[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) autoantibodies target muscles in spontaneous human myasthenia gravis (MG) and its induced experimental autoimmune model MG (EAMG). The aim of this study was to identify novel functional mechanisms occurring in the muscle pathology of myasthenia.
A transcriptome analysis performed on muscle tissue from MG patients (compared with healthy controls) and from EAMG rats (compared with control rats) revealed a deregulation of genes associated with the Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) pathways in both humans and rats. The expression of IL-6 and its receptor IL-6R transcripts was found to be altered in muscles of EAMG rats and mice compared with control animals. In muscle biopsies from MG patients, IL-6 protein level was higher than in control muscles. Using cultures of human muscle cells, we evaluated the effects of anti-AChR antibodies on IL-6 production and on the phosphorylation of Protein Kinase B (PKB/Akt). Most MG sera and some monoclonal anti-AChR antibodies induced a significant increase in IL-6 production by human muscle cells. Furthermore, Akt phosphorylation in response to insulin was decreased in the presence of monoclonal anti-AChR antibodies.
Anti-AChR antibodies alter IL-6 production by muscle cells, suggesting a putative novel functional mechanism of action for the anti-AChR antibodies. IL-6 is a myokine with known effects on signaling pathways such as Akt/mTOR (mammalian Target of Rapamycin). Since Akt plays a key role in multiple cellular processes, the reduced phosphorylation of Akt by the anti-AChR antibodies may have a significant impact on the muscle fatigability observed in MG patients.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulmonary veno-occlusive disease (PVOD) is a rare form of pulmonary hypertension characterised by predominant remodelling of pulmonary venules. Bi-allelic mutations in the eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α kinase 4 (EIF2AK4) gene were recently described as the major cause of heritable PVOD, but risk factors associated with PVOD remain poorly understood. Occupational exposures have been proposed as a potential risk factor for PVOD, but epidemiological studies are lacking.A case-control study was conducted in consecutive PVOD (cases, n=33) and pulmonary arterial hypertension patients (controls, n=65). Occupational exposure was evaluated via questionnaire interview with blinded assessments using an expert consensus approach and a job exposure matrix (JEM).Using the expert consensus approach, PVOD was significantly associated with occupational exposure to organic solvents (adjusted OR 12.8, 95% CI 2.7-60.8), with trichloroethylene being the main agent implicated (adjusted OR 8.2, 95% CI 1.4-49.4). JEM analysis independently confirmed the association between PVOD and trichloroethylene exposure. Absence of significant trichloroethylene exposure was associated with a younger age of disease (54.8±21.4 years, p=0.037) and a high prevalence of harbouring bi-allelic EIF2AK4 mutations (41.7% versus 0%, p=0.015).Occupational exposure to organic solvents may represent a novel risk factor for PVOD. Genetic background and environmental exposure appear to influence the phenotypic expression of the disease.
European Respiratory Journal 11/2015; DOI:10.1183/13993003.00814-2015 · 7.64 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An original piglet model of Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension (CTEPH) associated with chronic Right Ventricular (RV) dysfunction is described. Pulmonary Hypertension (PH) was induced in 3-week-old piglets by a progressive obstruction of the pulmonary vascular bed. A ligation of the left Pulmonary Artery (PA) was performed first through a mini-thoracotomy. Second, weekly embolizations of the right lower pulmonary lobe were done under fluoroscopic guidance with n-butyl-2-cyanoacrylate during 5 weeks. Mean Pulmonary Arterial Pressure (mPAP) measured by ritght heart catheterism, increased progressively, as well as Right Atrial pressure and Pulmonary Vascular Resistances (PVR) after 5 weeks compared to sham animals. Right Ventricular (RV) structural and functional remodeling were assessed by transthoracic echocardiography (RV diameters, RV wall thickness, RV systolic function). RV elastance and RV-pulmonary coupling were assessed by Pressure-Volume Loops (PVL) analysis with conductance method. Histologic study of the lung and the right ventricle were also performed. Molecular analyses on RV fresh tissues could be performed through repeated transcutaneous endomyocardial biopsies. Pulmonary microvascular disease in obstructed and unobstructed territories was studied from lung biopsies using molecular analyses and pathology. Furthermore, the reliability and the reproducibility was associated with a range of PH severity in animals. Most aspects of the human CTEPH disease were reproduced in this model, which allows new perspectives for the understanding of the underlying mechanisms (mitochondria, inflammation) and new therapeutic approaches (targeted, cellular or gene therapies) of the overloaded right ventricle but also pulmonary microvascular disease.
