[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) is a rare neurodegenerative disease characterized by chronic inflammation in the spinal cord. We hypothesized that a positive feedback loop driven by chemokines may be responsible for the chronic inflammation in HAM/TSP. We aimed to determine the identity of these chemokines, where they are produced, and how they drive chronic inflammation in HAM/TSP. We found that patients with HAM/TSP have extraordinarily high levels of the chemokine CXCL10 (also known as IP-10) and an abundance of cells expressing the CXCL10-binding receptor CXCR3 in the cerebrospinal fluid. Histological analysis revealed that astrocytes are the main producers of CXCL10 in the spinal cords of patients with HAM/TSP. Co-culture of human astrocytoma cells with CD4(+) T cells from patients with HAM/TSP revealed that astrocytes produce CXCL10 in response to IFN-γ secreted by CD4(+) T cells. Chemotaxis assays results suggest that CXCL10 induces migration of peripheral blood mononuclear cells to the central nervous system and that anti-CXCL10 neutralizing antibody can disrupt this migration. In short, we inferred that human T-lymphotropic virus type 1-infected cells in the central nervous system produce IFN-γ that induces astrocytes to secrete CXCL10, which recruits more infected cells to the area via CXCR3, constituting a T helper type 1-centric positive feedback loop that results in chronic inflammation.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can provide in vivo assessment of tissue damage, allowing evaluation of multiple sclerosis (MS) lesion evolution over time - a perspective not obtainable with postmortem histopathology. Relapsing-remitting experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an experimental model of MS that can be induced in the common marmoset, a small new world primate, and that causes perivenular white matter (WM) lesions similar to those observed in MS. METHODS Brain lesion development and evolution were studied in vivo and postmortem in four marmosets with EAE through serial T2- and T2*-weighted scans at 7-tesla. Supratentorial WM lesions were identified and characterized. RESULTS Of 97 lesions observed, 86 (88%) were clearly perivenular, and 62 (72%) developed around veins that were visible even prior to EAE induction. The perivenular configuration was confirmed by postmortem histopathology. Most affected veins, and their related perivascular Virchow-Robin spaces, passed into the subarachnoid space rather than the ventricles. CONCLUSION As in human MS, the intimate association between small veins and EAE lesions in the marmoset can be studied with serial in vivo MRI. This further strengthens the usefulness of this model for understanding the process of perivenular lesion development and accompanying tissue destruction in MS.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) -associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) is a rare chronic neuroinflammatory disease. Since the disease course of HAM/TSP varies among patients, there is a dire need for biomarkers capable of predicting the rate of disease progression. However, there have been no studies to date that have compared the prognostic values of multiple potential biomarkers for HAM/TSP.
Peripheral blood and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples from HAM/TSP patients and HTLV-1-infected control subjects were obtained and tested retrospectively for several potential biomarkers, including chemokines and other cytokines, and nine optimal candidates were selected based on receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis. Next, we evaluated the relationship between these candidates and the rate of disease progression in HAM/TSP patients, beginning with a first cohort of 30 patients (Training Set) and proceeding to a second cohort of 23 patients (Test Set). We defined "deteriorating HAM/TSP" as distinctly worsening function (≥3 grades on Osame's Motor Disability Score (OMDS)) over four years and "stable HAM/TSP" as unchanged or only slightly worsened function (1 grade on OMDS) over four years, and we compared the levels of the candidate biomarkers in patients divided into these two groups. The CSF levels of chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 10 (CXCL10), CXCL9, and neopterin were well-correlated with disease progression, better even than HTLV-1 proviral load in PBMCs. Importantly, these results were validated using the Test Set.
As the CSF levels of CXCL10, CXCL9, and neopterin were the most strongly correlated with rate of disease progression, they represent the most viable candidates for HAM/TSP prognostic biomarkers. The identification of effective prognostic biomarkers could lead to earlier detection of high-risk patients, more patient-specific treatment options, and more productive clinical trials.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T cell lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) infection can lead to development of adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) or HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) in a subset of infected subjects. HTLV-1 basic leucine zipper factor (HBZ) gene has a critical role in HTLV-1 infectivity and the development of ATL and HAM/TSP. However, little is known about the immune response against HBZ in HTLV-1-infected individuals. In this study, we examined antibody responses against HBZ in serum/plasma samples from 436 subjects including HTLV-1 seronegative donors, asymptomatic carriers (AC), ATL, and HAM/TSP patients using the luciferase immunoprecipitation system.
