bims-imicid Biomed News
on Immunometabolism of infection, cancer and immune-mediated disease
Issue of 2023‒06‒18
forty papers selected by
Dylan Ryan
University of Cambridge

  1. Nat Metab. 2023 Jun 12.
      Itaconate, the product of the decarboxylation of cis-aconitate, regulates numerous biological processes. We and others have revealed itaconate as a regulator of fatty acid β-oxidation, generation of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species and the metabolic interplay between resident macrophages and tumors. In the present study, we show that itaconic acid is upregulated in human non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and a mouse model of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Male mice deficient in the gene responsible for itaconate production (immunoresponsive gene (Irg)-1) have exacerbated lipid accumulation in the liver, glucose and insulin intolerance and mesenteric fat deposition. Treatment of mice with the itaconate derivative, 4-octyl itaconate, reverses dyslipidemia associated with high-fat diet feeding. Mechanistically, itaconate treatment of primary hepatocytes reduces lipid accumulation and increases their oxidative phosphorylation in a manner dependent upon fatty acid oxidation. We propose a model whereby macrophage-derived itaconate acts in trans upon hepatocytes to modulate the liver's ability to metabolize fatty acids.
  2. Nat Commun. 2023 Jun 14. 14(1): 3513
      Excessive inflammation-associated coagulation is a feature of infectious diseases, occurring in such conditions as bacterial sepsis and COVID-19. It can lead to disseminated intravascular coagulation, one of the leading causes of mortality worldwide. Recently, type I interferon (IFN) signaling has been shown to be required for tissue factor (TF; gene name F3) release from macrophages, a critical initiator of coagulation, providing an important mechanistic link between innate immunity and coagulation. The mechanism of release involves type I IFN-induced caspase-11 which promotes macrophage pyroptosis. Here we find that F3 is a type I IFN-stimulated gene. Furthermore, F3 induction by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is inhibited by the anti-inflammatory agents dimethyl fumarate (DMF) and 4-octyl itaconate (4-OI). Mechanistically, inhibition of F3 by DMF and 4-OI involves suppression of Ifnb1 expression. Additionally, they block type I IFN- and caspase-11-mediated macrophage pyroptosis, and subsequent TF release. Thereby, DMF and 4-OI inhibit TF-dependent thrombin generation. In vivo, DMF and 4-OI suppress TF-dependent thrombin generation, pulmonary thromboinflammation, and lethality induced by LPS, E. coli, and S. aureus, with 4-OI additionally attenuating inflammation-associated coagulation in a model of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Our results identify the clinically approved drug DMF and the pre-clinical tool compound 4-OI as anticoagulants that inhibit TF-mediated coagulopathy via inhibition of the macrophage type I IFN-TF axis.
  3. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2023 Jun 12.
      Despite its importance in protecting the host from infections and injury, excessive inflammation may lead to serious human diseases including autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and cancer. Exercise is a known immunomodulator; however, whether exercise causes long term changes in inflammatory responses and how these changes occur are lacking. Here, we show that chronic moderate intensity training of mice leads to persistent metabolic rewiring and changes to chromatin accessibility in bone marrow derived macrophages (BMDMs), which, in turn, tempers their inflammatory responses. We show that BMDMs from exercised mice exhibited a decrease in lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced NF-kB activation and pro-inflammatory gene expression along with an increase in M2-like associated genes when compared to BMDMs from sedentary mice. This was associated with improved mitochondrial quality and increased reliance on oxidative phosphorylation accompanied with reduced mitochondrial ROS production. Mechanistically, ATAC-seq analysis showed changes in chromatin accessibility of genes associated with inflammatory and metabolic pathways. Overall, our data suggest that chronic moderate exercise can influence the inflammatory responses of macrophages by reprogramming their metabolic and epigenetic landscape.
    Keywords:  Exercise; Inflammation; Macrophages; Mitochondria; epigenetic
  4. Sci Immunol. 2023 Jun 23. 8(84): eade7652
      NLRP3 inflammasome activation is a highly regulated process for controlling secretion of the potent inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IL-18 that are essential during bacterial infection, sterile inflammation, and disease, including colitis, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, and atherosclerosis. Diverse stimuli activate the NLRP3 inflammasome, and unifying upstream signals has been challenging to identify. Here, we report that a common upstream step in NLRP3 inflammasome activation is the dissociation of the glycolytic enzyme hexokinase 2 from the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC) in the outer membrane of mitochondria. Hexokinase 2 dissociation from VDAC triggers activation of inositol triphosphate receptors, leading to release of calcium from the ER, which is taken up by mitochondria. This influx of calcium into mitochondria leads to oligomerization of VDAC, which is known to form a macromolecule-sized pore in the outer membranes of mitochondria that allows proteins and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), often associated with apoptosis and inflammation, respectively, to exit the mitochondria. We observe that VDAC oligomers aggregate with NLRP3 during initial assembly of the multiprotein oligomeric NLRP3 inflammasome complex. We also find that mtDNA is necessary for NLRP3 association with VDAC oligomers. These data, together with other recent work, help to paint a more complete picture of the pathway leading to NLRP3 inflammasome activation.
  5. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2023 Jun 20. 120(25): e2300566120
      Mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells are a subset of unconventional T cells which recognize a limited repertoire of ligands presented by the MHC class-I like molecule MR1. In addition to their key role in host protection against bacterial and viral pathogens, MAIT cells are emerging as potent anti-cancer effectors. With their abundance in human, unrestricted properties, and rapid effector functions MAIT cells are emerging as attractive candidates for immunotherapy. In the current study, we demonstrate that MAIT cells are potent cytotoxic cells, rapidly degranulating and inducing target cell death. Previous work from our group and others has highlighted glucose metabolism as a critical process for MAIT cell cytokine responses at 18 h. However, the metabolic processes supporting rapid MAIT cell cytotoxic responses are currently unknown. Here, we show that glucose metabolism is dispensable for both MAIT cell cytotoxicity and early (<3 h) cytokine production, as is oxidative phosphorylation. We show that MAIT cells have the machinery required to make (GYS-1) and metabolize (PYGB) glycogen and further demonstrate that that MAIT cell cytotoxicity and rapid cytokine responses are dependent on glycogen metabolism. In summary, we show that glycogen-fueled metabolism supports rapid MAIT cell effector functions (cytotoxicity and cytokine production) which may have implications for their use as an immunotherapeutic agent.
    Keywords:  MAIT cells; cytotoxicity; immunometabolism
  6. Cancer Cell. 2023 Jun 12. pii: S1535-6108(23)00182-4. [Epub ahead of print]
      Inactivating STK11/LKB1 mutations are genomic drivers of primary resistance to immunotherapy in KRAS-mutated lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD), although the underlying mechanisms remain unelucidated. We find that LKB1 loss results in enhanced lactate production and secretion via the MCT4 transporter. Single-cell RNA profiling of murine models indicates that LKB1-deficient tumors have increased M2 macrophage polarization and hypofunctional T cells, effects that could be recapitulated by the addition of exogenous lactate and abrogated by MCT4 knockdown or therapeutic blockade of the lactate receptor GPR81 expressed on immune cells. Furthermore, MCT4 knockout reverses the resistance to PD-1 blockade induced by LKB1 loss in syngeneic murine models. Finally, tumors from STK11/LKB1 mutant LUAD patients demonstrate a similar phenotype of enhanced M2-macrophages polarization and hypofunctional T cells. These data provide evidence that lactate suppresses antitumor immunity and therapeutic targeting of this pathway is a promising strategy to reversing immunotherapy resistance in STK11/LKB1 mutant LUAD.
