Glial cells have emerged as key players in the central control of energy balance and etiology of obesity. Astrocytes play a central role in neural communication via the release of gliotransmitters. Acyl-CoA–binding protein–derived (ACBP-derived) endozepines are secreted peptides that modulate the GABAA receptor. In the hypothalamus, ACBP is enriched in arcuate nucleus (ARC) astrocytes, ependymocytes, and tanycytes. Central administration of the endozepine octadecaneuropeptide (ODN) reduces feeding and improves glucose tolerance, yet the contribution of endogenous ACBP in energy homeostasis is unknown. We demonstrated that ACBP deletion in GFAP+ astrocytes, but not in Nkx2.1-lineage neural cells, promoted diet-induced hyperphagia and obesity in both male and female mice, an effect prevented by viral rescue of ACBP in ARC astrocytes. ACBP+ astrocytes were observed in apposition with proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons, and ODN selectively activated POMC neurons through the ODN GPCR but not GABAA, and suppressed feeding while increasing carbohydrate utilization via the melanocortin system. Similarly, ACBP overexpression in ARC astrocytes reduced feeding and weight gain. Finally, the ODN GPCR agonist decreased feeding and promoted weight loss in ob/ob mice. These findings uncover ACBP as an ARC gliopeptide playing a key role in energy balance control and exerting strong anorectic effects via the central melanocortin system.
Khalil Bouyakdan, Hugo Martin, Fabienne Liénard, Lionel Budry, Bouchra Taib, Demetra Rodaros, Chloé Chrétien, Éric Biron, Zoé Husson, Daniela Cota, Luc Pénicaud, Stephanie Fulton, Xavier Fioramonti, Thierry Alquier
We studied human T cell repertoire formation using high-throughput T cell receptor β (TCRβ) complementarity-determining region 3 (CDR3) sequencing in immunodeficient mice receiving human hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and human thymus grafts. Replicate humanized mice generated diverse and highly divergent repertoires. We observed repertoire narrowing and increased CDR3β sharing during thymocyte selection. Whereas hydrophobicity analysis implicated self-peptides in positive selection of the overall repertoire, positive selection favored shorter shared sequences that had reduced hydrophobicity at positions 6 and 7 of CDR3βs, suggesting weaker interactions with self-peptides than were observed with unshared sequences, possibly allowing escape from negative selection. Sharing was similar between autologous and allogeneic thymi and occurred between different cell subsets. Shared sequences were enriched for allo–cross-reactive CDR3βs and for type 1 diabetes–associated autoreactive CDR3βs. Single-cell TCR sequencing showed increased sharing of CDR3αs compared with CDR3βs between mice. Our data collectively implicate preferential positive selection for shared human CDR3βs that are highly cross-reactive. Although previous studies suggested a role for recombination bias in producing “public” sequences in mice, our study is the first to our knowledge to demonstrate a role for thymic selection. Our results implicate positive selection for promiscuous TCRβ sequences that probably evade negative selection, given their low affinity for self-ligands, in the abundance of “public” human TCRβ sequences.
Mohsen Khosravi-Maharlooei, Aleksandar Obradovic, Aditya Misra, Keshav Motwani, Markus Holzl, Howard R. Seay, Susan DeWolf, Grace Nauman, Nichole Danzl, Haowei Li, Siu-hong Ho, Robert Winchester, Yufeng Shen, Todd M. Brusko, Megan Sykes
Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) are emerging as attractive drug targets by virtue of their prevalence in various diseases including cancer. Drug development targeting IDPs is challenging because IDPs have dynamic structure features and conventional drug design is not applicable. NUPR1 is an IDP that plays an important role in pancreatic cancer. We previously reported that trifluoperazine (TFP), an antipsychotic agent, was capable of binding to NUPR1 and inhibiting tumor growth. Unfortunately, TFP showed strong central nervous system side effects. In the present work, we undertook a multidisciplinary approach to optimize TFP based on the synergy of computer modeling, chemical synthesis, and a variety of biophysical, biochemical, and biological evaluations. A family of TFP-derived compounds was produced and the most active one, ZZW-115, showed a dose-dependent tumor regression with no neurological effects and an ability to induce cell death mainly by necroptosis. This study opens a new perspective for drug development against IDPs, demonstrating the possibility of successful ligand-based drug design for such challenging targets.
Patricia Santofimia-Castaño, Yi Xia, Wenjun Lan, Zhengwei Zhou, Can Huang, Ling Peng, Philippe Soubeyran, Adrián Velázquez-Campoy, Olga Abián, Bruno Rizzuti, José L. Neira, Juan Iovanna
Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) are widely associated with positive outcomes, yet carry key indicators of a systemic failed immune response against unresolved cancer. Cancer immunotherapies can reverse their tolerance phenotypes while preserving tumor reactivity and neoantigen specificity shared with circulating immune cells. We performed comprehensive transcriptomic analyses to identify gene signatures common to circulating and TILs in the context of clear cell renal cell carcinoma. Modulated genes also associated with disease outcome were validated in other cancer types. Through comprehensive bioinformatics analyses, we identified practical diagnostic markers and actionable targets of the failed immune response. On circulating lymphocytes, 3 genes (LEF1, FASLG, and MMP9) could efficiently stratify patients from healthy control donors. From their associations with resistance to cancer immunotherapies and microbial infections, we uncovered not only pan-cancer, but pan-pathology, failed immune response profiles. A prominent lymphocytic matrix metallopeptidase cell migration pathway is central to a panoply of diseases and tumor immunogenicity, correlates with multi-cancer recurrence, and identifies a feasible noninvasive approach to pan-pathology diagnoses. The differentially expressed genes we have identified warrant future investigation into the development of their potential in noninvasive precision diagnostics and precision pan-disease immunotherapeutics.
