Modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) serves as a versatile platform in vaccine development. This highly attenuated orthopoxvirus, which cannot replicate in mammalian cells, triggers strong innate immune responses, including cell migration. Previously, we have shown that induction of chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) by MVA is necessary for the recruitment of monocytes and T cells, but not neutrophils, to the lung. Here, we identified neutrophil-attracting chemokines produced by MVA-infected primary murine lung fibroblasts and murine bone marrow-derived macrophages. We demonstrate that MVA, but not vaccinia virus (VACV) strain WR, induces chemokine expression, which is independent of Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) signaling. Additionally, we show that both chemokine (C-C motif) receptor 1 (CCR1) and chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 2 (CXCR2) are involved in MVA-induced neutrophil chemotaxis in vitro. Finally, intranasal infection of Ccr1(-/-) mice with MVA, as well as application of the CCR1 antagonist J-113863, revealed a role for CCR1 in leukocyte recruitment, including neutrophils, into the lung.
Retroviral infections e.g. HIV still represent a unique burden in the field of vaccine research. A common challenge in vaccine design is to find formulations that create appropriate immune responses to protect against and/or control the given pathogen. Nanoparticles have been considered to be ideal vaccination vehicles that mimic invading pathogens. In this study, we present biodegradable calcium phosphate (CaP) nanoparticles, functionalized with CpG and retroviral T cell epitopes of Friend virus (FV) as excellent vaccine delivery system. CaP nanoparticles strongly increased antigen delivery to antigen-presenting cells to elicit a highly efficient T cell-mediated immune response against retroviral FV infection. Moreover, single-shot immunization of chronically FV-infected mice with functionalized CaP nanoparticles efficiently reactivated effector T cells which led to a significant decrease in viral loads. Thus, our findings clearly indicate that a nanoparticle-based peptide immunization is a promising approach to improve antiretroviral vaccination.
The current candidate vaccine against Yersinia pestis infection consists of two subunit proteins: the capsule protein or F1 protein and the low calcium response V protein or V-antigen. Little is known of the recognition of the vaccine by the host's innate immune system and how it affects the acquired immune response to the vaccine. Thus, we vaccinated Toll-like receptor (Tlr) 2, 4, and 2/4-double deficient, as well as signal adaptor protein Myd88-deficient mice. We found that Tlr4 and Myd88 appeared to be required for an optimal immune response to the F1-V vaccine but not Tlr2 when compared to wild-type mice. However, there was a difference between the requirement for Tlr4 and MyD88 in vaccinated animals. When F1-V vaccinated Tlr4 mutant (lipopolysaccharide tolerant) and Myd88-deficient mice were challenged by aerosol with Y. pestis CO92, all but one Tlr4 mutant mice survived the challenge, but no vaccinated Myd88-deficient mice survived the challenge. Spleens from these latter nonsurviving mice showed that Y. pestis was not cleared from the infected mice. Our results suggest that MyD88 appears to be important for both an optimal immune response to F1-V and in protection against a lethal challenge of Y. pestis CO92 in F1-V vaccinated mice.
Accumulation of Alu RNA transcripts due to DICER1 deficiency in the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) promotes geographic atrophy. Recently we showed that Alu RNA activated the NLRP3 inflammasome, leading to RPE cell death via interleukin-18 (IL-18)-mediated MyD88 signaling. However, the molecular basis for NLRP3 inflammasome activation by Alu RNA is not well understood. We sought to decipher the key signaling events triggered by Alu RNA that lead to priming and activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome and, ultimately, to RPE degeneration by investigating the roles of the purinoreceptor P2X7, the transcription factor NF-?B, and the Toll-like receptors (TLRs) in these processes.
The immune system recognizes pathogens and other danger by means of pattern recognition receptors. Recently, we have demonstrated that the orphan Toll-like receptor 13 (TLR13) senses a defined sequence of the bacterial rRNA and that bacteria use specific mechanisms to evade macrolide lincosamide streptogramin (MLS) antibiotics detection via TLR13.
Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) is a component of the innate immune system, which recognizes the DNA of both pathogens and hosts. Thus, it can drive autoimmune diseases. Intracellular antibodies expressed inside the ER block transitory protein functions by inhibiting the translocation of the protein from the ER to its subcellular destination. Here, we describe the construction and characterization of an anti-TLR9 ER intrabody (?T9ib). The respective single-chain Fv comprises the variable domains of the heavy and light chain of a monoclonal antibody (mAb; 5G5) towards human and murine TLR9. Co-expression of ?T9ib and mouse TLR9 in HEK293 cells resulted in co-localization of both molecules with the ER marker calnexin. Co-immunoprecipitation of mouse TLR9 with ?T9ib indicated that ?T9ib interacts with its cognate antigen. The expression of ?T9ib inhibited NF-?B-driven reporter gene activation upon CpG DNA challenge but not the activation of TLR3 or TLR4. Consequently, TLR9-driven TNF? production was inhibited in RAW264.7 macrophages upon transfection with the ?T9ib expression plasmid. The ?T9ib-encoding open reading frame was integrated into an adenoviral cosmid vector to produce the recombinant adenovirus (AdV)-?T9ib. Transduction with AdV?T9ib specifically inhibited TLR9-driven cellular TNF? release. These data strongly indicate that ?T9ib is a very promising experimental tool to block TLR9 signaling.