    Keywords:  LKB1; MCT4; PD-1; T cell activation; immunotherapy resistance; lactate; lung adenocarcinoma; macrophage polarization; metabolism
  7. Blood Adv. 2023 Jun 14. pii: bloodadvances.2023010083. [Epub ahead of print]
      A direct regulation of adaptive immunity by the coagulation protease activated protein C (aPC) has recently been established. T-cell pre-incubation with aPC for 1 hour prior to transplantation increases FOXP3+ Tregs and reduces acute graft versus host disease (aGvHD) in mice, but the underlying mechanism remains unknown. As cellular metabolism modulates epigenetic gene regulation and plasticity in T-cells, we hypothesized that aPC promotes FOXP3+ expression by altering T-cell metabolism. To this end, T-cell differentiation was assessed in vitro using mixed lymphocyte reaction or plate-bound α-CD3/CD28 stimulation and ex vivo using T-cells isolated from aGvHD mice without and with aPC preincubation or analyses of mice with high plasma aPC levels. In stimulated CD4+CD25- cells, aPC induces FOXP3 expression while reducing expression of Th1-cell markers. Increased FOXP3 expression is associated with altered epigenetic markers (reduced 5-methylcytosine and H3K27me3) and reduced Foxp3 promoter methylation and activity These changes are linked to metabolic quiescence, decreased glucose and glutamine uptake, decreased mitochondrial metabolism (reduced TCA metabolites and mitochondrial membrane potential), and decreased intracellular glutamine and α-ketoglutarate levels. In mice with high aPC plasma levels, T-cell subpopulations in the thymus are not altered, reflecting normal T-cell development, while FOXP3 expression in splenic T-cells is reduced. Glutamine and α-ketoglutarate substitution reverse aPC-mediated FOXP3+ induction and abolish aPC-mediated suppression of allogeneic T-cell stimulation. These findings show that aPC modulates cellular metabolism in T-cells, reducing glutamine and α-ketoglutarate levels, which results in altered epigenetic marks, Foxp3 promoter demethylation and induction of FOXP3 expression, thus favoring a Treg-like phenotype.
  8. J Immunol. 2023 Jun 14. pii: ji2200552. [Epub ahead of print]
      Mechanisms to control the immune response are important to pathogen evasion and host defense. Gram-negative bacteria are common pathogens that can activate host immune responses through their outer membrane component, LPS. Macrophage activation by LPS induces cell signals that promote hypoxic metabolism, phagocytosis, Ag presentation, and inflammation. Nicotinamide (NAM) is a vitamin B3 derivative and precursor in the formation of NAD, which is a required cofactor in cellular function. In this study, treatment of human monocyte-derived macrophages with NAM promoted posttranslational modifications that antagonized LPS-induced cell signals. Specifically, NAM inhibited AKT and FOXO1 phosphorylation, decreased p65/RelA acetylation, and promoted p65/RelA and hypoxia-inducible transcription factor-1α (HIF-1α) ubiquitination. NAM also increased prolyl hydroxylase domain 2 (PHD2) production, inhibited HIF-1α transcription, and promoted the formation of the proteasome, resulting in reduced HIF-1α stabilization, decreased glycolysis and phagocytosis, and reductions in NOX2 activity and the production of lactate dehydrogenase A. These NAM responses were associated with increased intracellular NAD levels formed through the salvage pathway. NAM and its metabolites may therefore decrease the inflammatory response of macrophages and protect the host against excessive inflammation but potentially increase injury through reduced pathogen clearance. Continued study of NAM cell signals in vitro and in vivo may provide insight into infection-associated host pathologies and interventions.
  9. Biomater Adv. 2023 Jun 03. pii: S2772-9508(23)00218-2. [Epub ahead of print]152 213495
      Primary total joint arthroplasties (TJAs) are widely and successfully applied reconstructive procedures to treat end-stage arthritis. Nearly 50 % of TJAs are now performed in young patients, posing a new challenge: performing TJAs which last a lifetime. The urgency is justified because subsequent TJAs are costlier and fraught with higher complication rates, not to mention the toll taken on patients and their families. Polyethylene particles, generated by wear at joint articulations, drive aseptic loosening by inciting insidious inflammation associated with surrounding bone loss. Down modulating polyethylene particle-induced inflammation enhances integration of implants to bone (osseointegration), preventing loosening. A promising immunomodulation strategy could leverage immune cell metabolism, however, the role of immunometabolism in polyethylene particle-induced inflammation is unknown. Our findings reveal that immune cells exposed to sterile or contaminated polyethylene particles show fundamentally altered metabolism, resulting in glycolytic reprogramming. Inhibiting glycolysis controlled inflammation, inducing a pro-regenerative phenotype that could enhance osseointegration.
    Keywords:  Glycolytic reprogramming; Immune cells; Polyethylene wear particles; Total joint arthroplasty
  10. MedComm (2020). 2023 Jun;4(3): e306
      Epigenetic regulation of inflammatory macrophages governs inflammation initiation and resolution in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying macrophage-mediated arthritis injuries remain largely obscure. Here, we found that increased expression of lysine acetyltransferase 2A (KAT2A) in synovial tissues was closely correlated with inflammatory joint immunopathology in both RA patients and experimental arthritis mice. Administration of MB-3, the KAT2A-specific chemical inhibitor, significantly ameliorated the synovitis and bone destruction in collagen-induced arthritis model. Both pharmacological inhibition and siRNA silencing of KAT2A, not only suppressed innate stimuli-triggered proinflammatory gene (such as Il1b and Nlrp3) transcription but also impaired NLR family pyrin domain containing 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome activation in vivo and in vitro. Mechanistically, KAT2A facilitated macrophage glycolysis reprogramming through suppressing nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related factor 2 (NRF2) activity as well as downstream antioxidant molecules, which supported histone 3 lysine 9 acetylation (H3K9ac) and limited NRF2-mediated transcriptional repression of proinflammatory genes. Our study proves that acetyltransferase KAT2A licenses metabolic and epigenetic reprogramming for NLRP3 inflammasome activation in inflammatory macrophages, thereby targeting KAT2A represents a potential therapeutic approach for patients suffering from RA and relevant inflammatory diseases.
    Keywords:  KAT2A; NLRP3; NRF2; metabolic reprogramming; rheumatoid arthritis
  11. Front Immunol. 2023 ;14 1183825
      Introduction: The synovial membrane is the main site of inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Here several subsets of fibroblasts and macrophages, with distinct effector functions, have been recently identified. The RA synovium is hypoxic and acidic, with increased levels of lactate as a result of inflammation. We investigated how lactate regulates fibroblast and macrophage movement, IL-6 secretion and metabolism via specific lactate transporters.Methods: Synovial tissues were taken from patients undergoing joint replacement surgery and fulfilling the 2010 ACR/EULAR RA criteria. Patients with no evidence of degenerative or inflammatory disease were used as control. Expression of the lactate transporters SLC16A1 and SLC16A3 on fibroblasts and macrophages was assessed by immunofluorescence staining and confocal microscopy. To test the effect of lactate in vitro we used RA synovial fibroblasts and monocyte-derived macrophages. Migration was assessed via scratch test assays or using trans-well inserts. Metabolic pathways were analysed by Seahorse analyser. IL-6 secretion was determined by ELISA. Bioinformatic analysis was performed on publicly available single cell and bulk RNA sequencing datasets.