Anne Monette, Antigoni Morou, Nadia A. Al-Banna, Louise Rousseau, Jean-Baptiste Lattouf, Sara Rahmati, Tomas Tokar, Jean-Pierre Routy, Jean-François Cailhier, Daniel E. Kaufmann, Igor Jurisica, Réjean Lapointe
Prevalence of obesity among infants and children below 5 years of age is rising dramatically, and early childhood obesity is a forerunner of obesity and obesity-associated diseases in adulthood. Childhood obesity is hence one of the most serious public health challenges today. Here, we have identified a mother-to-child lipid signaling that protects from obesity. We have found that breast milk–specific lipid species, so-called alkylglycerol-type (AKG-type) ether lipids, which are absent from infant formula and adult-type diets, maintain beige adipose tissue (BeAT) in the infant and impede the transformation of BeAT into lipid-storing white adipose tissue (WAT). Breast milk AKGs are metabolized by adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs) to platelet-activating factor (PAF), which ultimately activates IL-6/STAT3 signaling in adipocytes and triggers BeAT development in the infant. Accordingly, lack of AKG intake in infancy leads to a premature loss of BeAT and increases fat accumulation. AKG signaling is specific for infants and is inactivated in adulthood. However, in obese adipose tissue, ATMs regain their ability to metabolize AKGs, which reduces obesity. In summary, AKGs are specific lipid signals of breast milk that are essential for healthy adipose tissue development.
Haidong Yu, Sedat Dilbaz, Jonas Coßmann, Anh Cuong Hoang, Victoria Diedrich, Annika Herwig, Akiko Harauma, Yukino Hoshi, Toru Moriguchi, Kathrin Landgraf, Antje Körner, Christina Lucas, Susanne Brodesser, Lajos Balogh, Julianna Thuróczy, Gopal Karemore, Michael Scott Kuefner, Edwards A. Park, Christine Rapp, Jeffrey Bryant Travers, Tamás Röszer
How altered metabolism contributes to chemotherapy resistance in cancer cells remains unclear. Through a metabolism-related kinome RNAi screen, we identified inositol-trisphosphate 3-kinase B (ITPKB) as a critical enzyme that contributes to cisplatin-resistant tumor growth. We demonstrated that inositol 1,3,4,5-tetrakisphosphate (IP4), the product of ITPKB, plays a critical role in redox homeostasis upon cisplatin exposure by reducing cisplatin-induced ROS through inhibition of a ROS-generating enzyme, NADPH oxidase 4 (NOX4), which promotes cisplatin-resistant tumor growth. Mechanistically, we identified that IP4 competes with the NOX4 cofactor NADPH for binding and consequently inhibits NOX4. Targeting ITPKB with shRNA or its small-molecule inhibitor resulted in attenuation of NOX4 activity, imbalanced redox status, and sensitized cancer cells to cisplatin treatment in patient-derived xenografts. Our findings provide insight into the crosstalk between kinase-mediated metabolic regulation and platinum-based chemotherapy resistance in human cancers. Our study also suggests a distinctive signaling function of IP4 that regulates NOX4. Furthermore, pharmaceutical inhibition of ITPKB displayed synergistic attenuation of tumor growth with cisplatin, suggesting ITPKB as a promising synthetic lethal target for cancer therapeutic intervention to overcome cisplatin resistance.
Chaoyun Pan, Lingtao Jin, Xu Wang, Yuancheng Li, Jaemoo Chun, Austin C. Boese, Dan Li, Hee-Bum Kang, Guojing Zhang, Lu Zhou, Georgia Z. Chen, Nabil F. Saba, Dong M. Shin, Kelly R. Magliocca, Taofeek K. Owonikoko, Hui Mao, Sagar Lonial, Sumin Kang
Acute kidney injury (AKI) can lead to chronic kidney disease (CKD) if injury is severe and/or repair is incomplete. However, the pathogenesis of CKD following renal ischemic injury is not fully understood. Capillary rarefaction and tubular hypoxia are common findings during the AKI-to-CKD transition. We investigated the tubular stress response to hypoxia and demonstrated that a stress-responsive transcription factor, FoxO3, was regulated by prolyl hydroxylase (PHD). Hypoxia inhibited FoxO3 prolyl hydroxylation and FoxO3 degradation, leading to FoxO3 accumulation and activation in tubular cells. Hypoxia-activated HIF-1α contributed to FoxO3 activation and functioned to protect kidneys, as tubular deletion of HIF-1α decreased hypoxia-induced FoxO3 activation and resulted in more severe tubular injury and interstitial fibrosis following ischemic injury. Strikingly, tubular deletion of FoxO3 during the AKI-to-CKD transition aggravated renal structural and functional damage, leading to a much more profound CKD phenotype. We show that tubular deletion of FoxO3 resulted in decreased autophagic response and increased oxidative injury, which may explain renal protection by FoxO3. Our study indicates that in the hypoxic kidney, stress-responsive transcription factors can be activated for adaptions to counteract hypoxic insults, thus attenuating CKD development.
