Nader Najafian

Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (82)460.92 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Tacrolimus and sirolimus are commonly used maintenance immunosuppressants in kidney transplantation. As their effects on immune cells and allograft molecular profiles have not been elucidated, we characterized the effects of tacrolimus to sirolimus conversion on the frequency and function of T cells, and on graft molecular profiles. Samples from renal transplant patients in a randomized trial of 18 patients with late sirolimus conversion and 12 on tacrolimus maintenance were utilized. Peripheral blood was collected at 0, 6, 12, and 24 months post randomization, with T-cell subpopulations analyzed by flow cytometry and T-cell alloreactivity tested by IFN-γ ELISPOT. Graft biopsy samples obtained 24 months post randomization were used for gene expression analysis. Sirolimus conversion led to an increase in CD4(+)25(+++)Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells. While tacrolimus-maintained patients showed a decrease in indirect alloreactivity over time post transplant, sirolimus conversion increased indirect alloreactive T-cell frequencies compared with tacrolimus-maintained patients. No histological differences were found in graft biopsies, but molecular profiles showed activation of the antigen presentation, IL-12 signaling, oxidative stress, macrophage-derived production pathways, and increased inflammatory and immune response in sirolimus-converted patients. Thus, chronic immune alterations are induced after sirolimus conversion. Despite the molecular profile being favorable to calcineurin inhibitor-based regimen, there was no impact in renal function over 30 months of follow-up.Kidney International advance online publication, 29 October 2014; doi:10.1038/ki.2014.350.
    Kidney international. 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: IVIG is frequently used in the ‘pre-conditioning’ regimens for higher risk transplants; its effects are attributed in part to induction of Tregs. We have identified regulatory T cell (Treg) epitopes, now known as Tregitopes, in IgG, the main component of intravenous immunoglobulin therapy (IVIg). Tregitopes provide one explanation for the expansion and activation of Treg cells following IVIg treatment. Tregitopes are peptides that exhibit high affinity binding to multiple human HLA Class II DR and are conserved across IgG isotypes and mammalian species. In vitro and in vivo, for human PBMC and in animal models, Tregitopes activate Tregs. Studies to delineate the mechanism of action have shown that Tregitopes’ effects are very similar to IVIg in vitro. Here we demonstrate that Tregitopes induce Tregs to produce IL-10, leading to modulation of dendritic cell phenotype (down-regulation of Class II, CD80 and CD86 and up-regulation of ILT3), and describe the effects of Tregitopes in the ABM-TCR-transgenic skin transplantation model. The discovery of Tregitopes in IgG and other autologous proteins may contribute to improved understanding of the mechanism of action of IVIg and lead to the application of these powerful immunomodulators to improve transplantation success and suppress autoimmune disease, in the future.
    Human Immunology. 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: More than 30% of potential kidney transplant recipients have pre-existing anti-human leukocyte antigen antibodies. This subgroup has significantly lower transplant rates and increased mortality. Desensitization has become an important tool to overcome this immunological barrier. However, limited data is available regarding long-term outcomes, in particular for the highest risk group with a positive complement-dependent cytotoxicity crossmatch (CDC XM) before desensitization.
    Transplantation 02/2014; · 3.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Transplant glomerulitis is an active form of glomerular injury associated with suboptimal graft outcome, inadequate histologic reproducibility, and poorly understood pathogenesis. Using a modified pathologic schema where glomerular inflammation is defined by the presence of five or more leukocytes per glomerulus, we sought to assess the reproducibility of transplant glomerulitis and to prospectively investigate the pathogenesis of glomerular inflammation. Our cohort includes 59 kidney transplant recipients who underwent 60 "for cause" allograft biopsies. In addition to light microscopy, the majority of the biopsies were assessed using immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, and electron microscopy studies. Biopsies were classified as noninflamed (n=21), inflamed (borderline changes or above) without glomerulitis (n=21), and transplant glomerulitis (n=18). Peripheral blood was collected on the day of biopsy and cytokines secreted by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were measured ex vivo. Our modified schema had higher inter-observer agreement for detecting glomerulitis than that of the current Banff schema. Biopsies with glomerulitis showed ultrastructural signs of glomerular capillary wall remodeling. In contrast to other anatomic compartments, intraglomerular leukocytes in glomerulitis group consisted largely of monocytes. Patients with glomerulitis had high levels of IL-6 and IL-1β secreted by PBMCs. Furthermore, the percentage of inflamed glomeruli and the number of intraglomerular monocytes showed independent association with IL-6 and IL-1β levels, which tended to correlate with subsequent estimated glomerular filtration rate decline. Inter-observer reproducibility of transplant glomerulitis can be improved by using more stringent histologic criteria. Glomerular inflammation correlates with endothelial injury, monocyte influx, and IL-6 and IL-β secretion by circulating immune cells.