Natural killer (NK) cells play an important role in the defense against viral infections. Activation of resting NK cells is tightly controlled by the balance of surface inhibitory and activating receptors and aided by cytokines released by accessory cells along the anti-viral response. On the other hand, NK cells express functional pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) whose function has been mostly addressed by the use of synthetic agonists. The present study was undertaken to investigate whether NK cells could directly recognize a complex pathogen such as Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV). Exposure of primary human NK cells to HCMV (TB40/E strain) induced the expression of CD69, promoted IFN? secretion, and increased their cytotoxic activity against HCMV-infected autologous monocyte-derived dendritic cells. The divergent response induced by infective and UV-inactivated virions indicated the involvement of different NK cell sensors in the recognition of HCMV. The fact that NK cell activation could be partially prevented by blocking mAb specific for IFNAR and TLR2, together with the induction of IFN? mRNA, supported the involvement of IFN? and TLR2 in the response to HCMV. Thus, our data indicate that simultaneous activation of several PRRs leads to the autonomous priming of NK cell effector functions and could be a previously unappreciated mechanism presumably contributing to the control of HCMV infection.
The beneficial effects of nonpathogenic bacteria are increasingly being recognized. We reported in a placebo-controlled study with atopic dermatitis (AD) patients that cutaneous exposure to lysates of nonpathogenic bacteria alleviates skin inflammation. To now unravel underlying mechanisms, immune consequences of sensing nonpathogenic bacterium Vitreoscilla filiformis lysate (Vf) were characterized analyzing (1) differentiation of dendritic cells (DCs) and, consecutively, (2) effector functions of DCs and T helper (Th) cells in vitro and in a murine model of AD in NC/Nga mice in vivo. Topical treatment with Vf significantly reduced AD-like inflammation in NC/Nga mice. Importantly, cutaneous exposure to Vf in combination with the allergen FITC significantly also reduced subsequent allergen-induced dermatitis indicating active immune modulation. Indeed, innate sensing of Vf predominantly induced IL-10-producing DCs, which was dependent on Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) activation. Vf-induced IL-10+ DCs primed naive CD4+ T helper cells to become regulatory IFN-?(low) IL-10(high) Tr1 (type 1 regulatory T) cells. These IL-10(high) Tr1 cells were also induced by Vf in vivo and strongly suppressed T effector cells and inflammation. In conclusion, we show that innate sensing of nonpathogenic bacteria by TLR2 induces tolerogenic DCs and regulatory Tr1 cells suppressing T effector cells and cutaneous inflammation. These findings indicate a promising therapeutic strategy for inflammatory skin diseases like AD.
Successful vaccination against intracellular pathogens requires the generation of cellular immune responses. Trehalose-6,6-dibehenate (TDB), the synthetic analog of the mycobacterial cord factor trehalose-6,6-dimycolate (TDM), is a potent adjuvant inducing strong Th1 and Th17 immune responses. We previously identified the C-type lectin Mincle as receptor for these glycolipids that triggers the FcR?-Syk-Card9 pathway for APC activation and adjuvanticity. Interestingly, in vivo data revealed that the adjuvant effect was not solely Mincle-dependent but also required MyD88. Therefore, we dissected which MyD88-dependent pathways are essential for successful immunization with a tuberculosis subunit vaccine. We show here that antigen-specific Th1/Th17 immune responses required IL-1 receptor-mediated signals independent of IL-18 and IL-33-signaling. ASC-deficient mice had impaired IL-17 but intact IFN? responses, indicating partial independence of TDB adjuvanticity from inflammasome activation. Our data suggest that the glycolipid adjuvant TDB triggers Mincle-dependent IL-1 production to induce MyD88-dependent Th1/Th17 responses in vivo.
This study was designed to test the responses of TLR2-knockout mice (TLR2-KO) and wild- type mice (C57/BL-6), and of CD36 deficient spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and their genetic controls [Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats] to systemic stimulations with the TLR2/6 agonist MALP-2 and the TLR4 agonist LPS. Fever and formation of TNF-? and IL-6 induced by intraperitoneal injections of MALP-2 (1000?µg/kg) were completely blunted in TLR2-KO, while LPS (100?µg/kg)-induced responses were not abolished in these animals. In SHR lacking CD36, a reduction of fever was observed in response to MALP-2 (100?µg/kg), but LPS-fever was even more attenuated in SHR when compared with WKY controls. Concentrations of circulating IL-6 tended to be lower in SHR after stimulation with both pyrogens. However, the IL-6-mediated activation of the transcription factor STAT3 in the brain was identical in both strains, indicating that the brain-controlled inflammatory response to MALP-2 (and LPS) is not impaired in the absence of CD36. In addition, stimulation of peritoneal macrophages with LPS and MALP-2 (10?µg/ml) caused the appearance of similar concentrations of bioactive cytokines in the supernatants from cells of both rat strains. These results demonstrate that TLR2 is essential for the manifestation of MALP-2, but not LPS-induced inflammatory responses. A moderate participation of CD36 in MALP-2-induced sickness- and cytokine-responses can not be ruled out but is unlikely as LPS-induced inflammatory responses were also attenuated in SHR.
