[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Non-human primate models of human disease have an important role in the translation of a new scientific finding in lower species into an effective treatment. In this study, we tested a new therapeutic antibody against the IL-7 receptor α chain (CD127), which in a C57BL/6 mouse model of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) ameliorates disease, demonstrating an important pathogenic function of IL-7. We observed that while the treatment was effective in 100 % of the mice, it was only partially effective in the EAE model in common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus), a small-bodied Neotropical primate. EAE was induced in seven female marmoset twins and treatment with the anti-CD127 mAb or PBS as control was started 21 days after immunization followed by weekly intravenous administration. The anti-CD127 mAb caused functional blockade of IL-7 signaling through its receptor as shown by reduced phosphorylation of STAT5 in lymphocytes upon stimulation with IL-7. Group-wise analysis showed no significant effects on the clinical course and neuropathology. However, paired twin analysis revealed a delayed disease onset in three twins, which were high responders to the immunization. In addition, we observed markedly opposite effects of the antibody on pathological changes in the spinal cord in high versus low responder twins. In conclusion, promising clinical effect of CD127 blockade observed in a standard inbred/SPF mouse EAE model could only be partially replicated in an outbred/non-SPF non-human primate EAE model. Only in high responders to the immunization we found a positive response to the treatment. The mechanism underpinning this dichotomous response will be discussed.
Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology 08/2015; DOI:10.1007/s11481-015-9629-6 · 3.17 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We read with interest the article by Tozer et al on microbiota in Crohn's disease and idiopathic anal fistula . They observed that neither fistula types contain high levels of bacteria and suggested that bacteria are less important than previously thought in the aetiology and persistence of anal fistula. Furthermore, they describe their observation as novel and the first molecular microbiological study on microbiota of anal fistula. We do not agree. A few years ago we conducted a study using molecular microbiological techniques. The data obtained from this study have been published in 2013 by van Onkelen et al  and are in accordance with the findings reported by Tozer et al. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) interact with cells of the immune system in multiple ways. Modulation of the immune system by MSC is believed to be a therapeutic option for autoimmune disease and transplant rejection. In recent years, B cells have moved into the focus of the attention as targets for the treatment of immune disorders. Current B cell targeting treatment is based on the indiscriminate depletion of B cells. The aim of this study was to examine whether human adipose tissue-derived MSC (ASC) interact with B cells to affect their proliferation, differentiation and immune function. ASC supported the survival of quiescent B cells predominantly via contact-dependent mechanisms. Co-culture of B cells with activated T helper cells led to proliferation and differentiation of B cells into CD19+CD27highCD38high antibody producing plasmablasts. ASC inhibited the proliferation of B cells and this effect was dependent on the presence of T cells. In contrast, ASC directly targeted B cell differentiation, independently of T cells. In the presence of ASC, plasmablast formation was reduced and IL-10 producing CD19+CD24highCD38high B cells, known as regulatory B cells, were induced. These results demonstrate that ASC affect B cell biology in vitro, suggesting that they can be a tool for the modulation of the B cell response in immune disease. Stem Cells 2014
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kinesin family member 21b (kif21b) is one of the few multiple sclerosis (MS) risk genes with a presumed central nervous system function. Kif21b belongs to the kinesin family, proteins involved in intracellular transport of proteins and organelles. We hypothesised that kif21b is involved in the neurodegenerative component of MS and Alzheimer’s (AD) disease. Post-mortem kinesin expression was assessed in 50 MS, 58 age and gender matched non-demented controls (NDC) and 50 AD. Kif21b expression was five-fold increased in AD compared to MS and NDC aged below 62 years (p = 8*10−5), three-fold between 62–72 years (p = 0.005) and not different above 72 years. No significant differences were observed between MS and NDC. In AD, kif21b expression was two-fold increased in Braak stage 6 (scoring for density of neurofibrillary tangles) compared with stage 5 (p = 0.003). In MS patients, kif21b correlated with the extent of grey matter demyelination (Spearman’s rho = 0.31, p = 0.03). Abundant kif21b, defined as expression above the median, was associated with a two-fold accelerated development of the Kurtzke Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) 6.0 (median time in low kif21b group 16 years vs. high kif21b 7.5 years, log-rank test p = 0.04) in MS. Given the genetic association of kif21b with MS, the results were stratified according to rs12122721[A] single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP). No association was found between kif21b expression or the time to EDSS 6 in kif21b risk SNP carriers compared to non-risk carriers. Kif21b was expressed in astrocytes in addition to neurons. Upon astrocyte activation, kif21b increased nine-fold. Abundant kif21b expression is associated with severe MS and AD pathology and with accelerated neurodegeneration independent of the kif21b risk SNP.
