Bat3 promotes T cell responses and autoimmunity by repressing Tim-3–mediated cell death and exhaustion.
ABSTRACT: T cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain–containing 3 (Tim-3) is an inhibitory receptor that is expressed on exhausted T cells during infection with HIV-1 and hepatitis C virus. By contrast, Tim-3 expression and function are defective in multiple human autoimmune diseases. However, the molecular mechanisms modulating Tim-3 function are not well understood. Here we show that human leukocyte antigen B (HLA-B)-associated transcript 3 (Bat3) binds to, and represses the function of, Tim-3. Bat3 protects T helper type 1 (TH1) cells from galectin-9–mediated cell death and promotes both proliferation and proinflammatory cytokine production. Bat3-deficient T cells have elevated expression of exhaustion-associated molecules such as Tim-3, Lag3, Prdm1 and Pbx3, and Bat3 knockdown in myelin-antigen–specific CD4+ T cells markedly inhibits the development of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis while promoting the expansion of a dysfunctional Tim-3hi, interferon-? (IFN-?)loCD4+ cell population. Furthermore, expression of Bat3 is reduced in exhausted Tim-3+ T cells from mouse tumors and HIV-1–infected individuals. These data indicate that Bat3 acts as an inhibitor of Tim-3–dependent exhaustion and cell death. Bat3 may thus represent a viable therapeutic target in autoimmune disorders, chronic infections and cancers.
Project description:Although one of the first comprehensive examinations of long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) expression was performed in human CD8 T lymphocytes, little is known about their roles in CD8 T cells functions during the progression of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Here, we show that Lnc-Tim3 is upregulated and negatively correlates with IFN-? and IL-2 production in tumor-infiltrating CD8 T cells of HCC patients. Lnc-Tim3 plays a pivotal role in stimulating CD8 T exhaustion and the survival of the exhausted CD8 T cells. Mechanistically, Lnc-Tim3 specifically binds to Tim-3 and blocks its interaction with Bat3, thus suppressing downstream Lck/ NFAT1/AP-1 signaling, leading to nuclear localization of Bat3, and enhancing p300-dependent p53 and RelA transcriptional activation of anti-apoptosis genes including MDM2 and Bcl-2. In summary, Lnc-Tim3 promotes T cell exhaustion, a phenotype which is correlated with compromised anti-tumor immunity, suggesting that Lnc-Tim3 and its associated signaling pathways may influence the outcome of cancer therapies aimed at modulating the acquired immune system.
Project description:T cell immunoglobulin and mucin protein 3 (TIM-3) is a type I cell surface protein that was originally identified as a marker for murine T helper type 1 cells. TIM-3 was found to negatively regulate murine T cell responses and galectin-9 was described as a binding partner that mediates T cell inhibitory effects of TIM-3. Moreover, it was reported that like PD-1 the classical exhaustion marker, TIM-3 is up-regulated in exhausted murine and human T cells and TIM-3 blockade was described to restore the function of these T cells. Here we show that the activation of human T cells is not affected by the presence of galectin-9 or antibodies to TIM-3. Furthermore, extensive studies on the interaction of galectin-9 with human and murine TIM-3 did not yield evidence for specific binding between these molecules. Moreover, profound differences were observed when analysing the expression of TIM-3 and PD-1 on T cells of HIV-1-infected individuals: TIM-3 was expressed on fewer cells and also at much lower levels. Furthermore, whereas PD-1 was preferentially expressed on CD45RA(-)CD8 T cells, the majority of TIM-3-expressing CD8 T cells were CD45RA(+). Importantly, we found that TIM-3 antibodies were ineffective in increasing anti-HIV-1 T cell responses in vitro, whereas PD-L antibodies potently reverted the dysfunctional state of exhausted CD8 T cells. Taken together, our results are not in support of an interaction between TIM-3 and galectin-9 and yield no evidence for a functional role of TIM-3 in human T cell activation. Moreover, our data indicate that PD-1, but not TIM-3, is a promising target to ameliorate T cell exhaustion.