    Results: We show that: i) SLC16A1 and SLC16A3 which regulate lactate intake and export respectively, are both expressed in RA synovial tissue and are upregulated upon inflammation. SLC16A3 is more highly expressed by macrophages, while SLC16A1 was expressed by both cell types. ii) This expression is maintained in distinct synovial compartments at mRNA and protein level. iii) Lactate, at the concentration found in RA joints (10 mM), has opposite effects on the effector functions of these two cell types. In fibroblasts, lactate promotes cell migration, IL-6 production and increases glycolysis. In contrast macrophages respond to increases in lactate by reducing glycolysis, migration, and IL-6 secretion.
    Discussion: In this study, we provide the first evidence of distinct functions of fibroblasts and macrophages in presence of high lactate levels, opening new insights in understanding the pathogenesis of RA and offering novel potential therapeutic targets.
    Keywords:  arthritis; cell metabolism; fibroblasts; lactate; macrophages
  12. Immunity. 2023 Jun 13. pii: S1074-7613(23)00218-2. [Epub ahead of print]56(6): 1168-1186
      Recent studies have demonstrated that tissue homeostasis and metabolic function are dependent on distinct tissue-resident immune cells that form functional cell circuits with structural cells. Within these cell circuits, immune cells integrate cues from dietary contents and commensal microbes in addition to endocrine and neuronal signals present in the tissue microenvironment to regulate structural cell metabolism. These tissue-resident immune circuits can become dysregulated during inflammation and dietary overnutrition, contributing to metabolic diseases. Here, we review the evidence describing key cellular networks within and between the liver, gastrointestinal tract, and adipose tissue that control systemic metabolism and how these cell circuits become dysregulated during certain metabolic diseases. We also identify open questions in the field that have the potential to enhance our understanding of metabolic health and disease.
    Keywords:  cell circuits; immunometabolism; metabolism; systems immunology; tissue homeostasis; tissue-resident
  13. Life Metab. 2023 Feb;pii: load002. [Epub ahead of print]2(1):
      T cells are one of few cell types in adult mammals that can proliferate extensively and differentiate diversely upon stimulation, which serves as an excellent example to dissect the metabolic basis of cell fate decisions. During the last decade, there has been an explosion of research into the metabolic control of T-cell responses. The roles of common metabolic pathways, including glycolysis, lipid metabolism, and mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation, in T-cell responses have been well characterized, and their mechanisms of action are starting to emerge. In this review, we present several considerations for T-cell metabolism-focused research, while providing an overview of the metabolic control of T-cell fate decisions during their life journey. We try to synthesize principles that explain the causal relationship between cellular metabolism and T-cell fate decision. We also discuss key unresolved questions and challenges in targeting T-cell metabolism to treat disease.
    Keywords:  FAO; OXPHOS; T cells; acetyl-CoA; glycolysis; immunometabolism
  14. Anal Chem. 2023 Jun 13.
      Dendritic cells (DCs) actively sample and present antigen to cells of the adaptive immune system and are thus vital for successful immune control and memory formation. Immune cell metabolism and function are tightly interlinked, and a better understanding of this interaction offers potential to develop immunomodulatory strategies. However, current approaches for assessing the immune cell metabolome are often limited by end-point measurements, may involve laborious sample preparation, and may lack unbiased, temporal resolution of the metabolome. In this study, we present a novel setup coupled to a secondary electrospray ionization-high resolution mass spectrometric (SESI-HRMS) platform allowing headspace analysis of immature and activated DCs in real-time with minimal sample preparation and intervention, with high technical reproducibility and potential for automation. Distinct metabolic signatures of DCs treated with different supernatants (SNs) of bacterial cultures were detected during real-time analyses over 6 h compared to their respective controls (SN only). Furthermore, the technique allowed for the detection of 13C-incorporation into volatile metabolites, opening the possibility for real-time tracing of metabolic pathways in DCs. Moreover, differences in the metabolic profile of naı̈ve and activated DCs were discovered, and pathway-enrichment analysis revealed three significantly altered pathways, including the TCA cycle, α-linolenic acid metabolism, and valine, leucine, and isoleucine degradation.
  15. Front Immunol. 2023 ;14 1199233
      Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are produced both enzymatically and non-enzymatically in vivo. Physiological concentrations of ROS act as signaling molecules that participate in various physiological and pathophysiological activities and play an important role in basic metabolic functions. Diseases related to metabolic disorders may be affected by changes in redox balance. This review details the common generation pathways of intracellular ROS and discusses the damage to physiological functions when the ROS concentration is too high to reach an oxidative stress state. We also summarize the main features and energy metabolism of CD4+ T-cell activation and differentiation and the effects of ROS produced during the oxidative metabolism of CD4+ T cells. Because the current treatment for autoimmune diseases damages other immune responses and functional cells in the body, inhibiting the activation and differentiation of autoreactive T cells by targeting oxidative metabolism or ROS production without damaging systemic immune function is a promising treatment option. Therefore, exploring the relationship between T-cell energy metabolism and ROS and the T-cell differentiation process provides theoretical support for discovering effective treatments for T cell-mediated autoimmune diseases.
    Keywords:  CD4+ T cells; Th17 cells; Treg cells; effector T cells (Teffs); inflammation; reactive oxygen species
  16. Cancer Lett. 2023 Jun 12. pii: S0304-3835(23)00218-5. [Epub ahead of print] 216267
      Effector, memory and exhaustion are three phenotypes of CD8+ T cell. In tumor microenvironment (TME), metabolism dysfunction of the three should take the blame for immune escape. Against background of CD8+ T cell in normal development, multiple determinants in TME, including nutrition competition, PD-1 signals and other cancer- CD8+ T cell interaction, cause metabolism reprograming, including failure in energy metabolism and other abnormal lipid metabolism. Further, incompatibility of different CD8+ T cell metabolism pattern results in unresponsiveness of immune checkpoint blockade (ICB). Therefore, combination of ICB and drugs aiming at abnormal lipid metabolism provides promising direction to improve cancer therapy.
    Keywords:  Cholesterol; Energy metabolism; Immune checkpoint blockade; Lipid peroxidation; Metabolism regulating drug; Mitochondria
  17. Immunol Lett. 2023 Jun 12. pii: S0165-2478(23)00107-4. [Epub ahead of print]
      Vaccination aims to generate a protective and persisting antibody response. Indeed, humoral vaccine-mediated protection depends on the quality and quantity of the produced antigen-specific antibodies for its initial magnitude and the persistence of the plasma cells for its duration. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms behind the generation, selection and maintenance of long-lived plasma cells secreting protective antibodies is of fundamental importance for understanding long-term immunity, vaccine responses, autoimmune disease therapy and multiple myeloma. Recent studies have observed correlations between the generation, function and lifespan of plasma cells and their metabolism, with metabolism being both a main driver and primary consequence of changes in cellular behavior. This review introduces how metabolic programs influence and drive immune cell functions in general and plasma cell differentiation and longevity more specifically, summarizing the current knowledge on metabolic pathways and their influences on cellular fate. In addition, available technologies to profile metabolism and their limitations are discussed, leading to the unique and open technological challenges for further advancement of this research field.
