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In this issue, Mishra et al. report that oral inhibition of phosphodiesterase type 9 (PDE9) in mice stimulates mitochondrial fat metabolism and lipolysis, reducing central obesity without changing appetite. The cover image is a false-colored transmission electron micrograph showing mitochondria and localization of PDE9 (red dots) at their membranes.
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Dysregulation in adipokine biosynthesis and function contributes to obesity-induced metabolic diseases. However, the identities and functions of many of the obesity-induced secretory molecules remain unknown. Here, we report the identification of leucine-rich alpha-2-glycoprotein 1 (LRG1) as an obesity-associated adipokine that exacerbates high fat diet-induced hepatosteatosis and insulin resistance. Serum levels of LRG1 were markedly elevated in obese humans and mice compared to their respective controls. LRG1 deficiency in mice greatly alleviated diet-induced hepatosteatosis, obesity, and insulin resistance. Mechanistically, LRG1 bound with high selectivity to the liver and promoted hepatosteatosis by increasing de novo lipogenesis and suppressing fatty acid β-oxidation. LRG1 also inhibited hepatic insulin signaling by down-regulating insulin receptor substrates 1 and 2. Our study identified LRG1 as a key molecule that mediates the crosstalk between adipocytes and hepatocytes in diet-induced hepatosteatosis and insulin resistance. Suppressing LRG1 expression and function may be a promising strategy for the treatment of obesity-related metabolic diseases.
Sijia He, Jiyoon Ryu, Juanhong Liu, Hairong Luo, Ying Lv, Paul R. Langlais, Jie Wen, Feng Dong, Zhe Sun, Wenjuan Xia, Jane L. Lynch, Ravindranath Duggirala, Bruce J. Nicholson, Mengwei Zang, Yuguang Shi, Fang Zhang, Feng Liu, Juli Bai, Lily Q. Dong
Impaired wound healing associated with recurrent Staphylococcus aureus infection and unresolved inflammation are hallmarks of non-healing diabetic foot ulcers (DFU). Perforin-2, an innate immunity molecule against intracellular bacteria, limits cutaneous infection and dissemination of S. aureus in mice. Here we report the intracellular accumulation of S. aureus in the epidermis of DFU with no clinical signs of infection due to marked suppression of Perforin-2. S. aureus residing within the epidermis of DFU triggers AIM2-inflammasome activation and pyroptosis. These findings were corroborated in mice lacking Perforin-2. The effects of pyroptosis on DFU clinical outcomes were further elucidated in a 4-week longitudinal clinical study in DFU patients undergoing standard of care. Increased AIM2-inflammasome and ASC-pyroptosome coupled with induction of IL-1β were found in non-healing when compared to healing DFU. Our findings reveal novel mechanism that includes Perforin-2 suppression, intracellular S. aureus accumulation and associated induction of pyroptosis that contribute to healing inhibition and prolonged inflammation in patients with DFU.
Irena Pastar, Andrew P. Sawaya, Jelena Marjanovic, Jamie L. Burgess, Natasa Strbo, Katelyn E. Rivas, Tongyu C. Wikramanayake, Cheyanne R. Head, Rivka C. Stone, Ivan Jozic, Olivera Stojadinovic, Eran Y. Kornfeld, Robert S. Kirsner, Hadar Lev-Tov, Marjana Tomic-Canic
The PRDM13 (PR Domain containing 13) putative chromatin modifier and transcriptional regulator functions downstream of the transcription factor PTF1A, which controls GABAergic fate in the spinal cord and neurogenesis in the hypothalamus. Here, we report a novel, recessive syndrome associated with PRDM13 mutation. Patients exhibited intellectual disability, ataxia with cerebellar hypoplasia, scoliosis and delayed puberty with congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (CHH). Expression studies revealed Prdm13/PRDM13 transcripts in the developing hypothalamus and cerebellum in mouse and human. An analysis of hypothalamus and cerebellum development in mice homozygous for a Prdm13 mutant allele revealed a significant reduction in the number of Kisspeptin (Kiss1) neurons in the hypothalamus and PAX2+ progenitors emerging from the cerebellar ventricular zone. The latter was accompanied by ectopic expression of the glutamatergic lineage marker TLX3. Prdm13-deficient mice displayed cerebellar hypoplasia, normal gonadal structure, but delayed pubertal onset. Together, these findings identify PRDM13 as a critical regulator of GABAergic cell fate in the cerebellum and of hypothalamic kisspeptin neuron development, providing a mechanistic explanation for the co-occurrence of CHH and cerebellar hypoplasia in this syndrome. To our knowledge, this is the first evidence linking disrupted PRDM13-mediated regulation of Kiss1 neurons to CHH in humans.
