bims-mepmim Biomed News
on Metabolites in pathological microenvironments and immunometabolism
Issue of 2023‒03‒05
38 papers selected by
Erika Mariana Palmieri
NIH/NCI Laboratory of Cancer ImmunoMetabolism

  1. Cell Rep. 2023 Feb 26. pii: S2211-1247(23)00164-X. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112153
      Pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) is the central enzyme connecting glycolysis and the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. The importance of PDH function in T helper 17 (Th17) cells still remains to be studied. Here, we show that PDH is essential for the generation of a glucose-derived citrate pool needed for Th17 cell proliferation, survival, and effector function. In vivo, mice harboring a T cell-specific deletion of PDH are less susceptible to developing experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Mechanistically, the absence of PDH in Th17 cells increases glutaminolysis, glycolysis, and lipid uptake in a mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)-dependent manner. However, cellular citrate remains critically low in mutant Th17 cells, which interferes with oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS), lipid synthesis, and histone acetylation, crucial for transcription of Th17 signature genes. Increasing cellular citrate in PDH-deficient Th17 cells restores their metabolism and function, identifying a metabolic feedback loop within the central carbon metabolism that may offer possibilities for therapeutically targeting Th17 cell-driven autoimmunity.
    Keywords:  CP: Immunology; CP: Metabolism; IL-17; T cells; Th17 cells; acetyl-CoA; citrate; epigenetics; experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis; glucose metabolism; histone acetylation; pyruvate dehydrogenase
  2. Sci Adv. 2023 Mar;9(9): eadd5220
      Cellular metabolism is important for adult neural stem/progenitor cell (NSPC) behavior. However, its role in the transition from quiescence to proliferation is not fully understood. We here show that the mitochondrial pyruvate carrier (MPC) plays a crucial and unexpected part in this process. MPC transports pyruvate into mitochondria, linking cytosolic glycolysis to mitochondrial tricarboxylic acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation. Despite its metabolic key function, the role of MPC in NSPCs has not been addressed. We show that quiescent NSPCs have an active mitochondrial metabolism and express high levels of MPC. Pharmacological MPC inhibition increases aspartate and triggers NSPC activation. Furthermore, genetic Mpc1 ablation in vitro and in vivo also activates NSPCs, which differentiate into mature neurons, leading to overall increased hippocampal neurogenesis in adult and aged mice. These findings highlight the importance of metabolism for NSPC regulation and identify an important pathway through which mitochondrial pyruvate import controls NSPC quiescence and activation.
  3. Cancer Res. 2023 Mar 02. pii: CAN-22-3000. [Epub ahead of print]
      Cysteine plays critical roles in cellular biosynthesis, enzyme catalysis, and redox metabolism. The intracellular cysteine pool can be sustained by cystine uptake or de novo synthesis from serine and homocysteine. Demand for cysteine is increased during tumorigenesis for generating glutathione to deal with oxidative stress. While cultured cells have been shown to be highly dependent on exogenous cystine for proliferation and survival, how diverse tissues obtain and use cysteine in vivo has not been characterized. We comprehensively interrogated cysteine metabolism in normal murine tissues and cancers that arise from them using stable isotope 13C1-serine and 13C6-cystine tracing. De novo cysteine synthesis was highest in normal liver and pancreas and absent in lung tissue, while cysteine synthesis was either inactive or downregulated during tumorigenesis. By contrast, cystine uptake and metabolism to downstream metabolites was a universal feature of normal tissues and tumors. However, differences in glutathione labeling from cysteine were evident across tumor types. Thus, cystine is a major contributor to the cysteine pool in tumors, and glutathione metabolism is differentially active across tumor types.
  4. Biochem Pharmacol. 2023 Feb 25. pii: S0006-2952(23)00055-2. [Epub ahead of print] 115464
      Cancer is characterized by metabolic reprogramming, which is a hot topic in tumor treatment research. Cancer cells alter metabolic pathways to promote their growth, and the common purpose of these altered metabolic pathways is to adapt the metabolic state to the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells. Most cancer cells in a state of nonhypoxia will increase the uptake of glucose and produce lactate, called the Warburg effect. Increased glucose consumption is used as a carbon source to support cell proliferation, including nucleotide, lipid and protein synthesis. In the Warburg effect, pyruvate dehydrogenase activity decreases, thereby disrupting the TCA cycle. In addition to glucose, glutamine is also an important nutrient for the growth and proliferation of cancer cells, an important carbon bank and nitrogen bank for the growth and proliferation of cancer cells, providing ribose, nonessential amino acids, citrate, and glycerin necessary for cancer cell growth and proliferation and compensating for the reduction in oxidative phosphorylation pathways in cancer cells caused by the Warburg effect. In human plasma, glutamine is the most abundant amino acid. Normal cells produce glutamine via glutamine synthase (GLS), but the glutamine synthesized by tumor cells is insufficient to meet their high growth needs, resulting in a "glutamine-dependent phenomenon." Most cancers have an increased glutamine demand, including breast cancer. Metabolic reprogramming not only enables tumor cells to maintain the reduction-oxidation (redox) balance and commit resources to biosynthesis but also establishes heterogeneous metabolic phenotypes of tumor cells that are distinct from those of nontumor cells. Thus, targeting the metabolic differences between tumor and nontumor cells may be a promising and novel anticancer strategy. Glutamine metabolic compartments have emerged as promising candidates, especially in TNBC and drug-resistant breast cancer. In this review, the latest discoveries of breast cancer and glutamine metabolism are discussed, novel treatment methods based on amino acid transporters and glutaminase are discussed, and the relationship between glutamine metabolism and breast cancer metastasis, drug resistance, tumor immunity and ferroptosis are explained, which provides new ideas for the clinical treatment of breast cancer.
