Significance of para-esophageal lymph nodes in food or aeroallergen-induced iNKT cell-mediated experimental eosinophilic esophagitis.
ABSTRACT: Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a recently recognized inflammatory disorder driven by food hypersensitivity; however, the specific foods and mechanisms involved are unclear. In patients with EoE, we have found that hypersensitivities to corn and peanuts are the most common. Accordingly, we sensitized and exposed mice either intranasally or intragastrically with corn or peanut extract or saline. Esophageal eosinophilia, the genes of eosinophil-directed cytokines, and allergen-induced antibodies were examined in mice challenged with corn or peanut extract or saline. A high number of esophageal lamina propria eosinophils as well as eosinophilic microabscesses, intraepithelial eosinophils, extracellular eosinophilic granules, thickened and disrupted epithelial mucosa, and mast cell hyperplasia were observed in the esophagus of peanut or corn allergen-challenged mice. Mechanistic analysis indicated that para-esophageal lymph nodes might be critical in the trafficking of eosinophils to the esophagus and in EoE association to airway eosinophilia. Furthermore, experimentation with gene-targeted mice revealed that peanut allergen-induced EoE was dependent on eotaxin and invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells, as CD1d and eotaxin-1/2 gene-deficient mice were protected from disease induction. Thus we provide evidence that para-esophageal lymph nodes are involved in food- or aeroallergen-induced eosinophilia and patchy EoE pathogenesis, likely a mechanism dependent on eotaxins and iNKT cells.
Project description:Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a recently recognized inflammatory disorder that needs a potential therapeutic strategy. We earlier showed that iNKT cell-deficient mice are protected from allergen-induced EoE. Therefore, we now tested the hypothesis that iNKT cells are induced in the human EoE and is a novel possible target for the treatment of human EoE. Accordingly, we examine number of iNKT cells and eosinophils and expression of iNKT-associated cell surface receptors and chemokines by performing immunofluorescence, qPCR and ELISA in the esophageal biopsies and blood samples of normal subjects (comparison control) and EoE patients. Herein, we show that iNKT cell number, their receptor subcomponents V?24 and V?11 expression, and associated chemokine CXCL16 levels (or expression) are induced significantly in EoE patients compared with normal individuals. In addition, we show that CXCL16 levels (or expression) correlate with the mRNA levels of V?24 receptor but not well with esophageal eosinophilia in human EoE. Of note, we show that in vivo activation of iNKT cells is sufficient to induce EoE in mice. Furthermore, we show that anti-mCD1d- and anti-hV?24J?18-neutralizing antibody treatment protects allergen-induced experimental EoE. Taken together, we have shown first time that iNKT cells have a critical pathogenic role in human and experimental EoE. iNKT cell neutralization by humanized anti-CD1d and anti-V?24J?18 antibodies might be a novel and potential therapy for human EoE.
Project description:Quantitative microarray analyses have shown increased expression of interleukin-15 (IL-15) messenger RNA in the esophagus of patients with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), a recently recognized allergic disorder with poorly understood pathogenesis.Quantitative polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analyses were performed to examine protein and transcript levels in tissue samples from patients with EoE. Tissues from IL-15Ra-deficient and wild-type (control) mice were also examined. Tissue eosinophilia was determined by immunostaining for major basic protein and flow cytometry for cell-surface receptors.Quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses showed that levels of IL-15 and its receptor IL-15Ra were increased approximately 6- and approximately 10-fold, respectively, in tissues from patients with EoE and approximately 3- and approximately 4-fold, respectively, in mice with allergen-induced EoE. A >2-fold increase in serum IL-15 protein levels was also detected in human EoE samples compared with those from healthy individuals. Human IL-15 messenger RNA levels correlated with esophageal eosinophilia (P < .001). IL-15Ra-deficient mice were protected from allergen-induced esophageal eosinophilia compared with controls (P < .001), even though similar levels of airway eosinophilia were observed in all mice. IL-15 activated STAT5 and CD4(+) T cells to produce cytokines that act on eosinophils. Incubation of primary esophageal epithelial cells from mice and humans with IL-15 caused a dose-dependent increase in the mRNA expression and protein levels of eotaxin-1, -2, and -3.IL-15 mediates in the pathogenesis of EoE. IL-15 activates CD4(+) T cells to produce cytokines that act on eosinophils.
