[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Telomeres repress the DNA damage response at the natural chromosome ends to prevent cell-cycle arrest and maintain genome stability. Telomeres are elongated by telomerase in a tightly regulated manner to ensure a sufficient number of cell divisions throughout life, yet prevent unlimited cell division and cancer development. Hoyeraal-Hreidarsson syndrome (HHS) is characterized by accelerated telomere shortening and a broad range of pathologies, including bone marrow failure, immunodeficiency, and developmental defects. HHS-causing mutations have previously been found in telomerase and the shelterin component telomeric repeat binding factor 1 (TRF1)-interacting nuclear factor 2 (TIN2). We identified by whole-genome exome sequencing compound heterozygous mutations in four siblings affected with HHS, in the gene encoding the regulator of telomere elongation helicase 1 (RTEL1). Rtel1 was identified in mouse by its genetic association with telomere length. However, its mechanism of action and whether it regulates telomere length in human remained unknown. Lymphoblastoid cell lines obtained from a patient and from the healthy parents carrying heterozygous RTEL1 mutations displayed telomere shortening, fragility and fusion, and growth defects in culture. Ectopic expression of WT RTEL1 suppressed the telomere shortening and growth defect, confirming the causal role of the RTEL1 mutations in HHS and demonstrating the essential function of human RTEL1 in telomere protection and elongation. Finally, we show that human RTEL1 interacts with the shelterin protein TRF1, providing a potential recruitment mechanism of RTEL1 to telomeres.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 08/2013; · 9.74 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent evidence suggests that kindlin-3 is a major co-activator, required for most, if not all integrin activities. Here we studied the function of kindlin-3 in regulating NK cell activation by studying a patient suffering from kindlin-3 deficiency (LAD-III). We found that kindlin-3 is required for NK cell migration and adhesion under shear-force. Surprisingly, we also found that kindlin-3 lowers the threshold for NK cell activation. Loss of kindlin-3 has a pronounced effect on NK cell-mediated killing triggered by single activating receptors. In contrast, for activation through multiple receptors, kindlin-3 deficiency is overcome and target cells killed. The realization that NK cell activity is impaired, but not absent in LAD-III deficiency may lead to the development of more efficient therapy for this rare disease.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kindlin-3 is a key lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1 (LFA-1) coactivator deleted in leukocyte adhesion deficiency-III (LAD-III). In the present study, we investigated the involvement of this adaptor in lymphocyte motility and TCR-triggered arrest on ICAM-1 or on dendritic cells (DCs). Kindlin-3-null primary T cells from a LAD-III patient migrated normally on the major lymph node chemokine CCL21 and engaged in normal TCR signaling. However, TCR activation of Kindlin-3-null T lymphocytes failed to trigger the robust LFA-1-mediated T-cell spreading on ICAM-1 and ICAM-1-expressing DCs that is observed in normal lymphocytes. Kindlin-3 was also essential for cytoskeletal anchorage of the LFA-1 heterodimer and for microclustering of LFA-1 within ventral focal dots of TCR-stimulated lymphocytes spread on ICAM-1. Surprisingly, LFA-1 on Kindlin-3-null lymphocytes migrating over CCL21 acquired normal expression of an epitope associated with the conformational activation of the key headpiece domain, β I. This activated LFA-1 was highly responsive to TCR-triggered ICAM-1-driven stop signals in normal T cells locomoting on CCL21, but not in their Kindlin-3-null T-cell counterparts. We suggest that Kindlin-3 selectively contributes to a final TCR-triggered outside-in stabilization of bonds generated between chemokine-primed LFA-1 molecules and cell-surface ICAM-1.