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The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s40478-014-0144-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS) characterized by autoimmune-mediated demyelination and neurodegeneration. The CNS of patients with MS harbors expanded clones of antigen-experienced B cells that reside in distinct compartments including the meninges, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and parenchyma. It is not understood whether this immune infiltrate initiates its development in the CNS or in peripheral tissues. B cells in the CSF can exchange with those in peripheral blood, implying that CNS B cells may have access to lymphoid tissue that may be the specific compartment(s) in which CNS-resident B cells encounter antigen and experience affinity maturation. Paired tissues were used to determine whether the B cells that populate the CNS mature in the draining cervical lymph nodes (CLNs). High-throughput sequencing of the antibody repertoire demonstrated that clonally expanded B cells were present in both compartments. Founding members of clones were more often found in the draining CLNs. More mature clonal members derived from these founders were observed in the draining CLNs and also in the CNS, including lesions. These data provide new evidence that B cells traffic freely across the tissue barrier, with the majority of B cell maturation occurring outside of the CNS in the secondary lymphoid tissue. Our study may aid in further defining the mechanisms of immunomodulatory therapies that either deplete circulating B cells or affect the intrathecal B cell compartment by inhibiting lymphocyte transmigration into the CNS.
Science translational medicine 08/2014; 6(248):248ra107. DOI:10.1126/scitranslmed.3008879 · 14.41 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Fumaric acid esters (FAE) are widely used in Europe for the treatment of psoriasis because of their clinical efficacy and favourable safety profile. However, the mechanisms of action by which FAE improve psoriasis remain largely unknown.Objectives
To identify pathways and mechanisms affected by FAE treatment and to compare these with pathways affected by treatment with the anti-TNF-α biologic etanercept.Methods
In a prospective cohort study, 50 patients with plaque psoriasis were treated with FAE for 20 weeks. Nine patients were randomly selected for gene expression profiling of plaque biopsies from week 0 and week 12. The groups consisted of FAE responders (>PASI-75 improvement) and non-responders (<PASI-50 improvement). Changes in gene expression profiles were analyzed using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) and the outcome was compared with gene expression affected by etanercept.ResultsResponse to FAE treatment was associated with a ≥2-fold change (P<0.05) in the expression of 458 genes. In FAE responders the ‘role of IL17A in psoriasis’ pathway was most significantly activated. Glutathione and Nrf2 pathway molecules were specifically induced by FAE treatment and not by etanercept treatment, representing a FAE specific effect in psoriatic skin. In addition, FAE treatment specifically induced the transcription factors PTTG1, NR3C1, GATA3 and NFκBIZ in responding patients.ConclusionsFAE treatment induces glutathione and Nrf2 pathway genes in lesional skin of patients with psoriasis. In responders FAE specifically regulates the transcription factors PTTG1, NR3C1, GATA3 and NFκBIZ, which are important in normal cutaneous development, Th2 and Th17 pathways, respectively.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
British Journal of Dermatology 05/2014; 171(4). DOI:10.1111/bjd.13128 · 4.10 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Depleting mAbs against the pan B cell marker CD20 are remarkably effective in the treatment of autoimmune-mediated inflammatory disorders, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly defined. The primary objective of this study was to find a mechanistic explanation for the remarkable clinical effect of the anti-CD20 mAbs in a representative nonhuman primate autoimmune-mediated inflammatory disorder model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in common marmosets, allowing detailed analysis of secondary lymphoid organs (SLO). We observed that the depletion of CD20(+) B cells creates a less immunostimulatory environment in the SLO reflected by reduced expression of MHC class II, CD40, CD83, and CD80/CD86. APCs isolated from SLO of B cell-depleted EAE monkeys were also less responsive to mitogenic stimulation. The depleted B cell areas were replenished by T cells, of which the majority expressed CD127 (IL-7R) and CCR7. Such effects were not detected in EAE marmosets treated with mAb against BLyS or APRIL, where B cell depletion via withdrawal of essential survival cytokines was not associated with a marked clinical effect. We propose that at least part of the efficacy of anti-CD20 mAb therapy is attributable to the sustained CCR7 expression on T cells within SLO, limiting their release into the circulation.