Streptococcus pneumoniae meningitis causes brain damage through inflammation-related pathways whose identity and mechanisms of action are yet unclear. We previously identified caspase-1, which activates precursor IL-1 type cytokines, as a central mediator of inflammation in pneumococcal meningitis. In this study, we demonstrate that lack of the inflammasome components ASC or NLRP3 that are centrally involved in caspase-1 activation decreases scores of clinical and histological disease severity as well as brain inflammation in murine pneumococcal meningitis. Using specific inhibitors (anakinra and rIL-18-binding protein), we further show that ASC- and NLRP3-dependent pathologic alterations are solely related to secretion of both IL-1? and IL-18. Moreover, using differentiated human THP-1 cells, we demonstrate that the pneumococcal pore-forming toxin pneumolysin is a key inducer of IL-1? expression and inflammasome activation upon pneumococcal challenge. The latter depends on the release of ATP, lysosomal destabilization (but not disruption), and cathepsin B activation. The in vivo importance of this pathway is supported by our observation that the lack of pneumolysin and cathepsin B inhibition is associated with a better clinical course and less brain inflammation in murine pneumococcal meningitis. Collectively, our study indicates a central role of the NLRP3 inflammasome in the pathology of pneumococcal meningitis. Thus, interference with inflammasome activation might be a promising target for adjunctive therapy of this disease.
Defence mechanisms against intracellular bacterial pathogens are incompletely understood. Our study characterizes a type I IFN-dependent cell-autonomous defence pathway directed against Legionella pneumophila, an intracellular model organism and frequent cause of pneumonia. We show that macrophages infected with L. pneumophila produced IFN? in a STING- and IRF3- dependent manner. Paracrine type I IFNs stimulated upregulation of IFN-stimulated genes and a cell-autonomous defence pathway acting on replicating and non-replicating Legionella within their specialized vacuole. Our infection experiments in mice lacking receptors for type I and/or II IFNs show that type I IFNs contribute to expression of IFN-stimulated genes and to bacterial clearance as well as resistance in L. pneumophila pneumonia in addition to type II IFN. Overall, our study shows that paracrine type I IFNs mediate defence against L. pneumophila, and demonstrates a protective role of type I IFNs in in vivo infections with intracellular bacteria.
Filarial parasites have to trespass many barriers to successfully settle within their mammalian host, which is equipped with mechanical borders and complex weaponry of an evolved immune system. However, little is known about mechanisms of early local events in filarial infections. In this study, bone marrow-derived dendritic cells not only upregulated activation markers CD40 and CD80 upon in vitro stimulation with filarial extracts, but also secreted CCL17, a chemokine known to be produced upon microbial challenge. Mice deficient for CCL17 had an up to 4-fold higher worm burden compared with controls by day 10 of infection with the murine filaria Litomosoides sigmodontis. Also, numbers of mast cells (MCs) invading the skin and degranulation were significantly increased, which was associated with enhanced vascular permeability and larval establishment. This phenotype was reverted by inhibition of MC degranulation with disodium cromoglycate or by blockade of histamine. In addition, we showed that CCL17-mediated vascular permeability was dependent on the presence of Wolbachia endosymbionts and TLR2. Our findings reveal that CCL17 controls filarial larval entry by limiting MC-dependent vascular permeability.
Early during Gram-negative sepsis, excessive release of pro-inflammatory cytokines can cause septic shock that is often followed by a state of immune paralysis characterized by the failure to mount adaptive immunity towards secondary microbial infections. Especially, the early mechanisms responsible for such immune hypo-responsiveness are unclear. Here, we show that TLR4 is the key immune sensing receptor to initiate paralysis of T-cell immunity after bacterial sepsis. Downstream of TLR4, signalling through TRIF but not MyD88 impaired the development of specific T-cell immunity against secondary infections. We identified type I interferon (IFN) released from splenic macrophages as the critical factor causing T-cell immune paralysis. Early during sepsis, type I IFN acted selectively on dendritic cells (DCs) by impairing antigen presentation and secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Our results reveal a novel immune regulatory role for type I IFN in the initiation of septic immune paralysis, which is distinct from its well-known immune stimulatory effects. Moreover, we identify potential molecular targets for therapeutic intervention to overcome impairment of T-cell immunity after sepsis.
