[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prevention of infections by vaccination remains a compelling goal to improve public health. Mucosal vaccines would make immunization procedures easier, be better suited for mass administration, and most efficiently induce immune exclusion - a term coined for non-inflammatory antibody shielding of internal body surfaces, mediated principally by secretory immunoglobulin A (SIgA). The exported antibodies are polymeric, mainly IgA dimers (pIgA), produced by local plasma cells (PCs) stimulated by antigens that target the mucose. SIgA was early shown to be complexed with an epithelial glycoprotein - the secretory component (SC). A common SC-dependent transport mechanism for pIgA and pentameric IgM was then proposed, implying that membrane SC acts as a receptor, now usually called the polymeric Ig receptor (pIgR). From the basolateral surface, pIg-pIgR complexes are taken up by endocytosis and then extruded into the lumen after apical cleavage of the receptor - bound SC having stabilizing and innate functions in the secretory antibodies. Mice deficient for pIgR show that this is the only receptor responsible for epithelial export of IgA and IgM. These knockout mice show a variety of defects in their mucosal defense and changes in their intestinal microbiota. In the gut, induction of B-cells occurs in gut-associated lymphoid tissue, particularly the Peyer's patches and isolated lymphoid follicles, but also in mesenteric lymph nodes. PC differentiation is accomplished in the lamina propria to which the activated memory/effector B-cells home. The airways also receive such cells from nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue but by different homing receptors. This compartmentalization is a challenge for mucosal vaccination, as are the mechanisms used by the mucosal immune system to discriminate between commensal symbionts (mutualism), pathobionts, and overt pathogens (elimination).
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The two principal antibody classes present in saliva are secretory IgA (SIgA) and IgG; the former is produced as dimeric IgA by local plasma cells (PCs) in the stroma of salivary glands and is transported through secretory epithelia by the polymeric Ig receptor (pIgR), also named membrane secretory component (SC). Most IgG in saliva is derived from the blood circulation by passive leakage mainly via gingival crevicular epithelium, although some may be locally produced in the gingiva or salivary glands. Gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) and nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue (NALT) do not contribute equally to the pool of memory/effector B cells differentiating to mucosal PCs throughout the body. Thus, enteric immunostimulation may not be the best way to activate the production of salivary IgA antibodies although the level of specific SIgA in saliva may still reflect an intestinal immune response after enteric immunization. It remains unknown whether the IgA response in submandibular/sublingual glands is better related to B-cell induction in GALT than the parotid response. Such disparity is suggested by the levels of IgA in submandibular secretions of AIDS patients, paralleling their highly upregulated intestinal IgA system, while the parotid IgA level is decreased. Parotid SIgA could more consistently be linked to immune induction in palatine tonsils/adenoids (human NALT) and cervical lymph nodes, as supported by the homing molecule profile observed after immune induction at these sites. Several other variables influence the levels of antibodies in salivary secretions. These include difficulties with reproducibility and standardization of immunoassays, the impact of flow rate, acute or chronic stress, protein loss during sample handling, and uncontrolled admixture of serum-derived IgG and monomeric IgA. Despite these problems, saliva is an easily accessible biological fluid with interesting scientific and clinical potentials.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs) bearing the γδ T-cell receptor are a unique intestinal subset whose function remains elusive. Here, we examine how they behave in AIDS and during various regimens of antiretroviral treatment in order to obtain mechanistic insight into their adaptive or innate functional in vivo properties. IELs were studied by multimarker two-colour immunofluorescence in situ staining. Consecutive duodenal biopsies were obtained from advanced infection-prone HIV(+) patients (n = 30). The systemic adaptive immune status was monitored by determining T-cell subsets and immunoglobulins in peripheral blood. The γδ IEL ratio (median 14.5%, range 1.5-56.3%) was significantly increased (p<0.02) compared with that in clinically healthy HIV(-) control subjects (n = 11, median 2.8%; range 0.3-38%), although the number of γδ IELs per mucosal length unit (U) only tended to be increased (4.0/U in HIV(+) versus 3.2/U in HIV(-) subjects). Notably, the total number of CD3(+) IELs was significantly reduced in AIDS (p<0.0001, 39.6/U in HIV(+) versus 86.4/U in HIV(-) subjects). Almost 100% of the γδ IELs were CD8(-) and they often expressed the Vδ1/Jδ1-encoded epitope (median 65.2%). HIV(+) patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy only tended to have a lower ratio of γδ IELs (median 12.8%) than those receiving no treatment (median 14.3%) or 1 nucleoside analogue (NA) (median 23.5%) or 2 NAs (median 13.0%). This minimal variation among therapy groups, contrasting the treatment response of systemic and local adaptive immunity, harmonizes with the novel idea derived from animal experiments that γδ T cells are largely innate cells in first-line microbial defence.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(1):e29066. