Renal transplantation is currently the most effective treatment for end-stage renal disease. However, chronic antibody-mediated rejection (cABMR) remains a serious obstacle for the long-term survival of patients with renal transplantation and a problem to be solved. At present, the role and mechanism underlying immune factors such as T- and B- cell subsets in cABMR after renal transplantation remain unclear. In this study, single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) of peripheral blood monocytes (PBMCs) from cABMR and control subjects was performed to define the transcriptomic landscape at single-cell resolution. A comprehensive scRNA-seq analysis was performed. The results indicated that most cell types in the cABMR patients exhibited an intense interferon response and release of proinflammatory cytokines. In addition, we found that the expression of MT-ND6, CXCL8, NFKBIA, NFKBIZ, and other genes were up-regulated in T- and B-cells and these genes were associated with pro-inflammatory response and immune regulation. Western blot and qRT-PCR experiments also confirmed the up-regulated expression of these genes in cABMR. GO and KEGG enrichment analyses indicated that the overexpressed genes in T- and B-cells were mainly enriched in inflammatory pathways, including the TNF, IL-17, and Toll-like receptor signaling pathways. Additionally, MAPK and NF-κB signaling pathways were also involved in the occurrence and development of cABMR. This is consistent with the experimental results of Western blot. Trajectory analysis assembled the T-cell subsets into three differentiation paths with distinctive phenotypic and functional prog rams. CD8 effector T cells and γδ T cells showed three different differentiation trajectories, while CD8_MAI T cells and naive T cells primarily had two differentiation trajectories. Cell-cell interaction analysis revealed strong T/B cells and neutrophils activation in cABMR. Thus, the study offers new insight into pathogenesis and may have implications for the identification of novel therapeutic targets for cABMR.
HIV-1 Envelope (Env) proteins designed to induce neutralizing antibody responses allow study of the role of affinities (equilibrium dissociation constant, KD) and kinetic rates (association/dissociation rates) on B cell antigen recognition. It is unclear whether affinity discrimination during B cell activation is based solely on Env protein binding KD, and whether B cells discriminate between proteins of similar affinities but that bind with different kinetic rates. Here we used a panel of Env proteins and Ramos B cell lines expressing IgM BCRs with specificity for CD4 binding-site broadly neutralizing (bnAb) or a precursor antibody to study the role of antigen binding kinetic rates on both early (proximal/distal signaling) and late events (BCR/antigen internalization) in B cell activation. Our results support a kinetic model for B cell activation in which Env protein affinity discrimination is based not on overall KD, but on sensing of association rate and a threshold antigen-BCR half-life.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) and neuromyelitis optica syndrome disease (NMOSD) are inflammatory diseases of the central nervous system. The pathogenesis and treatments for these two conditions are very different. Natural killer (NK) and natural killer T (NKT) cells are immune cells with an important role in shaping the immune response. B cells are involved in antigen presentation as well as antibody and cytokine production. There is conflicting evidence of the roles of NK, NKT, and B cells in the two conditions. We aimed to compare the frequency of CD3−CD16+CD56+NK, CD3+ CD56+ NKT, and CD5+CD19+ B cells in the peripheral blood and serum Interleukin-10 (IL-10) in patients with MS and NMOSD.