The appearance of group 1 CD1 proteins (CD1a, CD1b and CD1c) on maturing myeloid DC is a key event that converts myeloid DC to effective lipid APC. Here, we show that Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, triggers appearance of group 1 CD1 proteins at high density on the surface of human myeloid DC during infection. Within human skin, CD1b and CD1c expression was low or absent prior to infection, but increased significantly after experimental infections and in erythema migrans lesions from Lyme disease patients. The induction of CD1 was initiated by borrelial lipids acting through TLR-2 within minutes, but required 3 days for maximum effect. The delay in CD1 protein appearance involved a multi-step process whereby TLR-2 stimulated cells release soluble factors, which are sufficient to transfer the CD1-inducing effect in trans to other cells. Analysis of these soluble factors identified IL-1? as a previously unknown pathway leading to group 1 CD1 protein function. This study establishes that upregulation of group 1 CD1 proteins is an early event in B. burgdorferi infection and suggests a stepwise mechanism whereby bacterial cell walls, TLR activation and cytokine release cause DC precursors to express group 1 CD1 proteins.
The induction of type I IFN is the most immediate host response to viral infections. Type I IFN has a direct antiviral activity mediated by antiviral enzymes, but it also modulates the function of cells of the adaptive immune system. Many viruses can suppress type I IFN production, and in retroviral infections, the initial type I IFN is weak. Thus, one strategy of immunotherapy in viral infection is the exogenous induction of type I IFN during acute viral infection by TLR ligands. Along these lines, the TLR3/MDA5 ligand polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid [poly(I:C)] has already been used to treat viral infections. However, the immunological mechanisms underlying this successful therapy have not been defined until now. In this study, the Friend retrovirus (FV) mouse model was used to investigate the mode of action of poly(I:C) in antiretroviral immunotherapy. Postexposure, poly(I:C) treatment of FV-infected mice resulted in a significant reduction in viral loads and protection from virus-induced leukemia. This effect was IFN dependent because type I IFN receptor-deficient mice could not be protected by poly(I:C). The poly(I:C)-induced IFN response resulted in the expression of antiviral enzymes, which suppressed FV replication. Also, the virus-specific T cell response was augmented. Interestingly, it did not enhance the number of virus-specific CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells, but rather the functional properties of these cells, such as cytokine production and cytotoxic activity. The results demonstrate a direct antiviral and immunomodulatory effect of poly(I:C) and, therefore, suggests its potential for clinical treatment of retroviral infections.
Restoration of myocardial blood flow after ischemia triggers an inflammatory response involving toll-like receptors. Toll-like receptor 2 deficiency is associated with a reduced infarct size after myocardial ischemia and reperfusion. Because a marked mortality was observed in C3HeN wild-type mice, which was absent in TLR2 mice, we tested whether cardiac arrhythmias are the underlying pathology and aimed to elucidate how toll-like receptor 2 ligation might prevent lethal arrhythmias.
Restoration of myocardial blood flow after ischemia triggers an inflammatory response involving toll-like receptors (TLRs). TLR2(-/-)-mice show short-term advantages upon reperfusion injury as compared with WT controls. Accordingly, it has been shown that transient TLR2-blockade prior to reperfusion is associated with improved left-ventricular performance after myocardial scar formation. We present here adverse myocardial remodeling due to a chronic lack of TLR2 expression. Myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (MI/R) was surgically induced in C3HeN-mice by ligation of the left anterior descending coronary artery for 20 min, followed by 24 h or 28 days of reperfusion. TLR2(-/-)-mice and TLR2-Ab treated (T2.5) WT-mice displayed a reduction of infarct size, plasma troponin T concentrations, and leukocyte infiltration as compared with untreated controls after 24 h of reperfusion. After 28 days, however, magnetic resonance imaging revealed a marked left ventricular dilation in TLR2(-/-)-animals, which was associated with pronounced matrix remodeling characterized by reduced collagen and decorin density in the infarct scar. Our data show adverse effects on myocardial remodeling in TLR2(-/-)-mice. Although interception with TLR2 signaling is a promising concept for the prevention of reperfusion injury after myocardial ischemia, these data give cause for serious concern with respect to the time-point and duration of the potential treatment.
Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2 is a component of the innate immune system and senses specific pathogen associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) of both microbial and viral origin. Cell activation via TLR2 and other pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) contributes to sepsis pathology and chronic inflammation both relying on overamplification of an immune response. Intracellular antibodies expressed and retained inside the endoplasmatic reticulum (ER-intrabodies) are applied to block translocation of secreted and cell surface molecules from the ER to the cell surface resulting in functional inhibition of the target protein. Here we describe generation and application of a functional anti-TLR2 ER intrabody (alphaT2ib) which was generated from an antagonistic monoclonal antibody (mAb) towards human and murine TLR2 (T2.5) to inhibit the function of TLR2. alphaT2ib is a scFv fragment comprising the variable domain of the heavy chain and the variable domain of the light chain of mAb T2.5 linked together by a synthetic (Gly4Ser)3 amino acid sequence.