    Transplantation 01/2014; · 3.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Rabbit antithymocyte globulin (ATG) is commonly used as an induction therapy in renal transplant recipients, but the ideal dosage in tacrolimus-based early steroid withdrawal protocols has not been established. The purpose of this pilot study was to determine the immunophenotyping and efficacy of lower dose ATG in low immunological-risk kidney transplant recipients. In this prospective study, 45 patients were randomized (1∶1) to our standard dose ATG (total dose 3.75 mg/kg)(sATG) vs. lower dose 2.25 mg/kg (lowATG). All patients underwent early steroid withdrawal within 7 days. The primary end point was biopsy-proven acute rejection at 12 months. Prospective immunophenotyping of freshly isolated PBMCs was performed at baseline, 3, 6, 12 months post-transplant. The rate of acute rejection was 17% and 10% in the sATG and lowATG, respectively. Effector memory T cells, Tregs and recent thymic emigrants T cells had similar kinetics post-transplant in both groups. No statistically significant differences were found in graft survival, patient survival or infections between the two groups, though there was a non-significant increase in leukopenia (43%v s. 30%), CMV (8% vs. 0) and BK (4% vs. 0) infections in sATG group vs. lowATG. In sum, in low immunological risk kidney recipients undergoing steroid withdrawal, low dose ATG seems to be efficacious in preventing acute rejection and depleting T cells with potentially lower infectious complications. A larger study is warranted to confirm these findings.
    PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(8):e104408. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    R Abdoli, N Najafian
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    ABSTRACT: T cell differentiation is dictated by a combination of T cell receptor (TCR) interaction with an antigen-bound major histocompatibility complex (MHC), and co-stimulatory molecules signal. The co-stimulatory signal can be positive or negative, and amplifying or diminishing the initial signal. However, the secondary co-stimulatory signal is not obligatory and its necessity is dictated, in part, by the stage of T cell development. In the field of transplantation, directing the T cell differentiation process can lead to therapeutic possibilities that promote allograft tolerance, and hinder unfavorable alloimmune responses. Therefore, understanding the details of T cell differentiation process, including the influence of co-stimulatory signals, is of paramount importance. It is important to note there is functional overlap between co-stimulatory molecules. It has been observed that some co-stimulatory signals have different effects on different T cell subsets. Hence, blockade of a co-stimulatory signal pathway, as part of a therapeutic regimen in transplantation, may have far reaching effects beyond the initial therapeutic intent and inhibit co-stimulatory signals necessary for desirable regulatory responses. In this review, co-stimulatory molecules involved in the differentiation of naïve T cells into T helper 1 (Th1), T helper 2 (Th2), T helper 17 (Th17), inducible regulatory T cells (iTregs), and T helper 9 (Th9) cells and their overlap are discussed.
    International journal of organ transplantation medicine. 01/2014; 5(3):97-110.
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: The pivotal role of costimulatory pathways in regulating T-cell activation versus tolerance has stimulated tremendous interest in their manipulation for therapeutic purposes. Of these, the CD28-B7 pathway is arguably the most important and best studied. Therapeutic targets of CD28 are currently used in the treatment of melanoma, autoimmune diseases and in transplantation. Areas covered: In this review, we summarize our current knowledge of CD28 and cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 (CTLA-4) signaling, and review the current state and challenges of harnessing them to promote transplant tolerance. Expert opinion: Despite the success of belatacept, a first-in-class CTLA-4 fusion protein now clinically used in transplantation, it is apparent that we have only scratched the surface in understanding the complexities of how costimulatory pathways modulate the immune system. Our initial assumption that positive costimulators activate effector T cells and prevent tolerance, while negative costimulators inhibit effector T cells and promote tolerance, is clearly an oversimplified view. Indeed, belatacept is not only capable of blocking deleterious CD28-B7 interactions that promote effector T-cell responses but can also have undesired effects on tolerogenic regulatory T-cell populations.
