Quantum dot/peptide-MHC biosensors reveal strong CD8-dependent cooperation between self and viral antigens that augment the T cell response.
ABSTRACT: Cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) can respond to a few viral peptide-MHC-I (pMHC-I) complexes among a myriad of virus-unrelated endogenous self pMHC-I complexes displayed on virus-infected cells. To elucidate the molecular recognition events on live CTL, we have utilized a self-assembled biosensor composed of semiconductor nanocrystals, quantum dots, carrying a controlled number of virus-derived (cognate) and other (noncognate) pMHC-I complexes and examined their recognition by antigen-specific T cell receptor (TCR) on anti-virus CD8(+) T cells. The unique architecture of nanoscale quantum dot/pMHC-I conjugates revealed that unexpectedly strong multivalent CD8-MHC-I interactions underlie the cooperative contribution of noncognate pMHC-I to the recognition of cognate pMHC-I by TCR to augment T cell responses. The cooperative, CD8-dependent spread of signal from a few productively engaged TCR to many other TCR can explain the remarkable ability of CTL to respond to virus-infected cells that present few cognate pMHC-I complexes.
Project description:Noncognate or self peptide-MHC (pMHC) ligands productively interact with T-cell receptor (TCR) and are always in a large access over the cognate pMHC on the surface of antigen presenting cells. We assembled soluble cognate and noncognate pMHC class I (pMHC-I) ligands at designated ratios on various scaffolds into oligomers that mimic pMHC clustering and examined how multivalency and density of the pMHCs in model clusters influences the binding to live CD8 T cells and the kinetics of TCR signaling. Our data demonstrate that the density of self pMHC-I proteins promotes their interaction with CD8 co-receptor, which plays a critical role in recognition of a small number of cognate pMHC-I ligands. This suggests that MHC clustering on live target cells could be utilized as a sensitive mechanism to regulate T cell responsiveness.
Project description:MHC proteins that present peptide ligands for recognition by TCR form nanoscale clusters on the cell membrane of APCs. How the extent of MHC clustering controls productive TCR engagement and TCR-mediated signaling has not been systematically studied. To evaluate the role of MHC clustering, we exploited nanoscale discoidal membrane mimetics (nanolipoprotein particles) to capture and present peptide-MHC (pMHC) ligands at various densities. We examined the binding of these model membrane clusters to the surface of live human CD8+ T cells and the subsequent triggering of intracellular signaling. The data demonstrate that the proximity of pMHC ligands, high association rate of CD8-MHC interactions, and relatively long lifetime of cognate TCR-pMHC complexes emerge as essential parameters, explaining the significance of MHC clustering. Rapid rebinding of CD8 to MHC suggests a dual role of CD8 in facilitating the T cells' hunt for a rare foreign pMHC ligand and the induction of rapid T cell response. Thus, our findings provide a new understanding of how MHC clustering influences multivalent interactions of pMHC ligands with CD8 and TCR on live T cells that regulate Ag recognition, kinetics of intracellular signaling, and the selectivity and efficiency of T cell responses.
Project description:Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors are effective gene delivery vehicles mediating long-lasting transgene expression. Data from a clinical trial of AAV2-mediated hepatic transfer of the Factor IX gene (F9) into hemophilia B subjects suggests that CTL responses against AAV capsid can eliminate transduced hepatocytes and prevent long-term F9 expression. However, the capacity of hepatocytes to present AAV capsid-derived antigens has not been formally demonstrated, nor whether transduction by AAV sensitizes hepatocytes for CTL-mediated destruction. To investigate the fate of capsids after transduction, we engineered a soluble TCR for the detection of capsid-derived peptide:MHC I (pMHC) complexes. TCR multimers exhibited antigen and HLA specificity and possessed high binding affinity for cognate pMHC complexes. With this reagent, capsid pMHC complexes were detectable by confocal microscopy following AAV-mediated transduction of human hepatocytes. Although antigen presentation was modest, it was sufficient to flag transduced cells for CTL-mediated lysis in an in vitro killing assay. Destruction of hepatocytes was inhibited by soluble TCR, demonstrating a possible application for this reagent in blocking undesirable CTL responses. Together, these studies provide a mechanism for the loss of transgene expression and transient elevations in aminotransferases following AAV-mediated hepatic gene transfer in humans and a potential therapeutic intervention to abrogate these limitations imposed by the host T cell response.