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are an evolutionarily conserved family of cell membrane receptors that are part of the innate immunity system playing an important role as a first response to tissue injury. TLR2 and TLR4 are constitutively expressed on renal epithelium, and their expression is enhanced following renal ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. Genetic deletion of either TLR2 or TLR4 protects from renal I/R injury. However, it is not known whether deletion of both combined protects the kidney more than a deletion of either one alone. Therefore, we performed renal I/R injury in mice lacking TLR2, TLR4, and TLR2/4, respectively. Our results demonstrate that there are no significant differences regarding protection from renal I/R injury in TLR2/4((-/-)) compared with either TLR2((-/-)) or TLR4((-/-)) gene-targeted mice as determined by histological evaluation and renal functional parameters. Furthermore, there was no difference in the number of apoptotic tubular cells and in nuclear translocation of nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-kappaB) between the TLR-gene-targeted groups. In parallel, in vitro experiments did not demonstrate an additional effect of the double genetic deletion compared with the single gene deletion with respect to tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha and interleukin (IL)-8 production in hypoxic isolated proximal tubular epithelial cells of the respective animals. In conclusion, a double genetic deletion of TLR2 and TLR4 confers a similar protection following renal I/R injury compared with single deletions of TLR2 and TLR4.
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) recognize specific molecular patterns derived from microbial components (exogenous ligands) or stressed cells (endogenous ligands). Stimulation of these receptors leads to a pronounced inflammatory response in a variety of acute animal models. Chronic allograft dysfunction (CAD) was regarded as a candidate disease to test whether TLRs influence chronic fibrosing inflammation. Potential endogenous renal TLR ligands, specifically for TLR2 and TLR4, have now been detected by a significant upregulation of glucose regulated protein (GRP)-94, fibrinogen, heat shock protein (HSP)-60, HSP-70, biglycan (Bgn) and high-mobility group box chromosomal protein 1 (HMGB1) in the acute and chronic transplant setting. In a genetic approach to define the contribution of TLR2 and TLR4, and their adaptor proteins MyD88 and TRIF [Toll/interleukin (IL)-1 receptor domain-containing adaptor-protein inducing interferon beta], to CAD, kidney transplantation of TLR wild-type grafts to recipients who were deficient in TLR2, TLR4, TLR2/4, MyD88 and TRIF was performed. TLR and adaptor protein deficiencies significantly improved the excretory function of chronic kidney grafts by between 65% and 290%, and histopathologic signs of chronic allograft damage were significantly ameliorated. T cells, dendritic cells (DCs) and foremost macrophages were reduced in grafts by up to 4.5-fold. The intragraft concentrations of IL-6, IL-10, monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1) and IL-12p70 were significantly lower. TLR-, MyD88- and TRIF-deficient recipients showed a significant reduction in fibrosis. alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA)-positive cells were decreased by up to ninefold, and collagen I and III were reduced by up to twofold. These findings highlight the functional relevance of TLRs and their two major signaling pathways in graft-infiltrating mononuclear cells in the pathophysiology of CAD. A TLR signaling blockade may be a therapeutic option for the prevention of CAD.
The pre- and postnatal environment may represent a window of opportunity for allergy and asthma prevention, and the hygiene hypothesis implies that microbial agents may play an important role in this regard. Using the cowshed-derived bacterium Acinetobacter lwoffii F78 together with a mouse model of experimental allergic airway inflammation, this study investigated the hygiene hypothesis, maternal (prenatal) microbial exposure, and the involvement of Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling in prenatal protection from asthma. Maternal intranasal exposure to A. lwoffii F78 protected against the development of experimental asthma in the progeny. Maternally, A. lwoffii F78 exposure resulted in a transient increase in lung and serum proinflammatory cytokine production and up-regulation of lung TLR messenger RNA. Conversely, suppression of TLRs was observed in placental tissue. To investigate further, the functional relevance of maternal TLR signaling was tested in TLR2/3/4/7/9(-/-) knockout mice. The asthma-preventive effect was completely abolished in heterozygous offspring from A. lwoffii F78-treated TLR2/3/4/7/9(-/-) homozygous mother mice. Furthermore, the mild local and systemic inflammatory response was also absent in these A. lwoffii F78-exposed mothers. These data establish a direct relationship between maternal bacterial exposures, functional maternal TLR signaling, and asthma protection in the progeny.
OM-89 (Uro-Vaxom) is a bacterial extract prepared from 18 uropathogenic Escherichia coli strains used for the prevention and treatment of recurrent infections of the urinary tract. The immunomodulating effects of the bacterial extract were investigated in a mouse model. After a single oral administration of OM-89, leukocyte activation was demonstrated ex vivo in blood and liver cells using a chemiluminescence assay. An increase of the production of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) in supernatants of peritoneal cells was also observed. After repeated oral administration of OM-89, increased serum immunoglobulin G responses against several E. coli strains were found. Also, adjuvant properties of the extract using ovalbumin as an antigen could be demonstrated. In line with these findings in the mouse system, preliminary in vitro data obtained in the human system showed an increase in TNF-alpha and interleukin-6 production after stimulation of monocyte derived dendritic cells with OM-89. The activation of immune cells is likely to be mediated via Toll like receptors (TLRs); thus, the binding of components of the extract to TLR-4 and marginally to TLR-2 could be shown.