    Expert Opinion on Therapeutic Targets 12/2013; · 4.90 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dendritic cells (DCs) are the central architects of the immune response, inducing inflammatory or tolerogenic immunity, dependent on their activation status. As such, DCs are highly attractive therapeutic targets and may hold the potential to control detrimental immune responses. TIM-4, expressed on APCs, has complex functions in vivo, acting both as a costimulatory molecule and a phosphatidylserine receptor. The effect of TIM-4 costimulation on T cell activation remains unclear. In this study, we demonstrate that Ab blockade of DC-expressed TIM-4 leads to increased induction of induced regulatory T cells (iTregs) from naive CD4(+) T cells, both in vitro and in vivo. iTreg induction occurs through suppression of IL-4/STAT6/Gata3-induced Th2 differentiation. In addition, blockade of TIM-4 on previously activated DCs still leads to increased iTreg induction. iTregs induced under TIM-4 blockade have equivalent potency to control and, upon adoptive transfer, significantly prolong skin allograft survival in vivo. In RAG(-/-) recipients of skin allografts adoptively transferred with CD4(+) T cells, we show that TIM-4 blockade in vivo is associated with a 3-fold prolongation in allograft survival. Furthermore, in this mouse model of skin transplantation, increased induction of allospecific iTregs and a reduction in T effector responses were observed, with decreased Th1 and Th2 responses. This enhanced allograft survival and protolerogenic skewing of the alloresponse is critically dependent on conversion of naive CD4(+) to Tregs in vivo. Collectively, these studies identify blockade of DC-expressed TIM-4 as a novel strategy that holds the capacity to induce regulatory immunity in vivo.
    The Journal of Immunology 09/2013; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Programmed death-1 (PD-1) and its ligands, PD-L1 and PD-L2, play an important role in the maintenance of peripheral tolerance. We explored the role of PD-1 ligands in regulating graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Both PD-L1 and PD-L2 expression were upregulated in spleen, liver, colon, and ileum of GVHD mice. Whereas PD-L2 expression was limited to hematopoietic cells, hematopoietic and endothelial cells expressed PD-L1. PD-1/PD-L1 but not PD-1/PD-L2 blockade markedly accelerated GVHD-induced lethality. Chimera studies suggest that PD-L1 expression on host parenchymal cells is more critical than hematopoietic cells in regulating acute GVHD. Rapid mortality onset in PD-L1 deficient hosts was associated with increased gut T-cell homing and loss of intestinal epithelial integrity, along with increased donor T-cell proliferation, activation, Th1 cytokine-production, and reduced apoptosis. Bioenergetics profile analysis of proliferating alloreactive donor T-cells demonstrated increased aerobic glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation in PD-L1 deficient hosts. Donor T-cells exhibited a hyperpolarized mitochondrial membrane potential, increased superoxide production, and increased expression of GLUT1 (glucose transporter) in PD-L1 deficient hosts. Taken together, these data provide new insight into the differential roles of host PD-L1 and PD-L2 and their associated cellular and metabolic mechanisms controlling acute GVHD.
    Blood 09/2013; · 9.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Traditionally, chronic calcineurin inhibitor (CNI) nephrotoxicity has been considered to be one of the main nonimmune mechanisms causing chronic renal allograft dysfunction. CNI minimization and withdrawal strategies have yielded inconsistent results. Few studies address the feasibility of CNI elimination in a prednisone-free regimen. We report a prospective, randomized trial in 200 patients evaluating the impact on renal function and incidence of acute rejection after conversion from tacrolimus (Tac) to sirolimus (SRL). Patients with recent (<3 months) acute rejection episodes or with >0.5 g/day of proteinuria were excluded. All were induced with alemtuzumab, underwent rapid steroid elimination and were maintained on mycophenolate mofetil and Tac. At 12 months posttransplant, patients were randomized 2:1 to SRL (n = 123) or maintained on Tac (n = 64). Mean follow-up was 41.1 ± 15.8 months in the SRL group and 40.7 ± 14.4 months in the Tac group. Biopsy-proven acute rejection at 24 months postrandomization was similar between the groups. Patient survival, graft survival and estimated GFR were also not statistically different. Our study demonstrates that in a prednisone-free immunosuppressive regimen, conversion from Tac to SRL at 12 months posttransplantation is not associated with increased rates of acute rejection and graft loss. However, despite CNI elimination, renal allograft function is equally maintained in both groups.