Project description:Rationale: Oral immunotherapy (OIT) is an emerging treatment for food allergy. While desensitization is achieved in most subjects, many experience gastrointestinal symptoms and few develop eosinophilic gastrointestinal disease. It is unclear whether these subjects have subclinical gastrointestinal eosinophilia (GE) at baseline. We aimed to evaluate the presence of GE in subjects with food allergy before peanut OIT. Methods: We performed baseline esophagogastroduodenoscopies on 21 adults before undergoing peanut OIT. Subjects completed a detailed gastrointestinal symptom questionnaire. Endoscopic findings were assessed using the Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE) Endoscopic Reference Score (EREFS) and biopsies were obtained from the esophagus, gastric antrum, and duodenum. Esophageal biopsies were evaluated using the EoE Histologic Scoring System. Immunohistochemical staining for eosinophil peroxidase (EPX) was also performed. Hematoxylin and eosin and EPX stains of each biopsy were assessed for eosinophil density and EPX/mm2 was quantified using automated image analysis. Results: All subjects were asymptomatic. Pre-existing esophageal eosinophilia (>5 eosinophils per high-power field [eos/hpf]) was present in five participants (24%), three (14%) of whom had >15 eos/hpf associated with mild endoscopic findings (edema, linear furrowing, or rings; median EREFS = 0, IQR 0-0.25). Some subjects also demonstrated basal cell hyperplasia, dilated intercellular spaces, and lamina propria fibrosis. Increased eosinophils were noted in the gastric antrum (>12 eos/hpf) or duodenum (>26 eos/hpf) in 9 subjects (43%). EPX/mm2 correlated strongly with eosinophil counts (r = 0.71, p < 0.0001). Conclusions: Pre-existing GE is common in adults with IgE-mediated peanut allergy. Eosinophilic inflammation (EI) in these subjects may be accompanied by mild endoscopic and histologic findings. Longitudinal data collection during OIT is ongoing.
Project description:Background/Aims:The epidemiology and pathogenesis of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) remain unclear in Asian countries. We investigated clinicopathological characteristics and diagnostic trends of EoE, and evaluated 3 tissue biomarkers for correlation with disease activity and treatment response in Korean patients with EoE. Methods:We retrospectively reviewed 25 271 esophageal biopsies performed during upper endoscopies between 2006 and 2017. We diagnosed EoE based on ≥ 15 eosinophils/high-power field (HPF) and, symptoms of esophageal dysfunction. We performed immunohistochemical analysis for tryptase, eosinophilic derived neurotoxin (EDN), and eotaxin-3. Results:We diagnosed EoE in 72 patients (53 men and 19 women; mean age, 46.2 years) with presenting symptoms of, dysphagia (15.3%), epigastric pain (31.9%), and heartburn (30.6%). The diagnostic rate of EoE considerably increased between 2006 and 2017, from 0.29 diagnoses to 7.99 diagnoses per 1000 esophageal biopsies ( P < 0.001). The mean peak eosinophil count (PEC) was 56.0 (± 77.8)/HPF. Whereas the EDN (rho = 0.667, P < 0.001) and eotaxin-3 levels (rho = 0.465, P < 0.001) correlated with PEC, tryptase and PEC were weakly correlated (rho = 0.291, P = 0.013). EDN (rho = 0.279, P = 0.017), and tryptase (rho = 0.279, P = 0.033) correlated with the inflammatory score of Eosinophilic Esophagitis Endoscopic Reference Score. Immunohistochemical analysis and changes in tryptase, EDN, and eotaxin-3 levels were associated with histologic and endoscopic improvements. Conclusions:EoE incidence considerably increased during the 12-year period, regardless of endoscopic esophageal biopsy rate. Tryptase, EDN, and eotaxin-3 levels in esophageal biopsy specimens could be promising biomarkers for disease activity, symptom, and endoscopic response in Korea.
