15 kDa Granulysin versus GM-CSF for monocytes differentiation: analogies and differences at the transcriptome level.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Granulysin is an antimicrobial and proinflammatory protein with several isoforms. While the 9 kDa isoform is a well described cytolytic molecule with pro-inflammatory activity, the functions of the 15 kDa isoform is less well understood. Recently it was shown that 15 kDa Granulysin can act as an alarmin that is able to activate monocytes and immature dendritic cells. Granulocyte Macrophage Colony Stimulating Factor (GM-CSF) is a growth factor widely used in immunotherapy both for in vivo and ex vivo applications, especially for its proliferative effects. METHODS: We analyzed gene expression profiles of monocytes cultured with 15 kDa Granulysin or GM-CSF for 4, 12, 24 and 48 hours to unravel both similarities and differences between the effects of these stimulators. RESULTS: The analysis revealed a common signature induced by both factors at each time point, but over time, a more specific signature for each factor became evident. At all time points, 15 kDa Granulysin induced immune response, chemotaxis and cell adhesion genes. In addition, only 15 kDa Granulsyin induced the activation of pathways related to fundamental dendritic cell functions, such as co-stimulation of T-cell activation and Th1 development. GM-CSF specifically down-regulated genes related to cell cycle arrest and the immune response. More specifically, cytokine production, lymphocyte mediated immunity and humoral immune response were down-regulated at late time points. CONCLUSION: This study provides important insights on the effects of a novel agent, 15 kDa granulysin, that holds promise for therapeutic applications aimed at the activation of the immune response.
Project description:Granulysin, a cationic protein expressed by human natural killer cells and cytotoxic T lymphocytes, is a mediator for drug-induced Stevens-Johnson syndrome and graft-versus-host disease. Some 15 kDa granulysin are processed into 9 kDa forms and sequestered in cytolytic granules, while others are constitutively secreted into body fluids. Both 9 and 15 kDa granulysin have been shown to be a serum marker for cell-mediated immunity. Furthermore, 15 kDa is able to activate monocyte differentiation. However, its antimicrobial properties have not been clearly addressed. Here, we report a novel method to prepare both the soluble 9 and 15 kDa granulysin and show that the 15 kDa form is more effective than the 9 kDa form in exerting specific antimicrobial activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa within a range of few micromolars. We also show that the 15 kDa granulysin is able to hyperpolarize the membrane potential and increase membrane permeability of treated bacteria. Interestingly, the bactericidal activity and membrane permeability of the granulysins were markedly reduced at lower pH (pH 5.4) as a result of probable increase in hydrophobicity of the granulysins. Additionally, we've also shown the granulysin to inhibit biofilm formation by P. aeruginosa. These results suggest that the 15 kDa granulysin exhibits a novel mechanism in bacteria killing in a way that's different from most antimicrobial peptides. Our novel granulysin preparation methodology will be useful for further study of action mechanisms of other antimicrobial, cytotoxic and immunomodulating properties in granulysin-mediated diseases.
Project description:Granulysin is expressed as two isoforms by human cytotoxic cells: a single mRNA gives rise to 15 kDa granulysin, a portion of which is cleaved to a 9 kDa protein. Studies with recombinant 9 kDa granulysin have demonstrated its cytolytic and proinflammatory properties, but much less is known about the biologic function of the 15 kDa isoform. In this study, we show that the subcellular localization and functions of 9 and 15 kDa granulysin are largely distinct. Nine kilodalton granulysin is confined to cytolytic granules that are directionally released following target cell recognition. In contrast, 15 kDa granulysin is located in distinct granules that lack perforin and granzyme B and that are released by activated cytolytic cells. Although recombinant 9 kDa granulysin is cytolytic against a variety of tumors and microbes, recombinant 15 kDa granulysin is not. The 15 kDa isoform is a potent inducer of monocytic differentiation to dendritic cells, but the 9 kDa isoform is not. In vivo, mice expressing granulysin show markedly improved antitumor responses, with increased numbers of activated dendritic cells and cytokine-producing T cells. Thus, the distinct functions of granulysin isoforms have major implications for diagnosis and potential new therapies for human disease.