CD19+CD5+ B, CD3− CD16+CD56+ NK, and CD3+CD56+ NKT cells were quantitated by flow cytometry in 15 individuals with Interferon-Beta (IFN-β) treated relapsing–remitting MS (RRMS), 15 untreated RRMS, and 15 NMOSD patients as well as 30 healthy controls (HC). Serum IL-10 was measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
The percentage of CD3−CD56+CD16+ NK cells in the peripheral blood of IFN-treated MS (1.81 ± 0.87) was significantly lower than for untreated RRMS (4.74 ± 1.80), NMOSD (4.64 ± 1.26) and HC (5.83 ± 2.19) (p < 0.0001). There were also differences for the percentage of CD3−CD16+ and CD3−CD56+ cells (p < 0.001 and p < 0.0007; respectively). IFN-treated RRMS (2.89 ± 1.51) had the lowest proportion of CD3+CD56+ among the study groups (p < 0.002). Untreated RRMS (5.56 ± 3.04) and NMOSD (5.47 ± 1.24) had higher levels of CD3+CD56+ than the HC (3.16 ± 1.98). The mean percentage of CD19+CD5+ B cells in the peripheral blood of untreated RRMS patients (1.32 ± 0.67) was higher compared to the patients with NMOSD (0.30 ± 0.20), HC (0.5 ± 0.22) and IFN-treated RRMS (0.81 ± 0.17) (p < 0.0001). Serum interleukin-10 was significantly higher in the IFN-treated RRMS (8.06 ± 5.39) and in HC (8.38 ± 2.84) compared to untreated RRMS (5.07 ± 1.44) and the patients with NMOSD (5.33 ± 2.56) (p < 0.003).
The lower proportion of CD3−CD56+ CD16+ NK and CD3+CD56+ cells in peripheral blood of IFN-treated RRMS compared to other groups suggests the importance of immunomodulation in patients with RRMS disorder. Based on the differences in CD19+CD5+ B cells and serum IL-10 between patients and HC, supplementary assessments could be of value in clarifying their roles in autoimmunity.
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a frequent lymphoproliferative disorder of B cells. Although inhibitors targeting signal proteins involved in B cell antigen receptor (BCR) signaling constitute an important part of the current therapeutic protocols for CLL patients, the exact role of BCR signaling, as compared to genetic aberration, in the development and progression of CLL is controversial.
To investigate whether BCR expression per se is pivotal for the development and maintenance of CLL B cells, we used the TCL1 mouse model. By ablating the BCR in CLL cells from TCL1 transgenic mice, we show that CLL cells cannot survive without BCR signaling and are lost within eight weeks in diseased mice.
Furthermore, we tested whether mutations augmenting B cell signaling influence the course of CLL development and its severity. The Phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway is an integral part of the BCR signaling machinery and its activity is indispensable for B cell survival. It is negatively regulated by the lipid phosphatase PTEN, whose loss mimics PI3K pathway activation. Herein, we show that PTEN has a key regulatory function in the development of CLL, as deletion of the Pten gene resulted in greatly accelerated onset of the disease. By contrast, deletion of the gene TP53, which encodes the tumor suppressor p53 and is highly mutated in CLL, did not accelerate disease development, confirming that development of CLL was specifically triggered by augmented PI3K activity through loss of PTEN and suggesting that CLL driver consequences most likely affect BCR signaling. Moreover, we could show that in human CLL patient samples, 64% and 81% of CLL patients with a mutated and unmutated IgH VH, respectively, show downregulated PTEN protein expression in CLL B cells if compared to healthy donor B cells. Importantly, we found that B cells derived from CLL patients had higher expression levels of the miRNA-21 and miRNA-29, which suppresses PTEN translation, compared to healthy donors. The high levels of miRNA-29 might be induced by increased PAX5 expression of the B-CLL cells. We hypothesize that downregulation of PTEN by increased expression levels of miR-21, PAX5 and miR-29 could be a novel mechanism of CLL tumorigenesis that is not established yet.
Together, our study demonstrates the pivotal role for BCR signaling in CLL development and deepens our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the genesis of CLL and for the development of new treatment strategies.