Immunoreactivity against HBZ was detected in subsets of all HTLV-1-infected individuals but the test did not discriminate between AC, ATL and HAM/TSP. However, the frequency of detection of HBZ-specific antibodies in the serum of ATL patients with the chronic subtype was higher than in ATL patients with the lymphomatous subtype. Antibody responses against HBZ were also detected in cerebrospinal fluid of HAM/TSP patients with anti-HBZ in serum. Antibody responses against HBZ did not correlate with proviral load and HBZ mRNA expression in HAM/TSP patients, but the presence of an HBZ-specific response was associated with reduced CD4+ T cell activation in HAM/TSP patients. Moreover, HBZ-specific antibody inhibited lymphoproliferation in the PBMC of HAM/TSP patients.
This is the first report demonstrating humoral immune response against HBZ associated with HTLV-I infection. Thus, a humoral immune response against HBZ might play a role in HTLV-1 infection.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human Herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) is a ubiquitous virus with an estimated seroprevalence of 95% in the adult population. HHV-6 is associated with several neurologic disorders, including multiple sclerosis, an inflammatory demyelinating disease affecting the CNS. Animal models of HHV-6 infection would help clarify its role in human disease but have been slow to develop because rodents lack CD46, the receptor for cellular entry. Therefore, we investigated the effects of HHV-6 infections in a non-human primate, the common marmoset Callithrix jacchus. We inoculated a total of 12 marmosets with HHV-6A and HHV-6B intravenously and HHV-6A intranasally. Animals were monitored for 25 weeks post-inoculation clinically, immunologically and by MRI. Marmosets inoculated with HHV-6A intravenously exhibited neurologic symptoms and generated virus-specific antibody responses, while those inoculated intravenously with HHV-6B were asymptomatic and generated comparatively lower antibody responses. Viral DNA was detected at a low frequency in paraffin-embedded CNS tissue of a subset of marmosets inoculated with HHV-6A and HHV-6B intravenously. When different routes of HHV-6A inoculation were compared, intravenous inoculation resulted in virus-specific antibody responses and infrequent detection of viral DNA in the periphery, while intranasal inoculation resulted in negligible virus-specific antibody responses and frequent detection of viral DNA in the periphery. Moreover, marmosets inoculated with HHV-6A intravenously exhibited neurologic symptoms, while marmosets inoculated with HHV-6A intranasally were asymptomatic. We demonstrate that a marmoset model of HHV-6 infection can serve to further define the contribution of this ubiquitous virus to human neurologic disorders.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Translocator protein (18 kDa) (TSPO) is a marker of inflammation in the brain. Positron emission tomography (PET) scans with ligands for this receptor show increased expression of TSPO in many neuropathologic conditions. However, expression of TSPO in the periphery and its possible correlation to central nervous system (CNS) inflammation has been largely unstudied. In this paper PBR28, a recently synthesized ligand for TSPO that is shown to have 80-fold higher specific binding than its predecessor PK11195, is used to quantify peripheral TSPO. Data presented in this study show that monocytes account for the majority of TSPO measured in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), and that TSPO expression is stable over time in healthy individuals. Previous studies show that areas of increased PBR28 binding in the brains of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients correlate with active demylinating lesions found during magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). To measure peripheral TSPO expression in an inflammatory disease of the CNS, PBR28 is used in an in vitro radioligand binding assay to measure the amount of TSPO in the PBMC of MS and healthy donor cohorts. Surprisingly, MS patients are found to have a significantly lower amount of peripheral TSPO than healthy donors. We suggest that TSPO protein expression is a potential peripheral biomarker of MS, more research is needed to determine if peripheral TSPO expression may also be altered in other neuroinflammatory conditions.
Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology 09/2012; · 3.80 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adult T-cell leukemia (ATL) and human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I)-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) are known to be caused by HTLV-I infection. However, current methods used to determine HTLV-I infection do not differentiate between HTLV-I asymptomatic carriers (ACs) and ATL and HAM/TSP patients. Using the luciferase immunoprecipitation system, a highly sensitive, quantitative technology that can efficiently detect HTLV-I Ab responses, we examined Ab responses for HTLV-I in serum/plasma samples from 439 subjects in Jamaica, including HTLV-I-seronegative donors, ACs, and ATL and HAM/TSP patients. The Ab responses of HTLV-I-infected subjects differed significantly from those of seronegative donors for all 3 immunodominant proteins, Gag, Env, and Tax. HAM/TSP patients had significantly higher Ab responses for Gag and Env compared with ACs, and Ab responses for all 3 Ags were higher in HAM/TSP patients than in ATL patients. Moreover, immunoreactivities for HTLV-I Ags as determined by the luciferase immunoprecipitation system could distinguish HAM/TSP patients from ACs at a true-positive rate of 85.42% and from ATL patients at a true-positive rate of 75.00%, and modeled in conjunction with subject information to distinguish HAM/TSP patients from ACs (odds ratio = 14.12) and from ATL patients (odds ratio = 7.00). The relative risk assessment resulting from these significant differences between Ab responses in HTLV-I-infected groups may be a useful diagnostic tool in the future.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I)-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) is a disabling neurological disorder characterized by inflammatory changes in the spinal cord. We used a semiautomatic technique to quantify spinal cord volume from 3-dimensional MR images of patients with HAM/TSP. METHODS: Five patients and 5 matched healthy volunteers (HVs) underwent MRI of the cervical and thoracic spinal cord at 1.5 T. Quantification of the spinal cord volume was obtained from 3-dimensional MR images using a semiautomatic technique based on level sets. An unpaired t-test was used to assess statistical significance. RESULTS: Significant differences were found between mean spinal cord volume of HVs and HAM/TSP patients. The thoracic spinal cord volume was 14,050 ± 981 mm(3) for HVs and 8,774 ± 2,218 mm(3) for HAM/TSP patients (P= .0079), a reduction of 38%. The cervical spinal cord volume was 9,721 ± 797 mm(3) for HVs and 6,589 ± 897 mm(3) for HAM/TSP patients (P= .0079), a reduction of 32%. These results suggest that atrophy is evident throughout the spinal cord not routinely quantified. CONCLUSIONS: Semiautomatic spinal cord volume quantification is a sensitive technique for quantifying the extent of spinal cord involvement in HAM/TSP. J Neuroimaging 2012;XX:1-5.
Journal of neuroimaging: official journal of the American Society of Neuroimaging 02/2012; · 1.72 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The activation of mononuclear phagocytes (MPs), including monocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells, contributes to central nervous system inflammation in various neurological diseases. In HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP), MPs are reservoirs of HTLV-I, and induce proinflammatory cytokines and excess T cell responses. The virus-infected or activated MPs may play a role in immuneregulation and disease progression in patients with HTLV-I-associated neurological diseases.
Phenotypic analysis of CD14⁺ monocytes in HAM/TSP patients demonstrated high expression of CX3CR1 and HLA-DR in CD14lowCD16⁺ monocytes, compared to healthy normal donors (NDs) and asymptomatic carriers (ACs), and the production of TNF-α and IL-1β in cultured CD14⁺ cells of HAM/TSP patients. CD14⁺ cells of HAM/TSP patients also showed acceleration of HTLV-I Tax expression in CD4⁺ T cells. Minocycline, an inhibitor of activated MPs, decreased TNF-α expression in CD14⁺ cells and IL-1β release in PBMCs of HAM/TSP patients. Minocycline significantly inhibited spontaneous lymphoproliferation and degranulation/IFN-γ expression in CD8⁺ T cells of HAM/TSP patients. Treatment of minocycline also inhibited IFN-γ expression in CD8⁺ T cells of HAM/TSP patients after Tax11-19 stimulation and downregulated MHC class I expression in CD14⁺ cells.
These results demonstrate that minocycline directly inhibits the activated MPs and that the downregulation of MP function can modulate CD8⁺ T cells function in HAM/TSP patients. It is suggested that activated MPs may be a therapeutic target for clinical intervention in HAM/TSP.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Glial activation in the setting of central nervous system inflammation is a key feature of the multiple sclerosis (MS) pathology. Monitoring glial activation in subjects with MS, therefore, has the potential to be informative with respect to disease activity. The translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is a promising biomarker of glial activation that can be imaged by positron emission tomography (PET). To characterize the in vivo TSPO expression in MS, we analyzed brain PET scans in subjects with MS and healthy volunteers in an observational study using [(11)C]PBR28, a newly developed translocator protein-specific radioligand. The [(11)C]PBR28 PET showed altered compartmental distribution of TSPO in the MS brain compared to healthy volunteers (p = 0.019). Focal increases in [(11)C]PBR28 binding corresponded to areas of active inflammation as evidenced by significantly greater binding in regions of gadolinium contrast enhancement compared to contralateral normal-appearing white matter (p = 0.0039). Furthermore, increase in [(11)C]PBR28 binding preceded the appearance of contrast enhancement on magnetic resonance imaging in some lesions, suggesting a role for early glial activation in MS lesion formation. Global [(11)C]PBR28 binding showed correlation with disease duration (p = 0.041), but not with measures of clinical disability. These results further define TSPO as an informative marker of glial activation in MS.
Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology 09/2011; 6(3):354-61. · 3.80 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) is a retrovirus that is the causative agent of adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) and associated with multiorgan inflammatory disorders, including HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) and uveitis. HTLV-1-infected T cells have been hypothesized to contribute to the development of these disorders, although the precise mechanisms are not well understood. HTLV-1 primarily infects CD4(+) T helper (Th) cells that play a central role in adaptive immune responses. Based on their functions, patterns of cytokine secretion, and expression of specific transcription factors and chemokine receptors, Th cells that are differentiated from naïve CD4(+) T cells are classified into four major lineages: Th1, Th2, Th17, and T regulatory (Treg) cells. The CD4(+)CD25(+)CCR4(+) T cell population, which consists primarily of suppressive T cell subsets, such as the Treg and Th2 subsets in healthy individuals, is the predominant viral reservoir of HTLV-1 in both ATL and HAM/TSP patients. Interestingly, CD4(+)CD25(+)CCR4(+) T cells become Th1-like cells in HAM/TSP patients, as evidenced by their overproduction of IFN-γ, suggesting that HTLV-1 may intracellularly induce T cell plasticity from Treg to IFN-γ(+) T cells. This review examines the recent research into the association between HTLV-1 and Treg cells that has greatly enhanced understanding of the pathogenic mechanisms underlying immune dysregulation in HTLV-1-associated neuroinflammatory disease.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: T₂-weighted MRI at high field is a promising approach for studying noninvasively the tissue structure and composition of the brain. However, the biophysical origin of T₂ contrast, especially in white matter, remains poorly understood. Recent work has shown that R₂ (=1/T₂) may depend on the tissue's orientation relative to the static magnetic field (B(0)) and suggested that this dependence could be attributed to local anisotropy in the magnetic properties of brain tissue. In the present work, we analyzed high-resolution, multi-gradient-echo images of in vivo marmoset brains at 7T, and compared them with ex vivo diffusion tensor images, to show that R₂ relaxation in white matter is highly sensitive to the fiber orientation relative to the main field. We directly demonstrate this orientation dependence by performing in vivo multi-gradient-echo experiments in two orthogonal brain positions, uncovering a nearly 50% change in the R₂ relaxation rate constant of the optic radiations. We attribute this substantial R₂ anisotropy to local subvoxel susceptibility effects arising from the highly ordered and anisotropic structure of the myelin sheath.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Viruses have been implicated in the development of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and multiple sclerosis. Human herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) is a neurotropic virus that has been associated with a wide variety of neurologic disorders, including encephalitis, mesial temporal lobe epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis. Currently, the route of HHV-6 entry into the CNS is unknown. Using autopsy specimens, we found that the frequency of HHV-6 DNA in the olfactory bulb/tract region was among the highest in the brain regions examined. Given this finding, we investigated whether HHV-6 may infect the CNS via the olfactory pathway. HHV-6 DNA was detected in a total of 52 of 126 (41.3%) nasal mucous samples, showing the nasal cavity is a reservoir for HHV-6. Furthermore, specialized olfactory-ensheathing glial cells located in the nasal cavity were demonstrated to support HHV-6 replication in vitro. Collectively, these results support HHV-6 utilization of the olfactory pathway as a route of entry into the CNS.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 08/2011; 108(33):13734-9. · 9.74 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) infects an estimated 15-20 million persons worldwide. A number of diseases have been associated with the virus including adult T-cell leukemia (ATL), HTLV-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP), HTLV-I uveitis, and HTLV-I-associated infective dermatitis. Once it was shown that there is an increased risk for developing HAM/TSP associated with blood transfusion, screening for HTLV-1 among blood banks was implemented in Japan, United States, France, and the Netherlands. This process includes detection by an enzyme immunoassay (EIA) followed by a confirmatory Western blot (WB) in which recombinant proteins specific for HTLV-I Env glycoproteins are incorporated into WB strips. HTLV-I seropositive results are defined by the presence of antibodies against either gp46 or gp62/68 (both Env protein bands) and either p19, p24, or p53 (one of the gag bands). HTLV-II seropositivity is confirmed by the presence of rgp46-II. However, numerous cases have been documented in which serum samples are reactive by EIA, but an incomplete banding pattern is displayed by subsequent confirmatory WB. Although the significance of these HTLV-I/II seroindeterminates is unclear, it may suggest a much higher incidence of exposure to HTLV-I/II than previously estimated.