Project description:As perinatally HIV-1-infected children grow into adolescents and young adults, they are increasingly burdened with the long-term consequences of chronic HIV-1 infection, with long-term morbidity due to inadequate immunity. In progressive HIV-1 infection in horizontally infected adults, inflammation, T cell activation, and perturbed T cell differentiation lead to an "immune exhaustion", with decline in T cell effector functions. T effector cells develop an increased expression of CD57 and loss of CD28, with an increase in co-inhibitory receptors such as PD-1 and Tim-3. Very little is known about HIV-1 induced T cell dysfunction in vertical infection. In two perinatally antiretroviral drug treated HIV-1-infected groups with median ages of 11.2 yr and 18.5 yr, matched for viral load, we found no difference in the proportion of senescent CD28(-)CD57(+)CD8(+) T cells between the groups. However, the frequency of Tim-3(+)CD8(+) and Tim-3(+)CD4(+) exhausted T cells, but not PD-1(+) T cells, was significantly increased in the adolescents with longer duration of infection compared to the children with shorter duration of HIV-1 infection. PD-1(+)CD8(+) T cells were directly associated with T cell immune activation in children. The frequency of Tim-3(+)CD8(+) T cells positively correlated with HIV-1 plasma viral load in the adolescents but not in the children. These data suggest that Tim-3 upregulation was driven by both HIV-1 viral replication and increased age, whereas PD-1 expression is associated with immune activation. These findings also suggest that the Tim-3 immune exhaustion phenotype rather than PD-1 or senescent cells plays an important role in age-related T cell dysfunction in perinatal HIV-1 infection. Targeting Tim-3 may serve as a novel therapeutic approach to improve immune control of virus replication and mitigate age related T cell exhaustion.
Project description:The immunoregulatory protein T-cell immunoglobulin- and mucin-domain-containing molecule-3 (Tim-3) mediates T-cell exhaustion and contributes to the suppression of immune responses in both viral infections and tumors. Tim-3 blockade reverses the exhausted phenotype of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in several chronic diseases, including melanoma. Interestingly, natural killer (NK) cells constitutively express Tim-3; however, the role of Tim-3 in modulating the function of these innate effector cells remains unclear, particularly in human diseases. In this study, we compared the function of Tim-3 in NK cells from healthy donors and patients with metastatic melanoma. NK cells from the latter were functionally impaired/exhausted, and Tim-3 blockade reversed this exhausted phenotype. Moreover, Tim-3 expression levels were correlated with the stage of the disease and poor prognostic factors. These data indicate that Tim-3 can function as an NK-cell exhaustion marker in advanced melanoma and support the development of Tim-3-targeted therapies to restore antitumor immunity.
Project description:Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways are dynamic and sensitive regulators of T cell function and differentiation. Altered MAPK signaling has been associated with the inflammatory and autoimmune diseases lupus and arthritis and with some pathogenic viral infections. HIV-1 infection is characterized by chronic immune inflammation, aberrantly heightened CD8(+) T cell activation levels, and altered T cell function. The relationship between MAPK pathway function, HIV-1-induced activation (CD38 and HLA-DR), and exhaustion (Tim-3) markers in circulating CD8(+) T cells remains unknown. Phosphorylation of the MAPK effector proteins ERK and p38 was examined by "phosflow" flow cytometry in 79 recently HIV-1-infected, antiretroviral-treatment-naïve adults and 21 risk-matched HIV-1-negative controls. We identified a subset of CD8(+) T cells refractory to phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate plus ionomycin-induced ERK1/2 phosphorylation (referred to as p-ERK1/2-refractory cells) that was greatly expanded in HIV-1-infected adults. The CD8(+) p-ERK1/2-refractory cells were highly activated (CD38(+) HLA-DR(+)) but not exhausted (Tim-3 negative), tended to have low CD8 expression, and were enriched in intermediate and late transitional memory states of differentiation (CD45RA(-) CD28(-) CD27(+/-)). Targeting MAPK pathways to restore ERK1/2 signaling may normalize immune inflammation levels and restore CD8(+) T cell function during HIV-1 infection.
