[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
The foreskin is the site of most HIV acquisition in uncircumcised heterosexual men. Although HIV-exposed, seronegative (HESN) uncircumcised men demonstrate HIV-neutralizing IgA and increased antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in the foreskin prepuce, no prospective studies have examined the mucosal immune correlates of HIV acquisition.
To assess the association of foreskin immune parameters with HIV acquisition, antimicrobial peptides and IgA with the capacity to neutralize a primary clade C HIV strain were quantified by blinded investigators, using sub-preputial swabs collected longitudinally during a randomized trial of male circumcision for HIV prevention in Rakai, Uganda.
Participants were 99 men who acquired HIV (cases) and 109 randomly selected controls who remained HIV seronegative. At enrollment, 44.4% of cases vs. 69.7% of controls demonstrated IgA neutralization (adjusted OR = 0.31; 95% CI, 0.16–0.61). IgA neutralization was detected in 38.7% of cases and 70.7% of controls at the last seronegative case visit prior to HIV acquisition and the comparable control visit (adjusted OR 0.21; 95% CI, 0.11–0.39). Levels of the α-defensins and secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor (SLPI) were over ten-fold higher in the foreskin prepuce of cases who acquired HIV, both at enrollment (mean 4.43 vs. 3.03 and 5.98 vs. 4.61 logn pg/mL, P = 0.005 and 0.009, respectively), and at the last seronegative visit (mean 4.81 vs. 3.15 and 6.46 vs. 5.20 logn pg/mL, P = 0.0002 and 0.013).
This prospective, blinded analysis is the first to assess the immune correlates of HIV acquisition in the foreskin. HIV-neutralizing IgA, previously associated with the HESN phenotype, was a biomarker of HIV protection, but other HESN associations correlated with increased HIV acquisition. This emphasizes the importance of prospective epidemiological studies or in vitro tissue studies to define the impact of mucosal parameters on HIV risk.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract The intestinal mucosa harbors the largest population of antibody (Ab)-secreting plasma cells (PC) in the human body, producing daily several grams of immunoglobulin A (IgA). IgA has many functions, serving as a first-line barrier that protects the mucosal epithelium from pathogens, toxins and food antigens (Ag), shaping the intestinal microbiota, and regulating host-commensal homeostasis. Signals induced by commensal colonization are central for regulating IgA induction, maintenance, positioning and function and the number of IgA(+) PC is dramatically reduced in neonates and germ-free (GF) animals. Recent evidence demonstrates that the innate immune effector molecules tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFa) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) are required for IgA(+) PC homeostasis during the steady state and infection. Moreover, new functions ascribed to PC independent of Ab secretion continue to emerge, suggesting that PC, including IgA(+) PC, should be re-examined in the context of inflammation and infection. Here, we outline mechanisms of IgA(+) PC generation and survival, reviewing their functions in health and disease.
Gut Microbes 09/2014; 5(5). DOI:10.4161/19490976.2014.969977
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Innate immune responses provoke the accumulation of leukocytes at sites of inflammation. In addition to monocytes and granulocytes, B cells also participate in antimicrobial innate immune responses; however, the mechanisms for accumulation of B cells to sites of inflammation are not well understood. To study B cell accumulation following systemic inflammation, we used a model synthetic ligand that stimulates a specific pattern recognition molecule, nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 1 (Nod1). Upon exposure to Nod1 agonists, both B cells and neutrophils rapidly accumulate within the spleen, and dendritic cells migrate into the periarterial lymphoid sheath. Nod1 stimulation led to a marked increase in several chemokines within the spleen, including CXCL13, CCL2, and CCL20. Whereas the lymphotoxin pathway was critical for the induction of the B cell chemoattractant CXCL13 in response to Nod1 agonists, B cell accumulation within the spleen following Nod1-induced systemic inflammation was independent of the lymphotoxin pathway. In contrast, a CCR6/CCL20 chemokine loop instructed rapid increase of B cells in the spleen in response to systemic administration of Nod1 agonists in a TNF-α-dependent manner. Moreover, CCR6 was required to regulate Nod1-mediated B cell responses. These results reveal a novel mechanism of B cells during inflammation and shed light on how B cells participate in innate immune responses to microbial stimulation.
The Journal of Immunology 02/2014; 192(6). DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1203310 · 4.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Germinal centers (GCs) are clusters of activated B cells that form in secondary lymphoid organs during a T-dependent immune response. B cells enter GCs and become rapidly proliferating centroblasts that express the enzyme activation-induced deaminase (AID) to undergo somatic hypermutation and class-switch recombination. Centroblasts then mature into centrocytes to undergo clonal selection. Within the GC, the highest affinity B cell clones are selected to mature into memory or plasma cells while lower affinity clones undergo apoptosis. We reported previously that murine Aicda(-/-) GC B cells have enhanced viability and accumulate in GCs. We now show that murine Aicda(-/-) GC B cells accumulate as centrocytes and inefficiently generate plasma cells. The reduced rate of plasma cell formation was not due to an absence of AID-induced DNA lesions. In addition, we show that the deletion of caspase 8 specifically in murine GC-B cells results in larger GCs and a delay in affinity maturation, demonstrating the importance of apoptosis in GC homeostasis and clonal selection.