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mucosal surfaces of the gut and airways have important barrier functions and regulate the induction of immunological tolerance. The rapidly increasing incidence of chronic inflammatory disorders of these surfaces, such as inflammatory bowel disease and asthma, indicates that the immune functions of these mucosae are becoming disrupted in humans. Recent data indicate that events in prenatal and neonatal life orchestrate mucosal homeostasis. Several environmental factors promote the perinatal programming of the immune system, including colonization of the gut and airways by commensal microorganisms. These complex microbial-host interactions operate in a delicate temporal and spatial manner and have an important role in the induction of homeostatic mechanisms.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Over the last half century, a dramatic increase in the incidence of chronic inflammatory diseases, such as asthma, allergy, and irritable bowel syndrome, has rightfully led to concern about how the modern lifestyle might inappropriately trigger innate physiologic defense mechanisms. Health care research in the Western world is faced with a significant challenge if it is to meet the needs of its populations in the decades ahead. The tools with which we hope to advance our understanding of the intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms of chronic inflammatory diseases must therefore be adequately exploited and further developed to identify treatment and prevention strategies. There is an urgent need to prioritize resources and identify the most efficient scientific and societal initiatives to be adopted within this area. In this context national collaboration within Europe and beyond to establish state-of-the-art practices with an interdisciplinary perspective and promote an efficient exchange of best practices is essential. Such an approach likely represents the most efficient manner in which strategies for amelioration of the increase of chronic inflammatory diseases in the Western world can be achieved. The present report is based on a Forward Look initiative conducted by the European Medical Research Councils under the European Science Foundation. Experts from industry and academia, as well as relevant interest organizations, have been consulted in the process of conducting this initiative and have, based on this work, developed a set of final recommendations that target academic research, science funders, and policy makers.
The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 12/2011; 128(6 Suppl):S27-49. · 12.05 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During human evolution, the mucosal immune system developed two anti-inflammatory mechanisms: immune exclusion by secretory antibodies (SIgA and SIgM) to control epithelial colonization of microorganisms and inhibit penetration of harmful substances; and immunosuppression to counteract local and peripheral hypersensitivity against innocuous antigens such as food proteins. The latter function is referred to as oral tolerance when induced via the gut. Similar mechanisms also control immunity to commensal bacteria. The development of immune homeostasis depends on "windows of opportunity" where adaptive and innate immunities are coordinated by antigen-presenting cells; their function is not only influenced by microbial products but also by dietary constituents, including vitamin A and lipids like polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids. These factors can in several ways exert beneficial effects on the immunophenotype of the infant. Also breast milk provides immune-modulating factors and SIgA antibodies - reinforcing the gut barrier. Mucosal immunity is most abundantly expressed in the gut, and the intestinal mucosa of an adult contains at least 80% of the body's activated B cells - terminally differentiated to plasmablasts and plasma cells (PCs). Most mucosal PCs produce dimeric IgA which is exported by secretory epithelia expressing the polymeric Ig receptor (pIgR), also called membrane secretory component (SC). Immune exclusion is therefore performed mainly by SIgA. Notably, pIgR knockout mice which lack SIgs show increased uptake of food and microbial antigens and they have a hyper-reactive immune system with disposition for anaphylaxis; but this untoward development is counteracted by cognate oral tolerance induction as a homeostatic back-up mechanism.
European journal of pharmacology 07/2011; 668 Suppl 1:S16-32. · 2.59 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue (NALT), constituting Waldeyer's ring in humans, is a unique inductive site for B-cell responses and plasma cell generation. This makes the nasal route of vaccine administration interesting for induction of mucosal and systemic antibodies. The unpaired nasopharyngeal tonsil (adenoids) and the paired palatine tonsils are prominent NALT structures, functionally similar to the paired rodent NALT structures located dorsal to the cartilaginous soft palate. Human NALT is more strategically located, however, because its elements are exposed to both airborne and alimentary antigens and have antigen-retaining crypts. It also shows similarities with lymph nodes and participates both in systemic- and secretory-type mucosal immunity. Primary follicles occur at 16 weeks of gestation, which is similar to Peyer's patches but different from rodent NALT whose organogenesis begins at birth. The formation of germinal centers reflecting B-cell activation does not take place until shortly after birth, and terminal differentiation of plasma cell can be seen about 2 weeks postnatally. Germinal centers arise in T cell-dependent B-cell responses and are associated with somatic hypermutation of Ig V-region genes. Downstream switching to various Ig isotypes also takes place, with or without concurrent expression of the J-chain gene. The J chain is a crucial part of dimeric IgA and pentameric IgM, making these Ig polymers able to interact with the epithelial polymeric Ig receptor. This interaction is central in the formation of secretory IgA and secretory IgM. Accumulating evidence suggests a major role for NALT in antibody immunity of the respiratory tract and associated glands.