    Keywords:  Amino acid transporters; Breast cancer; Glutaminase; Glutamine metabolism; Immune microenvironment; ferroptosis
  5. Cell Rep. 2023 Feb 27. pii: S2211-1247(23)00166-3. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112155
      The most abundant cellular divalent cations, Mg2+ (mM) and Ca2+ (nM-μM), antagonistically regulate divergent metabolic pathways with several orders of magnitude affinity preference, but the physiological significance of this competition remains elusive. In mice consuming a Western diet, genetic ablation of the mitochondrial Mg2+ channel Mrs2 prevents weight gain, enhances mitochondrial activity, decreases fat accumulation in the liver, and causes prominent browning of white adipose. Mrs2 deficiency restrains citrate efflux from the mitochondria, making it unavailable to support de novo lipogenesis. As citrate is an endogenous Mg2+ chelator, this may represent an adaptive response to a perceived deficit of the cation. Transcriptional profiling of liver and white adipose reveals higher expression of genes involved in glycolysis, β-oxidation, thermogenesis, and HIF-1α-targets, in Mrs2-/- mice that are further enhanced under Western-diet-associated metabolic stress. Thus, lowering mMg2+ promotes metabolism and dampens diet-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome.
    Keywords:  CP: Metabolism; HCC; HIF1; MCU; Mrs2; NAFLD; Western diet; adipose expansion; adipose tissue; calcium channel; cardiometabolic disease; diabetes; energy imbalance; hepatocytes; liver; magnesium channel; metabolic disease; metabolic syndrome; mitochondrial dysfunction; obesity; whole-body metabolism
  6. Nat Commun. 2023 Mar 03. 14(1): 1213
      Lymph nodes (LNs) are always embedded in the metabolically-active white adipose tissue (WAT), whereas their functional relationship remains obscure. Here, we identify fibroblastic reticular cells (FRCs) in inguinal LNs (iLNs) as a major source of IL-33 in mediating cold-induced beiging and thermogenesis of subcutaneous WAT (scWAT). Depletion of iLNs in male mice results in defective cold-induced beiging of scWAT. Mechanistically, cold-enhanced sympathetic outflow to iLNs activates β1- and β2-adrenergic receptor (AR) signaling in FRCs to facilitate IL-33 release into iLN-surrounding scWAT, where IL-33 activates type 2 immune response to potentiate biogenesis of beige adipocytes. Cold-induced beiging of scWAT is abrogated by selective ablation of IL-33 or β1- and β2-AR in FRCs, or sympathetic denervation of iLNs, whereas replenishment of IL-33 reverses the impaired cold-induced beiging in iLN-deficient mice. Taken together, our study uncovers an unexpected role of FRCs in iLNs in mediating neuro-immune interaction to maintain energy homeostasis.
  7. STAR Protoc. 2023 Jan 24. pii: S2666-1667(23)00020-5. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 102062
      Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) hijacks host-derived fatty acids (FAs) to sustain its intracellular growth inside host cells. Here, we present a click-chemistry-based protocol to assess FA import by Mtb in axenic culture or inside mouse macrophages. We describe the use of alkyne analogs of natural FAs as an alternative to structurally altered fluorescent derivatives or hazardous radiolabeled FAs. We also detail quantitative analyses of FA uptake at single bacterial or host cell level by flow cytometry and confocal fluorescence microscopy. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Laval et al. (2021).1.
    Keywords:  Cell Biology; Cell Culture; Flow Cytometry/Mass Cytometry; Immunology; Metabolism; Microbiology; Microscopy; Molecular/Chemical Probes
  8. Nat Commun. 2023 Feb 27. 14(1): 1121
      Liver tumour-initiating cells (TICs) contribute to tumour initiation, metastasis, progression and drug resistance. Metabolic reprogramming is a cancer hallmark and plays vital roles in liver tumorigenesis. However, the role of metabolic reprogramming in TICs remains poorly explored. Here, we identify a mitochondria-encoded circular RNA, termed mcPGK1 (mitochondrial circRNA for translocating phosphoglycerate kinase 1), which is highly expressed in liver TICs. mcPGK1 knockdown impairs liver TIC self-renewal, whereas its overexpression drives liver TIC self-renewal. Mechanistically, mcPGK1 regulates metabolic reprogramming by inhibiting mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) and promoting glycolysis. This alters the intracellular levels of α-ketoglutarate and lactate, which are modulators in Wnt/β-catenin activation and liver TIC self-renewal. In addition, mcPGK1 promotes PGK1 mitochondrial import via TOM40 interactions, reprogramming metabolism from oxidative phosphorylation to glycolysis through PGK1-PDK1-PDH axis. Our work suggests that mitochondria-encoded circRNAs represent an additional regulatory layer controlling mitochondrial function, metabolic reprogramming and liver TIC self-renewal.
