bims-imseme Biomed News
on Immunosenescence and T cell metabolism
Issue of 2020‒07‒19
eighteen papers selected by
Pierpaolo Ginefra
Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

  1. Nat Immunol. 2020 Jul 13.
      The majority of tumor-infiltrating T cells exhibit a terminally exhausted phenotype, marked by a loss of self-renewal capacity. How repetitive antigenic stimulation impairs T cell self-renewal remains poorly defined. Here, we show that persistent antigenic stimulation impaired ADP-coupled oxidative phosphorylation. The resultant bioenergetic compromise blocked proliferation by limiting nucleotide triphosphate synthesis. Inhibition of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation in activated T cells was sufficient to suppress proliferation and upregulate genes linked to T cell exhaustion. Conversely, prevention of mitochondrial oxidative stress during chronic T cell stimulation allowed sustained T cell proliferation and induced genes associated with stem-like progenitor T cells. As a result, antioxidant treatment enhanced the anti-tumor efficacy of chronically stimulated T cells. These data reveal that loss of ATP production through oxidative phosphorylation limits T cell proliferation and effector function during chronic antigenic stimulation. Furthermore, treatments that maintain redox balance promote T cell self-renewal and enhance anti-tumor immunity.
  2. Nat Immunol. 2020 Jul 13.
      Tissue-resident memory CD8+ T cells (TRM cells) are crucial in protecting against reinvading pathogens, but the impact of reinfection on their tissue confinement and contribution to recall responses is unclear. We developed a unique lineage tracer mouse model exploiting the TRM-defining transcription factor homolog of Blimp-1 in T cells (Hobit) to fate map the TRM progeny in secondary responses. After reinfection, a sizeable fraction of secondary memory T cells in the circulation developed downstream of TRM cells. These tissue-experienced ex-TRM cells shared phenotypic properties with the effector memory T cell population but were transcriptionally and functionally distinct from other secondary effector memory T cell cells. Adoptive transfer experiments of TRM cells corroborated their potential to form circulating effector and memory cells during recall responses. Moreover, specific ablation of primary TRM cell populations substantially impaired the secondary T cell response, both locally and systemically. Thus, TRM cells retain developmental plasticity and shape both local and systemic T cell responses on reinfection.
  3. Nat Immunol. 2020 Jul 13.
      Robust CD8+ T cell memory is essential for long-term protective immunity but is often compromised in cancer, where T cell exhaustion leads to loss of memory precursors. Immunotherapy via checkpoint blockade may not effectively reverse this defect, potentially underlying disease relapse. Here we report that mice with a CD8+ T cell-restricted neuropilin-1 (NRP1) deletion exhibited substantially enhanced protection from tumor rechallenge and sensitivity to anti-PD1 immunotherapy, despite unchanged primary tumor growth. Mechanistically, NRP1 cell-intrinsically limited the self-renewal of the CD44+PD1+TCF1+TIM3- progenitor exhausted T cells, which was associated with their reduced ability to induce c-Jun/AP-1 expression on T cell receptor restimulation, a mechanism that may contribute to terminal T cell exhaustion at the cost of memory differentiation in wild-type tumor-bearing hosts. These data indicate that blockade of NRP1, a unique 'immune memory checkpoint', may promote the development of long-lived tumor-specific Tmem that are essential for durable antitumor immunity.
  4. Front Immunol. 2020 ;11 1013
      CD8+ T cells represent one of the most versatile immune cells critical for clearing away viral infections. Due to their important role, CD8+ T cell activation and memory formation during viral infection have been the focus of several studies recently. Although CD8+ T cell activation and memory formation have been associated with metabolic alterations, the molecular understanding behind T cells choosing one type of metabolism over others based on their differentiation stage is still unclear. This review focuses on how the signaling molecules and cellular processes that are characteristic of CD8+ T cell activation and memory formation also play a critical role in selecting specific type of metabolism during viral infections. In addition, we will summarize the epigenetic factors regulating these metabolic alterations.
    Keywords:  CD8+ T cells; epigenetics; fatty acid oxidation; glutaminolysis; glycolysis; metabolism; viral infections
  5. Immune Netw. 2020 Jun;20(3): e20
      Memory CD8+ T cells in the immune system are responsible for the removal of external Ags for a long period of time to protect against re-infection. Naïve to memory CD8+ T cell differentiation and memory CD8+ T cell maintenance require many different factors including local environmental factors. Thus, it has been suggested that the migration of memory CD8+ T cells into specific microenvironments alters their longevity and functions. In this review, we have summarized the subsets of memory CD8+ T cells based on their migratory capacities and described the niche hypothesis for their survival. In addition, the basic roles of CCR7 in conjunction with the migration of memory CD8+ T cells and recent understandings of their survival niches have been introduced. Finally, the applications of altering CCR7 signaling have been discussed.