With about 350 million virus carriers, hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection remains a major health problem. HBV is a noncytopathic virus causing persistent infection, but it is still unknown whether host recognition of HBV may activate an innate immune response. We describe that upon infection of primary human liver cells, HBV is recognized by nonparenchymal cells of the liver, mainly by liver macrophages (Kupffer cells), although they are not infected. Within 3 hours, this recognition leads to the activation of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) and subsequently to the release of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and other proinflammatory cytokines (IL-8, TNF-alpha, IL-1beta), but does not induce an interferon response. The activation of proinflammatory cytokines, however, is transient, and even inhibits responsiveness toward a subsequent challenge. IL-6 released by Kupffer cells after activation of NF-kappaB controls HBV gene expression and replication in hepatocytes at the level of transcription shortly after infection. Upon binding to its receptor complex, IL-6 activates the mitogen-activated protein kinases exogenous signal-regulated kinase 1/2, and c-jun N-terminal kinase, which inhibit expression of hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF) 1alpha and HNF 4alpha, two transcription factors essential for HBV gene expression and replication.
The immunostimulatory activity of lipids associated with the mycobacterial cell wall has been recognized for several decades and exploited in a large variety of different adjuvant preparations. Previously, we have shown that a mycobacterial lipid extract from Mycobacterium bovis bacillus Calmette-Guérin delivered in cationic liposomes was a particular efficient Th1-inducing adjuvant formulation effective against tuberculosis. Herein, we have dissected the adjuvant activity of the bacillus Calmette-Guérin lipid extract showing that the majority of the activity was attributable to the apolar lipids and more specifically to a single lipid, monomycoloyl glycerol (MMG), previously also shown to stimulate human dendritic cells. Delivered in cationic liposomes, MMG induced the most prominent Th1-biased immune response that provided significant protection against tuberculosis. Importantly, a simple synthetic analog of MMG, based on a 32 carbon mycolic acid, was found to give rise to comparable high Th1-biased responses with a major representation of polyfunctional CD4 T cells coexpressing IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and IL-2. Furthermore, comparable activity was shown by an even simpler monoacyl glycerol analog, based on octadecanoic acid. The use of these synthetic analogs of MMG represents a promising new strategy for exploiting the immunostimulatory activity and adjuvant potential of components from the mycobacterial cell wall without the associated toxicity issues observed with complex mycobacterial preparations.
Parapoxvirus ovis (PPVO) is a member of the Poxviridae family and belongs to the genus Parapoxvirus. It displays only limited homology with orthopoxviruses and has some molecular features such as an unusual high GC content distinct from orthopoxviruses. Inactivated PPVO (iPPVO) displays strong immunostimulatory capacities mediating antiviral activity in vivo. The role of dendritic cells (DC) and the pattern recognition receptors and signaling requirements responsible for immunostimulation by iPPVO are unknown. We demonstrate here that bone marrow-derived plasmacytoid DC (BM-pDC) and bone marrow-derived conventional DC (BM-cDC) secrete alpha/beta interferon (IFN-alpha/beta) in response to iPPVO. Furthermore, iPPVO induces tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) and interleukin-12/23p40 (IL-12/23p40) release and major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC-II), MHC-I, and CD86 upregulation by bone marrow-derived DC (BMDC). After engulfment, iPPVO is located in endosomal compartments and in the cytosol of BMDC. iPPVO elicits IFN-alpha/beta by Toll-like receptor (TLR)-independent pathways in BM-cDC, since IFN-alpha/beta release does not require myeloid differentiation primary response gene 88 (MyD88) or TIR-domain containing adaptor protein inducing interferon (TRIF). In contrast, iPPVO-induced TNF-alpha release and enhanced expression of MHC-I and CD86 but not of MHC-II by BMDC chiefly requires MyD88 but not TLR2 or TLR4. Induction of IFN-alpha by iPPVO in BM-cDC occurred in the absence of IFN regulatory factor 3 (IRF3) but required the presence of IRF7, whereas iPPVO-triggered IFN-beta production required the presence of either IRF7 or IRF3. These results provide the first evidence that iPPVO mediates its immunostimulatory properties by TLR-independent and TLR-dependent pathways and demonstrate an important role of cDC for IFN-alpha/beta production.
Mainly Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial infections, but also other infections such as with fungal or viral pathogens, can cause the life-threatening clinical condition of septic shock. Transgression of the host immune response from a local level limited to the pathogens place of entry to the systemic level is recognised as a major mode of action leading to sepsis. This view has been established upon demonstration of the capacity of specific pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) to elicit symptoms of septic shock upon systemic administration. Immune stimulatory PAMPs are agonists of soluble, cytoplasmic, as well as/or cell membrane-anchored and/or -spanning pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs). However, reflection of pathogen-host crosstalk triggering sepsis pathogenesis upon an infection by a host response to challenge with an isolated PAMP is incomplete. Therefore, an experimental model more reflective of pathogen-host interaction requires experimental host confrontation with a specific pathogen in its viable form resulting in a collective stimulation of a variety of specific PRRs. This chapter describes methods to analyse innate pathogen sensing by the host on both a cellular and systemic level.