  9. Nat Commun. 2023 Mar 02. 14(1): 1187
      Ferroptosis is mediated by lipid peroxidation of phospholipids containing polyunsaturated fatty acyl moieties. Glutathione, the key cellular antioxidant capable of inhibiting lipid peroxidation via the activity of the enzyme glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX-4), is generated directly from the sulfur-containing amino acid cysteine, and indirectly from methionine via the transsulfuration pathway. Herein we show that cysteine and methionine deprivation (CMD) can synergize with the GPX4 inhibitor RSL3 to increase ferroptotic cell death and lipid peroxidation in both murine and human glioma cell lines and in ex vivo organotypic slice cultures. We also show that a cysteine-depleted, methionine-restricted diet can improve therapeutic response to RSL3 and prolong survival in a syngeneic orthotopic murine glioma model. Finally, this CMD diet leads to profound in vivo metabolomic, proteomic and lipidomic alterations, highlighting the potential for improving the efficacy of ferroptotic therapies in glioma treatment with a non-invasive dietary modification.
  10. J Lipid Res. 2023 Feb 25. pii: S0022-2275(23)00023-8. [Epub ahead of print] 100350
      Neuroinflammation, a major hallmark of Alzheimer's disease and several other neurological and psychiatric disorders, is often associated with dysregulated cholesterol metabolism. Relative to homeostatic microglia, activated microglia express higher levels of Ch25h, an enzyme that hydroxylates cholesterol to produce 25-hydroxycholesterol (25HC). 25HC is an oxysterol with interesting immune roles stemming from its ability to regulate cholesterol metabolism. Since astrocytes synthesize cholesterol in the brain and transport it to other cells via apolipoprotein E (ApoE)-containing lipoproteins, we hypothesized that secreted 25HC from microglia may influence lipid metabolism as well as extracellular ApoE derived from astrocytes. Here we show that astrocytes take up externally added 25HC and respond with altered lipid metabolism. Extracellular levels of ApoE lipoprotein particles increased after treatment of astrocytes with 25HC without an increase in Apoe mRNA expression. In mouse astrocytes expressing human ApoE3 or ApoE4, 25HC promoted extracellular ApoE3 better than ApoE4. Increased extracellular ApoE was due to elevated efflux from increased Abca1 expression via LXRs as well as decreased lipoprotein reuptake from suppressed Ldlr expression via inhibition of SREBP. 25HC also suppressed expression of Srebf2, but not Srebf1, leading to reduced cholesterol synthesis in astrocytes without affecting fatty acid levels. We further show that 25HC promoted the activity of sterol-o-acyl transferase that led to a doubling of the amount of cholesteryl esters and their concomitant storage in lipid droplets. Our results demonstrate an important role for 25HC in regulating astrocyte lipid metabolism.
    Keywords:  25-hydroxycholesterol; Alzheimer disease; Neuroinflammation; apolipoprotein E; astrocyte; cholesterol metabolism; microglia; oxysterols
  11. Cardiovasc Res. 2023 Mar 02. pii: cvad038. [Epub ahead of print]
      AIMS: Recent studies have revealed a close connection between cellular metabolism and the chronic inflammatory process of atherosclerosis. While the link between systemic metabolism and atherosclerosis is well established, the implications of altered metabolism in the artery wall are less understood. Pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase (PDK)-dependent inhibition of pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) has been identified major metabolic step regulating inflammation. Whether the PDK/PDH axis plays role in vascular inflammation and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease has never been studied.METHODS AND RESULTS: Gene profiling of human atherosclerotic plaques revealed a strong correlation between PDK1 and PDK4 transcript levels and the expression of pro-inflammatory and destabilizing genes. Remarkably, the PDK1 and PDK4 expression correlated with a more vulnerable plaque phenotype, and PDK1 expression was found to predict future major adverse cardiovascular events. Using the small molecule PDK inhibitor dichloroacetate (DCA) that restores arterial PDH activity, we demonstrated that the PDK/PDH axis is a major immunometabolic pathway, regulating immune cell polarization, plaque development, and fibrous cap formation in Apoe-/- mice. Surprisingly, we discovered that DCA regulates succinate release and mitigates its GPR91-dependent signals promoting NLRP3 inflammasome activation and IL-1β secretion by macrophages in the plaque.
    CONCLUSIONS: We have demonstrated for the first time that the PDK/PDH axis is associated with vascular inflammation in humans, and particularly that the PDK1 isozyme is associated with more severe disease and could predict secondary cardiovascular events. Moreover, we demonstrate that targeting the PDK/PDH axis with DCA skews the immune system, inhibits vascular inflammation and atherogenesis, and promotes plaque stability features in Apoe-/- mice. These results point toward a promising treatment to combat atherosclerosis.
  12. Cell Rep. 2023 Mar 01. pii: S2211-1247(23)00180-8. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112169
      Adipose extracellular vesicles (AdEVs) transport lipids that could participate in the development of obesity-related metabolic dysfunctions. This study aims to define mouse AdEV lipid signature by a targeted LC-MS/MS approach in either healthy or obesity context. Distinct clustering of AdEV and visceral adipose tissue (VAT) lipidomes by principal component analysis reveals specific AdEV lipid sorting when compared with secreting VAT. Comprehensive analysis identifies enrichment of ceramides, sphingomyelins, and phosphatidylglycerols species in AdEVs compared with source VAT whose lipid content closely relates to the obesity status and is influenced by the diet. Obesity moreover impacts AdEV lipidome, mirroring lipid alterations retrieved in plasma and VAT. Overall, our study identifies specific lipid fingerprints for plasma, VAT, and AdEVs that are informative of the metabolic status. Lipid species enriched in AdEVs in the obesity context may constitute biomarker candidates or mediators of the obesity-associated metabolic dysfunctions.