Project description:BACKGROUND & AIMS:Over the last decade, clinical experiences and research studies raised concerns regarding use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) as part of the diagnostic strategy for eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). We aimed to clarify the use of PPIs in the evaluation and treatment of children and adults with suspected EoE to develop updated international consensus criteria for EoE diagnosis. METHODS:A consensus conference was convened to address the issue of PPI use for esophageal eosinophilia using a process consistent with standards described in the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation II. Pediatric and adult physicians and researchers from gastroenterology, allergy, and pathology subspecialties representing 14 countries used online communications, teleconferences, and a face-to-face meeting to review the literature and clinical experiences. RESULTS:Substantial evidence documented that PPIs reduce esophageal eosinophilia in children, adolescents, and adults, with several mechanisms potentially explaining the treatment effect. Based on these findings, an updated diagnostic algorithm for EoE was developed, with removal of the PPI trial requirement. CONCLUSIONS:EoE should be diagnosed when there are symptoms of esophageal dysfunction and at least 15 eosinophils per high-power field (or approximately 60 eosinophils per mm2) on esophageal biopsy and after a comprehensive assessment of non-EoE disorders that could cause or potentially contribute to esophageal eosinophilia. The evidence suggests that PPIs are better classified as a treatment for esophageal eosinophilia that may be due to EoE than as a diagnostic criterion, and we have developed updated consensus criteria for EoE that reflect this change.
Project description:<h4>Background & aims</h4>Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is characterized by medically/surgically-resistant gastroesophageal reflux symptoms and dense squamous eosinophilia. Studies suggest that histologic assessment of esophageal eosinophilia alone cannot reliably separate patients with EoE from those with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Our goal was to develop an assay to identify EoE patients and perhaps differentiate EoE from other causes of esophageal eosinophilia.<h4>Methods</h4>A monoclonal antibody specific for an eosinophil secondary granule protein (eosinophil peroxidase [EPX]) was developed and shown to specifically identify intact eosinophils and detect eosinophil degranulation in formalin-fixed specimens. A histopathologic scoring algorithm was developed to analyze data from patient evaluations; the utility of this algorithm was assessed by using archived esophageal tissues from patients with known diagnoses of EoE and GERD as well as controls from 2 tertiary care centers.<h4>Results</h4>Intraobserver/interobserver blinded evaluations demonstrated a significant difference (P < .001) between scores of samples taken from control subjects, from patients with esophageal eosinophilia who had a diagnosis of EoE, and from patients with GERD (P < .001). This algorithm also was able to identify patients whose clinical course was suggestive of a diagnosis of EoE, but that nonetheless failed to reach the critical threshold number of > or =15 eosinophils in a high-power (40x) microscopy field.<h4>Conclusions</h4>A novel immunohistochemical scoring system was developed to address an unmet medical need to differentiate histologic specimens from patients with EoE relative to those with GERD. The availability of a unique anti-EPX-specific monoclonal antibody, combined with the ease/rapidity of this staining method and scoring system, will provide a valuable strategy for the assessment of esophageal eosinophilia.
Project description:Although most studies on treatments for eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) have focused on effects in the epithelium, EoE is a transmural disease. Eosinophils that infiltrate the subepithelial layers of the esophagus lead to fibrosis and the serious complications of EoE, and current therapies have shown minimal effects on this fibrosis. We aimed to elucidate T helper (Th)2 cytokine effects on esophageal fibroblasts and to explore potential fibroblast-targeted therapies for EoE.We established telomerase-immortalized fibroblasts from human esophageal biopsies. We stimulated these esophageal fibroblasts with Th2 cytokines, and examined effects of omeprazole and inhibitors of the Janus kinase (JAK)-signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT6) pathway (AS1517499, leflunomide, and ruxolitinib) on STAT6 phosphorylation, STAT6 nuclear translocation, and eotaxin-3 expression. We also measured the effects of these inhibitors in esophageal epithelial cells stimulated with Th2 cytokines.As in esophageal epithelial cells, Th2 cytokines increased STAT6 phosphorylation, STAT6 nuclear translocation, eotaxin-3 transcription and protein secretion in esophageal fibroblasts. Unlike in epithelial cells, however, omeprazole did not inhibit cytokine-stimulated eotaxin-3 expression in fibroblasts. In contrast, JAK-STAT6 pathway inhibitors decreased cytokine-stimulated eotaxin-3 expression in both fibroblasts and epithelial cells.Omeprazole does not inhibit Th2 cytokine-stimulated eotaxin-3 expression by esophageal fibroblasts, suggesting that PPIs will have limited impact on subepithelial EoE processes such as fibrosis. JAK-STAT6 pathway inhibitors block Th2 cytokine-stimulated eotaxin-3 expression both in fibroblasts and in epithelial cells, suggesting a potential role for JAK-STAT inhibitors in treating both epithelial inflammation and subepithelial fibrosis in EoE.
