Molecular Immunology Unit

Molecular Immunology Unit

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Charrier S.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Charrier S.,University of Évry Val d'Essonne | Blundell M.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Blundell M.,University College London | And 12 more authors.
Haematologica | Year: 2013

The Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein is an essential cytoskeleton regulator found in cells of the hematopoietic lineage and controls the motility of leukocytes. The impact of WAS gene deficiency on the mobilization of hematopoietic progenitor/stem cells in circulation has remained unexplored but information would be pertinent in the context of autologous gene therapy of Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome. The response to granulocyte-colony stimulating factor mobilization was investigated in a murine WAS knock-out model of the disease, by measuring hematologic parameters, circulation and engraftment of hematopoietic progenitor/stem cells. In the steady-state, adult WAS knock-out mice have B-cell lymphopenia, marked neutrophilia, increased counts of circulating hematopoietic progenitor cells and splenomegaly, presumably caused by the retention of hematopoietic progenitor cells due to high levels of splenic CXCL12. In spite of these anomalies, the administration of granulocyte-colonystimulating factor mobilizes progenitor/stem cells in WAS knock-out mice to the same level and with the same kinetics as in wild-type control mice. Mobilized peripheral blood cells from WAS knock-out mice can be transduced and are able to engraft into lethally-irradiated hosts reconstituting multiple lineages of cells and providing more effective radio-protection than mobilized cells from wild-type control mice. Surprisingly, the homing and the peripheral blood recovery of B lymphocytes was influenced by the background of the host. Thus, in the absence of Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein, effective mobilization is achieved but partial correction may occur as a result of an abnormal hematopoietic environment. © 2013 Ferrata Storti Foundation.

PubMed | University of Palermo, San Raffaele Scientific Institute, University of Brescia and Molecular Immunology Unit
Type: | Journal: Molecular cancer therapeutics | Year: 2016

Prostate cancer is a leading cause of death by cancer in male worldwide. Indeed, advanced and metastatic disease characterized by androgen resistance and often associated with neuroendocrine (NE) differentiation remains incurable. Using the spontaneous prostate cancer TRAMP model, we have shown that mast cells (MCs) support in vivo the growth of prostate adenocarcinoma, whereas their genetic or pharmacologic targeting favours prostate NE cancer arousal. Aiming at simultaneously targeting prostate NE tumor cells and MCs, both expressing the cKit tyrosine kinase receptor, we have tested the therapeutic effect of Imatinib in TRAMP mice. Imatinib-treated TRAMP mice experience a partial benefit against prostate adenocarcinoma, because of inhibition of supportive MCs. However, they show an unexpected outgrowth of prostate NE tumors, likely because of defective signaling pathway downstream of cKit receptor. Also unexpected but very effective was the inhibition of epithelial-stromal tumors of the seminal vesicles achieved by Imatinib treatment. These tumors normally arise in the seminal vesicles of TRAMP mice, independently of the degree of prostatic glandular lesions, and resemble phyllodes tumors found in human prostate and seminal vesicles, and in breast. In both mice and in patients, these tumors are negative for cKit but express PDGFR-, another tyrosine kinase receptor specifically inhibited by Imatinib. Our results imply a possible detrimental effect of Imatinib in prostate cancer patients but suggest a promising therapeutic application of Imatinib in the treatment of recurrent or metastatic phyllodes tumors.

Albon S.J.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Mancao C.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Gilmour K.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Gilmour K.,Camelia Botnar Laboratories | And 7 more authors.
Cytotherapy | Year: 2013

Background aims. Immunotherapy with allodepleted donor T cells improves immunity after T cell-depleted hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. We developed a methodology for selective depletion of alloreactive T cells after activation with host antigen-presenting cells by targeting T cells up-regulating CD25 and CD71. Combined depletion of these cells yields a pool of allodepleted donor T cells with antiviral properties with minimal capacity to cause graft-versus-host disease. Methods. Mature dendritic cells were irradiated and used to stimulate donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells for 4 days. The co-culture was stained with anti-CD71-biotin followed by CliniMACS CD25 and Anti-Biotin Reagents (Miltenyi Biotec GmbH; Bergisch Gladbach, Germany) before depletion on the CliniMACS Plus (Miltenyi Biotec GmbH). Residual alloreactivity was tested by flow cytometry, a secondary mixed lymphocyte reaction and limiting dilution analysis, and specific anti-viral immunity with pentamer staining. The large-scale protocol was tested under current good manufacturing practice conditions in five donor-recipient pairs of human leukocyte antigen-matched volunteer donors. Results. We developed a closed-system methodology using cell differentiation bags for cell culture and the COBE2991 Cell Processor (CaridianBCT, Lakewood, CO, USA). We also validated an anti-CD71-biotin generated for ex vivo clinical use. In five large-scale runs, the depleted fraction demonstrated excellent viability (99.9%), minimal residual expression of CD3/CD25 and CD3/CD71 (<0.2%) and passed tests for Mycoplasma, endotoxin, bacterial and fungal sterility. In secondary mixed lymphocyte reaction assays, the median response to host after allodepletion was 0%, whereas responses to third-party peripheral blood mononuclear cells were preserved (median, 105%; range 37%-350%). Limiting dilution analysis assays also demonstrated a reduction in response to host (median, -1.11 log) with preservation of third-party responses, and testing with human leukocyte antigen-restricted pentamers showed that populations of Epstein-Barr virus-specific and cytomegalovirus- specific CD8+ T cells were retained after depletion. Conclusions. We optimized a protocol for the combined immunomagnetic depletion of alloreactive CD25/CD71 T cells under current good manufacturing practice conditions and tested the efficacy in five donor-recipient pairs. © 2013, International Society for Cellular Therapy.

