Project

Immunological Surveillance and Autoimmunity

Goal: Mutations in mitochondrial (mt) DNA accumulate with age and can result in the generation of neopeptides. Immune surveillance of such neopeptides may allow suboptimal mitochondria to be eliminated, thereby avoiding mt-related diseases, but may also contribute to autoimmunity in susceptible individuals. To date, the direct recognition of neo-mtpeptides by the adaptive immune system has not been demonstrated. In this study we used bioinformatics approaches to predict MHC binding of neopeptides identified from known deletions in mtDNA. Six such peptides were confirmed experimentally to bind to HLA-A*02. Pre-existing human CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells from healthy donors were shown to recognize and respond to these neopeptides. One remarkably promiscuous immunodominant peptide (P9) could be presented by diverse MHC molecules to CD4(+) and/or CD8(+) T cells from 75% of the healthy donors tested. The common soil microbe, Bacillus pumilus, encodes a 9-mer that differs by one amino acid from P9. Similarly, the ATP synthase F0 subunit 6 from normal human mitochondria encodes a 9-mer with a single amino acid difference from P9 with 89% homology to P9. T cells expanded from human PBMCs using the B. pumilus or self-mt peptide bound to P9/HLA-A2 tetramers, arguing for cross-reactivity between T cells with specificity for self and foreign homologs of the altered mt peptide. These findings provide proof of principal that the immune system can recognize peptides arising from spontaneous somatic mutations and that such responses might be primed by foreign peptides and/or be cross-reactive with self.

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Bhargavi Duvvuri
added a project goal
Mutations in mitochondrial (mt) DNA accumulate with age and can result in the generation of neopeptides. Immune surveillance of such neopeptides may allow suboptimal mitochondria to be eliminated, thereby avoiding mt-related diseases, but may also contribute to autoimmunity in susceptible individuals. To date, the direct recognition of neo-mtpeptides by the adaptive immune system has not been demonstrated. In this study we used bioinformatics approaches to predict MHC binding of neopeptides identified from known deletions in mtDNA. Six such peptides were confirmed experimentally to bind to HLA-A*02. Pre-existing human CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells from healthy donors were shown to recognize and respond to these neopeptides. One remarkably promiscuous immunodominant peptide (P9) could be presented by diverse MHC molecules to CD4(+) and/or CD8(+) T cells from 75% of the healthy donors tested. The common soil microbe, Bacillus pumilus, encodes a 9-mer that differs by one amino acid from P9. Similarly, the ATP synthase F0 subunit 6 from normal human mitochondria encodes a 9-mer with a single amino acid difference from P9 with 89% homology to P9. T cells expanded from human PBMCs using the B. pumilus or self-mt peptide bound to P9/HLA-A2 tetramers, arguing for cross-reactivity between T cells with specificity for self and foreign homologs of the altered mt peptide. These findings provide proof of principal that the immune system can recognize peptides arising from spontaneous somatic mutations and that such responses might be primed by foreign peptides and/or be cross-reactive with self.
 
Bhargavi Duvvuri
added 5 research items
Comparison of C’s in hot spots (WRC) on NTS and TS
Structural state of bases C’s sand G’s by folding NTS and TS strands of germline IGHV3-23 gene sequence in ‘mfold’a
Mutations in mitochondrial (mt) DNA accumulate with age and can result in the generation of neopeptides. Immune surveillance of such neopeptides may allow suboptimal mitochondria to be eliminated, thereby avoiding mt-related diseases, but may also contribute to autoimmunity in susceptible individuals. To date, the direct recognition of neo-mtpeptides by the adaptive immune system has not been demonstrated. In this study we used bioinformatics approaches to predict MHC binding of neopeptides identified from known deletions in mtDNA. Six such peptides were confirmed experimentally to bind to HLA-A*02. Pre-existing human CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells from healthy donors were shown to recognize and respond to these neopeptides. One remarkably promiscuous immunodominant peptide (P9) could be presented by diverse MHC molecules to CD4(+) and/or CD8(+) T cells from 75% of the healthy donors tested. The common soil microbe, Bacillus pumilus, encodes a 9-mer that differs by one amino acid from P9. Similarly, the ATP synthase F0 subunit 6 from normal human mitochondria encodes a 9-mer with a single amino acid difference from P9 with 89% homology to P9. T cells expanded from human PBMCs using the B. pumilus or self-mt peptide bound to P9/HLA-A2 tetramers, arguing for cross-reactivity between T cells with specificity for self and foreign homologs of the altered mt peptide. These findings provide proof of principal that the immune system can recognize peptides arising from spontaneous somatic mutations and that such responses might be primed by foreign peptides and/or be cross-reactive with self.