[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Results of experimental and genetic studies have highlighted the role of the IL-23/IL-17 axis in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). IL-23-driven inflammation has been primarily linked to Th17 cells; however, we have recently identified a novel population of innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) in mice that produces IL-17, IL-22, and IFN-γ in response to IL-23 and mediates innate colitis. The relevance of ILC populations in human health and disease is currently poorly understood. In this study, we have analyzed the role of IL-23-responsive ILCs in the human intestine in control and IBD patients. Our results show increased expression of the Th17-associated cytokine genes IL17A and IL17F among intestinal CD3⁻ cells in IBD. IL17A and IL17F expression is restricted to CD56⁻ ILCs, whereas IL-23 induces IL22 and IL26 in the CD56⁺ ILC compartment. Furthermore, we observed a significant and selective increase in CD127⁺CD56⁻ ILCs in the inflamed intestine in Crohn's disease (CD) patients but not in ulcerative colitis patients. These results indicate that IL-23-responsive ILCs are present in the human intestine and that intestinal inflammation in CD is associated with the selective accumulation of a phenotypically distinct ILC population characterized by inflammatory cytokine expression. ILCs may contribute to intestinal inflammation through cytokine production, lymphocyte recruitment, and organization of the inflammatory tissue and may represent a novel tissue-specific target for subtypes of IBD.
Journal of Experimental Medicine 06/2011; 208(6):1127-33. · 13.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several genes in an interval of human and mouse chromosome 1 are associated with a predisposition for systemic lupus erythematosus. Congenic mouse strains that contain a 129-derived genomic segment, which is embedded in the B6 genome, develop lupus because of epistatic interactions between the 129-derived and B6 genes, e.g. in B6.129chr1b mice. If a gene that is located on chromosome 1 is altered through homologous recombination in 129-derived embryonic stem cells (ES cells) and if the resultant knockout mouse is backcrossed with B6, interpretation of the phenotype of the mutant mouse may be affected by epistatic interactions between the 129 and B6 genomes. Here, we report that knockout mice of two adjacent chromosome 1 genes, Slamf1(-/-) and Slamf2(-/-), which were generated with the same 129-derived ES cell line, develop features of lupus, if backcrossed on to the B6 genetic background. By contrast, Slamf1(-/-) [BALB/c.129] and Slamf2(-/-) [BALB/c.129] do not develop disease. Surprisingly, Slamf1(-/-) [B6.129] mice develop both auto-antibodies and glomerulonephritis between 3 and 6 months of age, while disease fully develops in Slamf1(-/-) [B6.129] mice after 9-14 months. Functional analyses of CD4(+) T cells reveals that Slamf2(-/-) T cells are resistant to tolerance induction in vivo. We conclude that the Slamf2(-/-) mutation may have a unique influence on T-cell tolerance and lupus.
International Immunology 02/2011; 23(2):149-58. · 3.14 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interleukin-23 (IL-23) is an inflammatory cytokine that plays a key role in the pathogenesis of several autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. It orchestrates innate and T cell-mediated inflammatory pathways and can promote T helper 17 (Th17) cell responses. Utilizing a T cell transfer model, we showed that IL-23-dependent colitis did not require IL-17 secretion by T cells. Furthermore, IL-23-independent intestinal inflammation could develop if immunosuppressive pathways were reduced. The frequency of naive T cell-derived Foxp3+ cells in the colon increased in the absence of IL-23, indicating a role for IL-23 in controlling regulatory T cell induction. Foxp3-deficient T cells induced colitis when transferred into recipients lacking IL-23p19, showing that IL-23 was not essential for intestinal inflammation in the absence of Foxp3. Taken together, our data indicate that overriding immunosuppressive pathways is an important function of IL-23 in the intestine and could influence not only Th17 cell activity but also other types of immune responses.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Foxp3(+) regulatory T (T reg) cells play a key role in controlling immune pathological re actions. Many develop their regulatory activity in the thymus, but there is also evidence for development of Foxp3(+) T reg cells from naive precursors in the periphery. Recent studies have shown that transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta can promote T reg cell development in culture, but little is known about the cellular and molecular mechanisms that mediate this pathway under more physiological conditions. Here, we show that after antigen activation in the intestine, naive T cells acquire expression of Foxp3. Moreover, we identify a population of CD103(+) mesenteric lymph node dendritic cells (DCs) that induce the development of Foxp3(+) T reg cells. Importantly, promotion of T reg cell responses by CD103(+) DCs is dependent on TGF-beta and the dietary metabolite, retinoic acid (RA). These results newly identify RA as a cofactor in T reg cell generation, providing a mechanism via which functionally specialized gut-associated lymphoid tissue DCs can extend the repertoire of T reg cells focused on the intestine.
Journal of Experimental Medicine 09/2007; 204(8):1757-64. · 13.21 Impact Factor