    Keywords:  CD8-positive T-lymphocytes; Cell movement; Chemotaxis; Immunologic memory; Immunotherapy; Receptors, CCR7
  6. Nat Commun. 2020 Jul 17. 11(1): 3588
      Tumors subvert immune cell function to evade immune responses, yet the complex mechanisms driving immune evasion remain poorly understood. Here we show that tumors induce de novo steroidogenesis in T lymphocytes to evade anti-tumor immunity. Using a transgenic steroidogenesis-reporter mouse line we identify and characterize de novo steroidogenic immune cells, defining the global gene expression identity of these steroid-producing immune cells and gene regulatory networks by using single-cell transcriptomics. Genetic ablation of T cell steroidogenesis restricts primary tumor growth and metastatic dissemination in mouse models. Steroidogenic T cells dysregulate anti-tumor immunity, and inhibition of the steroidogenesis pathway is sufficient to restore anti-tumor immunity. This study demonstrates T cell de novo steroidogenesis as a mechanism of anti-tumor immunosuppression and a potential druggable target.
  7. Cell Biol Toxicol. 2020 Jul 12.
      CD8+T cells play an important role in controlling infections and tumorigenesis in vivo. naïve CD8+T cells exponentially expand and exert effector functions in response to TCR ligation. After antigen clearance, most effector CD8+T cells (Teff) experience activation-induced cell death, only a small portion becomes long-lived memory T cells (Tmem). The cell-intrinsic mechanisms driving the differentiation need further understanding. Here we used combined transposase-accessible chromatin (ATAC-seq) technology and RNA-seq analysis to explore chromatin accessibility in CD8+T cell subsets (naïve T cells, Teff, and Tmem). The data demonstrates different chromatin openness of CD8+T cell states is associated with metabolic regulation and the high accessibility of upstream binding site SP1 emerged as critical transcription factor for both Teff and Tmem in fatty acid oxidation (FAO) and glycolysis. The different presence of accessible regions in CD8+T cell subsets provides a novel perspective for understanding epigenetic mechanisms underlying T cell differentiation and related immune response.
    Keywords:  CD8 T cell; Chromatin accessibility; Epigenetic regulation; Metabolism; SP1
  8. Nat Biotechnol. 2020 Jul 13.
      Engineered T cells are effective therapies against a range of malignancies, but current approaches rely on autologous T cells, which are difficult and expensive to manufacture. Efforts to develop potent allogeneic T cells that are not rejected by the recipient's immune system require abrogating both T- and natural killer (NK)-cell responses, which eliminate foreign cells through various mechanisms. In the present study, we engineered a receptor that mediates deletion of activated host T and NK cells, preventing rejection of allogeneic T cells. Our alloimmune defense receptor (ADR) selectively recognizes 4-1BB, a cell surface receptor temporarily upregulated by activated lymphocytes. ADR-expressing T cells resist cellular rejection by targeting alloreactive lymphocytes in vitro and in vivo, while sparing resting lymphocytes. Cells co-expressing chimeric antigen receptors and ADRs persisted in mice and produced sustained tumor eradication in two mouse models of allogeneic T-cell therapy of hematopoietic and solid cancers. This approach enables generation of rejection-resistant, 'off-the-shelf', allogeneic T-cell products to produce long-term therapeutic benefit in immunocompetent recipients.
  9. J Leukoc Biol. 2020 Jul 17.
      Many cancers are predominantly diagnosed in older individuals and chronic inflammation has a major impact on the overall health and immune function of older cancer patients. Chronic inflammation is a feature of aging, it can accelerate disease in many cancers and it is often exacerbated during conventional treatments for cancer. This review will provide an overview of the factors that lead to increased inflammation in older individuals and/or individuals with cancer, as well as those that result from conventional treatments for cancer, using ovarian cancer (OC) and multiple myeloma (MM) as key examples. We will also consider the impact of chronic inflammation on immune function, with a particular focus on T cells as they are key targets for novel cancer immunotherapies. Overall, this review aims to highlight specific pathways for potential interventions that may be able to mitigate the impact of chronic inflammation in older cancer patients.