The Journal of Immunology 04/2014; 192(9). DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1303125 · 5.36 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aging is associated with reduced function, degenerative changes, and increased neuroinflammation of the central nervous system (CNS). Increasing evidence suggests that changes in microglia cells contribute to the age-related deterioration of the CNS. The most prominent age-related change of microglia is enhanced sensitivity to inflammatory stimuli, referred to as priming. It is unclear if priming is due to intrinsic microglia ageing or induced by the ageing neural environment. We have studied this in Ercc1 mutant mice, a DNA repair-deficient mouse model that displays features of accelerated aging in multiple tissues including the CNS. In Ercc1 mutant mice, microglia showed hallmark features of priming such as an exaggerated response to peripheral lipopolysaccharide exposure in terms of cytokine expression and phagocytosis. Specific targeting of the Ercc1 deletion to forebrain neurons resulted in a progressive priming response in microglia exemplified by phenotypic alterations. Summarizing, these data show that neuronal genotoxic stress is sufficient to switch microglia from a resting to a primed state.
Neurobiology of aging 03/2014; 35(9). DOI:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2014.03.025 · 4.85 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Campylobacter jejuni is the most common bacterial cause of human gastroenteritis and often precedes development of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), a life-threatening paralytic disease. The incorporation of the carbohydrate sialic acid into C. jejuni lipooligosaccharides (LOS) is associated with increased severity of gastroenteritis and with induction of GBS; however, the underlying mechanisms remain completely unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that sialic acids in C. jejuni endotoxin enhance the rapid production of IFN-β and TNF-α by human dendritic cells (DCs). Using neutralizing Abs and receptors it was shown that these DC-derived cytokines promote the proliferation of human mucosal B cells in a T cell-independent manner. The production of both IFN-β and TNF-α by DCs in response to LOS requires CD14, and the amplified response of DCs to sialylated C. jejuni LOS is CD14 dependent. Together, these results indicate that sialylation of C. jejuni LOS increases DC activation and promotes subsequent B cell responses through CD14-driven production of IFN-β and TNF-α. This enhanced DC/B cell response may explain the increased pathogenicity of sialylated C. jejuni and may be key to the initiation of B cell-mediated autoimmunity in GBS.
The Journal of Immunology 10/2013; 191(11). DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1301536 · 5.36 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The activity of eicosanoid pathways is critical to the inflammatory and immune responses that are associated with the progression of atherosclerosis. Yet, the signals that regulate these pathways are poorly understood. Here, we address whether the innate immune signals of nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein (NOD) 2 affect eicosanoids metabolism in atherosclerosis.
Analysis of human carotid plaques revealed that NOD2 was abundantly expressed at both mRNA and protein level by endothelial cells and macrophages. Stimulation of NOD2 in ex vivo-cultured carotid plaques by muramyl dipeptide, an extrinsic ligand of NOD2, led to release of prostaglandin E2, upregulation of cyclooxygenase-2 and microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1, and to downregulation of cyclooxygenase-1. NOD2 was coexpressed with cyclooxygenase-2 in lesional macrophages. NOD2-induced cyclooxygenase-2 expression in macrophages was dependent on p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase activation and was mediated by interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α. Selective lipidomic analysis of the eicosanoids released by the carotid plaques characterized the metabolites of 12-, 5-, and 15-lipoxygenase as the predominant eicosanoids that were produced by the atherosclerotic lesion in the absence of additional stimuli. Unlike the prostaglandin E2 pathway, metabolic activity of the lipoxygenase pathways was not altered on the short-term activation of NOD2 in carotid plaques.
