinct roles in modulating erythropoiesis in AI.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Iron maldistribution has been implicated in the etiology of many diseases including the anemia of inflammation (AI), atherosclerosis, diabetes and neurodegenerative disorders. Iron metabolism is controlled by hepcidin, a 25 amino acid peptide. Hepcidin is induced by inflammation and causes iron to be sequestered within cells of the reticuloendothelial system, suppressing erythropoiesis and blunting the activity of erythropoiesis stimulating agents (ESAs). For this reason neutralization of hepcidin has been proposed as a therapeutic treatment for AI. The aim of the current work was to generate fully human anti-hepcidin antibodies as a potential human therapeutic for the treatment of AI and other iron maldistribution disorders. An ELISA was established using these antibodies to identify patients likely to benefit from either ESAs or anti-hepcidin agents. Using human hepcidin knock-in mice, the mechanism-of-action of the antibodies was shown to be due to an increase in available serum iron leading to enhanced red cell hemoglobinization. One of the antibodies, 12B9m was validated in a mouse model of AI and demonstrated to modulate serum iron in cynomolgus monkeys. 12B9m was deemed to be an appropriate candidate for use as a potential therapeutic to treat AI in patients with kidney disease or cancer.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Iron is a trace element important for the proper folding and function of various proteins. Physiological regulation of iron stores is of critical importance for RBC production and antimicrobial defense. Hepcidin is a key regulator of iron levels within the body. Under conditions of iron deficiency, hepcidin expression is reduced to promote increased iron uptake from the diet and release from cells, whereas during conditions of iron excess, induction of hepcidin restricts iron uptake and movement within the body. The cytokine IL-6 is well established as an important inducer of hepcidin. The presence of this cytokine during inflammatory states can induce hepcidin production, iron deficiency, and anemia. In this study, we show that IL-22 also influences hepcidin production in vivo. Injection of mice with exogenous mouse IgG1 Fc fused to the N terminus of mouse IL-22 (Fc-IL-22), an IL-22R agonist with prolonged and enhanced functional potency, induced hepcidin production, with a subsequent decrease in circulating serum iron and hemoglobin levels and a concomitant increase in iron accumulation within the spleen. This response was independent of IL-6 and was attenuated in the absence of the IL-22R-associated signaling kinase, Tyk2. Ab-mediated blockade of hepcidin partially reversed the effects on iron biology caused by IL-22R stimulation. Taken together, these data suggest that exogenous IL-22 regulates hepcidin production to physiologically influence iron usage.
The Journal of Immunology 07/2013; 191(4). DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1202716 · 4.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ferroportin is the primary means of cellular iron efflux and a key component of iron metabolism. Hepcidin regulates Fpn activity by inducing its internalization and degradation. The mechanism of internalization is reported to require JAK2 activation, phosphorylation of Fpn tyrosine residues 302 and 303, and initiation of transcription through STAT3 phosphorylation. These findings suggest Fpn may be a target for therapeutic intervention through JAK2 modulation. To evaluate the proposed mechanism, Fpn internalization was assessed using several techniques combined with reagents that specifically recognized cell-surface Fpn. In vitro results demonstrated that Hepc-induced Fpn internalization did not require JAK2 or phosphorylation of Fpn residues 302 and 303, nor did it induce JAK-STAT signaling. In vivo, inhibition of JAK2 had no effect on Hepc-induced hypoferremia. However, internalization was delayed by mutation of two Fpn lysine residues that may be targets of ubiquitination.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Iron maldistribution has been implicated in multiple diseases, including the anemia of inflammation (AI), atherosclerosis, diabetes, and neurodegenerative disorders. Iron metabolism is controlled by hepcidin, a 25-amino acid peptide. Hepcidin is induced by inflammation, causes iron to be sequestered, and thus, potentially contributes to AI. Human hepcidin (hHepc) overexpression in mice caused an iron-deficient phenotype, including stunted growth, hair loss, and iron-deficient erythropoiesis. It also caused resistance to supraphysiologic levels of erythropoiesis-stimulating agent, supporting the hypothesis that hepcidin may influence response to treatment in AI. To explore the role of hepcidin in inflammatory anemia, a mouse AI model was developed with heat-killed Brucella abortus treatment. Suppression of hepcidin mRNA was a successful anemia treatment in this model. High-affinity antibodies specific for hHepc were generated, and hHepc knock-in mice were produced to enable antibody testing. Antibody treatment neutralized hHepc in vitro and in vivo and facilitated anemia treatment in hHepc knock-in mice with AI. These data indicate that antihepcidin antibodies may be an effective treatment for patients with inflammatory anemia. The ability to manipulate iron metabolism in vivo may also allow investigation of the role of iron in a number of other pathologic conditions.