NKG2D initiates caspase-mediated CD3zeta degradation and lymphocyte receptor impairments associated with human cancer and autoimmune disease.
ABSTRACT: Deficiencies of the T cell and NK cell CD3? signaling adapter protein in patients with cancer and autoimmune diseases are well documented, but mechanistic explanations are fragmentary. The stimulatory NKG2D receptor on T and NK cells mediates tumor immunity but can also promote local and systemic immune suppression in conditions of persistent NKG2D ligand induction that include cancer and certain autoimmune diseases. In this paper, we provide evidence that establishes a causative link between CD3? impairment and chronic NKG2D stimulation due to pathological ligand expression. We describe a mechanism whereby NKG2D signaling in human T and NK cells initiates Fas ligand/Fas-mediated caspase-3/-7 activation and resultant CD3? degradation. As a consequence, the functional capacities of the TCR, the low-affinity Fc receptor for IgG, and the NKp30 and NKp46 natural cytotoxicity receptors, which all signal through CD3?, are impaired. These findings are extended to ex vivo phenotypes of T and NK cells among tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes and in peripheral blood from patients with juvenile-onset lupus. Collectively, these results indicate that pathological NKG2D ligand expression leads to simultaneous impairment of multiple CD3?-dependent receptor functions, thus offering an explanation that may be applicable to CD3? deficiencies associated with diverse disease conditions.
Project description:During the first trimester of human pregnancy, Natural Killer (NK) cells of the maternal uterine mucosa (e.g. decidua) have a unique phenotype and are involved in crucial physiological processes during pregnancy. We investigated whether modifications of the NK receptor repertoire occur during the first trimester of pregnancy. We found significantly decreased expression of KIR2DL1/S1 and KIR2DL2/L3/S2 receptors, NKp30 and NKp44 activatory receptors, and the CD85j (ILT-2) inhibitory receptor. We also observed significantly increased expression of the NKG2D activatory receptor at the decidual NK cell surface. By flow cytometry, we further highlighted an evolution of NK subsets between 8 and 12 weeks of gestation, with a shift from the KIR2DL1/S1?/KIR2DL2/L3/S2? subset towards the double negative subset, coupled with a decrease of the CD85j?/NKG2D? subset in favour of the CD85j?/NKG2D? subset. Furthermore, cell surface expression of NK receptor ligands, including CD85j and NKG2D ligands, has been characterized by flow cytometry on decidual immune CD14? and CD3? cells. HLA-G, the high affinity ligand of CD85j, was detected on both cell types. In contrast, NKG2D ligands ULBP-2 ULBP-3 and MICA/B were not expressed on CD14? and CD3? cells, however a variable expression of ULBP-1 was observed. The ligand expression of KIR2DL1/S1 and KIR2DL2/L3/S2 was also analyzed: the HLA-C molecule was expressed at a low level on some CD14? cells whereas it was not detected on CD3? cell surface. NK receptor ligands are known to be also expressed on the invading placental trophoblast cells. Thus, the phenotypic evolutions of decidual NK cells described in this present study may preserve their activation/inhibition balance during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Project description:Hepatic intrasinusoidal (HI) natural killer (NK) cells from liver perfusate have unique features that are similar to those of liver-resident NK cells. Previously, we have reported that HI CD56bright NK cells effectively degranulate against SNU398 hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. Thus, the aim of this study was to further investigate the phenotype and function of HI NK cells. We found that HI CD56bright NK cells degranulated much less to Huh7 cells. HI CD56bright NK cells expressed NKG2D, NKp46, TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), and FAS ligand (FASL) at higher levels than CD56dim cells. SNU398 cells expressed more NKG2D ligands and FAS and less PD-L1 than Huh7 cells. Blockade of NKG2D, TRAIL, and FASL significantly reduced the cytotoxicity of HI NK cells against SNU398 cells, but blockade of PD-L1 did not lead to any significant change. However, HI NK cells produced IFN-γ well in response to Huh7 cells. In conclusion, the cytotoxicity of HI CD56bright NK cells was attributed to the expression of NKG2D, TRAIL, and FASL. The results suggest the possible use of HI NK cells for cancer immunotherapy and prescreening of HCC cells to help identify the most effective NK cell therapy recipients.