    Keywords:  Plasma cells; antibody-secreting cells; durable immunity; immunometabolism; metabolic profiling; metabolism
  18. Physiol Rep. 2023 Jun;11(11): e15753
      Acute aerobic exercise increases the number and proportions of circulating peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PMBC) and can alter PBMC mitochondrial bioenergetics. In this study, we aimed to examine the impact of a maximal exercise bout on immune cell metabolism in collegiate swimmers. Eleven (7 M/4F) collegiate swimmers completed a maximal exercise test to measure anaerobic power and capacity. Pre- and postexercise PBMCs were isolated to measure the immune cell phenotypes and mitochondrial bioenergetics using flow cytometry and high-resolution respirometry. The maximal exercise bout increased circulating levels of PBMCs, particularly in central memory (KLRG1+/CD57-) and senescent (KLRG1+/CD57+) CD8+ T cells, whether measured as a % of PMBCs or as absolute concentrations (all p < 0.05). At the cellularlevel, the routine oxygen flow (IO2 [pmol·s-1 ·106 PBMCs-1 ]) increased following maximal exercise (p = 0.042); however, there were no effects of exercise on the IO2 measured under the LEAK, oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS), or electron transfer (ET) capacities. There were exercise-induced increases in the tissue-level oxygen flow (IO2-tissue [pmol·s-1 ·mL blood-1 ]) for all respiratory states (all p < 0.01), except for the LEAK state, after accounting for the mobilization of PBMCs. Future subtype-specific studies are needed to characterize further maximal exercise's true impact on immune cell bioenergetics.
    Keywords:  PBMC; athletes; inflammation; mitochondria; oxygraph; respirometry
  19. Front Allergy. 2023 ;4 1129248
      The reasons behind the onset and continuation of chronic inflammation in individuals with severe allergies are still not understood. Earlier findings indicated that there is a connection between severe allergic inflammation, systemic metabolic alterations and impairment of regulatory functions. Here, we aimed to identify transcriptomic alterations in T cells associated with the degree of severity in allergic asthmatic patients. T cells were isolated from severe (n = 7) and mild (n = 9) allergic asthmatic patients, and control (non-allergic, non-asthmatic healthy) subjects (n = 8) to perform RNA analysis by Affymetrix gene expression. Compromised biological pathways in the severe phenotype were identified using significant transcripts. T cells' transcriptome of severe allergic asthmatic patients was distinct from that of mild and control subjects. A higher count of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) was observed in the group of individuals with severe allergic asthma vs. control (4,924 genes) and vs. mild (4,232 genes) groups. Mild group also had 1,102 DEGs vs. controls. Pathway analysis revealed alterations in metabolism and immune response in the severe phenotype. Severe allergic asthmatic patients presented downregulation in genes related to oxidative phosphorylation, fatty acid oxidation and glycolysis together with increased expression of genes coding inflammatory cytokines (e.g. IL-19, IL-23A and IL-31). Moreover, the downregulation of genes involved in TGFβ pathway together with a decreased tendency on the percentage of T regulatory cell (CD4 + CD25+), suggest a compromised regulatory function in severe allergic asthmatic patients. This study demonstrates a transcriptional downregulation of metabolic and cell signalling pathways in T cells of severe allergic asthmatic patients associated with diminished regulatory T cell function. These findings support a link between energy metabolism of T cells and allergic asthmatic inflammation.
    Keywords:  CD3+cells; Tregs; allergy; inflammation; metabolism; severe phenotype; t cells; transcriptomics
  20. iScience. 2023 Jun 16. 26(6): 106915
      Urbanization drives the popularity of western diet (WD), which increased burden in metabolic diseases but also in inflammatory diseases. Here, we show continuous WD disrupted the gut barrier, initiating low-grade inflammation and enhancing the colitis response. Nevertheless, transient WD consumption followed by ad libitum normal diet enhanced mucin production and tight junction protein expression in recovered mice. Furthermore, transient WD consumption surprisingly reduced the subsequent inflammatory response in DSS colitis and Citrobacter rodentium-infection induced colitis. The protective effect of WD training was not sex-dependent, and co-housing experiments suggested microbiota changes were not responsible. We identified important roles for cholesterol biosynthesis pathway and macrophages, pointing to innate myeloid training. Together, these data suggest detrimental effects of WD consumption can be reversed on return to a healthier diet. Furthermore, transient WD consumption leads to beneficial immune training, suggesting an evolutionary mechanism to benefit from feasting when abundant food is available.
    Keywords:  Immune response; Immune system; Immunology
  21. Research (Wash D C). 2023 ;6 0167
      Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease featuring rapid proliferation of epidermal cells. Although elevated glycolysis flux has been reported in psoriasis, the molecular mechanisms underlying its pathogenesis remain unclear. We investigated the role of the integral membrane protein CD147 in psoriasis pathogenesis, observing its high expression in psoriatic skin lesions of humans and imiquimod (IMQ)-induced mouse models. In mouse models, genomic deletion of epidermal CD147 markedly attenuated IMQ-induced psoriatic inflammation. We found that CD147 interacted with glucose transporter 1 (Glut1). Depletion of CD147 in the epidermis blocked glucose uptake and glycolysis in vitro and in vivo. In CD147-knockout mice and keratinocytes, oxidative phosphorylation was increased in the epidermis, indicating CD147's pivotal role in glycolysis reprogramming during pathogenesis of psoriasis. Using non-targeted and targeted metabolic techniques, we found that epidermal deletion of CD147 significantly increased the production of carnitine and α-ketoglutaric acid (α-KG). Depletion of CD147 also increased transcriptional expression and activity of γ-butyrobetaine hydroxylase (γ-BBD/BBOX1), a crucial molecule for carnitine metabolism, by inhibiting histone trimethylations of H3K9. Our findings demonstrate that CD147 is critical in metabolic reprogramming through the α-KG-H3K9me3-BBOX1 axis in the pathogenesis of psoriasis, indicating that epidermal CD147 is a promising target for psoriasis treatment.
  22. Clin Nutr. 2023 Jun 07. pii: S0261-5614(23)00184-X. [Epub ahead of print]
      Alterations in amino acid metabolism is closely related to the occurrence of clinical diseases. The mechanism of tumorigenesis is complex, involving the complicated relationship between tumor cells and immune cells in local tumor microenvironment. A series of recent studies have shown that metabolic remodeling is intimately related to tumorigenesis. And amino acid metabolic reprogramming is one of the important characteristics of tumor metabolic remodeling, which participates in tumor cells growth, survival as well as the immune cell activation and function in the local tumor microenvironment, thereby affecting tumor immune escape. Recent studies have further shown that controlling the intake of specific amino acids can significantly improve the effect of clinical intervention in tumors, suggesting that amino acid metabolism is gradually becoming one of the new promising targets of clinical intervention in tumors. Therefore, developing new intervention strategies based on amino acid metabolism has broad prospects. In this article, we review the abnormal changes in the metabolism of some typical amino acids, including glutamine, serine, glycine, asparagine and so on in tumor cells and summarize the relationship among amino acid metabolism, tumor microenvironment and the function of T cells. In particular, we discuss the current issues that need to be addressed in the related fields of tumor amino acid metabolism, aiming to provide a theoretical basis for the development of new strategies for clinical interventions in tumors based on amino acid metabolism reprogramming.
    Keywords:  Amino acid metabolism; Immune cells; Immune escape; Tumor
  23. Cell Commun Signal. 2023 Jun 14. 21(1): 137
      BACKGROUND: Osteoarthritis is an age-related disease that currently faces a lack of symptomatic treatment. Inflammation, which is mainly sustained by pro-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-1b, TNF, and IL-6, plays an important role in osteoarthritis progression. In this context, pro-inflammatory cytokines are widely used to mimic the inflammatory component of osteoarthritis in vitro. However, the therapeutic failures of clinical trials evaluating anti-cytokines drugs highlight the lack of overall understanding of the effects of these cytokines on chondrocytes.METHODS: Here, we generated a comprehensive transcriptomic and proteomic dataset of osteoarthritic chondrocytes treated with these cytokines to describe their pro-inflammatory signature and compare it to the transcriptome of non-osteoarthritic chondrocytes. Then, the dysregulations highlighted at the molecular level were functionally confirmed by real-time cellular metabolic assays.