Helicobacter pylori infects half of the worlds population, thereby causing significant human morbidity and mortality. The mechanisms by which professional antigen-presenting cells recognize the microbe are poorly understood.
Novel vaccination strategies against Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) are urgently needed. The use of recombinant MTB antigens as subunit vaccines is a promising approach, but requires adjuvants that activate antigen-presenting cells (APCs) for elicitation of protective immunity. The mycobacterial cord factor Trehalose-6,6-dimycolate (TDM) and its synthetic analogue Trehalose-6,6-dibehenate (TDB) are effective adjuvants in combination with MTB subunit vaccine candidates in mice. However, it is unknown which signaling pathways they engage in APCs and how these pathways are coupled to the adaptive immune response. Here, we demonstrate that these glycolipids activate macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs) via Syk-Card9-Bcl10-Malt1 signaling to induce a specific innate activation program distinct from the response to Toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands. APC activation by TDB and TDM was independent of the C-type lectin receptor Dectin-1, but required the immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif-bearing adaptor protein Fc receptor gamma chain (FcRgamma). In vivo, TDB and TDM adjuvant activity induced robust combined T helper (Th)-1 and Th-17 T cell responses to a MTB subunit vaccine and partial protection against MTB challenge in a Card9-dependent manner. These data provide a molecular basis for the immunostimulatory activity of TDB and TDM and identify the Syk-Card9 pathway as a rational target for vaccine development against tuberculosis.
HPV 16 L1 capsomeres purified from Escherichia coli represent a promising and potentially cost-effective alternative to the recently licensed VLP-based vaccines for the prevention of cervical cancer. However, recombinant protein preparations from bacteria always bear the risk of contaminating endotoxins which are highly toxic in humans and therefore have to be eliminated from vaccine preparations. In this study, we measured the LPS concentration at various stages of the purification of HPV 16 L1 from E. coli and determined that it enhances the immunogenicity of HPV 16 VLPs and capsomeres. We confirmed the immunogenicity of the L1 capsomeres in TLR4(-/-) mice without the enhancing effect of the LPS and then elaborated a suitable protocol using Triton X-114 phase separation for the removal of LPS without any significant protein loss or influence on the structural integrity of the particles. The LPS-free capsomeres purified from E. coli induced neutralizing L1-specific antibodies. Our results demonstrate the excellent potential of capsomeres as an economically interesting alternative vaccine to prevent cervical cancer that could be made available in developing countries.
Necrotic cells are known to activate the innate immune system and trigger inflammation by releasing damage associated molecular patterns (DAMPs). However, how necrotic cells influence the induction of antigen-specific CD8(+) T cell-mediated adaptive immune responses under sterile conditions, in the absence of pathogen associated molecular patterns (PAMPs), remains poorly understood. Here, we examined antigen-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses to primary sterile necrotic tumor cells both in vitro and in vivo. We found that primary necrotic cells alone fail to generate CD8(+) T cell-dependent immune responses toward cell-associated antigens. We show that necrotic cells trigger CD8(+) T-cell immunity only in the presence of PAMPs or analogs, such as p(dI-dC) and/or unmethylated CpG DNA. The electroporation of tumor cells with these PAMPs prior to necrosis induction triggered antigen-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses through a TLR9/MyD88-dependent pathway. In addition, we found that necrotic cells contain factors that can block the cross-priming of CD8(+) T cells even under non-sterile conditions and can serve as a possible mechanism of immunosuppression. These results suggest that antigen-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses to primary necrotic tumor cells can be induced in the presence of PAMPs and thus have a substantial impact on the development of antitumor vaccination strategies.
Host protection from infection relies on the recognition of pathogens by innate pattern-recognition receptors such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs). Here, we show that the orphan receptor TLR13 in mice recognizes a conserved 23S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) sequence that is the binding site of macrolide, lincosamide, and streptogramin group (MLS) antibiotics (including erythromycin) in bacteria. Notably, 23S rRNA from clinical isolates of erythromycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and synthetic oligoribonucleotides carrying methylated adenosine or a guanosine mimicking a MLS resistance-causing modification failed to stimulate TLR13. Thus, our results reveal both a natural TLR13 ligand and specific mechanisms of antibiotic resistance as potent bacterial immune evasion strategy, avoiding recognition via TLR13.
Mononuclear phagocytes are an important component of an innate immune system perceived as a system ready to react upon encounter of pathogens. Here, we show that in response to microbial stimulation, mononuclear phagocytes residing in nonmucosal lymphoid organs of germ-free mice failed to induce expression of a set of inflammatory response genes, including those encoding the various type I interferons (IFN-I). Consequently, NK cell priming and antiviral immunity were severely compromised. Whereas pattern recognition receptor signaling and nuclear translocation of the transcription factors NF-?B and IRF3 were normal in mononuclear phagocytes of germ-free mice, binding to their respective cytokine promoters was impaired, which correlated with the absence of activating histone marks. Our data reveal a previously unrecognized role for postnatally colonizing microbiota in the introduction of chromatin level changes in the mononuclear phagocyte system, thereby poising expression of central inflammatory genes to initiate a powerful systemic immune response during viral infection.