    American Journal of Transplantation 09/2013; · 6.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Emerging evidence indicates memory donor-reactive T cells are detrimental to transplant outcome and that quantifying the frequency of IFNγ-producing, donor-reactive PBMCs by ELISPOT has potential utility as an immune monitoring tool. Nonetheless, differences in assay performance among laboratories limit the ability to compare results. In an effort to standardize assays, we prepared a panel of common cellular reagent standards, developed and cross validated a standard operating procedure (SOP) for alloreactive IFNγ ELISPOT assays in several research laboratories supported by the NIH-funded Clinical Trials in Organ Transplantation (CTOT) Consortium. We demonstrate that strict adherence to the SOP and centralized data analysis results in high reproducibility with a coefficient of variance (CV) of ∼30%. This standardization of IFNγ ELISPOTassay will facilitate interpretation of data from multicenter transplantation research studies and provide the foundation for developing clinical laboratory testing strategies to guide therapeutic decision-making in transplant patients.
    American Journal of Transplantation 05/2013; · 6.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Notch pathway is an important intercellular signaling pathway that plays a major role in controlling cell fate. Accumulating evidence indicates that Notch and its ligands present on APCs might be important mediators of Th-cell differentiation. In this study, we investigated the role of Jagged2 in murine cardiac transplantation by using a signaling Jagged2 mAb (Jag2) that activates RBP-Jκ. While administration of Jag2 mAb had little effect on graft survival in the fully allogeneic mismatched model BALB/c→B6, it hastened rejection in CD28-deficient recipients. Similarly, Jag2 precipitated rejection in the bm12→B6 model. In this MHC class II-mismatched model, allografts spontaneously survive for >56 days due to the emergence of Treg cells that inhibit the expansion of alloreactive T cells. The accelerated rejection was associated with upregulation of Th2 cytokines and proinflammatory cytokine IL-6, despite expansion of Treg cells. Incubation of Treg cells with recombinant IL-6 abrogated their inhibitory effects in vitro. Furthermore, neutralization of IL-6 in vivo protected Jag2-treated recipients from rejection and Jagged2 signaling was unable to further accelerate rejection in the absence of Treg cells. Our findings therefore suggest that Jagged2 signaling can affect graft acceptance by upregulation of IL-6 and consequent resistance to Treg-cell suppression.
    European Journal of Immunology 03/2013; · 4.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite significant nephrotoxicity, calcineurin inhibitors (CNIs) remain the cornerstone of immunosuppression in solid organ transplantation. We, along with others, have reported tolerogenic properties of anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG, Thymoglobulin®), evinced by its ability both to spare Tregs from depletion in vivo and, when administered at low, non-depleting doses, to expand Tregs ex vivo. Clinical trials investigating B7/CD28 blockade (LEA29Y, Belatacept) in kidney transplant recipients have proven that the replacement of toxic CNI use is feasible in selected populations. Rabbit polyclonal anti-murine thymocyte globulin (mATG) was administered as induction and/or prolonged, low-dose therapy, in combination with CTLA4-Ig, in a stringent, fully MHC-mismatched murine skin transplant model to assess graft survival and mechanisms of action. Prolonged, low-dose mATG, combined with CTLA4-Ig, effectively promotes engraftment in a stringent transplant model. Our data demonstrate that mATG achieves graft acceptance primarily by promoting Tregs, while CTLA4-Ig enhances mATG function by limiting activation of the effector T cell pool in the early stages of treatment, and by inhibiting production of anti-rabbit antibodies in the maintenance phase, thereby promoting regulation of alloreactivity. These data provide the rationale for development of novel, CNI-free clinical protocols in human transplant recipients.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(1):e53797. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: TIM-3 is constitutively expressed on subsets of macrophages and dendritic cells. Its expression on other cells of the innate immune system and its role in fetomaternal tolerance has not yet been explored. In this study, we investigate the role of TIM-3-expressing innate immune cells in the regulation of tolerance at the fetomaternal interface (FMI) using an allogeneic mouse model of pregnancy. Blockade of TIM-3 results in accumulation of inflammatory granulocytes and macrophages at the uteroplacental interface and upregulation of proinflammatory cytokines. Furthermore, TIM-3 blockade inhibits the phagocytic potential of uterine macrophages resulting in a build up of apoptotic bodies at the uteroplacental interface that elicits a local immune response. In response to inflammatory cytokines, Ly-6C(hi)G(neg) monocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells expressing inducible NO synthase and arginase 1 are induced. However, these suppressive cells fail to downregulate the inflammatory cascade induced by inflammatory granulocytes (Ly-6C(int)G(hi)) and apoptotic cells; the increased production of IFN-γ and TNF-α by inflammatory granulocytes leads to abrogation of tolerance at the FMI and fetal rejection. These data highlight the interplay between cells of the innate immune system at the FMI and their influence on successful pregnancy in mice.