Sangaletti S.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Tripodo C.,University of Palermo | Vitali C.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Portararo P.,Molecular Immunology Unit | And 9 more authors.
Cancer Discovery | Year: 2014

Altered expression of matricellular proteins can become pathogenic in the presence of persistent perturbations in tissue homeostasis. Here, we show that autoimmunity associated with Fasmutation was exacerbated and transitioned to lymphomagenesis in the absence of SPARC (secreted protein acidic rich in cysteine). The absence of SPARC resulted in defective collagen assembly, with uneven compartmentalization of lymphoid and myeloid populations within secondary lymphoid organs (SLO), and faulty delivery of inhibitory signals from the extracellular matrix. These conditions promoted aberrant interactions between neutrophil extracellular traps and CD5 + B cells, which underwent malignant transformation due to defective apoptosis under the pressure of neutrophil-derived trophic factors and NF-κB activation. Furthermore, this model of defective stromal remodeling during lymphomagenesis correlates with human lymphomas arising in a SPARC-defective environment, which is prototypical of CD5+ B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). SIGNIFICANCE: These results reveal the importance of stromal remodeling in SLO to accommodate autoimmune lymphoproliferation while preventing lymphomagenesis. Our fi ndings reveal a link between SPARC, collagen deposition, and the engagement of the immune-inhibitory receptor LAIR-1 on neutrophils, neutrophil cell death via NETosis, and the stimulation of CD5 + B-cell proliferation. Moreover, we show that SPARC deficiency promotes CD5 + B-cell lymphomagenesis and is correlated with CLL in humans. © 2013 AACR.

Alla V.,University of Rostock | Engelmann D.,University of Rostock | Niemetz A.,University of Rostock | Pahnke J.,Molecular Immunology Unit | And 6 more authors.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute | Year: 2010

Metastases are responsible for cancer deaths, but the molecular alterations leading to tumor progression are unclear. Overexpression of the E2F1 transcription factor is common in high-grade tumors that are associated with poor patient survival. To investigate the association of enhanced E2F1 activity with aggressive phenotype, we performed a gene-specific silencing approach in a metastatic melanoma model. Knockdown of endogenous E2F1 via E2F1 small hairpin RNA (shRNA) expression increased E-cadherin expression of metastatic SK-Mel-147 melanoma cells and reduced their invasive potential but not their proliferative activity. Although growth rates of SK-Mel-147 and SK-Mel-103 xenograft tumors expressing E2F1 shRNA or control shRNA were similar, mice implanted with cells expressing E2F1 shRNA had a smaller area of metastases per lung than control mice (n=3 mice per group; 5% vs 46%, difference=41%, 95% confidence interval=15% to 67%; P =. 01; one-way analysis of variance). We identified epidermal growth factor receptor as a direct target of E2F1 and demonstrated that inhibition of receptor signaling abrogates E2F1-induced invasiveness, emphasizing the importance of the E2F1-epidermal growth factor receptor interaction as a driving force in melanoma progression that may serve as a paradigm for E2F1-induced metastasis in other human cancers.

Compte M.,Molecular Immunology Unit
Biomatter | Year: 2013

Therapeutic monoclonal antibodies have revolutionized the treatment of cancer and other diseases. However, several limitations of antibody-based treatments, such as the cost of therapy and the achievement of sustained plasma levels, should be still addressed for their widespread use as therapeutics. The use of cell and gene transfer methods offers additional benefits by producing a continuous release of the antibody with syngenic glycosylation patterns, which makes the antibody potentially less immunogenic. In vivo secretion of therapeutic antibodies by viral vector delivery or ex vivo gene modified long-lived autologous or allogeneic human mesenchymal stem cells may advantageously replace repeated injection of clinical-grade antibodies. Gene-modified autologous mesenchymal stem cells can be delivered subcutaneously embedded in a non-immunogenic synthetic extracellular matrix-based scaffold that guarantees the survival of the cell inoculum. The scaffold would keep cells at the implantation site, with the therapeutic protein acting at distance (immunotherapeutic organoid), and could be retrieved once the therapeutic effect is fulfilled. In the present review we highlight the practical importance of living cell factories for in vivo secretion of recombinant antibodies.

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