    Keywords:  CP: Metabolism; adipocyte; adipose tissue; ectosome; exosome; extracellular vesicles; lipidomics; lipids; microvesicle; obesity
  13. EMBO J. 2023 Feb 27. e111148
      Osteoclasts are bone-resorbing polykaryons responsible for skeletal remodeling during health and disease. Coincident with their differentiation from myeloid precursors, osteoclasts undergo extensive transcriptional and metabolic reprogramming in order to acquire the cellular machinery necessary to demineralize bone and digest its interwoven extracellular matrix. While attempting to identify new regulatory molecules critical to bone resorption, we discovered that murine and human osteoclast differentiation is accompanied by the expression of Zeb1, a zinc-finger transcriptional repressor whose role in normal development is most frequently linked to the control of epithelial-mesenchymal programs. However, following targeting, we find that Zeb1 serves as an unexpected regulator of osteoclast energy metabolism. In vivo, Zeb1-null osteoclasts assume a hyperactivated state, markedly decreasing bone density due to excessive resorptive activity. Mechanistically, Zeb1 acts in a rheostat-like fashion to modulate murine and human osteoclast activity by transcriptionally repressing an ATP-buffering enzyme, mitochondrial creatine kinase 1 (MtCK1), thereby controlling the phosphocreatine energy shuttle and mitochondrial respiration. Together, these studies identify a novel Zeb1/MtCK1 axis that exerts metabolic control over bone resorption in vitro and in vivo.
    Keywords:  Zeb1; bone resorption; mitochondrial creatine kinase; osteoclast; skeletal remodeling
  14. Redox Biol. 2023 Feb 09. pii: S2213-2317(23)00028-9. [Epub ahead of print]61 102627
      Metabolic reprogramming and metabolic plasticity allow cancer cells to fine-tune their metabolism and adapt to the ever-changing environments of the metastatic cascade, for which lipid metabolism and oxidative stress are of particular importance. NADPH is a central co-factor for both lipid and redox homeostasis, suggesting that cancer cells may require larger pools of NADPH to efficiently metastasize. NADPH is recycled through reduction of NADP+ by several enzymatic systems in cells; however, de novo NADP+ is synthesized only through one known enzymatic reaction, catalyzed by NAD+ kinase (NADK). Here, we show that NADK is upregulated in metastatic breast cancer cells enabling de novo production of NADP(H) and the expansion of the NADP(H) pools thereby increasing the ability of these cells to adapt to the challenges of the metastatic cascade and efficiently metastasize. Mechanistically, we found that metastatic signals lead to a histone H3.3 variant-mediated epigenetic regulation of the NADK promoter, resulting in increased NADK levels in cells with metastatic ability. Together, our work presents a previously uncharacterized role for NADK and de novo NADP(H) production as a contributor to breast cancer progression and suggests that NADK constitutes an important and much needed therapeutic target for metastatic breast cancers.
    Keywords:  Breast cancer; Metastasis; NADK; NADPH; Redox
  15. STAR Protoc. 2023 Jan 24. pii: S2666-1667(23)00022-9. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 102064
      Impaired mitochondrial iron metabolism is associated with aging and a variety of diseases, and there is a growing need to accurately quantify mitochondrial iron levels. This protocol provides an optimized method for evaluating non-heme and heme iron in mitochondrial and cytosolic fractions of tissues and cultured cells. Our protocol consists of three steps: sample fractionation, non-heme iron measurement, and heme iron measurement. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Sato et al. (2022).1.
    Keywords:  Cell Biology; Cell Separation/Fractionation; Metabolism; Molecular Biology
  16. Cell Rep. 2023 Mar 01. pii: S2211-1247(23)00182-1. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112171
      Macrophages facilitate critical functions in regulating pathogen clearance and immune homeostasis in tissues. The remarkable functional diversity exhibited by macrophage subsets is dependent on tissue environment and the nature of the pathological insult. Our current knowledge of the mechanisms that regulate the multifaceted counter-inflammatory responses mediated by macrophages remains incomplete. Here, we report that CD169+ macrophage subsets are necessary for protection under excessive inflammatory conditions. We show that in the absence of these macrophages, even under mild septic conditions, mice fail to survive and exhibit increased production of inflammatory cytokines. Mechanistically, CD169+ macrophages control inflammatory responses via interleukin-10 (IL-10), as CD169+ macrophage-specific deletion of IL-10 was lethal during septic conditions, and recombinant IL-10 treatment reduced lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced lethality in mice lacking CD169+ macrophages. Collectively, our findings show a pivotal homeostatic role for CD169+ macrophages and suggest they may serve as an important target for therapy under damaging inflammatory conditions.