    RESULTS: We identified dysregulation of metabolic-related genes in osteoarthritic chondrocytes but not in non-osteoarthritic chondrocytes. A metabolic shift, toward increased glycolysis at the expense of mitochondrial respiration, was specifically confirmed in osteoarthritic chondrocytes treated with IL-1b or TNF.
    CONCLUSION: These data show a strong and specific association between inflammation and metabolism in osteoarthritic chondrocytes, which was not found in non-osteoarthritic chondrocytes. This indicates that the link between inflammation and metabolic dysregulation may be exacerbated during chondrocyte damage in osteoarthritis. Video Abstract.
    Keywords:  Chondrocytes; Inflammation; Metabolism; Osteoarthritis
  24. J Immunol. 2023 Jun 16. pii: ji2200863. [Epub ahead of print]
      Cell spreading is an initial and critical step in neutrophil adhesion and migration, leading to neutrophil recruitment to inflammatory tissues. Sideroflexin (Sfxn) family proteins are metabolite transporters located in the mitochondrial membrane. Recombinant SFXN5 protein is a citrate transporter in vitro; however, whether Sfxn5 regulates any cellular behavior or function remains unknown. In this study, we found that small interfering RNA transfection or morpholino injection achieving Sfxn5 deficiency in neutrophils significantly decreased neutrophil recruitment in mice and zebrafish, respectively. Sfxn5 deficiency impaired neutrophil spreading and spreading-associated cellular phenotypes, such as cell adhesion, chemotaxis, and ROS production. Actin polymerization is critical for neutrophil spreading, and we found that actin polymerization in spreading neutrophils was partially inhibited by Sfxn5 deficiency. Mechanistically, we observed that the levels of cytosolic citrate and its downstream metabolic products, acetyl-CoA and cholesterol, were decreased in Sfxn5-deficient neutrophils. The levels of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PI(4,5)P2), a mediator for the regulation of actin polymerization by cholesterol, were reduced in the plasma membrane of Sfxn5-deficient neutrophils. Exogenous supplementation with citrate or cholesterol partially reversed the reduction in PI(4,5)P2 levels, defective neutrophil actin polymerization, and cell spreading. Altogether, we demonstrated that Sfxn5 maintains cytosolic citrate levels and ensures the synthesis of sufficient cholesterol to promote actin polymerization in a PI(4,5)P2-dependent manner during neutrophil spreading, which is essential for the eventual inflammatory recruitment of neutrophils. Our study revealed the importance of Sfxn5 in neutrophil spreading and migration, thus identifying, to our knowledge, for the first time, the physiological cellular functions of the Sfxn5 gene.
  25. Nutrients. 2023 May 28. pii: 2507. [Epub ahead of print]15(11):
      Physalis alkekengi L. calyx (PC) extract can relieve insulin resistance and has glycemic and anti-inflammatory effects; however, the potential mechanisms related to gut microbiota and metabolites remain elusive. This study aimed to understand how PC regulates gut microbiota and metabolites to exert anti-obesogenic effects and relieve insulin resistance. In this study, a high-fat high-fructose (HFHF)-diet-induced obesity C57BL/6J male mice model with glycolipid metabolism dysfunction was established, which was supplemented with the aqueous extract of PC daily for 10 weeks. The results showed that the PC supplementation could effectively cure the abnormal lipid metabolism and maintain glucose metabolism homeostasis by regulating the expression of adipose metabolic genes and glucose metabolism genes in the liver, thereby effectively alleviating the inflammatory response. PC treatment also increased the contents of fecal short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), especially butyric acid. PC extract could restore the HFHF-disrupted diversity of gut microbiota by significantly increasing the relative abundance of Lactobacillus and decreasing those of Romboutsia, Candidatus_Saccharimonas, and Clostridium_sensu_stricto_1. The negative effects of the HFHF diet were ameliorated by PC by regulating multiple metabolic pathways, such as lipid metabolism (linoleic acid metabolism, alpha-linolenic acid metabolism, and sphingolipid metabolism) and amino acid metabolism (histidine and tryptophan metabolism). Correlation analysis showed that among the obesity parameters, gut microbiota and metabolites are directly and closely related. To sum up, this study suggested that PC treatment exhibited therapeutic effects by regulating the gut microbiota, fecal metabolites, and gene expression in the liver to improve glucose metabolism, modulate adiposity, and reduce inflammation.
    Keywords:  Physalis alkekengi L. calyx; glycolipid metabolism; gut microbiota; inflammation; obesity
  26. Molecules. 2023 Jun 01. pii: 4501. [Epub ahead of print]28(11):
      The activation of the microglia plays an important role in the neuroinflammation induced by different stimulations associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Different stimulations, such as pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs), damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) and cytokines, trigger a consequence of activation in the microglia with diverse changes of the microglial cell type response in AD. The activation of the microglia is often accompanied by metabolic changes in response to PAMPs, DAMPs and cytokines in AD. Actually, we do not know the distinct differences on the energetic metabolism of microglia when subject to these stimuli. This research assessed the changes of the cell type response and energetic metabolism in mouse-derived immortalized cells (BV-2 cells) induced by a PAMP (LPS), DAMPs (Aβ and ATP) and a cytokine (IL-4) in mouse-derived immortalized cells (BV-2 cells) and whether the microglial cell type response was improved by targeting the metabolism. We uncovered that LPS, a proinflammatory stimulation of PAMPs, modified the morphology from irregular to fusiform, with stronger cell viability, fusion rates and phagocytosis in the microglia accompanied by a metabolic shift to the promotion of glycolysis and the inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS). Aβ and ATP, which are two known kinds of DAMPs that trigger microglial sterile activation, induced the morphology from irregular to amoebic, and significantly decreased others in the microglia, accompanied by boosting or reducing both glycolysis and OXPHOS. Monotonous pathological changes and energetic metabolism of microglia were observed under IL-4 exposure. Further, the inhibition of glycolysis transformed the LPS-induced proinflammatory morphology and decreased the enhancement of LPS-induced cell viability, the fusion rate and phagocytosis. However, the promotion of glycolysis exerted a minimal effect on the changes of morphology, the fusion rate, cell viability and phagocytosis induced by ATP. Our study reveals that microglia induced diverse pathological changes accompanied by various changes in the energetic metabolism in response to PAMPs, DAMPs and cytokines, and it may be a potential application of targeting the cellular metabolism to interfere with the microglia-mediated pathological changes in AD.
    Keywords:  Alzheimer’s disease; DAMPs; PAMPs; cytokines; energetic metabolism; microglia
  27. Int J Mol Sci. 2023 Jun 01. pii: 9641. [Epub ahead of print]24(11):
      Macrophages constitute important immune cell targets of the antifolate methotrexate (MTX) in autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis. Regulation of folate/MTX metabolism remains poorly understood upon pro-inflammatory (M1-type/GM-CSF-polarized) and anti-inflammatory (M2-type/M-CSF-polarized) macrophages. MTX activity strictly relies on the folylpolyglutamate synthetase (FPGS) dependent intracellular conversion and hence retention to MTX-polyglutamate (MTX-PG) forms. Here, we determined FPGS pre-mRNA splicing, FPGS enzyme activity and MTX-polyglutamylation in human monocyte-derived M1- and M2-macrophages exposed to 50 nmol/L MTX ex vivo. Moreover, RNA-sequencing analysis was used to investigate global splicing profiles and differential gene expression in monocytic and MTX-exposed macrophages. Monocytes displayed six-eight-fold higher ratios of alternatively-spliced/wild type FPGS transcripts than M1- and M2-macrophages. These ratios were inversely associated with a six-ten-fold increase in FPGS activity in M1- and M2-macrophages versus monocytes. Total MTX-PG accumulation was four-fold higher in M1- versus M2-macrophages. Differential splicing after MTX-exposure was particularly apparent in M2-macrophages for histone methylation/modification genes. MTX predominantly induced differential gene expression in M1-macrophages, involving folate metabolic pathway genes, signaling pathways, chemokines/cytokines and energy metabolism. Collectively, macrophage polarization-related differences in folate/MTX metabolism and downstream pathways at the level of pre-mRNA splicing and gene expression may account for variable accumulation of MTX-PGs, hence possibly impacting MTX treatment efficacy.