    Keywords:  IL-1; IL-6; TNF; multiple myeloma; ovarian cancer
  10. Aging Cell. 2020 Jul 18. e13190
      Aging in the epidermis is marked by a gradual decline in barrier function, impaired wound healing, hair loss, and an increased risk of cancer. This could be due to age-related changes in the properties of epidermal stem cells and defective interactions with their microenvironment. Currently, no biochemical tools are available to detect and evaluate the aging of epidermal stem cells. The cellular glycosylation is involved in cell-cell communications and cell-matrix adhesions in various physiological and pathological conditions. Here, we explored the changes of glycans in epidermal stem cells as a potential biomarker of aging. Using lectin microarray, we performed a comprehensive glycan profiling of freshly isolated epidermal stem cells from young and old mouse skin. Epidermal stem cells exhibited a significant difference in glycan profiles between young and old mice. In particular, the binding of a mannose-binder rHeltuba was decreased in old epidermal stem cells, whereas that of an α2-3Sia-binder rGal8N increased. These glycan changes were accompanied by upregulation of sialyltransferase, St3gal2 and St6gal1 and mannosidase Man1a genes in old epidermal stem cells. The modification of cell surface glycans by overexpressing these glycogenes leads to a defect in the regenerative ability of epidermal stem cells in culture. Hence, our study suggests the age-related global alterations in cellular glycosylation patterns and its potential contribution to the stem cell function. These glycan modifications detected by lectins may serve as molecular markers for aging, and further functional studies will lead us to a better understanding of the process of skin aging.
    Keywords:  epidermal stem cells; glycosylation; lectin microarray; mannose; sialylation; skin aging; stem cell aging
  11. Cancers (Basel). 2020 Jul 14. pii: E1901. [Epub ahead of print]12(7):
      Telomeres are the ends of linear chromosomes comprised of repetitive nucleotide sequences in humans. Telomeres preserve chromosomal stability and genomic integrity. Telomere length shortens with every cell division in somatic cells, eventually resulting in replicative senescence once telomere length becomes critically short. Telomere shortening can be overcome by telomerase enzyme activity that is undetectable in somatic cells, while being active in germline cells, stem cells, and immune cells. Telomeres are bound by a shelterin complex that regulates telomere lengthening as well as protects them from being identified as DNA damage sites. Telomeres are transcribed by RNA polymerase II, and generate a long noncoding RNA called telomeric repeat-containing RNA (TERRA), which plays a key role in regulating subtelomeric gene expression. Replicative immortality and genome instability are hallmarks of cancer and to attain them cancer cells exploit telomere maintenance and telomere protection mechanisms. Thus, understanding the role of telomeres and their associated proteins in cancer initiation, progression and treatment is very important. The present review highlights the critical role of various telomeric components with recently established functions in cancer. Further, current strategies to target various telomeric components including human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) as a therapeutic approach in human malignancies are discussed.
    Keywords:  cancer; gene expression; genomic stability; telomerase; telomeres; therapeutic strategies
  12. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2020 ;2020 2128513
      During the aging process, senescent cells gradually accumulate in the organs; they secrete proinflammatory cytokines and other factors, collectively known as the senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). SASP secretions contribute to "inflammaging," which is a state of chronic, systemic, sterility, low-grade inflammatory microenvironment and a key risk factor in the development of aging-related diseases. Fructus psoraleae is a traditional Chinese medical herb best known for delaying aging and treating osteoporosis. Prenylflavonoids from fructus psoraleae are the main bioactive compounds responsible for its pharmacological applications, such as beaching, bavachinin, bavachalcone, isobavachalcone, and neobavaisoflavone. In previous decades, there have been some promising studies on the pharmacology of fructus psoraleae. Here, we focus on the anti-inflammatory and antiaging diseases of five psoralea prenylflavonoids, such as cardiovascular protection, diabetes and obesity intervention, neuroprotection, and osteoporosis, and discuss the mechanism of these active ingredients for better understanding the material basis and drug application of fructus psoraleae in Chinese medicine.
  13. BMC Nephrol. 2020 Jul 13. 21(1): 271
      BACKGROUND: Patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) exhibit a premature aging phenotype of immune system, which is recently concerned as a significant factor for increased risk of various morbidities. Nevertheless, there are few dates explicating the relevancy of T cell senescence to mortality. In this study, we prospectively studied the predictive value of T cell senescence for mortality in hemodialysis patients.METHODS: Patients who had been on hemodialysis treatment for at least 6 months were enrolled. T cell senescence determined by differentiation status was evaluated by flow cytometry. Survival outcomes were estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to evaluate the prognostic impact of T cell premature aging and other clinical factors on all-cause mortality.
    RESULTS: A total of 466 patients (277 man and 169 women) were enrolled in this study. Decreased number of naïve T cell, as the most prominent feature of T cell senescence, did not change in parallel with age in these patients. Decreased absolute count of T cell, naïve T cell, CD4+ naïve T cell were independently associated with all-cause mortality. Decreased percentage of T cell and increased percentage of CD8+central-memory T cell were also independently associated with all-cause mortality. After including all the T cell parameters in one regression model, only decreased count of naïve T cell was significantly associated with increased mortality in these patients.
    CONCLUSIONS: Aging-associated T cell changes are aggravated in ESRD patients. For the first time, our study demonstrates that naïve T cell depletion is a strong predictor of all-cause mortality in HD patients.