    Keywords:  CD169; CP: Immunology; G-CSF; IL-10; LPS; Siglec-1; macrophages; septic shock
  17. Cell Rep. 2023 Feb 28. pii: S2211-1247(23)00216-4. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112205
      Aerobic glycolysis, a metabolic pathway essential for effector T cell survival and proliferation, regulates differentiation of autoimmune T helper (Th) 17 cells, but the mechanism underlying this regulation is largely unknown. Here, we identify a glycolytic intermediate metabolite, phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP), as a negative regulator of Th17 differentiation. PEP supplementation or inhibition of downstream glycolytic enzymes in differentiating Th17 cells increases intracellular PEP levels and inhibits interleukin (IL)-17A expression. PEP supplementation inhibits expression of signature molecules for Th17 and Th2 cells but does not significantly affect glycolysis, cell proliferation, or survival of T helper cells. Mechanistically, PEP binds to JunB and inhibits DNA binding of the JunB/basic leucine zipper transcription factor ATF-like (BATF)/interferon regulatory factor 4 (IRF4) complex, thereby modulating the Th17 transcriptional program. Furthermore, daily administration of PEP to mice inhibits generation of Th17 cells and ameliorates Th17-dependent autoimmune encephalomyelitis. These data demonstrate that PEP links aerobic glycolysis to the Th17 transcriptional program, suggesting the therapeutic potential of PEP for autoimmune diseases.
    Keywords:  AP-1; CP: Immunology; Th17; autoimmune disease; cellular metabolism; glycolysis; phosphoenolpyruvate; transcriptional program
  18. EMBO Mol Med. 2023 Mar 01. e15674
      Besides genetic alterations, the cellular environment also determines disease onset and progression. When different cell types contribute to disease outcome, this imposes environmental challenges as different cell types likely differ in their extracellular dependencies. Hsa-microRNA-31-5p (miR-31) is highly expressed in keratinocytes of psoriatic skin, and we show that expression in keratinocytes is induced by limited glucose availability and enables increased survival under limiting glucose conditions by increasing glutamine metabolism. In addition, miR-31 expression results in not only secretion of specific metabolites (aspartate and glutamate) but also secretion of immunomodulatory factors. We show that this miR-31-induced secretory phenotype is sufficient to induce Th17 cell differentiation, a hallmark of psoriasis. Inhibitors of miR31-induced metabolic rewiring and metabolic crosstalk with immune cells alleviate psoriasis pathology in a mouse model of psoriasis. Together our data illustrate an emerging concept of metabolic interaction across cell compartments that characterizes disease development, which can be employed to design effective treatment options for disease, as shown here for psoriasis.
    Keywords:  T helper 17 cells; glutaminolysis; metabolism reprogramming; miR-31; psoriasis
  19. STAR Protoc. 2023 Jan 18. pii: S2666-1667(22)00831-0. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 101951
      The study of the tumor microenvironment (TME) and its interactions with cancer cells is an important issue in cancer research. Here, we present a protocol to sort three important cell populations from murine triple negative breast cancer 4T1 model TME, including CD45+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, cancer-associated fibroblasts, and tumor cells. The protocol includes four steps: generation of 4T1 tumors, tumor collection and digestion, magnetic sorting of the different populations, and phenotypic validation of sorted cells. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Limagne et al. (2022).1.
    Keywords:  Cancer; Cell isolation; Flow Cytometry/Mass Cytometry; Immunology; Model Organisms
  20. Nat Metab. 2023 Feb;5(2): 294-313
      Many cell biological and biochemical mechanisms controlling the fundamental process of eukaryotic cell division have been identified; however, the temporal dynamics of biosynthetic processes during the cell division cycle are still elusive. Here, we show that key biosynthetic processes are temporally segregated along the cell cycle. Using budding yeast as a model and single-cell methods to dynamically measure metabolic activity, we observe two peaks in protein synthesis, in the G1 and S/G2/M phase, whereas lipid and polysaccharide synthesis peaks only once, during the S/G2/M phase. Integrating the inferred biosynthetic rates into a thermodynamic-stoichiometric metabolic model, we find that this temporal segregation in biosynthetic processes causes flux changes in primary metabolism, with an acceleration of glucose-uptake flux in G1 and phase-shifted oscillations of oxygen and carbon dioxide exchanges. Through experimental validation of the model predictions, we demonstrate that primary metabolism oscillates with cell-cycle periodicity to satisfy the changing demands of biosynthetic processes exhibiting unexpected dynamics during the cell cycle.
  21. Cell Res. 2023 Mar 02.
      A well-established role of cyclic GMP-AMP synthase (cGAS) is the recognition of cytosolic DNA, which is linked to the activation of host defense programs against pathogens via stimulator of interferon genes (STING)-dependent innate immune response. Recent advance has also revealed that cGAS may be involved in several noninfectious contexts by localizing to subcellular compartments other than the cytosol. However, the subcellular localization and function of cGAS in different biological conditions is unclear; in particular, its role in cancer progression remains poorly understood. Here we show that cGAS is localized to mitochondria and protects hepatocellular carcinoma cells from ferroptosis in vitro and in vivo. cGAS anchors to the outer mitochondrial membrane where it associates with dynamin-related protein 1 (DRP1) to facilitate its oligomerization. In the absence of cGAS or DRP1 oligomerization, mitochondrial ROS accumulation and ferroptosis increase, inhibiting tumor growth. Collectively, this previously unrecognized role for cGAS in orchestrating mitochondrial function and cancer progression suggests that cGAS interactions in mitochondria can serve as potential targets for new cancer interventions.