We have measured the secretion of autoimmune antibodies in plasma samples and in culture supernatants of blood-derived B cells from four groups of individuals: young lean (YL), elderly lean (EL), young obese (YO) and elderly obese (EO). We found secretion comparable in YO and EL individuals, suggesting that obesity accelerates age-associated defects in circulating B cells. To define at least one possible molecular pathway involved, we used an in vitro model in which B cells from YL and EL individuals have been stimulated with the Fatty Acid (FA) palmitate, the most common saturated FA in the human body. The rationale to use palmitate is that there is a chronic increase in circulating levels of palmitate, due to increased spontaneous lipolysis occurring during aging and obesity, and this may induce autoimmune B cells. Results herein show that in vitro incubation of B cells from YL and EL individuals with the FA palmitate induces mRNA expression of T-bet, the transcription factor for autoimmune antibodies, as well as secretion of autoimmune IgG antibodies, with B cells from YL individuals looking similar to B cells from EL individuals, confirming our initial hypothesis. The generation of autoimmune B cells in the presence of the FA palmitate was found to be associated with a metabolic reprogramming of B cells from both YL and EL individuals. These results altogether show the critical role of the FA palmitate in inducing human B cell immunosenescence and show for the first time the importance of metabolic pathways in this process.
The new SARS-CoV-2 variant of concern (VOC) Omicron has more than 30 mutations in the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the Spike protein enabling viral escape from antibodies in vaccinated individuals and increased transmissibility. It is unclear how vaccine immunity protects against Omicron infection. Here we show that vaccinated participants at a superspreader event had robust recall response of humoral and pre-existing cellular immunity induced by the vaccines, and an emergent de novo T cell response to non-Spike antigens. We compared cases from a Christmas party where 81 of 110 (74%) developed Omicron breakthrough COVID-19, with Delta breakthrough cases and vaccinated non-infected controls. Omicron cases had significantly increased activated SARS-CoV-2 wild type Spike-specific (vaccine) cytotoxic T cells, activated follicular helper (TFH) cells, functional T cell responses, boosted humoral responses, activated anti-Spike plasmablasts and anti-RBD memory B cells compared to controls. Omicron cases had significantly increased de novo memory T cell responses to non-Spike viral antigens compared to Delta breakthrough cases demonstrating development of broad immunity. The rapid release of Spike and RBD-specific IgG+ B cell plasmablasts and memory B cells into circulation suggested affinity maturation of antibodies and that concerted T and B cell immunity may provide durable broad immunity.
Background: Recent studies have suggested that IgE sensitization to α-gal is associated with coronary artery disease (CAD). However, the B cell subtype(s) responsible for production of IgE to α-gal and mechanisms mediating this production remain elusive.Methods: Single cell multi-omics sequencing, was utilized to phenotype B cells obtained from 60 subjects that had undergone coronary angiography in whom serum IgE was evaluated by ImmunoCAP. Bioinformatics approaches were used to identify B cell subtype(s) and transcriptomic signatures associated with α-gal sensitization. In vitro characterization of chemokine/chemokine receptor pairs on switched memory B cells associated with IgE to α-gal was performed.Results: Of the 60 patients, 17 (28%) were positive for IgE to α-gal. CITESeq identified CCR6+ class-switched memory (SWM) B cells and CXCR4 expresssion on these CCR6+ SWM B cells as significantly associated with IgE sensitization to α-gal but not to other common allergens (peanut or inhalants). In vitro studies of enriched human B cells revealed significantly greater IgE on SWM B cells with high CCR6 and CXCR4 expression 10 days after cells were treated with IL-4 and CD40 to stimulate class switch recombination. Both CCL20 (CCR6 ligand) and CXCL12 (ligand for CXCR4) increased the expression of IgE on SWM B cells expressing their receptors. However, they appeared to have unique pathways mediating this effect as only CCL20 increased activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID), while CXCL12 drove proliferation of CXCR4+ SWM B cells. Lastly, correlation analysis indicated an association between CAD severity and the frequency of both CCR6+ SWM and CXCR4+ SWM B cells.Conclusions: CCR6+ SWM B cells were identified as potential producers of IgE to α-gal in CAD patients. Additionally, our findings highlighted non-chemotaxis roles of CCL20/CCR6 and CXCL12/CXCR4 signaling in mediating IgE class switching and cell proliferation of SWM B cells respectively. Results may have important implications for a better understanding and better therapeutic approaches for subjects with IgE sensitization to α-gal.