    Keywords:  alternative splicing; folate metabolism; folylpolyglutamate synthetase; gene expression; macrophages; methotrexate
  28. Nutrients. 2023 Jun 02. pii: 2617. [Epub ahead of print]15(11):
      Time-restricted feeding (TRF) has been shown to improve the disordered metabolic and immunologic functions associated with obesity, however little is known about its post-effects after the cessation of TRF practice. In the current study, we determined how long the effects of TRF persist, and whether the effects are tissue-dependent. There were four groups of mice in this study: overweight and obese mice were randomized into (1) TRF group (TRF for 6 weeks), (2) post-TRF group (TRF for 4 weeks and later ad libitum), (3) continuous ad libitum of high-fat diet (HFD-AL), and (4) the lean control-fed low-fat diet ad libitum. Blood, liver, and adipose tissues were collected to measure the metabolic, inflammatory, and immune cell parameters. The results showed that TRF withdrawal quickly led to increased body weight/adiposity and reversed fasting blood glucose. However, fasting insulin and insulin resistance index HOMA-IR remained lower in the post-TRF than in the HFD-AL group. In addition, TRF-induced reduction in blood monocytes waned in the post-TRF group, but the TRF effects on mRNA levels of proinflammatory immune cells (macrophages Adgre1 and Itgax) and cytokine (Tnf) in adipose tissue remained lower in the post-TRF group than in the HFD-AL group. Furthermore, the TRF group was protected from the down-regulation of Pparg mRNA expression in adipose tissue, which was also observed in the post-TRF group to a lesser extent. The post-TRF animals displayed liver mass similar to those in the TRF group, but the TRF effects on the mRNA of inflammation markers in the liver vanished completely. Together, these results indicate that, although the lasting effects of TRF may differ by tissues and genes, the impact of TRF on adipose tissue inflammation and immune cell infiltration could last a couple of weeks, which may, in part, contribute to the maintenance of insulin sensitivity even after the cessation of TRF.
    Keywords:  after-effects; inflammation; obesity; post-effects; time-restricted feeding
  29. Int J Mol Sci. 2023 May 24. pii: 9192. [Epub ahead of print]24(11):
      Hypertension affects over a billion adults worldwide and is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Studies have reported that the microbiota and its metabolites regulate hypertension pathophysiology. Recently, tryptophan metabolites have been identified to contribute to and inhibit the progression of metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension. Indole propionic acid (IPA) is a tryptophan metabolite with reported protective effects in neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases; however, its involvement in renal immunomodulation and sodium handling in hypertension is unknown. In the current study, targeted metabolomic analysis revealed decreased serum and fecal IPA levels in mice with L-arginine methyl ester hydrochloride (L-NAME)/high salt diet-induced hypertension (LSHTN) compared to normotensive control mice. Additionally, kidneys from LSHTN mice had increased T helper 17 (Th17) cells and decreased T regulatory (Treg) cells. Dietary IPA supplementation in LSHTN mice for 3 weeks resulted in decreased systolic blood pressure, along with increased total 24 h and fractional sodium excretion. Kidney immunophenotyping demonstrated decreased Th17 cells and a trend toward increased Treg cells in IPA-supplemented LSHTN mice. In vitro, naïve T cells from control mice were skewed into Th17 or Treg cells. The presence of IPA decreased Th17 cells and increased Treg cells after 3 days. These results identify a direct role for IPA in attenuating renal Th17 cells and increasing Treg cells, leading to improved sodium handling and decreased blood pressure. IPA may be a potential metabolite-based therapeutic option for hypertension.
    Keywords:  Th17; Treg; hypertension; immunity; kidney; microbiome
  30. Curr Opin Crit Care. 2023 Jun 01.
      PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The evidence base advocating ketones as an alternative substrate for critically ill patients is expanding. We discuss the rationale for investigating alternatives to the traditional metabolic substrates (glucose, fatty acids and amino acids), consider evidence relating to ketone-based nutrition in a variety of contexts, and suggest the necessary future steps.RECENT FINDINGS: Hypoxia and inflammation inhibit pyruvate dehydrogenase, diverting glucose to lactate production. Skeletal muscle beta-oxidation activity falls, decreasing acetyl-CoA generation from fatty acids and subsequent ATP generation reduction.The benefits of induced ketosis are well established in epilepsy, whilst the evidence base for ketogenic diet therapy in other neurological pathology, such as traumatic brain injury and neurodegenerative diseases, is expanding. Evidence of upregulation of ketone metabolism in the hypertrophied and failing heart suggests that ketones may be utilized as an alternative fuel source to sustain myocardial function. Ketogenic diets stabilize immune cell homeostasis, promote cell survival following bacterial infection and inhibit the NLRP3 inflammasome, preventing the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines - interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-18.
    SUMMARY: Whilst ketones provide an attractive nutritional option, further research is required to determine whether the proposed benefits are translatable to critically unwell patients.
  31. J Invest Dermatol. 2023 Jun 07. pii: S0022-202X(23)02141-3. [Epub ahead of print]
      Type 2 immune responses have been increasingly linked with tissue maintenance, regeneration and metabolic homeostasis. The molecular basis of regulator and effector mechanisms of type 2 immunity in skin regeneration and homeostasis is still lacking. Here, we analyzed the role of interleukin-4 receptor alpha (IL-4Rα) signaling in regeneration of diverse cellular compartments of the skin. Mutants with global IL-4Rα deficiency showed two major phenotypes, first a pronounced atrophy of the interfollicular epidermis (IFE) and second, a significant increase in dermal white adipose tissue (dWAT) thickness at P21 compared to littermate controls. Notably, IL-4Rα deficiency decreased activation of hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL), a rate-limiting step in lipolysis. Immunohistochemical and FACS analysis in IL-4/eGFP reporter mice showed that IL-4 expression peaked at P21 and that eosinophils are the predominant IL-4-expressing cells. Eosinophil-deficient mice recapitulated the lipolytic-defective dWAT phenotype of Il4ra-deficient mice, demonstrating that eosinophils are necessary for dWAT lipolysis. Collectively, we provide mechanistic insights into the regulation of IFE and HSL-mediated lipolysis in dWAT in early life by IL-4Rα and our findings demonstrate that eosinophils play a critical role in this process.