Propionibacterium acnes is usually a relatively harmless commensal. However, under certain, poorly understood conditions it is implicated in the etiology of specific inflammatory diseases. In mice, P. acnes exhibits strong immunomodulatory activity leading to splenomegaly, intrahepatic granuloma formation, hypersensitivity to TLR ligands and endogenous cytokines, and enhanced resistance to infection. All these activities reach a maximum one week after P. acnes priming and require IFN-? and TLR9. We report here the existence of a markedly delayed (1-2 weeks), but phenotypically similar TLR9-independent immunomodulatory response to P. acnes. This alternative immunomodulation is also IFN-? dependent and requires functional MyD88. From our experiments, a role for MyD88 in the IFN-?-mediated P. acnes effects seems unlikely and the participation of the known MyD88-dependent receptors, including TLR5, Unc93B-dependent TLRs, IL-1R and IL-18R in the development of the alternative response has been excluded. However, the crucial role of MyD88 can partly be attributed to TLR2 and TLR4 involvement. Either of these two TLRs, activated by bacteria and/or endogenously generated ligands, can fulfill the required function. Our findings hint at an innate immune sensitizing mechanism, which is potentially operative in both infectious and sterile inflammatory disorders.
Recognition of foreign nucleic acids is important for the induction of an innate immune response against invading pathogens. Although the pathways involved in sensing bacterial DNA and viral RNA are now well established, only limited knowledge is available on mechanisms underlying recognition of bacterial RNA. It has been reported that intracellular delivery of Escherichia coli RNA activates the Nlrp3 inflammasome, but whether this is a general property of bacterial RNA remains unclear as are the pathways involved in pro-IL-1? induction and caspase-1 activation by bacterial RNA. In this study, we report that bacterial RNA from both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria induces activation of caspase-1 and secretion of IL-1? by murine dendritic cells and bone-marrow derived macrophages. Stimulation was independent of the presence of 5-triphosphate termini and occurred with whole RNA preparations from bacteria but not from eukaryotes. Induction of pro-IL-1? as well as the priming for caspase-1 activation by bacterial RNA was dependent on UNC93B, an endoplasmic reticulum protein essential for delivery of TLRs to the endosome, whereas the established nucleic acid sensing endosomal TLRs 3, 7, and 9 were dispensable. Additionally, caspase-1 activation and IL-1? production by transfected bacterial RNA were absent in MyD88-deficient cells but independent of TRIF. Thus, our data indicate the presence of a yet unidentified intracellular nucleic acid receptor involved in bacterial RNA-induced inflammasome activation and release of IL-1?.
Poke weed mitogen (PWM), a lectin purified from Phytolacca americana is frequently used as a B cell-specific stimulus to trigger proliferation and immunoglobulin secretion. In the present study we investigated the mechanisms underlying the B cell stimulatory capacity of PWM. Strikingly, we observed that highly purified PWM preparations failed to induce B cell proliferation. By contrast, commercially available PWM preparations with B cell activity contained Toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands such as TLR2-active lipoproteins, lipopolysaccharide and DNA of bacterial origin. We show that these microbial substances contribute to the stimulatory activity of PWM. Additional experimental data highlight the capacity of PWM to enable B cell activation by immunostimulatory DNA. Based on these findings we propose that the lectin sensitizes B cells for TLR stimulation as described for B cell receptor ligation and that B cell mitogenicity of PWM preparations results from synergistic activity of the poke weed lectin and microbial TLR ligands present in the PWM preparations.
The function of P2X(7) receptors (ATP-gated ion channels) in innate immune cells is unclear. In the setting of Toll-like receptor (TLR) stimulation, secondary activation of P2X(7) ion channels has been linked to pro-caspase-1 cleavage and cell death. Here we show that cell death is a surprisingly early triggered event. We show using live-cell imaging that transient (1-4 min) stimulation of mouse macrophages with high extracellular ATP ([ATP]e) triggers delayed (hours) cell death, indexed as DEVDase (caspase-3 and caspase-7) activity. Continuous or transient high [ATP]e did not induce cell death in P2X(7)-deficient (P2X(7)(-/-)) macrophages or neutrophils (in which P2X(7) could not be detected). Blocking sustained Ca(2+) influx, a signature of P2X(7) ligation, was highly protective, whereas no protection was conferred in macrophages lacking caspase-1 or TLR2 and TLR4. Furthermore, pannexin-1 (Panx1) deficiency had no effect on transient ATP-induced delayed cell death or ATP-induced Yo-Pro-1 uptake (an index of large pore pathway formation). Thus, "transient" P2X(7) receptor activation and Ca(2+) overload act as a death trigger for native mouse macrophages independent of Panx1 and pro-inflammatory caspase-1 and TLR signaling.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.