Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory

Rochester, MN, United States

Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory

Rochester, MN, United States
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Goyvaerts C.,Vrije Universiteit Brussel | De Vlaeminck Y.,Vrije Universiteit Brussel | Escors D.,Navarrabiomed | Lienenklaus S.,Hannover Medical School | And 3 more authors.
Gene Therapy | Year: 2017

Targeting transgene expression specifically to antigen-presenting cells (APCs) has been put forward as a promising strategy to direct the immune system towards immunity. We developed the nanobody-display technology to restrict the tropism of lentiviral vectors (LVs) to APCs. However, we observed that immunization with APC-targeted LVs (DC2.1-LVs) did not evoke strong antigen-specific T-cell immunity when compared to immunization with broad tropism LVs (VSV.G-LVs). In this study, we report that VSV.G-LVs are more immunogenic than DC2.1-LVs because they transduce stromal cells, which has a role in activating antigen-specific T cells. Moreover, VSV.G-LVs trigger a pro-inflammatory innate immune response through transduction of APCs and stromal cells, while DC2.1-LVs trigger a type I interferon response with anti-viral capacity. These findings question the rationale of targeting LVs to APCs and argue for the development of VSV.G-LVs with an improved safety profile. © 2017 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature.


Jones-Lopez E.C.,Boston University | Acuna-Villaorduna C.,Boston University | Fregona G.,Federal University of Espirito Santo | Marques-Rodrigues P.,Federal University of Espirito Santo | And 12 more authors.
BMC Infectious Diseases | Year: 2017

Background: In household contact investigations of tuberculosis (TB), a second tuberculin skin test (TST) obtained several weeks after a first negative result consistently identifies individuals that undergo TST conversion. It remains unclear whether this delay in M. tuberculosis infection is related to differences in the infectious exposure, TST boosting, partial host resistance, or some other factor. Methods: We conducted a household contact study Vitória, Brazil. Between 2008 and 2013, we identified culture-positive pulmonary TB patients and evaluated their household contacts with both a TST and interferon gamma release assay (IGRA), and identified TST converters at 8-12 weeks post study enrollment. Contacts were classified as TST-positive (≥10 mm) at baseline, TST converters, or persistently TST-negative. We compared TST converters to TST-positive and to TST-negative contacts separately, using generalized estimating equations. Results: We enrolled 160 index patients and 838 contacts; 523 (62.4%) were TST+, 62 (7.4%) TST converters, and 253 (30.2%) TST'. TST converters were frequently IGRA' at 8-12 weeks. In adjusted analyses, characteristics distinguishing TST converters from TST+ contacts (no contact with another TB patient and residence ownership) were different than those differentiating them from TST' contacts (stronger cough in index patient and contact BCG scar). Conclusions: The individual risk and timing of M. tuberculosis infection within households is variable and dependent on index patient, contact and environmental factors within the household, and the surrounding community. Our findings suggest a threshold effect in the risk of infection in humans. © 2017 The Author(s).


Ribeiro-Rodrigues R.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Coelho Da Silva F.D.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Collins L.,Boston University | Palaci M.,Federal University of Espirito Santo | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) release assays (IGRAs) such as the Quantiferon Gold In-tube test are in vitro assays that measure IFN-γ release from T cells in response to M. tuberculosis (Mtb)-specific antigens. Unlike the tuberculin skin test (TST), IGRA is specific and able to distinguish Mtb-infection from BCG vaccination. In this study we evaluated the concordance between TST and IGRA and the efficacy of IGRA in diagnosing new Mtb infection in household contacts (HHC) of pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) cases. A total of 357 HHC of TB cases in Vitória, Brazil were studied. A TST was performed within 2 weeks following enrollment of the HHC and if negative a second TST was performed at 8-12 weeks. HHC were categorized as initially TST positive (TST+), persistently TST negative (TST-), or TST converters (TSTc), the latter representative of new infection. IGRA was performed at 8-12 weeks following enrollment and the test results were positive in 82% of TST+, 48% of TSTc, and 12% of TST-, indicating poor concordance between the two test results among HHC in each category. Evaluating CXCL10 levels in a subset of IGRA supernatants or lowering the IGRA cutoff value to define a positive test increased agreement between TST and IGRA test results. However, ROC curves demonstrated that this resulted in a trade-off between sensitivity and specificity of IGRA with respect to TST. Together, the findings suggest that until the basis for the discordance between TST and IGRA is fully understood, it may be necessary to utilize both tests to diagnose new Mtb infection in recently exposed HHC. Operationally, in IGRA negative HHC, it may be useful to employ a lower cutoff value for IGRA to allow closer monitoring for potential conversion. © 2014 Ribeiro-Rodrigues et al.