    The Journal of Immunology 11/2012; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tregitopes are regulatory T cell epitopes derived from immunoglobulin G (IgG) that stimulate CD25(+) FoxP3(+) T cells to expand. In conjunction with these Tregs, Tregitopes can prevent, treat, and even cure autoimmune disease in mouse models, suppress allo-specific responses in murine transplant models, inhibit CD8(+) T cell responses to recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene transfer vectors, and induce adaptive Tregs in DO11.10 mice. In this review of recent Tregitope studies, we summarize their effects in vitro and describe recent comparisons between intravenous IgG (IVIG) and Tregitopes in standard in vivo immune tolerance models. Further investigations of the mechanism of action of Tregitopes in the preclinical models described here will lead to clinical trials where Tregitopes may have the potential to alter the treatment of autoimmune disease, transplantation, and allergy, and to improve the efficiency of gene and protein replacement therapies.
    Journal of Clinical Immunology 09/2012; · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    C N Magee, O Boenisch, N Najafian
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    ABSTRACT: Costimulatory molecules are a heterogenous group of cell surface molecules that act to amplify or counteract the initial activating signals provided to T cells from the T cell receptor following its interaction with an antigen/major histocompatibility complex, thereby influencing T cell differentiation and fate. Although costimulation was previously thought to be indispensable for T cell activation at all stages of development, it is now known that the requirements for costimulation, and the costimulatory molecules involved, vary according to the stage of T cell differentiation. The ability to influence T cell fate is of paramount interest in the field of transplantation as we seek therapeutic options that inhibit detrimental alloimmune responses whilst simultaneously promoting allograft tolerance. As with many immune mechanisms, there is a degree of functional overlap between certain costimulatory molecules, whereas some have diametrically opposite effects on different T cell subsets despite sharing common ligands. This is a critical point when considering these molecules as therapeutic targets in transplantation, as blockade of a costimulatory pathway, although desirable in itself, may prevent the ligation of an essential regulatory coinhibitory molecule. This review discusses the T helper cell lineages pertinent to transplantation and the costimulatory molecules involved in their differentiation.
    American Journal of Transplantation 07/2012; 12(10):2588-600. · 6.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ligands of the B7 family provide both positive and negative costimulatory signals to the CD28 family of receptors on T lymphocytes, the balance of which determines the immune response. B7-H3 is a member of the B7 family whose function in T-cell activation has been the subject of some controversy: in autoimmunity and tumor immunity, it has been described as both costimulatory and coinhibitory, while in transplantation, B7-H3 signaling is thought to contribute to graft rejection. However, we now demonstrate results to the contrary. Signaling through a putative B7-H3 receptor prolonged allograft survival in a fully MHC-mismatched cardiac model and promoted a shift toward a Th2 milieu; conversely, B7-H3 blockade, achieved by use of a blocking antibody, resulted in accelerated rejection, an effect associated with enhanced IFN-γ production. Finally, graft prolongation achieved by CTLA4 Ig was shortened both by B7-H3 blockade and the absence of recipient B7-H3. These findings suggest a coinhibitory role for B7-H3. However, experience with other CD28/B7 family members suggests that immune redundancy plays a crucial role in determining the functions of various pathways. Given the abundance of conflicting data, it is plausible that, under differing conditions, B7-H3 may have both positive and negative costimulatory functions.