American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 03/2011; 183(12):1595-604. · 11.04 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) of pediatric and adult onset differs in several aspects although little knowledge exists about pathogenic disparity. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) characterized as CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ are modulators of gut homeostasis, but their role in human IBD remains unclear.
To evaluate the mucosal distribution of Foxp3+ and CD25+ cells in untreated pediatric IBD patients at the time of diagnosis.
Untreated pediatric (n = 14) and adult (n = 12) Crohn's disease (CD) patients were prospectively included together with age-matched symptomatic controls. Colonic and ileal mucosal biopsies collected at diagnosis were studied by immunohistochemistry for enumeration of T cells and for mucosal expression of Foxp3 and CD25. Multicolor immunofluorescence staining was performed in situ to phenotype Foxp3+ cells as Tregs and characterize the CD25+ cells.
The density of mucosal T cells displayed only small variations, while that of Foxp3+ cells and CD25+ cells was increased in CD patients. Multicolor immunofluorescence showed that most CD25+ cells were macrophages. Interestingly, in the ileum of pediatric CD patients the density of Foxp3+ cells was significantly higher than in adult CD patients. Co-expression of Foxp3 and CD25, as well as Foxp3 and CTLA-4, indicated that the Foxp3+ cells were Tregs.
Mucosal numbers of Foxp3(+) Tregs and activated (CD25+) macrophages are elevated in both pediatric and adult ileal CD. The greater increase of ileal Foxp3+ Tregs in pediatric CD than in adult CD might contribute to the relatively less frequent phenotype of isolated ileal enteritis in CD children.
Scandinavian journal of gastroenterology 02/2011; 46(5):550-60. · 2.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dendritic cells bind an array of antigens and DC-SIGN has been postulated to act as a receptor for mucosal pathogen transmission. Bile salt-stimulated lipase (BSSL) from human milk potently binds DC-SIGN and blocks DC-SIGN mediated trans-infection of CD4(+) T-lymphocytes with HIV-1. Objective was to study variation in DC-SIGN binding properties and the relation between DC-SIGN binding capacity of milk and BSSL gene polymorphisms.
ELISA and PCR were used to study DC-SIGN binding properties and BSSL exon 11 size variation for human milk derived from 269 different mothers distributed over 4 geographical regions.
DC-SIGN binding properties were highly variable for milks derived from different mothers and between samplings from different geographical regions. Differences in DC-SIGN binding were correlated with a genetic polymorphism in BSSL which is related to the number of 11 amino acid repeats at the C-terminus of the protein.
The observed variation in DC-SIGN binding properties among milk samples may have implications for the risk of mucosal transmission of pathogens during breastfeeding.
PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(2):e17316. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To review recent findings dealing with the involvement of mucosal immunoglobulin A (IgA) in the gut barrier function and various gastrointestinal diseases. New information will be discussed in the context of previous knowledge in this field.
The epithelial barrier function seems to be central in many mucosal disorders because it is decisive for host-microbial interactions and penetration of soluble antigens into the lamina propria. Secretory IgA contributes to the barrier function and recent evidence strongly supports the notion that such antibodies are involved in immunological homeostasis.
Inflammatory bowel disease involves a break of tolerance to the commensal microbiota. Aberrations in the mucosal IgA system may, therefore, be part of the inflammatory bowel disease pathogenesis. In gluten-induced enteropathy, however, it has been suggested that a mucosal IgA response may promote the progression of celiac disease and dermatitis herpetiformis by enhancing the uptake of gluten peptides and inhibiting the enzyme activity of tissue transglutaminase. A mucosal IgA response may also promote gastritis by protecting Helicobacter pylori from complement attack. In food allergy, several facets of the epithelial barrier function may show deficiency, including secretory IgA.