  22. Nat Commun. 2023 Feb 25. 14(1): 1077
      Tandem pore domain (K2P) potassium channels modulate resting membrane potentials and shape cellular excitability. For the mechanosensitive subfamily of K2Ps, the composition of phospholipids within the bilayer strongly influences channel activity. To examine the molecular details of K2P lipid modulation, we solved cryo-EM structures of the TREK1 K2P channel bound to either the anionic lipid phosphatidic acid (PA) or the zwitterionic lipid phosphatidylethanolamine (PE). At the extracellular face of TREK1, a PA lipid inserts its hydrocarbon tail into a pocket behind the selectivity filter, causing a structural rearrangement that recapitulates mutations and pharmacology known to activate TREK1. At the cytoplasmic face, PA and PE lipids compete to modulate the conformation of the TREK1 TM4 gating helix. Our findings demonstrate two distinct pathways by which anionic lipids enhance TREK1 activity and provide a framework for a model that integrates lipid gating with the effects of other mechanosensitive K2P modulators.
  23. Cell. 2023 Feb 22. pii: S0092-8674(23)00097-1. [Epub ahead of print]
      The uptake and metabolism of nutrients support fundamental cellular process from bioenergetics to biomass production and cell fate regulation. While many studies of cell metabolism focus on cancer cells, the principles of metabolism elucidated in cancer cells apply to a wide range of mammalian cells. The goal of this review is to discuss how the field of cancer metabolism provides a framework for revealing principles of cell metabolism and for dissecting the metabolic networks that allow cells to meet their specific demands. Understanding context-specific metabolic preferences and liabilities will unlock new approaches to target cancer cells to improve patient care.
  24. Cancer Cell. 2023 Feb 25. pii: S1535-6108(23)00035-1. [Epub ahead of print]
      Advanced cancers often present with the cachexia syndrome that impacts peripheral tissues, leading to involuntary weight loss and reduced prognosis. The central tissues undergoing depletion are skeletal muscle and adipose, but recent findings reveal an expanding tumor macroenvironment involving organ crosstalks that underlie the cachectic state.
  25. Nat Commun. 2023 Mar 01. 14(1): 1172
      The hypoxic ventilatory response (HVR) is a life-saving reflex, triggered by the activation of chemoreceptor glomus cells in the carotid body (CB) connected with the brainstem respiratory center. The molecular mechanisms underlying glomus cell acute oxygen (O2) sensing are unclear. Genetic disruption of mitochondrial complex I (MCI) selectively abolishes the HVR and glomus cell responsiveness to hypoxia. However, it is unknown what functions of MCI (metabolic, proton transport, or signaling) are essential for O2 sensing. Here we show that transgenic mitochondrial expression of NDI1, a single-molecule yeast NADH/quinone oxidoreductase that does not directly contribute to proton pumping, fully recovers the HVR and glomus cell sensitivity to hypoxia in MCI-deficient mice. Therefore, maintenance of mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase activity and the electron transport chain are absolutely necessary for O2-dependent regulation of breathing. NDI1 expression also rescues other systemic defects caused by MCI deficiency. These data explain the role of MCI in acute O2 sensing by arterial chemoreceptors and demonstrate the optimal recovery of complex organismal functions by gene therapy.
  26. Cell Rep. 2023 Feb 25. pii: S2211-1247(23)00167-5. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112156
      Monocytes can differentiate into macrophages (Mo-Macs) or dendritic cells (Mo-DCs). The cytokine granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) induces the differentiation of monocytes into Mo-Macs, while the combination of GM-CSF/interleukin (IL)-4 is widely used to generate Mo-DCs for clinical applications and to study human DC biology. Here, we report that pharmacological inhibition of the nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ) in the presence of GM-CSF and the absence of IL-4 induces monocyte differentiation into Mo-DCs. Remarkably, we find that simultaneous inhibition of PPARγ and the nutrient sensor mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) induces the differentiation of Mo-DCs with stronger phenotypic stability, superior immunogenicity, and a transcriptional profile characterized by a strong type I interferon (IFN) signature, a lower expression of a large set of tolerogenic genes, and the differential expression of several transcription factors compared with GM-CSF/IL-4 Mo-DCs. Our findings uncover a pathway that tailors Mo-DC differentiation with potential implications in the fields of DC vaccination and cancer immunotherapy.
    Keywords:  CP: Immunology; PPARγ; dendritic cell vaccines; differentiation; human monocytes; immunogenicity; mTORC1; transcriptomic
  27. Cell Rep. 2023 Mar 03. pii: S2211-1247(23)00197-3. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112186
      Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) provide nutrient signals for cell survival and growth. How BCAAs affect CD8+ T cell functions remains unexplored. Herein, we report that accumulation of BCAAs in CD8+ T cells due to the impairment of BCAA degradation in 2C-type serine/threonine protein phosphatase (PP2Cm)-deficient mice leads to hyper-activity of CD8+ T cells and enhanced anti-tumor immunity. CD8+ T cells from PP2Cm-/- mice upregulate glucose transporter Glut1 expression in a FoxO1-dependent manner with more glucose uptake, as well as increased glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation. Moreover, BCAA supplementation recapitulates CD8+ T cell hyper-functions and synergizes with anti-PD-1, in line with a better prognosis in NSCLC patients containing high BCAAs when receiving anti-PD-1 therapy. Our finding thus reveals that accumulation of BCAAs promotes effector function and anti-tumor immunity of CD8+ T cells through reprogramming glucose metabolism, making BCAAs alternative supplementary components to increase the clinical efficacy of anti-PD-1 immunotherapy against tumors.