Journal of Visualized Experiments 11/2015; DOI:10.3791/53133 · 1.33 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) is a form of pulmonary hypertension (PH) characterized by the persistence of thromboembolic obstructing the pulmonary arteries as an organized tissue and the presence of a variable small vessel arteriopathy. The consequence is an increase in pulmonary vascular resistance resulting in progressive right heart failure. CTEPH is classified as group IV pulmonary hypertension according to the WHO classification of pulmonary hypertension. CTEPH is defined as precapillary pulmonary hypertension (mean pulmonary artery pressure≥25mmHg with a pulmonary capillary wedge pressure≤15mmHg) associated with mismatched perfusion defects on ventilation-perfusion lung scan and signs of chronic thromboembolic disease on computed tomography pulmonary angiogram and/or conventional pulmonary angiography, in a patient who received at least 3 months of therapeutic anticoagulation. CTEPH as a direct consequence of symptomatic pulmonary embolism (PE) is rare, and a significant number of CTEPH cases develop in the absence of history of PE. Thus, CTEPH should be considered in any patient with unexplained PH. Splenectomy, chronic inflammatory conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease, indwelling catheters and cardiac pacemakers have been identified as associated conditions increasing the risk of CTEPH. Ventilation-perfusion scan (V/Q) is the best test available for establishing the thromboembolic nature of PH. When CTEPH is suspected, patients should be referred to expert centres where pulmonary angiography, right heart catheterization and high-resolution CT scan will be performed to confirm the diagnosis and to assess the operability. Pulmonary endarterectomy (PEA) remains the gold standard treatment for CTEPH when organized thrombi involve the main, lobar or segmental arteries. This operation should only be performed by experienced surgeons in specialized centres. For inoperable patients, current ESC/ERS guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary hypertension recommend the use of riociguat and say that off-label use of drugs approved for PAH and pulmonary angioplasty may be considered in expert centres.
La Presse Médicale 11/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.lpm.2015.10.010 · 1.08 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:
The incidence of posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLD) has recently declined, but late cases are increasingly reported in lung transplant recipients.
We present our experience with PTLD after lung transplantation, attempting to examine the distinguishing characteristics of early versus late cases.
We have reviewed clinical and pathological data of all cases occurring in our institution between 2001 and 2014.
Patients, aged 15-63 years, were mostly (12/16) Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) seropositive at the time of transplantation. Eleven early cases, occurring 9.4 ± 5.2 months after transplantation and mostly (9/11) prior to 2010, had EBV+ diffuse large B-cell lymphomas. Lungs and/or thoracic lymph nodes were often involved (n = 8). Treatments included reduction of immune suppression (n = 11), rituximab (n = 8) and chemotherapy (n = 7). Two patients are in complete remission at 26 and 216 months. Nine patients died 8.0 ± 6.5 months after PTLD diagnosis. Of the 5 cases with late PTLD occurring 4-23 years (mean ± SD: 10.4 ± 7.7) after transplantation (and 3/5 after 2009), 1 had pulmonary lymphomatoid granulomatosis (only endothoracic case), 1 cutaneous large T-cell lymphoma, 2 had anaplastic large cell lymphomas, and 1 Hodgkin's disease. Two of the 5 cases were EBV-, including one followed by a second EBV+ PTLD after 8 years of complete remission. Two patients were alive and well (follow-up: 44 and 151 months), one having suffered from EBV-related cholestatic hepatitis 6 years after the PTLD.
Our small experience shows a trend toward (very) late occurrence, associated with more unusual clinicopathologic features, but not with a worse prognosis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: While investigating cohorts of unclassified sarcomas by RNA sequencing, we identified 19 cases with inactivation of SMARCA4, which encodes an ATPase subunit of BAF chromatin-remodeling complexes. Clinically, the cases were all strikingly similar, presenting as compressive mediastino-pulmonary masses in 30- to 35-year-old adults with a median survival time of 7 months. To help define the nosological relationships of these tumors, we compared their transcriptomic profiles with those of SMARCA4-mutated small-cell carcinomas of the ovary, hypercalcemic type (SCCOHTs), SMARCB1-inactivated malignant rhabdoid tumors (MRTs) and lung carcinomas (of which 10% display SMARCA4 mutations). Gene profiling analyses demonstrated that these tumors were distinct from lung carcinomas but related to MRTs and SCCOHTs. Transcriptome analyses, further validated by immunohistochemistry, highlighted strong expression of SOX2, a marker that supports the differential diagnosis of these tumors from SMARCA4-deficient lung carcinomas. The prospective recruitment of cases confirmed this new category of 'SMARCA4-deficient thoracic sarcomas' as readily recognizable in clinical practice, providing opportunities to tailor their therapeutic management.