Project description:Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a Th2 cytokine-associated disease characterized by eosinophil infiltration, epithelial cell hyperplasia, and tissue remodeling. Recent studies highlighted a major contribution for IL-13 in EoE pathogenesis. Paired Ig-like receptor B is a cell surface immune-inhibitory receptor that is expressed by eosinophils and postulated to regulate eosinophil development and migration. We report that Pirb is upregulated in the esophagus after inducible overexpression of IL-13 (CC10-Il13(Tg) mice) and is overexpressed by esophageal eosinophils. CC10-Il13(Tg)/Pirb(-/-) mice displayed increased esophageal eosinophilia and EoE pathology, including epithelial cell thickening, fibrosis, and angiogenesis, compared with CC10-Il13(Tg)/Pirb(+/+) mice. Transcriptome analysis of primary Pirb(+/+) and Pirb(-/-) esophageal eosinophils revealed increased expression of transcripts associated with promoting tissue remodeling in Pirb(-/-) eosinophils, including profibrotic genes, genes promoting epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, and genes associated with epithelial growth. These data identify paired Ig-like receptor B as a molecular checkpoint in IL-13-induced eosinophil accumulation and activation, which may serve as a novel target for future therapy in EoE.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is characterized by the inflammation of the esophagus and the infiltration of eosinophils into the esophagus, leading to symptoms such as dysphagia and stricture formation. Systemic immune indicators like eotaxin and fibroblast growth factor were evaluated for possible synergistic pathological effects. Moreover, blood cells, local tissue, and plasma from EoE and control subjects were studied to determine if the localized disease was associated with a systemic effect that correlated with presence of EoE disease.<h4>Method</h4>Real-time polymerase chain reaction from peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), immunohistochemistry from local esophageal biopsies, fluid assays on plasma, and fluorescence-activated cell sorting on peripheral blood cells from subjects were used to study the systemic immune indicators in newly diagnosed EoE (n = 35), treated EoE (n = 9), Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) (n = 8), ulcerative colitis (n = 5), Crohn's disease (n = 5), and healthy controls (n = 8).<h4>Result</h4>Of the transcripts tested for possible immune indicators, we found extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), Bcl-2, bFGF (basic fibroblast growth factor), and eotaxin levels were highly upregulated in PBMC and associated with disease presence of EoE. Increased FGF detected by immunohistochemistry in esophageal tissues and in PBMC was correlated with low levels of pro-apoptotic factors (Fas, Caspase 8) in PBMC from EoE subjects. Plasma-derived bFGF was shown to be the most elevated and most specific in EoE subjects in comparison to healthy controls and disease control subjects.<h4>Conclusion</h4>We describe for the first time a possible mechanism by which increased FGF is associated with inhibiting apoptosis in local esophageal tissues of EoE subjects as compared to controls. Eotaxin and FGF signaling pathways share activation through the ERK pathway; together, they could act to increase eosinophil activation and prolong the half-life of eosinophils in local tissues of the esophagus in EoE subjects.
Project description:Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is an increasingly prevalent chronic disease arising from an allergy/immune-mediated process. Generally, the risk of atopic disease differs in rural and urban environments. The relationship between population density and EoE is unknown. Our aim was to assess the relationship between EoE and population density.We conducted a cross-sectional, case-control study of patients with esophageal biopsies in a US national pathology database between January 2009 and June 2012 to assess the relationship between population density and EoE. Using geographic information systems, the population density (individuals per square mile) was determined for each patient zip code. The odds of esophageal eosinophilia and EoE were estimated for each quintile of population density and adjusted for potential confounders. Sensitivity analyses were conducted with varying case definitions and to evaluate the potential for bias from endoscopy volume and patient factors.Of 292,621 unique patients in the source population, 89,754 had normal esophageal biopsies and 14,381 had esophageal eosinophilia with ?15 eosinophils per high-power field. The odds of having esophageal eosinophilia increased with decreasing population density (P for trend <0.001). Compared with those in the highest quintile of population density, odds of having esophageal eosinophilia were significantly higher among those in the lowest quintile of population density (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 1.27, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.18, 1.36). A similar dose-response trend was observed across case definitions with increased odds of EoE in the lowest population density quintile (aOR 1.59, 95% CI: 1.45-1.76). Estimates were robust to sensitivity analyses.Population density is strongly and inversely associated with esophageal eosinophilia and EoE. This association is robust to varying case definitions and adjustment factors. Environmental exposures that are more prominent in rural areas may be relevant to the pathogenesis of EoE.