    Keywords:  CD8(+) T cells; CP: Immunology; anti-tumor immunity; branched-chain amino acid accumulation; effector function; glucose metabolism; synergy with anti-PD-1 treatment
  28. STAR Protoc. 2023 Feb 22. pii: S2666-1667(23)00083-7. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 102125
      Although neutrophils are the most abundant leukocyte in healthy individuals and impact outcomes of diseases ranging from sepsis to cancer, they remain understudied due to technical constraints of isolation, preservation, and sequencing. We present a modified Smart-Seq2 protocol for bulk RNA sequencing of neutrophils enriched from whole blood. We describe steps for neutrophil isolation, cDNA generation, library preparation, and sample purity estimation via a bioinformatic approach. Our approach permits the collection of large cohorts and enables detection of neutrophil transcriptomic subtypes. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to LaSalle et al. (2022)1 and Boribong et al. (2022).2.
    Keywords:  Bioinformatics; Cell Biology; Cell Isolation; Immunology; Molecular Biology; RNAseq; Sequence Analysis; Single Cell
  29. Cell Rep. 2023 Jan 31. pii: S2211-1247(23)00046-3. [Epub ahead of print]42(1): 112035
      Invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells are a distinct population of lymphocytes characterized by their reactivity to glycolipids presented by CD1d. iNKT cells are found throughout the body, and little is known about their tissue-specific metabolic regulation. Here, we show that splenic and hepatic iNKT cells are metabolically comparable and rely on glycolytic metabolism to support their activation. Deletion of the pyruvate kinase M2 (Pkm2) gene in splenic and hepatic iNKT cells impairs their response to specific stimulation and their ability to mitigate acute liver injury. In contrast, adipose tissue (AT) iNKT cells exhibit a distinctive immunometabolic profile, with AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) being necessary for their function. AMPK deficiency impairs AT-iNKT physiology, blocking their capacity to maintain AT homeostasis and their ability to regulate AT inflammation during obesity. Our work deepens our understanding on the tissue-specific immunometabolic regulation of iNKT cells, which directly impacts the course of liver injury and obesity-induced inflammation.
    Keywords:  AMPK; CP: Immunology; CP: Metabolism; PKM2; adipose tissue; iNKT cells; immunometabolism; liver injury; metabolism; obesity
  30. STAR Protoc. 2023 Jan 25. pii: S2666-1667(23)00027-8. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 102069
      Understanding cellular metabolism is important across biotechnology and biomedical research and has critical implications in a broad range of normal and pathological conditions. Here, we introduce the user-friendly web-based platform ImmCellFie, which allows the comprehensive analysis of metabolic functions inferred from transcriptomic or proteomic data. We explain how to set up a run using publicly available omics data and how to visualize the results. The ImmCellFie algorithm pushes beyond conventional statistical enrichment and incorporates complex biological mechanisms to quantify cell activity. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Richelle et al. (2021).1.
    Keywords:  Bioinformatics; Genomics; Metabolism; Systems Biology
  31. Front Immunol. 2023 ;14 1033497
      Introduction: Although multiple targeted treatments have appeared, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is still one of the most common causes of cancer-related deaths. The immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment (TME) is a critical factor in the oncogenesis and progression of HCC. The emerging scRNA-seq makes it possible to explore the TME at a high resolution. This study was designed to reveal the immune-metabolic crosstalk between immune cells in HCC and provide novel strategies to regulate immunosuppressive TME.Method: In this study, we performed scRNA-seq on paired tumor and peri-tumor tissues of HCC. The composition and differentiation trajectory of the immune populations in TME were portrayed. Cellphone DB was utilized to calculate interactions between the identified clusters. Besides, flow cytometry, RT-PCR and seahorse experiments were implemented to explore potential metabolic and epigenetic mechanisms of the inter-cellular interaction.
    Result: A total of 19 immune cell clusters were identified and 7 were found closely related to HCC prognosis. Besides, differentiation trajectories of T cells were also presented. Moreover, a new population, CD3+C1q+ tumor-associated macrophages (TAM) were identified and found significantly interacted with CD8+ CCL4+T cells. Compared to the peri-tumor tissue, their interaction was attenuated in tumor. Additionally, the dynamic presence of this newly found cluster was also verified in the peripheral blood of patients with sepsis. Furthermore, we found that CD3+C1q+TAM affected T cell immunity through C1q signaling-induced metabolic and epigenetic reprogramming, thereby potentially affecting tumor prognosis.
    Conclusion: Our study revealed the interaction between CD3+C1q+TAM and CD8+ CCL4+T cells and may provide implications for tackling the immunosuppressive TME in HCC.
