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Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Bournazou I.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Mackenzie K.J.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Duffin R.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Rossi A.G.,Queens Medical Research Institute | And 2 more authors.
Immunology and Cell Biology | Year: 2010

Eosinophilic granulocytes are innate effector cells that are important in immune responses against helminth parasitic infections and contribute towards the pathology associated with allergic inflammatory conditions, including allergic rhinitis and asthma. Their recruitment to inflammatory sites occurs in response to chemotactic and activation signals, such as eotaxin and interleukin-5, and is a tightly controlled process. However, the mechanisms that counterbalance these positive chemoattractive processes, thereby preventing excessive eosinophil infiltration, have received little attention. Here, we show that, lactoferrin (LTF), a pleiotropic 80-kDa glycoprotein with iron-binding properties, acts as a powerful inhibitor of eosinophil migration. Irrespective of its source (milk or neutrophil derived), LTF inhibits eotaxin-stimulated eosinophil migration with no effects on eosinophil viability. Transferrin, a closely related cationic glycoprotein, failed to produce an analogous effect. Furthermore, the iron-saturation status of LTF did not influence the observed inhibitory effect on migration, proving that LTF exerts its effect on eosinophil chemotaxis independent of its iron-chelating activity. These results highlight LTF as one of the few molecules reported to negatively regulate eosinophil migration. Thus, through its ability to inhibit eosinophil migration, LTF has potential as an effective therapeutic in the control of eosinophil infiltration in atopic inflammatory conditions. © 2010 Australasian Society for Immunology Inc. All rights reserved. Source


Gregory C.D.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Gregory C.D.,ImmunoSolv Ltd | Pound J.D.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Pound J.D.,ImmunoSolv Ltd
Journal of Pathology | Year: 2011

Here we consider the impact of the physiological cell-death programme on normal tissue homeostasis and on disease pathogenesis, with particular reference to evolution and progression of neoplasia. We seek to describe the direct contributions played by apoptosis in creating the microenvironments of normal and malignant tissues and to discuss the molecular mechanisms underlying the elements of the '3Rs' that define the meaning of apoptosis: recognition, response, and removal. Apoptotic cells elicit responses in other cell types-both phagocytic and non-phagocytic-through short- and long-range signalling modes that range from direct contact to intercellular communication via membrane-bound microparticles. Such cellular responses include migration, proliferation, and differentiation, as well as production of immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory mediators together with, in the case of phagocytes, engulfment, and breakdown of apoptotic cells. In normal tissues, the removal of apoptotic cells is rapid and typically non-phlogistic. We discuss the importance of this clearance process in tissue homeostasis and the consequences of its failure in disease pathogenesis. Using the typical cell culture environment in vitro as an illustrative example in which apoptosis occurs commonly in the absence of the removal mechanisms, we also discuss the inhibitory effects of persistent apoptotic cells on their otherwise viable neighbours. Since apoptosis is a common and sustained event in high-grade malignancies, we hypothesize on its purposeful role in conditioning the tumour microenvironment. We propose that apoptosis subserves several pro-tumour functions-trophic, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory-and we identify strategies targeting host responses to apoptotic cells as promising modes of future therapies that could be applied to multiple cancer types in which tumour-cell apoptosis is active. Copyright © 2010 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Source


Gregory C.D.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Gregory C.D.,ImmunoSolv Ltd | Pound J.D.,Queens Medical Research Institute | Pound J.D.,ImmunoSolv Ltd
Apoptosis | Year: 2010

The apoptosis program of physiological cell death elicits a range of non-phlogistic homeostatic mechanisms-"recognition, response and removal"-that regulate the microenvironments of normal and diseased tissues via multiple modalities operating over short and long distances. The molecular mechanisms mediate intercellular signaling through direct contact with neighboring cells, release of soluble factors and production of membrane-delimited fragments (apoptotic bodies, blebs and microparticles) that allow for interaction with host cells over long distances. These processes effect the selective recruitment of mononuclear phagocytes and the specific activation of both phagocytic and non-phagocytic cells. While much evidence is available concerning the mechanisms underlying the recognition and responses of phagocytes that culminate in the engulfment and removal of apoptotic cell bodies, relatively little is yet known about the non-phagocytic cellular responses to the apoptosis program. These responses regulate inflammatory and immune cell activation as well as cell fate decisions of proliferation, differentiation and death. Here, we review current knowledge of these processes, considering especially how apoptotic cells condition the microenvironments of normal and malignant tissues. We also discuss how apoptotic cells that persist in the absence of phagocytic clearance exert inhibitory effects over their viable neighbors, paying particular attention to the specific case of cell cultures and highlighting how new cell-corpse-clearance devices-Dead-Cert ® Nanoparticles-can significantly improve the efficacy of cell cultures through effective removal of non-viable cells in the absence of phagocytes in vitro. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source


Sathe M.,Cranfield University | Sathe M.,Discovery Center Discovery Center | Derveni M.,Cranfield University | Broadbent G.,ImmunoSolv Ltd | And 6 more authors.
Analytica Chimica Acta | Year: 2011

In the present study, five different classes of small hydrophobic molecular targets, atypical for antibody generation, were structurally modified in order to introduce suitable reactive functionalities and/or spacers which allow covalent coupling to a carrier protein resulting in a stable carrier-hapten complex. These targets were chosen to serve as markers of extant and/or extinct life in the context of the development of the Life Marker Chip (LMC), an antibody-based instrument, which is being developed by a UK-led international consortium for flight to Mars on board the joint ESA/NASA Mars exploration ExoMars mission. The hapten-protein conjugates were designed to be used as immunogens for antibody generation and immunoassay reagents in subsequent stages of the LMC development. The extent of protein modification due to covalent attachment of hapten was determined by two independent methods, i.e. trinitrobenzenesulfonic acid (TNBSA) titrations of remaining protein reactive groups and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS) of the resultant hapten-protein conjugates. In a further quality validation step, the conjugates were presented to an animal's immune system and polyclonal antibody titres with moderate specificity were obtained. These results suggest that conjugates synthesized as described herein can successfully be used in the generation of antibodies targeting small hydrophobic molecules. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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