Danielle E. Whittaker, Roberto Oleari, Louise C. Gregory, Polona Le Quesne Stabej, Hywel J. Williams, John G. Torpiano, Nancy Formosa, Mario J. Cachia, Daniel Field, Antonella Lettieri, Louise A. Ocaka, Alyssa J.J. Paganoni, Sakina H. Rajabali, Kimberley L.H. Riegman, Lisa B. De Martini, Taro Chaya, Iain C. Robinson, Takahisa Furukawa, Anna Cariboni, M. Albert Basson, Mehul T. Dattani
Despite the curative potential of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), conditioning-associated toxicities preclude broader clinical application. Antibody-drug conjugates (ADC) provide an attractive approach to HSCT conditioning that minimizes toxicity while retaining efficacy. Initial studies of ADC conditioning have largely focused on syngeneic HSCT. However, to treat acute leukemias or induce tolerance for solid organ transplantation, this approach must be expanded to allogeneic HSCT (allo-HSCT). Using murine allo-HSCT models, we show that pharmacologic Janus kinase 1/2 (JAK1/2) inhibition combined with CD45- or cKit-targeted ADCs enables robust multilineage alloengraftment. Strikingly, myeloid lineage donor chimerism exceeding 99% was achievable in fully MHC-mismatched HSCT using this approach. Mechanistic studies using the JAK1/2 inhibitor baricitinib revealed marked impairment of T and NK cell survival, proliferation and effector function. NK cells were exquisitely sensitive to JAK1/2 inhibition due to interference with IL-15 signaling. Unlike irradiated mice, ADC-conditioned mice did not develop pathogenic graft-versus-host alloreactivity when challenged with mismatched T cells. Finally, the combination of ADCs and baricitinib balanced graft-versus-host disease and graft-versus-leukemia responses in delayed donor lymphocyte infusion models. Our allo-HSCT conditioning strategy exemplifies the promise of immunotherapy to improve the safety of HSCT for treating hematologic diseases.
Stephen P. Persaud, Julie K. Ritchey, Sena Kim, Sora Lim, Peter G. Ruminski, Matthew L. Cooper, Michael P. Rettig, Jaebok Choi, John F. DiPersio
Acute coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by SARS-CoV-2, is characterized by diverse clinical presentations, ranging from asymptomatic infection to fatal respiratory failure, and often associated with varied longer-term sequelae. Over the past 18 months, it has become apparent that inappropriate immune responses contribute to the pathogenesis of severe COVID-19. Researchers working at the intersection of COVID-19 and autoimmunity recently gathered at an American Autoimmune Related Disease Association (AARDA) Noel R. Rose Colloquium to address the current state of knowledge regarding two important questions: Does established autoimmunity predispose to severe COVID-19? And, at the same time, can SARS-CoV-2 infection trigger de novo autoimmunity? Indeed, work to date has demonstrated that 10 to 15% of patients with critical COVID-19 pneumonia exhibit autoantibodies against type I interferons, suggesting that preexisting autoimmunity underlies severe disease in some patients. Other studies have identified functional autoantibodies following infection with SARS-CoV-2, such as those that promote thrombosis or antagonize cytokine signaling. These autoantibodies may arise from a predominantly extrafollicular B cell response that is more prone to generating autoantibody-secreting B cells. This review highlights the current understanding, evolving concepts, and unanswered questions provided by this unique opportunity to determine mechanisms by which a viral infection can be exacerbated by, and even trigger, autoimmunity. The potential role of autoimmunity in post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 is also discussed.
Jason S. Knight, Roberto Caricchio, Jean Laurent Casanova, Alexis J. Combes, Betty Diamond, Sharon E. Fox, David A. Hanauer, Judith A. James, Yogendra Kanthi, Virginia Ladd, Puja Mehta, Aaron M. Ring, Ignacio Sanz, Carlo Selmi, Russell P. Tracy, Paul J. Utz, Catriona A. Wagner, Julia Y. Wang, W. Joseph McCune
JCI This Month is a digest of the research, reviews, and other features published each month.
Animals, plants, and bacteria all display behavioral patterns that coincide with Earth’s light and dark cycles. These oscillating behaviors are the manifestation of the molecular circadian clock, a highly conserved network that maintains a near 24-hour rhythm even in the absence of light. In mammals, light signals are transmitted via the superchiasmatic nucleus (SCN) in the hypothalamus to synchronize peripheral clocks and coordinate physiological functions with the organism’s active period. This collection of reviews, curated by Amita Sehgal, considers the critical role of the circadian system in human health. Technology, work, and social obligations can disrupt optimal sleep and wake schedules, leaving humans vulnerable to diseases affecting the heart, brain, metabolism, and more. Sleep disorders as well as normal variations in human chronotype may exacerbate circadian disruptions, with profound consequences. These reviews emphasize that ongoing efforts to understand the complexities of human circadian rhythm will be essential for developing chronotherapies and other circadian-based interventions.