The Journal of Immunology 11/2013; 191(12). DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1301776 · 4.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Gradients of the sphingolipid sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) are responsible for the egress of lymphocytes from lymph nodes by activating the S1P1 receptor expressed on the surface of lymphocytes. Small molecule drugs that downregulate S1P receptors induce the sequestration of lymphocytes within lymph nodes, thus preventing lymphocytes from accessing sites of inflammation. In particular, FTY720, a pan-S1P receptor agonist, has been efficacious in the treatment of multiple sclerosis as well as its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), by virtue of its ability to restrain lymphocytes within the lymph nodes, thus precluding their migration into the CNS. However, multiple leukocyte subsets express S1P receptors of varying types, and although it is beneficial to prevent transmigration of proinflammatory lymphocytes into the CNS, allowing access of regulatory leukocyte subsets to the CNS is desirable. In this study, we show that an S1P1-specific agonist (AUY954) is clinically efficacious in ameliorating pre-established EAE in SJL/J mice. Efficacy of AUY954 correlated with a reduction of lymphocytes in the CNS, but access of plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) to the CNS was unimpaired, and the presence of pDCs was found to be an important cofactor in mediating the clinical efficacy of AUY954. These results indicate that pDCs are important in quieting autoimmune responses during EAE, and that trafficking inhibitors that are permissive for pDC accumulation in the CNS may be of therapeutic value for the treatment of multiple sclerosis.
The Journal of Immunology 08/2012; 189(7):3700-6. DOI:10.4049/jimmunol.1102261 · 4.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interleukin-22 (IL-22) is a cytokine with epithelial reparative and regenerative properties that is produced by Th22 cells and by other immune cell subsets. Therefore, we explored the hypothesis that disruption of the gut barrier during HIV infection involves dysregulation of these cells in the gastrointestinal mucosa. Sigmoid IL-22-producing T cell and Th22 cells were dramatically depleted during chronic HIV infection, epithelial integrity was compromised, and microbial translocation was increased. These alterations were reversed after long-term antiretroviral therapy. While all mucosal IL-22-producing T-cell subsets were also depleted very early during HIV infection, at these early stages IL-22 production by non-T-cell populations (including NKp44+ cells) was increased and gut epithelial integrity was maintained. Circulating Th22 cells expressed a higher level of the HIV co-receptor/binding molecules CCR5 and α4β7 than CD4+ T-cell subsets in HIV-uninfected participants, but this was not the case after HIV infection. Finally, recombinant IL-22 was protective against HIV and tumor necrosis factor-α-induced gut epithelial damage in a validated in vitro gut epithelial system. We conclude that reduced IL-22 production and Th22 depletion in the gut mucosa are important factors in HIV mucosal immunopathogenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report that IgA+ PC also can produce the anti-microbial mediators TNFα and iNOS which appears to arise in the unique environment of the gut, and may be critical to mount effective responses to microbial assault.To examine the functional relevance of TNFα/iNOS expression in IgA+ cells, we created mixed-bone marrow (BM) chimeras from TNFα/iNOS double knockout mice (dKO), in combination with B-cell deficient (JH-/-), using JH-/- or Rag2-/- mice lethally irradiated recipients, thus creating mixed BM chimeras in which B cells are unable to produce TNFα/iNOS. Here we describe in detail the generation of these mixed bone marrow chimeras.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The largest mucosal surface in the body is in the gastrointestinal tract, a location that is heavily colonized by microbes that are normally harmless. A key mechanism required for maintaining a homeostatic balance between this microbial burden and the lymphocytes that densely populate the gastrointestinal tract is the production and transepithelial transport of poly-reactive IgA (ref. 1). Within the mucosal tissues, B cells respond to cytokines, sometimes in the absence of T-cell help, undergo class switch recombination of their immunoglobulin receptor to IgA, and differentiate to become plasma cells. However, IgA-secreting plasma cells probably have additional attributes that are needed for coping with the tremendous bacterial load in the gastrointestinal tract. Here we report that mouse IgA(+) plasma cells also produce the antimicrobial mediators tumour-necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), and express many molecules that are commonly associated with monocyte/granulocytic cell types. The development of iNOS-producing IgA(+) plasma cells can be recapitulated in vitro in the presence of gut stroma, and the acquisition of this multifunctional phenotype in vivo and in vitro relies on microbial co-stimulation. Deletion of TNF-α and iNOS in B-lineage cells resulted in a reduction in IgA production, altered diversification of the gut microbiota and poor clearance of a gut-tropic pathogen. These findings reveal a novel adaptation to maintaining homeostasis in the gut, and extend the repertoire of protective responses exhibited by some B-lineage cells.