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Leukocyte adhesion deficiency (LAD)-III is associated with homozygous stop codon mutations in Kindlin-3, the hematopoietic member of the Kindlin family of integrin coactivators. In addition, a subgroup of LAD-III patients has a homozygous splice junction mutation in and reduced expression of the Rap-1 guanine nucleotide exchange factor, CalDAG-GEFI (CDGI). In this study, we compared the adhesive properties of the leukocyte function-associated antigen-1 (LFA-1) and very late activation antigen-4 (VLA-4) integrins in both primary and activated leukocytes derived from these 2 LAD-III subgroups. Primary lymphocytes lacking both Kindlin-3 and CDGI lost all firm T-cell receptor-stimulated LFA-1 adhesiveness, in contrast to LAD-III lymphocytes deficient in Kindlin-3 alone. Effector T cells expanded from all tested LAD-III variants expressed normal CDGI, but lacked Kindlin-3. These Kindlin-3-null effector T cells exhibited total loss of inside-out LFA-1 activation by chemokine signals as well as abrogated intrinsic LFA-1 adhesiveness. Surprisingly, VLA-4 in Kindlin-3-null resting or effector lymphocytes retained intrinsic rolling adhesions to vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 and exhibited only partial defects in chemokine-stimulated adhesiveness to vascular cell adhesion molecule-1. Deletion of the putative beta(1) Kindlin-3 binding site also retained VLA-4 adhesiveness. Thus, our study provides the first evidence that Kindlin-3 is more critical to LFA-1 than to VLA-4-adhesive functions in human lymphocytes.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Eukaryotic chromosomes end with telomeres, which in most organisms are composed of tandem DNA repeats associated with telomeric proteins. These DNA repeats are synthesized by the enzyme telomerase, whose activity in most human tissues is tightly regulated, leading to gradual telomere shortening with cell divisions. Shortening beyond a critical length causes telomere uncapping, manifested by the activation of a DNA damage response (DDR) and consequently cell cycle arrest. Thus, telomere length limits the number of cell divisions and provides a tumor-suppressing mechanism. However, not only telomere shortening, but also damaged telomere structure, can cause telomere uncapping. Dyskeratosis Congenita (DC) and its severe form Hoyeraal-Hreidarsson Syndrome (HHS) are genetic disorders mainly characterized by telomerase deficiency, accelerated telomere shortening, impaired cell proliferation, bone marrow failure, and immunodeficiency.
We studied the telomere phenotypes in a family affected with HHS, in which the genes implicated in other cases of DC and HHS have been excluded, and telomerase expression and activity appears to be normal. Telomeres in blood leukocytes derived from the patients were severely short, but in primary fibroblasts they were normal in length. Nevertheless, a significant fraction of telomeres in these fibroblasts activated DDR, an indication of their uncapped state. In addition, the telomeric 3' overhangs are diminished in blood cells and fibroblasts derived from the patients, consistent with a defect in telomere structure common to both cell types.
Altogether, these results suggest that the primary defect in these patients lies in the telomere structure, rather than length. We postulate that this defect hinders the access of telomerase to telomeres, thus causing accelerated telomere shortening in blood cells that rely on telomerase to replenish their telomeres. In addition, it activates the DDR and impairs cell proliferation, even in cells with normal telomere length such as fibroblasts. This work demonstrates a telomere length-independent pathway that contributes to a telomere dysfunction disease.
PLoS ONE 02/2009; 4(5):e5666. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The inhibition of NK cell killing is mainly mediated via the interaction of NK inhibitory receptors with MHC class I proteins. In addition, we have previously demonstrated that NK cells are inhibited in a class I MHC-independent manner via homophilic carcinoembryonic Ag (CEA) cell adhesion molecules (CEACAM1)-CEACAM1 and heterophilic CEACAM1-CEA interactions. However, the cross-talk between immune effector cells and their target cells is not limited to cell interactions per se, but also involves a specific exchange of proteins. The reasons for these molecular exchanges and the functional outcome of this phenomenon are still mostly unknown. In this study, we show that NK cells rapidly and specifically acquire CEA molecules from target cells. We evaluated the role of cytotoxicity in the acquisition of CEA and demonstrated it to be mostly killing independent. We further demonstrate that CEA transfer requires a specific interaction with an unknown putative NK cell receptor and that carbohydrates are probably involved in CEA recognition and acquisition by NK cells. Functionally, the killing of bulk NK cultures was inhibited by CEA-expressing cells, suggesting that this putative receptor is an inhibitory receptor.
