In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (8)
- BMC Plant Biology
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- The Journal of Clinical Investigation
- Journal of Immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950)
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- European Journal of Immunology
- Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Articles by Sheena Pinto in JoVE
3D Organotypic Co-culture Model Supporting Medullary Thymic Epithelial Cell Proliferation, Differentiation and Promiscuous Gene Expression Sheena Pinto*1, Hans-Jürgen Stark*2, Iris Martin2, Petra Boukamp2, Bruno Kyewski1 1Division of Developmental Immunology, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), 2Genetics of Skin Carcinogenesis, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) Studying medullary thymic epithelial cells in vitro has been largely unsuccessful, as current 2D culture systems do not mimic the in vivo scenario. The 3D culture system described herein - a modified skin organotypic culture model - has proven superior in recapitulating mTEC proliferation, differentiation and maintenance of promiscuous gene expression.
Other articles by Sheena Pinto on PubMed
The PTI1-like Kinase ZmPti1a from Maize (Zea Mays L.) Co-localizes with Callose at the Plasma Membrane of Pollen and Facilitates a Competitive Advantage to the Male Gametophyte BMC Plant Biology. 2006 | Pubmed ID: 17022830 The tomato kinase Pto confers resistance to bacterial speck disease caused by Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato in a gene for gene manner. Upon recognition of specific avirulence factors the Pto kinase activates multiple signal transduction pathways culminating in induction of pathogen defense. The soluble cytoplasmic serine/threonine kinase Pti1 is one target of Pto phosphorylation and is involved in the hypersensitive response (HR) reaction. However, a clear role of Pti1 in plant pathogen resistance is uncertain. So far, no Pti1 homologues from monocotyledonous species have been studied.
Promiscuous Gene Expression Patterns in Single Medullary Thymic Epithelial Cells Argue for a Stochastic Mechanism Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Jan, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18180458 Promiscuous expression of tissue-restricted autoantigens in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) imposes central T cell tolerance. The molecular regulation of this unusual gene expression is not understood, in particular its delineation from cell lineage-specific gene expression control remains unclear. Here, we compared the expression profile of the casein gene locus in mTECs and mammary gland epithelial cells by single cell PCR. Mammary gland cells showed highly correlated intra- and interchromosomal coexpression of milk proteins (the casein genes, lactalbumin-alpha and whey acidic protein) and one of its transcriptional regulators (Elf5). In contrast, coexpression of these genes in mature CD80(hi) mTECs was rarely observed and no pattern of gene expression in individual mTECs was discernible. The apparent stochastic expression pattern of genes within the casein locus, the lower mRNA levels compared with mammary gland cells in conjunction with frequent coexpression of insulin in single mTECs clearly delineates the molecular mechanism(s) of promiscuous gene expression from cell lineage-specific gene control.
Impaired Thymic Tolerance to α-myosin Directs Autoimmunity to the Heart in Mice and Humans The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Apr, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21436590 Autoimmunity has long been linked to myocarditis and its sequela, dilated cardiomyopathy, the leading causes of heart failure in young patients. However, the underlying mechanisms are poorly defined, with most clinical investigations focused on humoral autoimmunity as the target for intervention. Here, we show that the α-isoform of myosin heavy chain (α-MyHC, which is encoded by the gene Myh6) is the pathogenic autoantigen for CD4+ T cells in a spontaneous mouse model of myocarditis. Further, we found that Myh6 transcripts were absent in mouse medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) and peripheral lymphoid stromal cells, which have been implicated in mediating central and peripheral T cell tolerance, respectively. Transgenic expression of α-MyHC in thymic epithelium conferred tolerance to cardiac myosin and prevented myocarditis, demonstrating that α-MyHC is a primary autoantigen in this disease process. Remarkably, we found that humans also lacked α-MyHC in mTECs and had high frequencies of α-MyHC-specific T cells in peripheral blood, with markedly augmented T cell responses to α-MyHC in patients with myocarditis. Since α-MyHC constitutes a small fraction of MyHC in human heart, these findings challenge the longstanding notion that autoimmune targeting of MyHC is due to its cardiac abundance and instead suggest that it is targeted as a result of impaired T cell tolerance mechanisms. These results thus support a role for T cell-specific therapies for myocarditis.
An Organotypic Coculture Model Supporting Proliferation and Differentiation of Medullary Thymic Epithelial Cells and Promiscuous Gene Expression Journal of Immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). Feb, 2013 | Pubmed ID: 23269248 Understanding intrathymic T cell differentiation has been greatly aided by the development of various reductionist in vitro models that mimic certain steps/microenvironments of this complex process. Most models focused on the faithful in vitro restoration of T cell differentiation and selection. In contrast, suitable in vitro models emulating the developmental pathways of the two major thymic epithelial cell lineages--cortical thymic epithelial cells and medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs)--are yet to be developed. In this regard, lack of an in vitro model mimicking the developmental biology of the mTEC lineage has hampered the molecular analysis of the so-called "promiscuous expression" of tissue-restricted genes, a key property of terminally differentiated mTECs. Based on the close biological relationship between the skin and thymus epithelial cell compartments, we adapted a three-dimensional organotypic coculture model, originally developed to provide a bona fide in vitro dermal equivalent, for the culture of isolated mTECs. This three-dimensional model preserves key features of mTECs: proliferation and terminal differentiation of CD80(lo), Aire(-) mTECs into CD80(hi), Aire(+) mTECs; responsiveness to RANKL; and sustained expression of FoxN1, Aire, and tissue-restricted genes in CD80(hi) mTECs. This in vitro culture model should facilitate the identification of molecular components and pathways involved in mTEC differentiation in general and in promiscuous gene expression in particular.