Chaudhuri S.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Chaudhuri S.,University of Calcutta | Bhattacharya D.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Singh M.K.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | And 3 more authors.
Molecular Immunology | Year: 2015

Malignant glioma is the most lethal of a wide array of CNS neoplasms. Its onset and progression are markedly associated with profound immunosupression and paralysis of T-cell survival and proliferation. Myriad immunotherapeutic strategies are presently used to target such T-cell anomalies in glioma. Our recent work has highlighted use of the novel glycopeptide, the CD2 ligand, T11 target structure (T11TS) as an immunotherapeutic agent against experimentally induced glioma in rats. We have shown that T11TS causes multi-target modulation of key components of the T-cell - antigen presenting cell (APC) immunological synapse. This consequently triggers T-cell activation so as to reverse glioma-induced changes to physiological levels. T11TS administration also causes CD2 upregulation. Earlier we also found T11TS to cause enhanced proliferation of both CD4+ and CD8+ T-cells in glioma conditions. These findings led us to believe that downstream CD2-stimulated "alternative pathway" of calcineurin-NFAT could be a possible target for modulation by T11TS. In the present paper we thus show that immunotherapy with T11TS induces a multi-targeted approach towards activation of this "alternative pathway" of T-cell signaling providing an immunotherapeutic advantage against glioma. We show here that T11TS immunotherapy causes positive modulations of the CD2 pathway-associated proteins, viz., p59fyn, protein kinase C-θ (PKC-θ), calcineurin and nuclear factor for activation of T-cells (NFAT) and hint that this may accord greater survival and proliferation advantage to T-cells of the glioma-bearing animals for augmented defence against glioma. These findings help open a molecular immunotherapeutic door - one which is directed towards clinical studies for glioma-immunotherapy using T11TS. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.


Bhattacharya D.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Chaudhuri S.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory | Singh M.K.,Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory
Experimental and Molecular Pathology | Year: 2015

Malignant gliomas represent one of the most aggressive and hypervascular primary brain tumors. Angiopoietin-1, the peptide growth factor activates endothelial Tie-2 receptor promoting vessel maturation and vascular stabilization steps of angiogenesis in glioma. Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and Tie-2 receptor on endothelial cells once activated transmits signals through downstream Raf/MEK/ERK pathway promoting endothelial cell proliferation and migration which are essential for angiogenesis induction. The in vivo effect of sheep erythrocyte membrane glycopeptide T11-target structure (T11TS) on angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 axis, EGFR signaling and Raf/MEK/ERK pathway in glioma associated endothelial cells has not been investigated previously. The present study performed with rodent glioma model aims to investigate the effect of T11TS treatment on angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 signaling, EGFR activity and Raf/MEK/ERK pathway in glioma associated endothelial cells within glioma milieu. T11TS administration in rodent glioma model inhibited angiopoietin-1 expression and attenuated Tie-2 expression and activation in glioma associated brain endothelial cells. T11TS treatment also downregulated total and phosphorylated EGFR expression in glioma associated endothelial cells. Additionally T11TS treatment inhibited Raf-1 expression, MEK-1 and ERK-1/2 expression and phosphorylation in glioma associated brain endothelial cells. Thus T11TS therapy remarkably inhibits endothelial angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 signaling associated with vessel maturation and simultaneously antagonizes endothelial cell proliferation signaling by blocking EGFR activation and components of Raf/MEK/ERK pathway. Collectively, the findings demonstrate a multi-targeted anti-angiogenic activity of T11TS which augments the potential for clinical translation of T11TS as an effective angiogenesis inhibitor for glioma treatment. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.