Project description:Granulysin (GNLY), an antimicrobial protein present in the granules of human cytotoxic T lymphocytes and natural killer (NK) cells, is produced as an intact 15-kDa form that is cleaved to yield a 9-kDa form. Alarmins are endogenous mediators that can induce recruitment and activation of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) and consequently promote the generation of immune response. We hypothesized that GNLY might function as an alarmin. Here, we report that both 9- and 15-kDa forms of recombinant GNLY-induced in vitro chemotaxis and activation of both human and mouse dendritic cells (DCs), recruited inflammatory leucocytes, including APCs in mice, and promoted antigen-specific immune responses upon coadministration with an antigen. GNLY-induced APC recruitment and activation required the presence of Toll-like receptor 4. The observed activity of recombinant GNLY was not due to endotoxin contamination. The capability of the supernatant of GNLY-expressing HuT78 cells to activate DC was blocked by anti-GNLY antibodies. Finally we present evidence that supernatants of degranulated human NK92 or primary NK cells also activated DCs in a GNLY- and Toll-like receptor 4-dependent manner, indicating the physiologic relevance of our findings. Thus, GNLY is the first identified lymphocyte-derived alarmin capable of promoting APC recruitment, activation, and antigen-specific immune response.
Project description:Gene expression profiling of elutriated monocytes cultured for 48 hours in RPMI-1640, 10% AB plamsa and one of the following: GMCSF (56IU/ml), IL-4 (2000 IU/ml), 15 kDa Granulysin (10 nM) Sources tested: monocytes form 3 donors tested at time 0, 4 hours, 12 hours, 24 hours, 48 hours 5 time points were compared: day 0 (cells before start the culture), 4, 12, 24, 48 hours
Project description:Granulysin is a human cytolytic molecule present in cytotoxic granules with perforin and granzymes. Recombinant 9-kDa granulysin kills a variety of microbes, including bacteria, yeast, fungi, and parasites, and induces apoptosis in tumor cells by causing intracellular calcium overload, mitochondrial damage, and activation of downstream caspases. Reasoning that granulysin delivered by cytotoxic cells may work in concert with other molecules, we crossed granulysin transgenic (GNLY(+/-)) mice onto perforin (perf)- or granzyme B (gzmb)-deficient mice to examine granulysin-mediated killing in a more physiologic whole-cell system. Splenocytes from these animals were activated in vitro with IL-15 to generate cytolytic T cells and NK cells. Cytotoxic cells expressing granulysin require perforin, but not granzyme B, to cause apoptosis of targets. Whereas granzyme B induces mitochondrial damage and activates caspases-3 and -9 in targets, cytotoxic cell-delivered granulysin induces endoplasmic reticulum stress and activates caspase-7 with no effect on mitochondria or caspases-3 and -9. In addition, recombinant granulysin and cell-delivered granulysin activate distinct apoptotic pathways in target cells. These findings suggest that cytotoxic cells have evolved multiple nonredundant cell death pathways, enabling host defense to counteract escape mechanisms employed by pathogens or tumor cells.
Project description:Release of granulysin by ?? T cells contributes to tumour cell killing. A cytolytic 9000 MW isoform of granulysin kills tumour cells directly, whereas a 15 000 MW precursor has been hypothesized to cause both the maturation and migration of dendritic cell (DC) populations. Recruiting DC to a tumour is beneficial as these cells initiate adaptive immune responses, which contribute to the eradication of malignancies. In this study, V?2+ ?? T cells were activated by stimulation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells with zoledronic acid or Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG), or were isolated and cultured with tumour targets. Although a large proportion of resting V?2+ ?? T cells expressed 15 000 MW granulysin, 9000 MW granulysin expression was induced only after stimulation with BCG. Increased levels of activation and granulysin secretion were also observed when V?2+ ?? T cells were cultured with the human B-cell lymphoma line Daudi. High concentrations of recombinant 15 000 MW granulysin caused migration and maturation of immature DC, and also initiated fugetaxis in mature DC. Conversely, low concentrations of recombinant 15 000 MW granulysin resulted in migration of mature DC, but not immature DC. Our data therefore support the hypothesis that V?2+ ?? T cells can release granulysin, which may modulate recruitment of DC, initiating adaptive immune responses.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Granulysin produced by cytolytic T cells directly contributes to immune defense against tuberculosis (TB). We investigated granulysin as a candidate immune marker for childhood and adolescent TB. METHODS: Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from children and adolescents (1-17 years) with active TB, latent TB infection (LTBI), nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) infection and from uninfected controls were isolated and restimulated in a 7-day restimulation assay. Intracellular staining was then performed to analyze antigen-specific induction of activation markers and cytotoxic proteins, notably, granulysin in CD4(+) CD45RO(+) memory T cells. RESULTS: CD4(+) CD45RO(+) T cells co-expressing granulysin with specificity for Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) were present in high frequency in TB-experienced children and adolescents. Proliferating memory T cells (CFSE(low)CD4(+)CD45RO(+)) were identified as main source of granulysin and these cells expressed both central and effector memory phenotype. PBMC from study participants after TB drug therapy revealed that granulysin-expressing CD4(+) T cells are long-lived, and express several activation and cytotoxicity markers with a proportion of cells being interferon-gamma-positive. In addition, granulysin-expressing T cell lines showed cytolytic activity against Mtb-infected target cells. CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest granulysin expression by CD4(+) memory T cells as candidate immune marker for TB infection, notably, in childhood and adolescence.