These results suggest that atherosclerosis may involve enhanced NOD2-mediated innate immunity. Activation of NOD2 preferentially upregulates the prostaglandin E2 pathway. Nevertheless, lipoxygenase pathways, such as 12-lipoxygenase, predominate the basal synthesis and metabolism of eicosanoids in atherosclerotic plaques. These findings provide new insights into the regulation of eicosanoids in atherosclerosis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The experimental autoimmune encephalitis (EAE) model is used for preclinical research into the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS), mostly in inbred, specific pathogen free (SPF)-raised laboratory mice. However, the naive state of the laboratory mouse immune system is considered a major hurdle in the translation of principles from the EAE model to the MS patient. Non-human primates (NHP) have an immune system harboring T- and B-cell memory against environmental antigens, similar as in humans. We sought to further refine existing NHP EAE models, which may help to bridge the gab between mouse EAE models and MS. We report here on new EAE models in three NHP species: rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta), cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) and common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). EAE was induced with recombinant human myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein extracellular domain (1-125) (rhMOG) formulated in incomplete Freund's adjuvant (IFA). IFA lacks the bacterial antigens that are present in complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA), which are notorious for the induction of discomforting side effects. Clinically evident EAE could be induced in two out of five rhesus monkeys, six out of six cynomolgus monkeys and six out of six common marmosets. In each of these species, the presence of an early, high anti-rhMOG IgM response is correlated with EAE with an earlier onset and more severe disease course. Animals without an early high IgM response either did not develop disease (rhesus monkeys) or developed only mild signs of neurological deficit (marmoset and cynomolgus monkeys).
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The remarkable clinical efficacy of anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies (mAb) in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis points at the critical involvement of B cells in the disease. However, the exact pathogenic contribution of B cells is poorly understood. In this publication we review new data on the role of CD20+ B cells in a unique experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) model in common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus), a small-bodied neotropical primate. We will also discuss the relevance of these data for MS. Different from rodent EAE models, but similar to MS, disease progression in marmosets can develop independent of autoantibodies. Progressive disease is mediated by MHC class Ib (Caja-E) restricted cytotoxic T cells, which are activated by γ-herpesvirus-infected B cells and cause widespread demyelination of cortical gray matter. B-cell directed monoclonal antibody therapies (anti-CD20 versus anti-BLyS and anti-APRIL) have a variable effect on EAE progression, which we found associated with variable depletion of the Epstein Barr virus (EBV)-like γ-herpesvirus CalHV3 from lymphoid organs. These findings support an important pathogenic role of CD20+ B cell in MS, especially of the subset infected with EBV.
Frontiers in Immunology 06/2013; 4:145. DOI:10.3389/fimmu.2013.00145
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: CD44 variant (CD44(v)) isoforms play important roles in the development of autoimmune disorders, including colitis and arthritis, but their role in multiple sclerosis (MS) has been explored only to a limited extent. We determined the functional relevance of CD44(v) isoforms in MS and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). Genetic ablation of CD44(v7) and CD44(v10) isoforms significantly reduced the clinical EAE burden, as well as the number of inflammatory infiltrates. CD44(v7) and CD44(v10) expression on both memory T and antigen-presenting cells, participated in the development of adoptive transfer EAE. Significantly reduced mRNA expression of Th1 signature genes was detected in the brains of CD44(v10-/-) mice compared with those of CD44(WT) mice. Furthermore, forkhead transcription factor 3 (Foxp3), Bcl-2, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) levels were reduced in CD44(v10-/-) brains, whereas active caspase-3 was elevated. Brain-infiltrating CD4(hi)CD44(v10+) T cells preceded EAE onset and paralleled disease severity in wild-type but not in CD44(v7-/-) and CD44(v10-/-) mice. CD44(v7) and CD44(v10) expression contributed to EAE by increasing the longevity of autoreactive CD4(hi)panCD44(hi) T cells. Accordingly, the absence of CD44(v7) and CD44(v10) led to increased apoptosis in the inflammatory infiltrates and reduced Th1 responses, resulting in marked disease reduction. Although absent in noninflamed human brains, we detected CD44(v3), CD44(v7), and CD44(v10) isoforms on glial cells and on perivascular infiltrating cells of MS lesions. We conclude that CD44(v7) and CD44(v10), expressed on autoreactive CD4(hi)panCD44(hi) T cells, are critically involved in the pathogenesis of classic EAE by increasing their life span. Targeting these short CD44(v) isoform regions may reduce inflammatory processes and clinical symptoms in MS.-Ghazi-Visser, L., Laman, J. D., Nagel, S., van Meurs, M., van Riel, D., Tzankov, A., Frank, S., Adams, H., Wolk, K., Terracciano, L., Melief, M.-J., Sabat, R., Günthert, U. CD44 variant isoforms control experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis by affecting the lifespan of the pathogenic T cells.