Current opinion in gastroenterology 11/2010; 26(6):554-63. · 4.33 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Numerous genes are involved in innate and adaptive immunity and these have been modified over millions of years. During this evolution, the mucosal immune system has developed two anti-inflammatory strategies: immune exclusion by the use of secretory antibodies to control epithelial colonization of microorganisms and to inhibit the penetration of potentially harmful agents; and immunosuppression to counteract local and peripheral hypersensitivity against innocuous antigens, such as food proteins. The latter strategy is called oral tolerance when induced via the gut. Homeostatic mechanisms also dampen immune responses to commensal bacteria. The mucosal epithelial barrier and immunoregulatory network are poorly developed in newborns. The perinatal period is, therefore, critical with regard to the induction of food allergy. The development of immune homeostasis depends on windows of opportunity during which innate and adaptive immunity are coordinated by antigen-presenting cells. The function of these cells is not only orchestrated by microbial products but also by dietary constituents, including vitamin A and lipids, such as polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids. These factors may in various ways exert beneficial effects on the immunophenotype of the infant. The same is true for breast milk, which provides immune-inducing factors and secretory immunoglobulin A, which reinforces the gut epithelial barrier. It is not easy to dissect the immunoregulatory network and identify variables that lead to food allergy. This Review discusses efforts to this end and outlines the scientific basis for future food allergy prevention.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mucosal immunity reduces the need for elimination of penetrating exogenous antigens by proinflammatory systemic immunity. The adult gut mucosa contains some 80% of the body's activated B cells-differentiated to plasmablasts and plasma cells (PCs). Most mucosal PCs produce dimeric immunoglobulin A (IgA), which, along with pentameric immunoglobulin M (IgM), can be exported by secretory epithelia expressing the polymeric immunoglobulin receptor. Immune exclusion of antigens is performed mainly by secretory IgA in cooperation with innate defenses, but, in newborns and in IgA deficiency, secretory IgM is important. In the gut, induction and regulation of mucosal immunity occurs primarily in gut-associated lymphoid tissue-particularly the Peyer's patches-and also in mesenteric lymph nodes. Terminal differentiation to PCs is accomplished in the lamina propria to which the activated memory/effector T and B cells home. Lactating mammary glands are part of the secretory immune system, and IgA antibodies in breast milk reflect antigenic stimulation of gut-associated lymphoid tissue and nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue such as the tonsils. Breast-milk antibodies are thus highly targeted against infectious agents and other exogenous antigens in the mother's environment, which are those likely to be encountered by the infant. Therefore breast-feeding represents an ingenious immunologic integration of mother and child.
The Journal of pediatrics 02/2010; 156(2 Suppl):S8-15. · 4.02 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abundant evidence supports the notion that human intestinal plasma cells are largely derived from B cells initially activated in gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT). Nevertheless, insufficient knowledge exists about the uptake, processing, and presentation of luminal antigens occurring in GALT to accomplish priming and sustained expansion of mucosal B cells. Also, it is unclear how the germinal center reaction so strikingly promotes class switch to IgA and expression of J chain, although the commensal microbiota appears to contribute to both diversification and memory. B-cell migration from GALT to the intestinal lamina propria is guided by rather well-defined adhesion molecules and chemokines/chemokine receptors, but the cues directing homing to secretory effector sites beyond the gut require better definition. In this respect, the role of human Waldeyer's ring (including adenoids and the palatine tonsils) as a regional mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue must be better defined, although the balance of evidence suggests that it functions as nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue (NALT) like the characteristic NALT structures in rodents. Altogether, data suggest a remarkable compartmentalization of the mucosal immune system that must be taken into account in the development of effective local vaccines to protect specifically the airways, small and large intestines, and the female genital tract.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prevention of infections by vaccination remains a compelling goal to improve public health. Most infections involve the mucosae, but the development of vaccines against many of these pathogens has yet to be successful. Mucosal vaccines would make immunization procedures easier, be better suited for mass administration, and most efficiently induce immune exclusion - a term coined for non-inflammatory antibody shielding of internal body surfaces - mediated principally by secretory immunoglobulin A (SIgA). The exported antibodies are polymeric, mainly IgA dimers (pIgA) - produced by local plasma cells stimulated by antigens that target the mucosae. SIgA was early shown to be complexed with an epithelial glycoprotein - the secretory component (SC). In 1974, a common SC-dependent transport of pIgA and pentameric IgM was proposed. From the basolateral surface, pIg-SC complexes are taken up by endocytosis and finally extruded into the lumen. Membrane SC is now referred to as polymeric Ig receptor (pIgR). In 1980, it was shown to be synthesized as a larger transmembrane protein - first cloned from rabbit and then from human. Mice deficient for pIgR showed that this is the only receptor responsible for epithelial transport of IgA and IgM. In the gut, induction of B cells occurs in gut-associated lymphoid tissue, particularly the Peyer's patches, but also in mesenteric lymph nodes. Plasma cell differentiation is accomplished in the lamina propria to which the memory/effector cells home. The airways also receive such cells from nasopharynx-associated lymphoid tissue - but by different homing receptors. Such compartmentalization is a challenge for development of mucosal vaccines.