Project description:The natural killer group 2 membrane D (NKG2D) activating receptor plays crucial roles not only in host defense against tumors and viral infections, but also in autoimmune diseases. After NKG2D-mediated activation, Natural killer (NK) cells must be regulated to avoid potentially harmful reactivity. However, the negative regulation of these activated NK cells is poorly understood. Here, we reveal that the engagement of NKG2D by its ligand elicits not only target cell lysis, but also NK cell fratricide. Conventional mouse NK cells underwent cell death when cocultured with RMA cells expressing the NKG2D ligand retinoic acid early-inducible protein 1 (Rae-1), but not with RMA cells lacking MHC class I. NK cells from mice deficient for DAP10 and DAP12 or perforin did not undergo death, highlighting the importance of the NKG2D pathway for NK cell death. However, NKG2D does not transmit direct death signals in NK cells. Rather, the interaction between NKG2D and Rae-1 allowed NK cells to acquire tumor-derived Rae-1 by a membrane transfer process known as "trogocytosis," which was associated with clathrin-dependent NKG2D endocytosis. NK cells dressed with Rae-1 were lysed by neighboring NK cells through the NKG2D-induced perforin pathway in vitro and in vivo. These results provide the unique NKG2D function in negative regulation of activated NK cells.
Project description:Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) present in the tumor microenvironment [usually named tumor-associated fibroblasts (TAF)] can exert immunosuppressive effects on T and natural killer (NK) lymphocytes, favoring tumor immune escape. We have analyzed this mechanism in colorectal carcinoma (CRC) and found that co-culture of NK cells with TAF can prevent the IL-2-mediated NKG2D upregulation. This leads to the impairment of NKG2D-mediated recognition of CRC cells, sparing the NK cell activation through DNAM1 or Fc?RIIIA (CD16). In situ, TAF express detectable levels of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR); thus, the therapeutic anti-EGFR humanized antibody cetuximab can trigger the antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity of TAF, through the engagement of Fc?RIIIA on NK cells. Importantly, in the tumor, we found a lymphoid infiltrate containing NKp46+CD3- NK cells, enriched in CD16+ cells. This population, sorted and cultured with IL-2, could be triggered via CD16 and via NKG2D. Of note, ex vivo NKp46+CD3- cells were able to kill autologous TAF; in vivo, this might represent a control mechanism to reduce TAF-mediated regulatory effect on NK cell function. Altogether, these findings suggest that MSC from the neoplastic mucosa (TAF) of CRC patients can downregulate the immune cell recognition of CRC tumor cells. This immunosuppression can be relieved by the anti-EGFR antibody used in CRC immunotherapy.
Project description:Natural killer (NK) cells have been reported to play a pathological role in autoimmune uveitis. However, the mechanisms regarding NK cells in uveitis and factors that affect NK-cell activation in this condition remain unclear. Here, we report that the number of CD3- NK1.1+ CD83+ CCR7+ cells is increased in the inflamed eyes within a mouse model of experimental autoimmune uveitis (EAU), and these cells express elevated levels of NKG2D, CD69 and IFN-γ. Adoptively transferring CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells aggravates EAU symptoms and increases the number of CD4+ IFN-γ+ T cells and dendritic cells (DCs) within the eye. These CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells then promote the maturation of DCs and IFN-γ expression within T cells as demonstrated in vitro. Furthermore, IL-18, as primarily secreted by DCs in the eyes, is detected to induce CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells. In EAU mice, anti-IL-18R antibody treatment also decreases retinal tissue damage, as well as the number of infiltrating CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells, T cells and DCs in the inflamed eyes and spleens of EAU mice. These results suggest that CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells, as induced by IL-18 that primarily secreted by DCs, play a critical pathological role in EAU. Anti-IL-18R antibody might serve as a potential therapeutic agent for uveitis through its capacity to inhibit CD83+ CCR7+ NK cells infiltration.
Project description:Natural killer group 2D (NKG2D) is a well-characterized activating receptor expressed on many immune cells, including invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells. These cells were shown to be responsible of liver injury in the model of concanavalin A (Con A)-induced hepatitis, considered to be an experimental model of human autoimmune hepatitis. In this study, we investigated whether NKG2D plays a role in the hepatitis induced by iNKT cell-mediated immune response to Con A. By using killer cell lectin-like receptor subfamily K, member 1 deficient (Klrk1-/-) mice, we found that the absence of NKG2D reduced the hepatic injury upon Con A administration. This was not due to an intrinsic functional defect of NKG2D-deficient iNKT cells as mice missing NKG2D have normal distribution and function of iNKT cells. Furthermore, increased resistance to Con A-induced hepatitis was confirmed using neutralizing anti-NKG2D antibodies. The reduced pathogenic effect of Con A in the absence of NKG2D correlates with a reduction in pathogenic cytokine production and FAS-Ligand (FAS-L) expression by iNKT cells. We also found that Con A administration led to an increase in the retinoic acid early inducible (RAE-1) surface expression on wild-type hepatocytes. Finally, we found that Con A has no direct action on FAS-L expression or cytokine production by iNKT cells and thus propose that NKG2D-L expression on stressed hepatocytes promote cytotoxic activity of iNKT cells via its interaction with NKG2D contributing to hepatic injury. In conclusion, our results highlight NKG2D as an essential receptor required for the activation of iNKT cells in Con A-induced hepatitis and indicate that it represents a potential drug target for prevention of autoimmune hepatitis.