The FASEB Journal 06/2013; 27(9). DOI:10.1096/fj.13-228809 · 5.48 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite the absence of conventional lymphatics, there is efficient drainage of both cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and interstitial fluid (ISF) from the CNS to regional lymph nodes. CSF drains from the subarachnoid space by channels that pass through the cribriform plate of the ethmoid bone to the nasal mucosa and cervical lymph nodes in animals and in humans; antigen presenting cells (APC) migrate along this pathway to lymph nodes. ISF and solutes drain from the brain parenchyma to cervical lymph nodes by a separate route along 100-150 nm wide basement membranes in the walls of cerebral capillaries and arteries. This pathway is too narrow for the migration of APC so it is unlikely that APC traffic directly from brain parenchyma to lymph nodes by this route. We present a model for the pivotal involvement of regional lymph nodes in immunological reactions of the CNS. The role of regional lymph nodes in immune reactions of the CNS in virus infections, the remote influence of the gut microbiota, multiple sclerosis and stroke are discussed. Evidence is presented for the role of cervical lymph nodes in the induction of tolerance and its influence on neuroimmunological reactions. We look to the future by examining how nanoparticle technology will enhance our understanding of CNS-lymph node connections and by reviewing the implications of lymphatic drainage of the brain for diagnosis and therapy of diseases of the CNS ranging from neuroimmunological disorders to dementias. Finally, we review the challenges and opportunities for progress in CNS-lymph node interactions and their involvement in disease processes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The robust and rapid clinical effect of depleting anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies (mAb) in multiple sclerosis (MS) demonstrates a critical pathogenic contribution of B cells. The clinical effect of anti-CD20 mAb has been replicated in a relevant preclinical MS model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in marmoset monkeys (Callithrix jacchus). By contrast, treatment with mAbs against two essential cytokines in B cell activation growth and survival, i.e. BlyS/BAFF and APRIL, was only partially effective. All three mAbs induced depletion of CD20+ B cells from the circulation, albeit with different kinetics and based on distinct mechanisms of action. In the current study we analyzed whether the different clinical effect of anti-CD20 mAb or the anti-BLyS and anti-APRIL mAbs is due to different depletion of B cells infected with the EBV of marmosets, CalHV3. Employing a novel PCR-based assay, half of the colony of group-housed marmosets was tested positive for CalHV3 DNA in secondary lymphoid organs. The same prevalence was observed in placebo-treated monkeys. In marmosets treated with anti-CD20 mAb the load of CalHV3 DNA in lymphoid organs was substantially reduced, while this was not observed in the monkeys treated with anti-BLyS or anti-APRIL mAbs. To examine the pathogenic role of virus-transformed B cells, we infused EBV-transformed B lymphoblastic cell (BLC) lines presenting the immunodominant MOG34-56 peptide. We observed in the recipients of MOG34-56 pulsed BLC, but not in their fraternal siblings infused with non-pulsed BLC, activation of anti-MOG34-56 T cells and meningeal inflammation. Collectively, the data show that among CD20+ B cells, the herpesvirus-transformed subset has a particularly important pathogenic role in the marmoset EAE model.