Jones-Lopez E.C.,Boston University | Kim S.,Rutgers University | Fregona G.,Federal University of Espirito Santo | Marques-Rodrigues P.,Federal University of Espirito Santo | And 13 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Rationale: The degree to which tuberculosis (TB) is transmitted between persons is variable. Identifying the factors that contribute to transmission could provide new opportunities for TB control. Transmission is influenced by host, bacterial and environmental factors. However, distinguishing their individual effects is problematic because measures of disease severity are tightly correlated, and assessing the virulence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates is complicated by epidemiological and clinical confounders. Objectives: To overcome these problems, we investigated factors potentially associated with TB transmission within households. Methods: We evaluated patients with smear-positive (≥2+), pulmonary TB and classified M. tuberculosis strains into single nucleotide polymorphism genetic cluster groups (SCG). We recorded index case, household contact, and environmental characteristics and tested contacts with tuberculin skin test (TST) and interferon-gamma release assay. Households were classified as high (≥70% of contacts with TST ≥10 mm) and low (≤40%) transmission. We used logistic regression to determine independent predictors. Result: From March 2008 to June 2012, we screened 293 TB patients to enroll 124 index cases and their 731 contacts. There were 23 low and 73 high transmission households. Index case factors associated with high transmission were severity of cough as measured by a visual analog cough scale (VACS) and the Leicester Cough Questionnaire (LCQ), and cavitation on chest radiograph. SCG 3b strains tended to be more prevalent in low (27.3%) than in high (12.5%) transmission households (p = 0.11). In adjusted models, only VACS (p<0.001) remained significant. SCG was associated with bilateral disease on chest radiograph (p = 0.002) and marginally associated with LCQ sores (p = 0.058), with group 3b patients having weaker cough. Conclusions: We found differential transmission among otherwise clinically similar patients with advanced TB disease. We propose that distinct strains may cause differing patterns of cough strength and cavitation in the host leading to diverging infectiousness. Larger studies are needed to verify this hypothesis. © 2014 Jones-López et al.


PubMed | Boston University, Mycobacteriology Laboratory, Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory, Federal University of Espirito Santo and Rutgers University
Type: Clinical Trial | Journal: PloS one | Year: 2014

The degree to which tuberculosis (TB) is transmitted between persons is variable. Identifying the factors that contribute to transmission could provide new opportunities for TB control. Transmission is influenced by host, bacterial and environmental factors. However, distinguishing their individual effects is problematic because measures of disease severity are tightly correlated, and assessing the virulence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates is complicated by epidemiological and clinical confounders.To overcome these problems, we investigated factors potentially associated with TB transmission within households.We evaluated patients with smear-positive (2+), pulmonary TB and classified M. tuberculosis strains into single nucleotide polymorphism genetic cluster groups (SCG). We recorded index case, household contact, and environmental characteristics and tested contacts with tuberculin skin test (TST) and interferon-gamma release assay. Households were classified as high (70% of contacts with TST10 mm) and low (40%) transmission. We used logistic regression to determine independent predictors.From March 2008 to June 2012, we screened 293 TB patients to enroll 124 index cases and their 731 contacts. There were 23 low and 73 high transmission households. Index case factors associated with high transmission were severity of cough as measured by a visual analog cough scale (VACS) and the Leicester Cough Questionnaire (LCQ), and cavitation on chest radiograph. SCG 3b strains tended to be more prevalent in low (27.3%) than in high (12.5%) transmission households (p=0.11). In adjusted models, only VACS (p<0.001) remained significant. SCG was associated with bilateral disease on chest radiograph (p=0.002) and marginally associated with LCQ sores (p=0.058), with group 3b patients having weaker cough.We found differential transmission among otherwise clinically similar patients with advanced TB disease. We propose that distinct strains may cause differing patterns of cough strength and cavitation in the host leading to diverging infectiousness. Larger studies are needed to verify this hypothesis.


PubMed | Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of cellular physiology | Year: 2016

Malignant glioma continues to be a clinical challenge with an urgent need for developing curative therapeutic intervention. Apoptosis induction in tumor-associated endothelial cells represent a central mechanism that counteracts angiogenesis in glioma and other solid tumors. We previously demonstrated that intraperitoneal administration of sheep erythrocyte membrane glycopeptide T11-target structure (T11TS) in rodent glioma model inhibits PI3K/Akt pathway and Raf/MEK/ERK signaling in glioma-associated brain endothelial cells. In the present study, we investigated whether T11TS treatment influence apoptosis signaling in vivo in glioma-associated brain endothelial cells. Annexin-V/PI staining showed that T11TS treatment in glioma-induced rats increases apoptosis of glioma-associated endothelial cells within glioma milieu compared to brain endothelial cells in glioma induced and control groups. Flowcytometric JC-1 assay revealed that T11TS administration triggers loss of mitochondrial membrane potential in glioma-associated brain endothelial cells. Flowcytometry, immunoblotting, and in situ immunofluoresecnt imaging were employed to investigate the effect of T11TS on apoptotic regulatory proteins in brain endothelial cells. T11TS treatment-upmodulated expression of p53, Bax, Fas, FasL, and FADD in glioma associated endothelial cells and downregulated Bcl-2 protein. T11TS therapy induced cytochrome-c release into cytosol, activated caspase -9, 8, 3, and cleaved Bid in glioma associated brain endothelial cells. The study demonstrates that T11TS induces apoptosis in glioma-associated brain endothelial cells via p53 accumulation and activation of intrinsic as well as Fas-dependent extrinsic pathway. The pro-apoptotic action of T11TS on glioma-associated endothelial cells provides crucial insight into how T11TS exerts its anti-angiogenic function in glioma. J. Cell. Physiol. 232: 526-539, 2017. 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