    Keywords:  Interleukin-4 receptor alpha; Type 2 immunity; dWAT; eosinophils; lipolysis
  32. Cytokine. 2023 Jun 07. pii: S1043-4666(23)00125-4. [Epub ahead of print]169 156247
      Various studies reported that the kynurenine (Kyn) pathway plays a pivotal role in regulating the balance between activation and inhibition of the immune system. Proinflammatory cytokines can accelerate the Kyn pathway by altering indoleamine (2, 3)- dioxygenase (IDO) allosteric enzyme activity. Excessive cytokine release and immune system activation have essential roles in the pathogenesis of axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA). We aimed to investigate the relationship of the Kyn pathway with proinflammatory cytokines and with the severity of the disease in patients with axSpA. The study included 104 patients with axSpA and 54 healthy volunteers. The severity of the disease was determined by Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index (BASDAI). The Kyn pathway was evaluated by IDO activity calculated with Kyn/Tryptophan (Trp) ratio. Plasma Trp and Kyn concentrations were measured with tandem mass spectrometry. Serum IL 17/23 and IFN-γ concentrations were measured with ELISA. These groups were compared in terms of IDO, IL-17, IL-23, IFN-γ, and BASDAI. Plasma IDO activity was significantly increased, however, serum IL-17, IL-23, and IFN-γ levels were significantly decreased in patients compared to healthy volunteers. While IFN-γ was positively correlated with the severity of the disease (p = 0.02), it also had a significant inverse correlation with IDO activity (p < 0.001). However, these correlations are weak. As a result of this study, the Kyn pathway is accelerated and proinflammatory cytokine levels are decreased in patients with axSpA. All of these results with an indirect weak negative association between high IDO and low disease activity suggest that an accelerated Kyn pathway may limit the immune system activation in axSpA disease.
    Keywords:  Axial spondyloarthritis; IFN-γ; IL-17/23; Indoleamine (2,3) –dioxygenase; Kynurenine; Tryptophan
  33. Cell Rep. 2023 Jun 12. pii: S2211-1247(23)00647-2. [Epub ahead of print]42(6): 112636
      Obesity-mediated hypoxic stress underlies inflammation, including interferon (IFN)-γ production by natural killer (NK) cells in white adipose tissue. However, the effects of obesity on NK cell IFN-γ production remain obscure. Here, we show that hypoxia promotes xCT-mediated glutamate excretion and C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 12 (CXCL12) expression in white adipocytes, resulting in CXCR4+ NK cell recruitment. Interestingly, this spatial proximity between adipocytes and NK cells induces IFN-γ production in NK cells by stimulating metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5). IFN-γ then triggers inflammatory activation of macrophages and augments xCT and CXCL12 expression in adipocytes, forming a bidirectional pathway. Genetic or pharmacological inhibition of xCT, mGluR5, or IFN-γ receptor in adipocytes or NK cells alleviates obesity-related metabolic disorders in mice. Consistently, patients with obesity showed elevated levels of glutamate/mGluR5 and CXCL12/CXCR4 axes, suggesting that a bidirectional pathway between adipocytes and NK cells could be a viable therapeutic target in obesity-related metabolic disorders.
    Keywords:  CP: Immunology; CP: Metabolism; glutamate; interferon-γ; metabolic disorders; metabotropic glutamate receptor; natural killer cells; obesity
  34. Mol Cell. 2023 Jun 08. pii: S1097-2765(23)00374-X. [Epub ahead of print]
      Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) causes infectious mononucleosis, triggers multiple sclerosis, and is associated with 200,000 cancers/year. EBV colonizes the human B cell compartment and periodically reactivates, inducing expression of 80 viral proteins. However, much remains unknown about how EBV remodels host cells and dismantles key antiviral responses. We therefore created a map of EBV-host and EBV-EBV interactions in B cells undergoing EBV replication, uncovering conserved herpesvirus versus EBV-specific host cell targets. The EBV-encoded G-protein-coupled receptor BILF1 associated with MAVS and the UFM1 E3 ligase UFL1. Although UFMylation of 14-3-3 proteins drives RIG-I/MAVS signaling, BILF1-directed MAVS UFMylation instead triggered MAVS packaging into mitochondrial-derived vesicles and lysosomal proteolysis. In the absence of BILF1, EBV replication activated the NLRP3 inflammasome, which impaired viral replication and triggered pyroptosis. Our results provide a viral protein interaction network resource, reveal a UFM1-dependent pathway for selective degradation of mitochondrial cargo, and highlight BILF1 as a novel therapeutic target.
    Keywords:  MAVS; NLRP3 inflammasome; UFMylation; antiviral defense; gamma-herpesvirus; herpesvirus; interactome; mitochondrial-derived vesicles; viral evasion; virus/host interaction
  35. Front Nutr. 2023 ;10 964337
      Introduction: Hepatic lipid accumulation and mitochondrial dysfunction are hallmarks of metabolic associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD), yet molecular parameters underlying MAFLD progression are not well understood. Differential methylation within the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has been suggested to be associated with dysfunctional mitochondria, also during progression to Metabolic Steatohepatitis (MeSH). This study further investigates whether mtDNA methylation is associated with hepatic lipid accumulation and MAFLD.Methods: HepG2 cells were constructed to stably express mitochondria-targeted viral and prokaryotic cytosine DNA methyltransferases (mtM.CviPI or mtM.SssI for GpC or CpG methylation, respectively). A catalytically inactive variant (mtM.CviPI-Mut) was constructed as a control. Mouse and human patients' samples were also investigated. mtDNA methylation was assessed by pyro- or nanopore sequencing.
    Results and discussion: Differentially induced mtDNA hypermethylation impaired mitochondrial gene expression and metabolic activity in HepG2-mtM.CviPI and HepG2-mtM.SssI cells and was associated with increased lipid accumulation, when compared to the controls. To test whether lipid accumulation causes mtDNA methylation, HepG2 cells were subjected to 1 or 2 weeks of fatty acid treatment, but no clear differences in mtDNA methylation were detected. In contrast, hepatic Nd6 mitochondrial gene body cytosine methylation and Nd6 gene expression were increased in mice fed a high-fat high cholesterol diet (HFC for 6 or 20 weeks), when compared to controls, while mtDNA content was unchanged. For patients with simple steatosis, a higher ND6 methylation was confirmed using Methylation Specific PCR, but no additional distinctive cytosines could be identified using pyrosequencing. This study warrants further investigation into a role for mtDNA methylation in promoting mitochondrial dysfunction and impaired lipid metabolism in MAFLD.
    Keywords:  NAFLD; NASH; ND6; liver steatosis; mtDNA methylation
  36. Metabolism. 2023 Jun 07. pii: S0026-0495(23)00217-2. [Epub ahead of print] 155613
      BACKGROUND: Eosinophils are generally related to helminth infections or allergies. Their association with metabolic alterations and adipose tissue (AT) remodeling has been demonstrated mainly in animal models of obesity. However, their physiological role in driving metabolic features has not yet been well described. Herein, we aimed to evaluate the participation of eosinophils in metabolic and adipose tissue homeostasis in mice and humans, focusing on a translational perspective.MATERIAL AND METHODS: Male BALB/c wild-type (WT) mice and GATA-1 knockout (Δdb/GATA-1-/-) mice were followed until 16-week-age in a regular diet or were fed with a high-refined-carbohydrate (HC) diet or high-fat (HF) diet for eight weeks. In subjects with obesity, clinical parameters and omental AT gene expression were evaluated.
    RESULTS: Eosinophils lack in mice fed a regular diet induced insulin resistance and increased adiposity. Their adipose tissue showed augmented cytokine levels, which could be attributed to increased leukocytes in the tissue, such as neutrophils and pro-inflammatory macrophages. Bone marrow transplant from WT mice to Δdb/GATA-1-/- mice showed some improvement in glucose metabolism with lower adipose tissue mass accretion. Upon an unhealthy diet challenge, Δdb/GATA-1-/- mice fed HC diet showed a mild degree of adiposity and glucose metabolic dysfunction severe in those mice fed HF diet. The expression of eosinophil markers in omental AT from humans with severe obesity was positively correlated to eosinophil cytokines and insulin sensitivity surrogate markers and negatively correlated to systemic insulin, HOMA-IR, and android fat mass.
