Laminins play a fundamental role in basement membrane architecture and function in human skin. The C-terminal laminin G domain-like (LG) modules of laminin ? chains are modified by proteolysis to generate LG1-3 and secreted LG4-5 tandem modules. In this study, we provide evidence that skin-derived cells process and secrete biologically active peptides from the LG4-5 module of the laminin ?3, ?4 and ?5 chain in vitro and in vivo. We show enhanced expression and processing of the LG4-5 module of laminin ?3 in keratinocytes after infection and in chronic wounds in which the level of expression and further processing of the LG4-5 module correlated with the speed of wound healing. Furthermore, bacterial or host-derived proteases promote processing of laminin ?3 LG4-5. On a functional level, we show that LG4-5-derived peptides play a role in wound healing. Moreover, we demonstrate that LG4-derived peptides from the ?3, ?4 and ?5 chains have broad antimicrobial activity and possess strong chemotactic activity to mononuclear cells. Thus, the data strongly suggest a novel multifunctional role for laminin LG4-5-derived peptides in human skin and its involvement in physiological processes and pathological conditions such as inflammation, chronic wounds and skin infection.
Mast cells (MC) are key mediators of the immune system, most prominently known for their role in eliciting harmful allergic reactions. Mast cell mediator release (e.g. by degranulation) is triggered by Fc?RI recognition of antigen - IgE complexes. Until today no therapeutic targeting of this and other mast cell activation pathways is established. Among possible new candidates there are tetraspanins that have been described on MC already several years ago. Tetraspanins are transmembrane proteins acting as scaffolds, mediating local clustering of their interaction partners, and thus amplify their activities. More recently, tetraspanins were also found to exert intrinsic receptor functions. Tetraspanins have been found to be crucial components of fundamental biological processes like cell motility and adhesion. In immune cells, they not only boost the effectiveness of antigen presentation by clustering MHC molecules, they are also key players in all kinds of degranulation events and immune receptor clustering. This review focuses on the contribution of tetraspanins clustered with Fc?RI or residing in granule membranes to classical MC functions but also undertakes an outlook on the possible contribution of tetraspanins to newly described mast cell functions and discusses possible targets for drug development.
T-cell activation and the subsequent transformation of activated T cells into T-cell blasts require profound changes in cell volume. However, the impact of cell volume regulation for T-cell immunology has not been characterized. Here we studied the role of the cell-volume regulating osmolyte transporter Taut for T-cell activation in Taut-deficient mice. T-cell mediated recall responses were severely impaired in taut(-/-) mice as shown with B16 melanoma rejection and hapten-induced contact hypersensitivity. CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells were unequivocally located within peripheral lymph nodes of unprimed taut(-/-) mice but significantly decreased in taut(-/-) compared with taut(+/+) mice following in vivo activation. Further analysis revealed that Taut is critical for rescuing T cells from activation-induced cell death in vitro and in vivo as shown with TCR, superantigen, and antigen-specific activation. Consequently, reduction of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells in taut(-/-) mice upon antigen challenge resulted in impaired in vivo generation of T-cell memory. These findings disclose for the first time that volume regulation in T cells is an element in the regulation of adaptive immune responses and that the osmolyte transporter Taut is crucial for T-cell survival and T-cell mediated immune reactions.
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