    Keywords:  C1q; HCC; T cell; immunometabolism; tumor-associated macrophage
  32. Nat Commun. 2023 Mar 02. 14(1): 1185
      Bacteria-triggered sepsis is characterized by systemic, uncontrolled inflammation in affected individuals. Controlling the excessive production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and subsequent organ dysfunction in sepsis remains challenging. Here, we demonstrate that Spi2a upregulation in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated bone marrow-derived macrophages reduces the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and myocardial impairment. In addition, exposure to LPS upregulates the lysine acetyltransferase, KAT2B, to promote METTL14 protein stability through acetylation at K398, leading to the increased m6A methylation of Spi2a in macrophages. m6A-methylated Spi2a directly binds to IKKβ to impair IKK complex formation and inactivate the NF-κB pathway. The loss of m6A methylation in macrophages aggravates cytokine production and myocardial damage in mice under septic conditions, whereas forced expression of Spi2a reverses this phenotype. In septic patients, the mRNA expression levels of the human orthologue SERPINA3 negatively correlates with those of the cytokines, TNF, IL-6, IL-1β and IFNγ. Altogether, these findings suggest that m6A methylation of Spi2a negatively regulates macrophage activation in the context of sepsis.
  33. STAR Protoc. 2023 Jan 28. pii: S2666-1667(23)00031-X. [Epub ahead of print]4(1): 102073
      Mitochondrial metabolism is critical in hematopoietic stem cell maintenance and differentiation. Here, we present a step-by-step protocol to efficiently differentiate human induced pluripotent stem cells into myeloid progenitors by a robust feeder- and serum-free system. Furthermore, we provide a protocol to subsequently assess mitochondrial function in iPSC-derived myeloid progenitors. We comprehensively describe a protocol to analyze and to quantify key parameters of mitochondrial respiration of iPSC-derived myeloid progenitors by the Seahorse XFe96 Analyzer. Additionally, our protocol includes extensive troubleshooting suggestions. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Fan et al. (2022).1.
    Keywords:  Cell Biology; Cell Differentiation; Immunology; Metabolism; Stem Cells
  34. Immunity. 2023 Feb 25. pii: S1074-7613(23)00037-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      Dietary components and metabolites have a profound impact on immunity and inflammation. Here, we investigated how sensing of cholesterol metabolite oxysterols by γδ T cells impacts their tissue residency and function. We show that dermal IL-17-producing γδ T (Tγδ17) cells essential for skin-barrier homeostasis require oxysterols sensing through G protein receptor 183 (GPR183) for their development and inflammatory responses. Single-cell transcriptomics and murine reporter strains revealed that GPR183 on developing γδ thymocytes is needed for their maturation by sensing medullary thymic epithelial-cell-derived oxysterols. In the skin, basal keratinocytes expressing the oxysterol enzyme cholesterol 25-hydroxylase (CH25H) maintain dermal Tγδ17 cells. Diet-driven increases in oxysterols exacerbate Tγδ17-cell-mediated psoriatic inflammation, dependent on GPR183 on γδ T cells. Hence, cholesterol-derived oxysterols control spatially distinct but biologically linked processes of thymic education and peripheral function of dermal T cells, implicating diet as a focal parameter of dermal Tγδ17 cells.
    Keywords:  GPR183; IL-17; cholesterol; diet; gamma delta T cells; mTEC; oxysterols; psoriasis; skin
  35. Cell Rep. 2023 Feb 28. pii: S2211-1247(23)00176-6. [Epub ahead of print]42(3): 112165
      Inflammatory stimuli cause a state of emergency myelopoiesis leading to neutrophil-like monocyte expansion. However, their function, the committed precursors, or growth factors remain elusive. In this study we find that Ym1+Ly6Chi monocytes, an immunoregulatory entity of neutrophil-like monocytes, arise from progenitors of neutrophil 1 (proNeu1). Granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) favors the production of neutrophil-like monocytes through previously unknown CD81+CX3CR1lo monocyte precursors. GFI1 promotes the differentiation of proNeu2 from proNeu1 at the cost of producing neutrophil-like monocytes. The human counterpart of neutrophil-like monocytes that also expands in response to G-CSF is found in CD14+CD16- monocyte fraction. The human neutrophil-like monocytes are discriminated from CD14+CD16- classical monocytes by CXCR1 expression and the capacity to suppress T cell proliferation. Collectively, our findings suggest that the aberrant expansion of neutrophil-like monocytes under inflammatory conditions is a process conserved between mouse and human, which may be beneficial for the resolution of inflammation.
    Keywords:  CP: Immunology; CXCR1; G-CSF; Ym1; demand-adapted myelopoiesis; emergency myelopoiesis; machine learning; monocyte; neutrophil-like monocyte; ontogeny
  36. Nat Commun. 2023 Feb 25. 14(1): 1098
      Inter-organ communication is a major hallmark of health and is often orchestrated by hormones released by the anterior pituitary gland. Pituitary gonadotropes secrete follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) to regulate gonadal function and control fertility. Whether FSH and LH also act on organs other than the gonads is debated. Here, we find that gonadotrope depletion in adult female mice triggers profound hypogonadism, obesity, glucose intolerance, fatty liver, and bone loss. The absence of sex steroids precipitates these phenotypes, with the notable exception of fatty liver, which results from ovary-independent actions of FSH. We uncover paracrine FSH action on pituitary corticotropes as a mechanism to restrain the production of corticosterone and prevent hepatic steatosis. Our data demonstrate that functional communication of two distinct hormone-secreting cell populations in the pituitary regulates hepatic lipid metabolism.