    CONCLUSIONS: Eosinophils seem to have a physiological role by controlling systemic and adipose tissue metabolic homeostasis by modulating glucose metabolism, inflammation, and visceral fat expansion, even in lean mice. Indeed, eosinophils also seem to modulate glucose homeostasis in human obesity.
    Keywords:  Adipose tissue; Eosinophils; Inflammation; Metabolism; Obesity
  37. Microbiol Spectr. 2023 Jun 15. e0524722
      Influenza A virus (IAV)-methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) coinfection causes severe respiratory infections. The host microbiome plays an important role in respiratory tract infections. However, the relationships among the immune responses, metabolic characteristics, and respiratory microbial characteristics of IAV-MRSA coinfection have not been fully studied. We used specific-pathogen-free (SPF) C57BL/6N mice infected with IAV and MRSA to build a nonlethal model of IAV-MRSA coinfection and characterized the upper respiratory tract (URT) and lower respiratory tract (LRT) microbiomes at 4 and 13 days postinfection by full-length 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Immune response and plasma metabolism profile analyses were performed at 4 days postinfection by flow cytometry and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The relationships among the LRT microbiota, the immune response, and the plasma metabolism profile were analyzed by Spearman's correlation analysis. IAV-MRSA coinfection showed significant weight loss and lung injury and significantly increased loads of IAV and MRSA in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF). Microbiome data showed that coinfection significantly increased the relative abundances of Enterococcus faecalis, Enterobacter hormaechei, Citrobacter freundii, and Klebsiella pneumoniae and decreased the relative abundances of Lactobacillus reuteri and Lactobacillus murinus. The percentages of CD4+/CD8+ T cells and B cells in the spleen; the levels of interleukin-9 (IL-9), interferon gamma (IFN-γ), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), IL-6, and IL-8 in the lung; and the level of mevalonolactone in plasma were increased in IAV-MRSA-coinfected mice. L. murinus was positively correlated with lung macrophages and natural killer (NK) cells, negatively correlated with spleen B cells and CD4+/CD8+ T cells, and correlated with multiple plasma metabolites. Future research is needed to clarify whether L. murinus mediates or alters the severity of IAV-MRSA coinfection. IMPORTANCE The respiratory microbiome plays an important role in respiratory tract infections. In this study, we characterized the URT and LRT microbiota, the host immune response, and plasma metabolic profiles during IAV-MRSA coinfection and evaluated their correlations. We observed that IAV-MRSA coinfection induced severe lung injury and dysregulated host immunity and plasma metabolic profiles, as evidenced by the aggravation of lung pathological damage, the reduction of innate immune cells, the strong adaptation of the immune response, and the upregulation of mevalonolactone in plasma. L. murinus was strongly correlated with immune cells and plasma metabolites. Our findings contribute to a better understanding of the role of the host microbiome in respiratory tract infections and identified a key bacterial species, L. murinus, that may provide important references for the development of probiotic therapies.
    Keywords:  IAV-MRSA coinfection; Lactobacillus murinus; adaptive immunity; bacterial-viral coinfection; host immunity; innate immunity; plasma metabolites; respiratory microbiomes
  38. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2023 Jun 07. pii: S0006-291X(23)00770-2. [Epub ahead of print]671 292-300
      Aging adipose tissue exhibits elevated inflammation and oxidative stress that are major sources of age-related metabolic dysfunction. However, the exact metabolic changes associated with inflammation and oxidative stress are unclear. To address this topic, we assessed variation in metabolic phenotypes of adipose tissue from 18 months adult sedentary (ASED), 26 months old sedentary (OSED), and 8 months young sedentary (YSED). The results of metabolomic analysis showed that ASED and OSED group had higher palmitic acid, elaidic acid, 1-heptadecanol, and α-tocopherol levels than YSED, but lower sarcosine levels. Furthermore, stearic acid was specifically elevated in ASED compared with YSED. Cholesterol was upregulated specifically in the OSED group compared with YSED, whereas linoleic acid was downregulated. In addition, ASED and OSED had more inflammatory cytokines, lower antioxidant capacity, and higher expression of ferroptosis-related genes than YSED. Moreover, mitochondrial dysfunction associated with abnormal cardiolipin synthesis was more pronounced in the OSED group. In conclusion, both ASED and OSED can affect the FA metabolism and increase oxidative stress in adipose tissue, leading to inflammation. In particular, linoleic acid content specifically decreases in OSED, which associated with abnormal cardiolipin synthesis and mitochondrial dysfunction in adipose tissue.
    Keywords:  Aging adipose tissue; Inflammation; Lipid catabolism; Metabolomics; Oxidative stress
  39. J Clin Med. 2023 Jun 02. pii: 3818. [Epub ahead of print]12(11):
      At present, obesity, as a part of metabolic syndrome, represents the leading factor for disability, and is correlated with higher inflammation status, morbidity, and mortality. The purpose of our study is to add new insights to the present body of knowledge regarding the correlations between chronic systemic inflammation and severe obesity, which cannot be treated without considering other metabolic syndrome conditions. Biomarkers of high-level chronic inflammation are recognized as important predictors of pro-inflammatory disease. Besides the well-known pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as WBCs (white blood cells), IL-1 (interleukin-1), IL-6 (interleukin-6), TNF-alpha (tumor necrosis factor-alpha), and hsCRP (high-sensitivity C-reactive protein), as well as anti-inflammatory markers, such as adiponectin and systemic inflammation, can be determined by a variety of blood tests as a largely available and inexpensive inflammatory biomarker tool. A few parameters, such as the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio; the level of cholesterol 25-hydroxylase, which is part of the macrophage-enriched metabolic network in adipose tissue; or levels of glutamine, an immune-metabolic regulator in white adipose tissue, are markers that link obesity to inflammation. Through this narrative review, we try to emphasize the influence of the weight-loss process in reducing obesity-related pro-inflammatory status and associated comorbidities. All data from the presented studies report positive results following weight-loss procedures while improving overall health, an effect that lasts over time, as far as the existing research data show.
    Keywords:  metabolic syndrome; morbid obesity; pro-inflammatory status; weight-loss effects
  40. Immunology. 2023 Jun 15.
      According to reports, gut microbiota and metabolites regulate the intestinal immune microenvironment. In recent years, an increasing number of studies reported that bile acids (BAs) of intestinal flora origin affect T helper cells and regulatory T cells (Treg cells). Th17 cells play a pro-inflammatory role and Treg cells usually act in an immunosuppressive role. In this review, we emphatically summarised the influence and corresponding mechanism of different configurations of lithocholic acid (LCA) and deoxycholic acid (DCA) on intestinal Th17 cells, Treg cells and intestinal immune microenvironment. The regulation of BAs receptors G protein-coupled bile acid receptor 1 (GPBAR1/TGR5) and farnesoid X receptor (FXR) on immune cells and intestinal environment are elaborated. Furthermore, the potential clinical applications above were also concluded in three aspects. The above will help researchers better understand the effects of gut flora on the intestinal immune microenvironment via BAs and contribute to the development of new targeted drugs.
    Keywords:  Farnesoid X receptor (FXR); G protein-coupled bile acid receptor 1 (GPBAR1/TGR5); Th17 cells; Treg cells; metabolism