Project description:The activation of natural killer (NK) cells depends on a change in the balance of signals from inhibitory and activating receptors. The activation threshold values of NK cells are thought to be set by engagement of inhibitory receptors during development. Here, we found that the activating receptor NKG2D specifically set the activation threshold for the activating receptor NCR1 through a process that required the adaptor DAP12. As a result, NKGD2-deficient (Klrk1-/-) mice controlled tumors and cytomegalovirus infection better than wild-type controls through the NCR1-induced production of the cytokine IFN-?. Expression of NKG2D before the immature NK cell stage increased expression of the adaptor CD3?. Reduced expression of CD3? in Klrk1-/- mice was associated with enhanced signal transduction through NCR1, and CD3? deficiency resulted in hyper-responsiveness to stimulation via NCR1. Thus, an activating receptor developmentally set the activity of another activating receptor on NK cells and determined NK cell reactivity to cellular threats.
Project description:Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is intrinsically immunogenic, with long-lasting immune control in many patients. However, the mechanisms and key cell types underlying effective immune control are incompletely understood.We studied the restoration of natural killer (NK) cell numbers and function post antiviral treatment in 52 hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg)-positive chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients who received telbivudine (LdT) for 48 weeks. Blood samples were collected at week 0, 12, 24, 36, and 48 and tested for HBV DNA, hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg), HBeAg, liver enzymes, and NK cell parameters.Compared with baseline, the number of peripheral CD3-CD56bright NK cells increased significantly from week 24 to 48, especially in patients with baseline alanine transaminase (ALT) two- to fivefold the upper line of normal (ULN) or HBV DNA <9 log10 copies/ml. Expression (number and density) of activating receptors NKG2D and NKp46 on CD3-CD56bright NK cells was enhanced, while inhibitory receptor NKG2A decreased. Notably, numbers of CD3-CD56bright or NKG2D+CD3-CD56bright NK cells were significantly better restored in patients with HBeAg seroconversion. NK cell activating serum interleukin 15 (IL-15) was significantly increased during LdT treatment, especially in HBeAg seroconverters. LdT significantly enhanced expression of NKG2D and IL-15 in cultures of purified peripheral NK cells from treatment-naïve HBeAg-positive CHB patients.Functional restoration of CD56bright NK cells via upregulation of IL-15 and NKG2D is a novel activity of LdT and likely other antivirals, independent of its effect on HBV replication. This also demonstrates the importance of host immune restoration in controlling chronic HBV infection.
Project description:The NK group 2 member D (NKG2D) immune receptor is implicated in both human and mouse autoimmune diabetes. However, the significance of NKG2D in diabetes pathogenesis has been unclear due to conflicting reports as to the importance of this receptor in the NOD mouse model. In this study we demonstrate that NKG2D expression affects NOD diabetes development by at least two previously undescribed, and opposing, mechanisms. First, we demonstrate that the NKG2D ligand H60a is induced on activated NOD T cells, and that NKG2D-H60a interaction during CD8+ T cell differentiation into CTLs generally decreases the subsequent CTL effector cytokine response. This corresponds to an increase in diabetes development in NKG2D-deficient compared with wild-type NOD mice under microbiota-depleted conditions. Second, we demonstrate that NKG2D promotes NOD diabetes development through interaction with the microbiota. Together these findings reveal a previously undescribed role for NKG2D ligand expression by activated T cells in CTL development. Further, they demonstrate that NKG2D has both diabetogenic and antidiabetogenic roles in NOD diabetes development.
Project description:Tumor angiogenesis plays an important role in the development of solid tumors, and targeting the tumor vasculature has emerged as a strategy to prevent growth and progression of solid tumors. In this study, we show that murine tumor vasculature expresses Rae1, a ligand for a stimulatory NK receptor NKG2D. By genetic modification of T cells with an NKG2D-based chimeric Ag receptor, referred to as chNKG2D in which the NKG2D receptor is fused to the signaling domain of CD3?-chain, T cells were capable of targeting tumor vasculature leading to reduced tumor angiogenesis and tumor growth. This occurred even in tumors where the tumor cells themselves did not express NKG2D ligands. H5V, an endothelial cell line, expresses Rae1 and was lysed by chNKG2D-bearing T cells in a perforin-dependent manner. In vitro capillary tube formation was inhibited by chNKG2D T cells through IFN-? and cell-cell contact mechanisms. The in vivo antiangiogenesis effects mediated by chNKG2D-bearing T cells at the tumor site were dependent on IFN-? and perforin. These results provide a novel mechanism for NKG2D-based targeting of solid tumors.