Project description:The availability of a variety of immune response modifiers creates an opportunity for improved efficacy of immunotherapy, but it also leads to uncertainty in how to combine agents and how to assess those combinations. We sought to assess the effect of the addition of granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) to vaccination with a melanoma vaccine.Ninety-seven patients with resected melanoma (stage II-IV) were enrolled, stratified by stage, and randomized to receive a cellular melanoma vaccine with or without GM-CSF. The primary endpoint was delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) response to melanoma cells. Antibody responses, peripheral leukocyte counts, and survival were also examined.The GM-CSF arm showed enhanced antibody responses with an increase in IgM titer against the TA90 antigen and increased TA90 immune complexes. This arm also had diminished antimelanoma cell delayed-type hypersensitivity response. Peripheral blood leukocyte profiles showed increases in eosinophils and basophils with decreased monocytes in the GM-CSF arm. These immune changes were accompanied by an increase in early melanoma deaths and a trend toward worse survival with GM-CSF.These data suggest that GM-CSF is not helpful as an immune adjuvant in this dose and schedule and raise concern that it may be harmful. Based on the discordant findings of an immune endpoint and clinical outcome, the use of such surrogate endpoints in selecting treatments for further evaluation must be done with a great deal of caution.
Project description:GM-CSF and IL-3 are hematopoietic cytokines that also modulate the effector functions of several immune cell subsets. In particular, GM-CSF and IL-3 exert a significant control on monocyte and macrophage effector functions, as assessed in experimental models of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases and also in human studies. Here, we sought to investigate the mechanisms and the extent to which GM-CSF and IL-3 modulate the pro-inflammatory, LPS-mediated, activation of human CD14<sup>+</sup> monocytes taking into account the new concept of trained immunity (i.e., the priming stimulus modulates the response to subsequent stimuli mainly by inducing chromatin remodeling and increased transcription at relevant genetic loci). We demonstrate that GM-CSF and IL-3 priming enhances TNF-? production upon subsequent LPS stimulation (short-term model of trained immunity) in a p38- and SIRT2-dependent manner without increasing <i>TNF</i> primary transcript levels (a more direct measure of transcription), thus supporting a posttranscriptional regulation of TNF-? in primed monocytes. GM-CSF and IL-3 priming followed by 6?days of resting also results in increased TNF-? production upon LPS stimulation (long-term model of trained immunity). In this case, however, GM-CSF and IL-3 priming induces a c-Myc-dependent monocyte renewal and increase in cell number that is in turn responsible for heightened TNF-? production. Overall, our results provide insights to understand the biology of monocytes in health and disease conditions in which the hematopoietic cytokines GM-CSF and IL-3 play a role and also extend our knowledge of the cellular and molecular mechanisms of trained immunity.
Project description:Patients with acquired deficiency in GM-CSF are susceptible to infections with Cryptococcus neoformans and other opportunistic fungi. We previously showed that GM-CSF protects against progressive fungal disease using a murine model of cryptococcal lung infection. To better understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms through which GM-CSF enhances antifungal host defenses, we investigated temporal and spatial relationships between myeloid and lymphoid immune responses in wild-type C57BL/6 mice capable of producing GM-CSF and GM-CSF-deficient mice infected with a moderately virulent encapsulated strain of C. neoformans (strain 52D). Our data demonstrate that GM-CSF deficiency led to a reduction in: 1) total lung leukocyte recruitment; 2) Th2 and Th17 responses; 3) total numbers of CD11b(+) dendritic cells (DC) and CD11b(-) and CD11b(+) macrophages (M?); 4) DC and M? activation; and 5) localization of DC and M? to the microanatomic sites of alveolar infection. In contrast, GM-CSF deficiency resulted in increased accumulation of DC and M? precursors, namely Ly-6C(high) monocytes, in the blood and lungs of infected mice. Collectively, these results show that GM-CSF promotes the local differentiation, accumulation, activation, and alveolar localization of lung DC and M? in mice with cryptococcal lung infection. These findings identify GM-CSF as central to the protective immune response that prevents progressive fungal disease and thus shed new light on the increased susceptibility to these infections observed in patients with acquired GM-CSF deficiency.