Project description:The CD8?? homodimer is crucial to both thymic T cell selection and the antigen recognition of cytotoxic T cells. The CD8-pMHC-I interaction can enhance CTL immunity <i>via</i> stabilizing the TCR-pMHC-I interaction and optimizing the cross-reactivity and Ag sensitivity of CD8<sup>+</sup> T cells at various stages of development. To date, only human and mouse CD8-pMHC-I complexes have been determined. Here, we resolved the pBF2*1501 complex and the cCD8??/pBF2*1501 and cCD8??/pBF2*0401 complexes in nonmammals for the first time. Remarkably, cCD8??/pBF2*1501 and the cCD8??/pBF2*0401 complex both exhibited two binding modes, including an "antibody-like" mode similar to that of the known mammal CD8/pMHC-I complexes and a "face-to-face" mode that has been observed only in chickens to date. Compared to the "antibody-like" mode, the "face-to-face" binding mode changes the binding orientation of the cCD8?? homodimer to pMHC-I, which might facilitate abundant ??T cells to bind diverse peptides presented by limited BF2 alleles in chicken. Moreover, the forces involving in the interaction of cCD8??/pBF2*1501 and the cCD8??/pBF2*0401 are different in this two binding model, which might change the strength of the CD8-pMHC-I interaction, amplifying T cell cross-reactivity in chickens. The coreceptor CD8?? of TCR has evolved two peptide-MHC-I binding patterns in chickens, which might enhance the T cell response to major or emerging pathogens, including chicken-derived pathogens that are relevant to human health, such as high-pathogenicity influenza viruses.
Project description:The discovery of naturally occurring T cell receptors (TCRs) that confer specific, high-affinity recognition of pathogen and cancer-associated antigens remains a major goal in cellular immunotherapies. The contribution of the CD8 co-receptor to the interaction between the TCR and peptide-bound major histocompatibility complex (pMHC) has previously been correlated with the activation and responsiveness of CD8+ T cells. However, these studies have been limited to model systems of genetically engineered hybridoma TCRs or transgenic mouse TCRs against either a single epitope or an array of altered peptide ligands. CD8 contribution in a native human antigen-specific T cell response remains elusive. Here, using Hepatitis C Virus-specific precursor CTLs spanning a large range of TCR affinities, we discovered that the functional responsiveness of any given TCR correlated with the contribution of CD8 to TCR/pMHC binding. Furthermore, we found that CD8 contribution to TCR/pMHC binding in the two-dimensional (2D) system was more accurately reflected by normalized synergy (CD8 cooperation normalized by total TCR/pMHC bonds) rather than synergy (total CD8 cooperation) alone. While synergy showed an increasing trend with TCR affinity, normalized synergy was demonstrated to decrease with the increase of TCR affinity. Critically, normalized synergy was shown to correlate with CTL functionality and peptide sensitivity, corroborating three-dimensional (3D) analysis of CD8 contribution with respect to TCR affinity. In addition, we identified TCRs that were independent of CD8 for TCR/pMHC binding. Our results resolve the current discrepancy between 2D and 3D analysis on CD8 contribution to TCR/pMHC binding, and demonstrate that naturally occurring high-affinity TCRs are more capable of CD8-independent interactions that yield greater functional responsiveness even with CD8 blocking. Taken together, our data suggest that addition of the normalized synergy parameter to our previously established TCR discovery platform using 2D TCR affinity and sequence test would allow for selection of TCRs specific to any given antigen with the desirable attributes of high TCR affinity, CD8 co-receptor independence and functional superiority. Utilizing TCRs with less CD8 contribution could be beneficial for adoptive cell transfer immunotherapies using naturally occurring or genetically engineered T cells against viral or cancer-associated antigens.
Project description:CD8(+) cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) can recognize and kill target cells expressing only a few cognate major histocompatibility complex (MHC) I-peptide complexes. This high sensitivity requires efficient scanning of a vast number of highly diverse MHC I-peptide complexes by the T cell receptor in the contact site of transient conjugates formed mainly by nonspecific interactions of ICAM-1 and LFA-1. Tracking of single H-2K(d) molecules loaded with fluorescent peptides on target cells and nascent conjugates with CTL showed dynamic transitions between states of free diffusion and immobility. The immobilizations were explained by association of MHC I-peptide complexes with ICAM-1 and strongly increased their local concentration in cell adhesion sites and hence their scanning by T cell receptor. In nascent immunological synapses cognate complexes became immobile, whereas noncognate ones diffused out again. Interfering with this mobility modulation-based concentration and sorting of MHC I-peptide complexes strongly impaired the sensitivity of antigen recognition by CTL, demonstrating that it constitutes a new basic aspect of antigen presentation by MHC I molecules.