Scandinavian Journal of Immunology 12/2009; 70(6):505-15. · 2.20 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mucosal immunity protects the epithelial barrier by immune exclusion of foreign antigens and by anti-inflammatory tolerance mechanisms, but there is a continuing debate about the role of secretory immunoglobulins (SIgs), particularly SIgA, in the protection against allergy and other inflammatory diseases. Lack of secretory antibodies may cause immune dysfunction and affect mucosally induced (oral) tolerance against food antigens.
We used polymeric Ig receptor (pIgR) knockout (KO) mice, which cannot export SIgA or SIgM, to study oral tolerance induction by ovalbumin (OVA) feeding and for parenteral antigen sensitization in the same animal.
Remarkable systemic hyperreactivity was observed in pIgR KO mice, as 50% died after intradermal OVA challenge, which was not seen in similarly sensitized and challenged wild-type (WT) mice. Oral tolerance induced by OVA completely protected the sensitized pIgR KO mice against anaphylaxis and suppressed antibody levels (particularly IgG1) as well as delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) to OVA. Delayed-type hypersensitivity to a bystander antigen, human serum albumin, was also suppressed and T-cell proliferation against OVA in vitro was reduced in tolerized compared with non-tolerized pIgR KO mice. This effect was largely mediated by CD25+ T cells. Adoptive transfer of splenic putative regulatory T cells (CD4+ CD25+) obtained from OVA-fed pIgR KO mice to naïve WT mice mediated suppression of DTH against OVA after sensitization of the recipients.
Compensatory regulatory T-cell function becomes critical in pIgR-deficient mice to avoid the potentially catastrophic effects of systemic immune hyperreactivity, presumably resulting from defective secretory antibody-mediated immune exclusion of microbial components.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recurrent diarrhoea and weight loss in many adult patients with Down's syndrome (DS), initiated a search for malabsorption based on determination of serum IgG and IgA antibody levels to dietary antigens. The results were compared with measurements of autoantibodies and serum zinc levels. DS patients had increased IgG and IgA activities to gluten proteins, casein and ovalbumin compared with an age- and sex-matched group of other mentally retarded patients in the same institution. Intestinal biopsy was performed in six of the 38 patients; one had total and one partial villous atrophy. Serum zinc was significantly lower in DS patients (median 14.7 μmol/l, range 5.5–20 μmol/l) than in the controls (median 16.4 μmol/l, range 12.7–19.5 μmol/l). DS patients with increased IgA activity to gluten weighed less and had lower concentrations of zinc in serum than DS patients with normal IgA activity. Twenty-eight per cent of the DS patients had autoantibodies to the thyroid gland. Our results suggest intestinal malfunction in DS, perhaps related to a defect of immune regulation caused by reduced levels of zinc in serum.
Journal of Internal Medicine 04/2009; 224(5):473 - 477. · 6.46 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pediatric inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) may be phenotypically different from adult IBD. In IBD lesions, macrophages are overactivated, suggesting involvement of innate immunity in the pathogenesis. Here, mucosal macrophages were studied in selected untreated pediatric patients compared with adults from a population-based Norwegian cohort of IBD patients. Age-matched non-IBD controls were also included.
Untreated children (<18 years) and adults (> or =18 years) were included at diagnosis with colonic and ileal biopsies. Controls were symptomatic non-IBD patients with histologically normal gut. Frozen mucosal sections were examined by immunohistochemistry for cellular expression of the pan-macrophage marker CD68 and the costimulatory molecule CD40. Two-color immunofluorescence staining in situ was performed to identify CD40(+) macrophages.
Non-IBD adults had significantly higher mucosal density of colonic CD68(+) macrophages than non-IBD children. In pediatric Crohn's disease (CD), macrophages were significantly increased in the colon (but not in the ileum) compared with controls. Their mucosal density in pediatric CD was significantly higher than in pediatric ulcerative colitis. The number of CD40(+) (activated) macrophages was significantly elevated in both histologically inflamed and uninflamed colon and ileum of IBD children.
Histologically normal colon mucosa contains fewer macrophages in children than in adults. However, in colon of children with untreated CD the mucosal macrophage density is increased. Activated mucosal macrophages are increased in untreated pediatric IBD regardless of inflammatory grade. Such upregulated innate mucosal immune activation may contribute to the colonic phenotype of childhood CD.