Overlapping Gene Coexpression Patterns in Human Medullary Thymic Epithelial Cells Generate Self-antigen Diversity Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Sep, 2013 | Pubmed ID: 23980163 Promiscuous expression of numerous tissue-restricted self-antigens (TRAs) in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) is essential to safeguard self-tolerance. A distinct feature of promiscuous gene expression is its mosaic pattern (i.e., at a given time, each self-antigen is expressed only in 1-3% of mTECs). How this mosaic pattern is generated at the single-cell level is currently not understood. Here, we show that subsets of human mTECs expressing a particular TRA coexpress distinct sets of genes. We identified three coexpression groups comprising overlapping and complementary gene sets, which preferentially mapped to certain chromosomes and intrachromosomal gene clusters. Coexpressed gene loci tended to colocalize to the same nuclear subdomain. The TRA subsets aligned along progressive differentiation stages within the mature mTEC subset and, in vitro, interconverted along this sequence. Our data suggest that single mTECs shift through distinct gene pools, thus scanning a sizeable fraction of the overall repertoire of promiscuously expressed self-antigens. These findings have implications for the temporal and spatial (re)presentation of self-antigens in the medulla in the context of tolerance induction.
Misinitiation of Intrathymic MART-1 Transcription and Biased TCR Usage Explain the High Frequency of MART-1-specific T Cells European Journal of Immunology. Sep, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24846220 Immunity to tumor differentiation antigens, such as melanoma antigen recognized by T cells 1 (MART-1), has been comprehensively studied. Intriguingly, CD8(+) T cells specific for the MART-1(26(27)-35) epitope in the context of HLA-A0201 are about 100 times more abundant compared with T cells specific for other tumor-associated antigens. Moreover, MART-1-specific CD8(+) T cells show a highly biased usage of the Vα-region gene TRAV12-2. Here, we provide independent support for this notion, by showing that the combinatorial pairing of different TCRα- and TCRβ- chains derived from HLA-A2-MART-1(26-35) -specific CD8(+) T-cell clones is unusually permissive in conferring MART-1 specificity, provided the CDR1α TRAV12-2 region is used. Whether TCR bias alone accounts for the unusual abundance of HLA-A2-MART-1(26-35) -specific CD8(+) T cells has remained conjectural. Here, we provide an alternative explanation: misinitiated transcription of the MART-1 gene resulting in truncated mRNA isoforms leads to lack of promiscuous transcription of the MART-1(26-35) epitope in human medullary thymic epithelial cells and, consequently, evasion of central self-tolerance toward this epitope. Thus, biased TCR usage and leaky central tolerance might act in an independent and additive manner to confer high frequency of MART-1(26-35) -specific CD8(+) T cells.
Multifaceted Effects of Oligodendroglial Exosomes on Neurons: Impact on Neuronal Firing Rate, Signal Transduction and Gene Regulation Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences. Sep, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 25135971 Exosomes are small membranous vesicles of endocytic origin that are released by almost every cell type. They exert versatile functions in intercellular communication important for many physiological and pathological processes. Recently, exosomes attracted interest with regard to their role in cell-cell communication in the nervous system. We have shown that exosomes released from oligodendrocytes upon stimulation with the neurotransmitter glutamate are internalized by neurons and enhance the neuronal stress tolerance. Here, we demonstrate that oligodendroglial exosomes also promote neuronal survival during oxygen-glucose deprivation, a model of cerebral ischaemia. We show the transfer from oligodendrocytes to neurons of superoxide dismutase and catalase, enzymes which are known to help cells to resist oxidative stress. Additionally, we identify various effects of oligodendroglial exosomes on neuronal physiology. Electrophysiological analysis using in vitro multi-electrode arrays revealed an increased firing rate of neurons exposed to oligodendroglial exosomes. Moreover, gene expression analysis and phosphorylation arrays uncovered differentially expressed genes and altered signal transduction pathways in neurons after exosome treatment. Our study thus provides new insight into the broad spectrum of action of oligodendroglial exosomes and their effects on neuronal physiology. The exchange of extracellular vesicles between neural cells may exhibit remarkable potential to impact brain performance.
Thymic B Cells Are Licensed to Present Self Antigens for Central T Cell Tolerance Induction Immunity. Jun, 2015 | Pubmed ID: 26070482 Thymic antigen-presenting cells (APCs) such as dendritic cells and medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) use distinct strategies of self-antigen expression and presentation to mediate central tolerance. The thymus also harbors B cells; whether they also display unique tolerogenic features and how they genealogically relate to peripheral B cells is unclear. Here, we found that Aire is expressed in thymic but not peripheral B cells. Aire expression in thymic B cells coincided with major histocompatibility class II (MHCII) and CD80 upregulation and immunoglobulin class-switching. These features were recapitulated upon immigration of naive peripheral B cells into the thymus, whereby this intrathymic licensing required CD40 signaling in the context of cognate interactions with autoreactive CD4(+) thymocytes. Moreover, a licensing-dependent neo-antigen selectively upregulated in immigrating B cells mediated negative selection through direct presentation. Thus, autoreactivity within the nascent T cell repertoire fuels a feed forward loop that endows thymic B cells with tolerogenic features.