Project description:TCR repertoire diversity has been convincingly shown to facilitate responsiveness of CD8+ T cell populations to mutant virus peptides, thereby safeguarding against viral escape. However, the impact of repertoire diversity on the functionality of the CD8+ T cell response to cognate peptide-MHC class I complex (pMHC) recognition remains unclear. Here, we have compared TCRbeta chain repertoires of three influenza A epitope-specific CD8+ T cell responses in C57BL/6 (B6) mice: D(b)NP(366-374), D(b)PA(224-233), and a recently described epitope derived from the +1 reading frame of the influenza viral polymerase B subunit (residues 62-70) (D(b)PB1-F2(62)). Corresponding to the relative antigenicity of the respective pMHCs, and irrespective of the location of prominent residues, the D(b)PA(224)- and D(b)PB1-F2(62)-specific repertoires were similarly diverse, whereas the D(b)NP(366) population was substantially narrower. Importantly, parallel analysis of response magnitude, cytotoxicity, TCR avidity, and cytokine production for the three epitope-specific responses revealed no obvious functional advantage conferred by increased T cell repertoire diversity. Thus, whereas a diverse repertoire may be important for recognition of epitope variants, its effect on the response to cognate pMHC recognition appears minimal.
Project description:The mechanism of CD8 cooperation with the TCR in antigen recognition was studied on live T cells. Fluorescence correlation measurements yielded evidence of the presence of two TCR and CD8 subpopulations with different lateral diffusion rate constants. Independently, evidence for two subpopulations was derived from the experimentally observed two distinct association phases of cognate peptide bound to class I MHC (pMHC) tetramers and the T cells. The fast phase rate constant ((1.7 +/- 0.2) x 10(5) M(-1) s(-1)) was independent of examined cell type or MHC-bound peptides' structure. Its value was much faster than that of the association of soluble pMHC and TCR ((7.0 +/- 0.3) x 10(3) M(-1) s(-1)), and close to that of the association of soluble pMHC with CD8 ((1-2) x 10(5) M(-1) s(-1)). The fast binding phase disappeared when CD8-pMHC interaction was blocked by a CD8-specific mAb. The latter rate constant was slowed down approximately 10-fold after cells treatment with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin. These results suggest that the most efficient pMHC-cell association route corresponds to a fast tetramer binding to a colocalized CD8-TCR subpopulation, which apparently resides within membrane rafts: the reaction starts by pMHC association with the CD8. This markedly faster step significantly increases the probability of pMHC-TCR encounters and thereby promotes pMHC association with CD8-proximal TCR. The slow binding phase is assigned to pMHC association with a noncolocalized CD8-TCR subpopulation. Taken together with results of cytotoxicity assays, our data suggest that the colocalized, raft-associated CD8-TCR subpopulation is the one capable of inducing T-cell activation.
Project description:The T cell antigen receptor (TCR) expressed on thymocytes interacts with self-peptide major histocompatibility complex (pMHC) ligands to signal apoptosis or survival. Here, we found that negative-selection ligands induced thymocytes to exert forces on the TCR and the co-receptor CD8 and formed cooperative TCR-pMHC-CD8 trimolecular 'catch bonds', whereas positive-selection ligands induced less sustained thymocyte forces on TCR and CD8 and formed shorter-lived, independent TCR-pMHC and pMHC-CD8 bimolecular 'slip bonds'. Catch bonds were not intrinsic to either the TCR-pMHC or the pMHC-CD8 arm of the trans (cross-junctional) heterodimer but resulted from coupling of the extracellular pMHC-CD8 interaction to the intracellular interaction of CD8 with TCR-CD3 via associated kinases to form a cis (lateral) heterodimer capable of inside-out signaling. We suggest that the coupled trans-cis heterodimeric interactions form a mechanotransduction loop that reinforces negative-selection signaling that is distinct from positive-selection signaling in the thymus.
Project description:It is unclear if the interaction between CD8 and the T cell receptor (TCR)-CD3 complex is constitutive or antigen induced. Here, fluorescence resonance energy transfer microscopy between fluorescent chimeras of CD3zeta and CD8beta showed that this interaction was induced by antigen recognition in the immunological synapse. Nonstimulatory endogenous or exogenous peptides presented simultaneously with antigenic peptides increased the CD8-TCR interaction. This finding indicates that the interaction between the intracellular regions of a TCR-CD3 complex recognizing its cognate peptide-major histocompatibility complex (MHC) antigen, and CD8 (plus the kinase Lck), is enhanced by a noncognate CD8-MHC interaction. Thus, the interaction of CD8 with a nonstimulatory peptide-MHC complex helps mediate T cell recognition of antigen, improving the coreceptor function of CD8.