Ling Li, Huimin Kang, Qing Zhang, Vivette D. D’Agati, Qais Al-Awqati, Fangming Lin
Mice selectively expressing a PPARγ dominant-negative mutation in vascular smooth muscle exhibit RhoBTB1 deficiency and hypertension. Our rationale was to use genetic complementation to uncover the mechanism of action of RhoBTB1 in vascular smooth muscle. Inducible smooth muscle–specific restoration of RhoBTB1 fully corrected hypertension and arterial stiffness by improving vasodilator function. Notably, the cardiovascular protection occurred despite the preservation of increased agonist-mediated contraction and RhoA and Rho kinase activity, suggesting that RhoBTB1 selectively controls vasodilation. RhoBTB1 augmented the cyclic 3′,5′-monophosphate (cGMP) response to NO by restraining the activity of phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) through its action as a substrate adaptor delivering PDE5 to the Cullin-3 E3 ring ubiquitin ligase complex for ubiquitination, thereby inhibiting PDE5. Angiotensin II infusion also caused RhoBTB1 deficiency and hypertension, which were prevented by smooth muscle–specific RhoBTB1 restoration. We conclude that RhoBTB1 protected against hypertension, vascular smooth muscle dysfunction, and arterial stiffness in at least 2 models of hypertension.
Masashi Mukohda, Shi Fang, Jing Wu, Larry N. Agbor, Anand R. Nair, Stella-Rita C. Ibeawuchi, Chunyan Hu, Xuebo Liu, Ko-Ting Lu, Deng-Fu Guo, Deborah R. Davis, Henry L. Keen, Frederick W. Quelle, Curt D. Sigmund
Posttransplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy) recently has had a marked impact on human allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Yet our understanding of how PTCy prevents graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) largely has been extrapolated from MHC-matched murine skin-allografting models that were highly contextual in their efficacy. Herein, we developed a T cell–replete, MHC-haploidentical, murine HCT model (B6C3F1→B6D2F1) to test the putative underlying mechanisms: alloreactive T cell elimination, alloreactive T cell intrathymic clonal deletion, and suppressor T cell induction. In this model and as confirmed in four others, PTCy did not eliminate alloreactive T cells identified using either specific Vβs or the 2C or 4C T cell receptors. Furthermore, the thymus was not necessary for PTCy’s efficacy. Rather, PTCy induced alloreactive T cell functional impairment, which was supported by highly active suppressive mechanisms established within one day after PTCy that were sufficient to prevent new donor T cells from causing GVHD. These suppressive mechanisms included the rapid, preferential recovery of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ regulatory T cells, including those that were alloantigen specific, which served an increasingly critical function over time. Our results prompt a paradigm shift in our mechanistic understanding of PTCy. These results have direct clinical implications for understanding tolerance induction and for rationally developing novel strategies to improve patient outcomes.
Lucas P. Wachsmuth, Michael T. Patterson, Michael A. Eckhaus, David J. Venzon, Ronald E. Gress, Christopher G. Kanakry
Hormone therapy (HT) is reported to be deficient in improving learning and memory in older postmenopausal women according to recent clinical studies; however, the reason for failure is unknown. A “window of opportunity” for estrogen treatment is proposed to explain this deficiency. Here, we found that facilitation of memory extinction and long-term depression by 17β-estradiol (E2) was normal in mice 1 week after ovariectomy (OVXST), but it was impaired in mice 3 months after ovariectomy (OVXLT). High-throughput sequencing revealed a decrease of miR-221-5p, which promoted cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) ubiquitination by upregulation of Neurl1a/b in E2-treated OVXLT mice. Blood samples from postmenopausal women aged 56–65 indicated decreases of miR-221-5p and 2-arachidonoylglycerol compared with samples from perimenopausal women aged 46–55. Replenishing of miR-221-5p or treatment with a CB1 agonist rescued the impairment of fear extinction in E2-treated OVXLT mice. The present study demonstrates that an HT time window in mice can be prolonged by cotreatment with a CB1 agonist, implying a potential strategy for HT in long-term menopausal women.
Kun Zhang, Qi Yang, Le Yang, Yan-jiao Li, Xin-shang Wang, Yu-jiao Li, Rui-li Dang, Shao-yu Guan, Yan-yan Guo, Ting Sun, Yu-mei Wu, An Liu, Yan Zhang, Shui-bing Liu, Ming-gao Zhao
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