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) codes for 9 alternatively spliced transcripts and 2 major regulatory proteins named Tax and Rex that function at the transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels, respectively. We investigated the temporal sequence of HTLV-1 gene expression in primary cells from infected patients using splice site-specific quantitative RT-PCR. The results indicated a two-phase kinetics with the tax/rex mRNA preceding expression of other viral transcripts. Analysis of mRNA compartmentalization in cells transfected with HTLV-1 molecular clones demonstrated the strict Rex-dependency of the two-phase kinetics and revealed strong nuclear retention of HBZ mRNAs, supporting their function as noncoding transcripts. Mathematical modeling underscored the importance of a delay between the functions of Tax and Rex, which was supported by experimental evidence of the longer half-life of Rex. These data provide evidence for a temporal pattern of HTLV-1 expression and reveal major differences in the intracellular compartmentalization of HTLV-1 transcripts.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The retrovirus, human T-cell-lymphotrophic virus-1 (HTLV-I) is the etiologic agent of adult T-cell leukemia (ATL) and the neurological disorder HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP). The HTLV-I-encoded protein tax constitutively activates interleukin-2 (IL-2), IL-9, and IL-15 autocrine/paracrine systems that in turn activate the Jak3 (Janus kinase 3)/STAT5 (signal transducers and activators of transcription 5) pathway, suggesting a therapeutic strategy that involves targeting Jak3. We evaluated the action of the Jak3 inhibitor CP-690,550 on cytokine dependent ex vivo proliferation that is characteristic of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from select patients with smoldering or chronic subtypes of ATL, or from those with HAM/TSP whose PBMCs are associated with autocrine/paracrine pathways that involve the production of IL-2, IL-9, IL-15, and their receptors. CP-690,550 at 50 nM inhibited the 6-day ex vivo spontaneous proliferation of PBMCs from ATL and HAM/TSP patients by 67.1% and 86.4%, respectively. Furthermore, CP-690,550 inhibited STAT5 phosphorylation in isolated ATL T cells ex vivo. Finally, in an in vivo test of biological activity, CP-690,550 treatment of mice with a CD8 T-cell IL-15-transgenic leukemia that manifests an autocrine IL-15/IL-15Rα pathway prolonged the survival duration of these tumor-bearing mice. These studies support further evaluation of the Jak3 inhibitor CP-690,550 in the treatment of select patients with HTLV-I-associated ATL and HAM/TSP.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) and HTLV-1associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) are caused by HTLV-I infection. In these patients, the antibody titer and provirus load are elevated compared to levels in asymptomatic carriers (AC). These methods that determine HTLV-I infection do not differentiate between AC, HAM/TSP patients, and ATL patients. We have reported on a Luciferase Immunoprecipitation System (LIPS), a highly sensitive, quantitative technology that can efficiently detect HTLV-I antibody responses in serum of infected individuals . We extended our preliminary analysis to detect anti-HTLV-I antibodies in samples from 439 persons from Jamaica: normal donors (ND), AC, ATL, and HAM/TSP patients. The antibody responses of ND differed significantly from those of HTLV-I infected patients for all three immunodominant proteins. More specifically, HAM/ TSP patients were 2 times more likely to have an antibody response >1 standard deviation above the mean for ACs in gag (Odds Ratio (OR) = 2.45, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.23-4.88) and were 5 times more likely to exceed that threshold in env (OR = 5.27, CI = 2.5111.08). ATL patients were 1.8 times more likely to exceed that threshold in env (OR = 1.82, CI = 1.01-3.27) and 70% less likely to exceed that threshold in tax (OR = 0.30, CI = 0.11-0.51). HAM/TSP patients had significantly higher antibody responses in gag, env, and tax compared to ATL patients. These significant differences between antibody responses in HTLV-I infected individuals may be a useful diagnostic tool in the future.