PubMed | University of Calcutta, National Institute of Immunology and Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Molecular immunology | Year: 2015

Malignant glioma is the most lethal of a wide array of CNS neoplasms. Its onset and progression are markedly associated with profound immunosupression and paralysis of T-cell survival and proliferation. Myriad immunotherapeutic strategies are presently used to target such T-cell anomalies in glioma. Our recent work has highlighted use of the novel glycopeptide, the CD2 ligand, T11 target structure (T11TS) as an immunotherapeutic agent against experimentally induced glioma in rats. We have shown that T11TS causes multi-target modulation of key components of the T-cell - antigen presenting cell (APC) immunological synapse. This consequently triggers T-cell activation so as to reverse glioma-induced changes to physiological levels. T11TS administration also causes CD2 upregulation. Earlier we also found T11TS to cause enhanced proliferation of both CD4+ and CD8+ T-cells in glioma conditions. These findings led us to believe that downstream CD2-stimulated alternative pathway of calcineurin-NFAT could be a possible target for modulation by T11TS. In the present paper we thus show that immunotherapy with T11TS induces a multi-targeted approach towards activation of this alternative pathway of T-cell signaling providing an immunotherapeutic advantage against glioma. We show here that T11TS immunotherapy causes positive modulations of the CD2 pathway-associated proteins, viz., p59fyn, protein kinase C- (PKC-), calcineurin and nuclear factor for activation of T-cells (NFAT) and hint that this may accord greater survival and proliferation advantage to T-cells of the glioma-bearing animals for augmented defence against glioma. These findings help open a molecular immunotherapeutic door - one which is directed towards clinical studies for glioma-immunotherapy using T11TS.


PubMed | Cellular and Molecular Immunology Laboratory
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Experimental and molecular pathology | Year: 2015

Malignant gliomas represent one of the most aggressive and hypervascular primary brain tumors. Angiopoietin-1, the peptide growth factor activates endothelial Tie-2 receptor promoting vessel maturation and vascular stabilization steps of angiogenesis in glioma. Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and Tie-2 receptor on endothelial cells once activated transmits signals through downstream Raf/MEK/ERK pathway promoting endothelial cell proliferation and migration which are essential for angiogenesis induction. The in vivo effect of sheep erythrocyte membrane glycopeptide T11-target structure (T11TS) on angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 axis, EGFR signaling and Raf/MEK/ERK pathway in glioma associated endothelial cells has not been investigated previously. The present study performed with rodent glioma model aims to investigate the effect of T11TS treatment on angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 signaling, EGFR activity and Raf/MEK/ERK pathway in glioma associated endothelial cells within glioma milieu. T11TS administration in rodent glioma model inhibited angiopoietin-1 expression and attenuated Tie-2 expression and activation in glioma associated brain endothelial cells. T11TS treatment also downregulated total and phosphorylated EGFR expression in glioma associated endothelial cells. Additionally T11TS treatment inhibited Raf-1 expression, MEK-1 and ERK-1/2 expression and phosphorylation in glioma associated brain endothelial cells. Thus T11TS therapy remarkably inhibits endothelial angiopoietin-1/Tie-2 signaling associated with vessel maturation and simultaneously antagonizes endothelial cell proliferation signaling by blocking EGFR activation and components of Raf/MEK/ERK pathway. Collectively, the findings demonstrate a multi-targeted anti-angiogenic activity of T11TS which augments the potential for clinical translation of T11TS as an effective angiogenesis inhibitor for glioma treatment.

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