    European Journal of Immunology 06/2012; 42(9):2343-53. · 4.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Acute rejection remains a problem in renal transplantation. This study sought to determine the utility of a noninvasive cytokine assay in screening of acute rejection. In this observational cross-sectional study, 64 patients from two centers were recruited upon admission for allograft biopsy to investigate acute graft dysfunction. Blood was collected before biopsy and assayed for a panel of 21 cytokines secreted by PBMCs. Patients were classified as acute rejectors or nonrejectors according to a classification rule derived from an initial set of 32 patients (training cohort) and subsequently validated in the remaining patients (validation cohort). Although six cytokines (IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α, IL-4, GM-CSF, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) distinguished acute rejectors in the training cohort, logistic regression modeling identified a single cytokine, IL-6, as the best predictor. In the validation cohort, IL-6 was consistently the most accurate cytokine (area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve, 0.85; P=0.006), whereas the application of a prespecified cutoff level, as determined from the training cohort, resulted in a sensitivity and specificity of 92% and 63%, respectively. Secondary analyses revealed a strong association between IL-6 levels and acute rejection after multivariate adjustment for clinical characteristics (P<0.001). In this pilot study, the measurement of a single cytokine can exclude acute rejection with a sensitivity of 92% in renal transplant recipients presenting with acute graft dysfunction. Prospective studies are needed to determine the utility of this simple assay, particularly for low-risk or remote patients.
    Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 04/2012; 7(6):1018-25. · 5.07 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The addition of low, nondepleting doses of rabbit antithymocyte globulin (ATG) to human peripheral blood mononuclear cells has been shown to expand functional CD4(+) CD25(+) FoxP3(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs) in vitro. This report is the first to elucidate the exact cellular mechanisms of ATG-mediated Treg expansion. CD4(+) T cells require monocytes, but not other antigen presenting cell subsets, to be present in coculture to expand Tregs. However, T cells do not require direct cell-cell contact with monocytes, suggesting the importance of soluble factors. Moreover, ATG initially "reprograms" CD4(+) T cells, but not monocytes, and induces STAT3 and STAT5 signaling in CD4(+) cells. These reprogrammed CD4(+) T cells subsequently secrete GM-CSF and IL-10 only in case of intact STAT3 signaling, which in turn promote the generation of tolerogenic CD14(+) CD11c(+) dendritic cells characterized by enhanced IL-10 and decreased IL-12 production. Treg expansion following ATG treatment is accompanied by enhanced gene expression of both GM-CSF and Bcl-2, but not TGF-β, in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. These results demonstrate that ex vivo expansion of human Tregs by ATG is due to its ability to reprogram CD4(+) T cells in a STAT3-dependent but TGF-β-independent manner, leading to the generation of monocyte-derived dendritic cells with a tolerogenic cytokine profile.
    American Journal of Transplantation 03/2012; 12(4):856-66. · 6.19 Impact Factor
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    Martina M McGrath, Nader Najafian
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    ABSTRACT: Negative costimulatory molecules, acting through so-called inhibitory pathways, play a crucial role in the control of T cell responses. This negative "second signal" opposes T cell receptor activation and leads to downregulation of T cell proliferation and promotes antigen specific tolerance. Much interest has focused upon these pathways in recent years as a method to control detrimental alloresponses and promote allograft tolerance. However, recent experimental data highlights the complexity of negative costimulatory pathways in alloimmunity. Varying effects are observed from molecules expressed on donor and recipient tissues and also depending upon the activation status of immune cells involved. There appears to be significant overlap and redundancy within these systems, rendering this a challenging area to understand and exploit therapeutically. In this article, we will review the literature at the current time regarding the major negative costimulation pathways including CTLA-4:B7, PD-1:PD-L1/PD-L2 and PD-L1:B7-1, B7-H3, B7-H4, HVEM:BTLA/CD160, and TIM-3:Galectin-9. We aim to outline the role of these pathways in alloimmunity and discuss their potential applications for tolerance induction in transplantation.
    Frontiers in Immunology 01/2012; 3:47.

Publication Stats

2k Citations
460.92 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002–2014
    • Harvard Medical School
      • Department of Pathology
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
    • Schepens Eye Research Institute
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2000–2013
    • Brigham and Women's Hospital
      • • Department of Medicine
      • • Division of Renal Medicine
      • • Center for Brain Mind Medicine
      • • Transplantation Research Center
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2008–2012
    • Boston Children's Hospital
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2010
    • Tokyo Medical and Dental University
      Edo, Tōkyō, Japan
  • 2007
    • University of Chicago
      • Department of Medicine
      Chicago, IL, United States
  • 2006
    • Harvard University
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States