The Journal of Immunology 11/2007; 179(7):4424-34. · 5.52 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Griscelli syndrome (GS) type 2 is an autosomal recessive disorder represented by pigment dilution and impaired cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) activity. NK activity has been scarcely investigated in GS patients. Here, we describe a new patient, possessing a hemophagocytic syndrome with a homozygous Q118X nonsense RAB27A mutation. Single specific primer-polymerase chain reaction (SSP-PCR) was developed based on this mutation and is currently used in prenatal genetic analysis. As expected, CTLs in the patient are not functional and NK cytotoxicity against K562 or 721.221 cells is diminished. Surprisingly, however, we demonstrate that CD16-mediated killing is intact in this patient and is therefore RAB27A independent, whereas NKp30-mediated killing is impaired and is therefore RAB27A dependent. We further analyzed the signaling pathways of these 2 receptors and demonstrated phosphorylation of Vav1 after CD16 activation but not after NKp30 engagement. Thus, we identify a novel homozygous mutation in the RAB27A gene of a new GS patient, observe for the first time that some activating NK receptors function in GS patients, and demonstrate a functional dichotomy in the killing mediated by these human NK-activating receptors.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, we reported a rare leukocyte adhesion deficiency (LAD) associated with severe defects in integrin activation by chemokine signals, despite normal ligand binding of leukocyte integrins.(1) We now report that the small GTPase, Rap1, a key regulator of inside-out integrin activation is abnormally regulated in LAD Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lymphocyte cells. Both constitutive and chemokine-triggered activation of Rap1 were abolished in LAD lymphocytes despite normal chemokine signaling. Nevertheless, Rap1 expression and activation by phorbol esters were intact, ruling out an LAD defect in Rap1 guanosine triphosphate (GTP) loading. The very late antigen 4 (VLA-4) integrin abnormally tethered LAD EBV lymphocytes to its ligand vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1) under shear flow due to impaired generation of high-avidity contacts despite normal ligand binding and intact avidity to surface-bound anti-VLA-4 monoclonal antibody (mAb). Thus, a defect in constitutive Rap1 activation results in an inability of ligand-occupied integrins to generate high-avidity binding to ligand under shear flow. This is a first report of an inherited Rap1 activation defect associated with a pathologic disorder in leukocyte integrin function, we herein term it "LAD-III."
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Leukocyte arrest on vascular endothelium under disruptive shear flow is a multistep process that requires in situ integrin activation on the leukocyte surface by endothelium-displayed chemoattractants, primarily chemokines. A genetic deficiency of leukocyte adhesion to endothelium associated with defective beta2 integrin expression or function (LAD-1) has been described. We now report a novel severe genetic disorder in this multistep process associated with functional defects in multiple leukocyte integrins, reflected in recurrent infections, profound leukocytosis, and a bleeding tendency. This syndrome is associated with an impaired ability of neutrophil and lymphocyte beta1 and beta2 integrins to generate high avidity to their endothelial ligands and arrest cells on vascular endothelium in response to endothelial chemoattractant signals. Patient leukocytes roll normally on endothelial selectins, express intact integrins and G protein-coupled chemokine receptors (GPCR), spread on integrin ligands, and migrate normally along a chemotactic gradient. Activation of beta2 integrins in response to GPCR signals and intrinsic soluble ligand binding properties of the very late activation antigen-4 (VLA-4) integrin are also retained in patient leukocytes. Nevertheless, all integrins fail to generate firm adhesion to immobilized ligands in response to in situ GPCR-mediated activation by chemokines or chemoattractants, a result of a primary defect in integrin rearrangement at ligand-bearing contacts. This syndrome is the first example of a human integrin-activation deficiency associated with defective GPCR stimulation of integrin avidity at subsecond contacts, a key step in leukocyte arrest on vascular endothelium under shear flow.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dyskeratosis congenita (DKC) is a rare syndrome characterized by cutaneous hyperpigmentation, nail dystrophy, leukoplakia, and pancytopenia. The purpose of this case study was to describe the management of a 7-year-old girl diagnosed with DKC who urgently needed dental treatment under general anesthesia before bone marrow transplantation (BMT). The patient presented normal skin, nails, and hair, but oral examination revealed a number of ulcers, leukoplakia, gingival recessions, alveolar bone loss, and dental caries. Hematologic preparation included raising blood parameters, and the anesthesiologist to had consider pulmonary infection. The alveolar bone loss and the gingival recessions required the consultation of a periodontist. Avoiding stainless steel crowns was necessary due to potential plaque accumulation in the crown margins. The goal of this dental treatment was eliminating potential sources of infection before transplantation was conducted. It is important for the pediatric dentist to recognize the medical aspects associated with dental management prior to BMT, and to incorporate them into the treatment plan.