    Keywords:  Hemodialysis; Inflammation; Mortality; T cell aging; naïve T cells
  14. Aging Cell. 2020 Jul 14. e13191
      Changes in mitochondrial dynamics (fusion and fission) are known to occur during stem cell differentiation; however, the role of this phenomenon in tissue aging remains unclear. Here, we report that mitochondrial dynamics are shifted toward fission during aging of Drosophila ovarian germline stem cells (GSCs), and this shift contributes to aging-related GSC loss. We found that as GSCs age, mitochondrial fragmentation and expression of the mitochondrial fission regulator, Dynamin-related protein (Drp1), are both increased, while mitochondrial membrane potential is reduced. Moreover, preventing mitochondrial fusion in GSCs results in highly fragmented depolarized mitochondria, decreased BMP stemness signaling, impaired fatty acid metabolism, and GSC loss. Conversely, forcing mitochondrial elongation promotes GSC attachment to the niche. Importantly, maintenance of aging GSCs can be enhanced by suppressing Drp1 expression to prevent mitochondrial fission or treating with rapamycin, which is known to promote autophagy via TOR inhibition. Overall, our results show that mitochondrial dynamics are altered during physiological aging, affecting stem cell homeostasis via coordinated changes in stemness signaling, niche contact, and cellular metabolism. Such effects may also be highly relevant to other stem cell types and aging-induced tissue degeneration.
    Keywords:  BMP; Drp1; GSC; Marf; mitochondrial fission; mitochondrial fusion
  15. Front Aging Neurosci. 2020 ;12 182
    Keywords:  Alzheimer's disease; aging; autophagy; caloric restriction; intermittent fasting; neurodegeneration
  16. Curr Dev Nutr. 2020 Jul;4(7): nzaa097
      Recent advances in epigenetic research have enabled the development of epigenetic clocks, which have greatly enhanced our ability to investigate molecular processes that contribute to aging and age-related disease. These biomarkers offer the potential to measure the effect of environmental exposures linked to dynamic changes in DNA methylation, including nutrients, as factors in age-related disease. They also offer a compelling insight into how imbalances in the supply of nutrients, particularly B-vitamins, or polymorphisms in regulatory enzymes involved in 1-carbon metabolism, the key pathway that supplies methyl groups for epigenetic reactions, may influence epigenetic age and interindividual disease susceptibility. Evidence from recent studies is critically reviewed, focusing on the significant contribution of the epigenetic clock to nutritional epigenomics and its impact on health outcomes and age-related disease. Further longitudinal studies and randomized nutritional interventions are required to advance the field.
    Keywords:  B-vitamins; DNA methylation; aging; diet; epigenetic age; epigenetic age acceleration; epigenetic clock; one-carbon metabolism
  17. Am J Transl Res. 2020 ;12(6): 3078-3088
      Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) are multipotential stem cells. Osteoporosis is an age-related disorder characterized by increased marrow fat accumulation and declined bone formation. Aging is an important initial factor of bone mass loss. So, manipulating the senescence of BMSCs is a considerable therapeutic target for osteoporosis treatment. To investigate the role of senolytics on regulating the differential fate of senescent BMSCs. Rat BMSCs were isolated and identified by immunofluorescence and multilineage differentiation assay. Quercetin was used to clean senescent BMSCs. Cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8) and colony formation assay was used to evaluate the cellular proliferation. While the cellular migration was detected by the scratch wound healing assay and transwell assay. And the osteogenesis assay and adipogenesis assay were used to determine the differential fate of BMSCs. BMSCs exhibited stemness. Eliminating senescent BMSCs improved the proliferation of BMSCs. But the quercetin treatment made no difference in cellular migration. And the osteogenic potential was increased while the adipogenic potential was decreased when the senescent BMSCs were cleaned by quercetin treatment. Our results demonstrate that cleaning senescent BMSCs improves the proliferation and osteogenesis of BMSCs as well as inhibits the adipogenesis of BMSCs, which provides a novel therapeutic target for the treatment of osteoporosis.
    Keywords:  Senolytic; bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells; osteoporosis; quercetin; senescence
  18. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2020 ;1207 681-688
      Senescence is a progressive process of degeneration that occurs when cells and organisms mature. Many studies have shown that autophagy is closely related to senescence. Autophagy gradually decreases with the senescence activity of cells, and vice versa. Therefore, moderate autophagy can protect the body and inhibit cell senescence. The inactivation of genes encoding nematode insulin-like tyrosine kinase receptor (daf-2) inhibited the activity of type I PI3K (age-1), Akt molecules (akt1, akt2), PDK (pdk-1), and TOR, and increased the lifespan and autophagy of Caenorhabditis elegans.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Insulin-like/PI3K pathway; Senescence