Project description:CD8+ T cell exhaustion is a state of dysfunction acquired in chronic viral infection and cancer, characterized by the formation of Slamf6+ progenitor exhausted and Tim-3+ terminally exhausted subpopulations through unknown mechanisms. Here we establish the phosphatase PTPN2 as a new regulator of the differentiation of the terminally exhausted subpopulation that functions by attenuating type 1 interferon signaling. Deletion of Ptpn2 in CD8+ T cells increased the generation, proliferative capacity and cytotoxicity of Tim-3+ cells without altering Slamf6+ numbers during lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus clone 13 infection. Likewise, Ptpn2 deletion in CD8+ T cells enhanced Tim-3+ anti-tumor responses and improved tumor control. Deletion of Ptpn2 throughout the immune system resulted in MC38 tumor clearance and improved programmed cell death-1 checkpoint blockade responses to B16 tumors. Our results indicate that increasing the number of cytotoxic Tim-3+CD8+ T cells can promote effective anti-tumor immunity and implicate PTPN2 in immune cells as an attractive cancer immunotherapy target.
Project description:HLA-B-associated transcript 3 (BAT3), also known as Scythe or BAG6, is a nuclear protein implicated in the control of apoptosis and natural killer (NK) cell-dendritic cell (DC) interaction. We demonstrate that BAT3 modulates the immune response by regulating the function of macrophages. BAT3 is released by macrophages in vitro and it down-regulates nitric oxide and proinflammatory cytokines release in IFN-? and LPS stimulated macrophages. Furthermore, Mycobacterium tuberculosis-derived protein ESAT-6 (Rv3875) induced transient increase in the expression and release of BAT3 in macrophages. We show that induction of apoptosis by ESAT-6 is dependent on the cleavage of BAT3 by caspase-3 and proteasomal degradation. Our results also indicate that BAT3 regulates ESAT-6-induced apoptosis by interacting with anti-apoptotic protein BCL-2. Taken together, the data suggest that BAT3 plays a role in the early immune response to M. tuberculosis infection and may be a key protein associated with the fate of antigen presenting cells during infection.
Project description:The rate at which HIV-1 infected individuals progress to AIDS is highly variable and impacted by T cell immunity. CD8 T cell inhibitory molecules are up-regulated in HIV-1 infection and associate with immune dysfunction. We evaluated participants (n = 122) recruited to the SPARTAC randomised clinical trial to determine whether CD8 T cell exhaustion markers PD-1, Lag-3 and Tim-3 were associated with immune activation and disease progression. Expression of PD-1, Tim-3, Lag-3 and CD38 on CD8 T cells from the closest pre-therapy time-point to seroconversion was measured by flow cytometry, and correlated with surrogate markers of HIV-1 disease (HIV-1 plasma viral load (pVL) and CD4 T cell count) and the trial endpoint (time to CD4 count <350 cells/?l or initiation of antiretroviral therapy). To explore the functional significance of these markers, co-expression of Eomes, T-bet and CD39 was assessed. Expression of PD-1 on CD8 and CD38 CD8 T cells correlated with pVL and CD4 count at baseline, and predicted time to the trial endpoint. Lag-3 expression was associated with pVL but not CD4 count. For all exhaustion markers, expression of CD38 on CD8 T cells increased the strength of associations. In Cox models, progression to the trial endpoint was most marked for PD-1/CD38 co-expressing cells, with evidence for a stronger effect within 12 weeks from confirmed diagnosis of PHI. The effect of PD-1 and Lag-3 expression on CD8 T cells retained statistical significance in Cox proportional hazards models including antiretroviral therapy and CD4 count, but not pVL as co-variants. Expression of 'exhaustion' or 'immune checkpoint' markers in early HIV-1 infection is associated with clinical progression and is impacted by immune activation and the duration of infection. New markers to identify exhausted T cells and novel interventions to reverse exhaustion may inform the development of novel immunotherapeutic approaches.
Project description:Both Tim-3 and Tim-4 belong to the T-cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain (Tim) gene family, which plays a critical role in immunoregulation. Tim-3 has been suggested as a negative regulator of anti-tumor immunity due to its function on inducing T cells exhaustion in cancer. In addition to its expression on exhausted T cells, Tim-3 also has been reported to up-regulate on nature killer (NK) cells and promote NK cells functionally exhausted in cancer. While Tim-3 selectively expression on most types of leukemia stem cells, it promotes the progression of acute myeloid leukemia. Recently, data from experimental models of tumor discovered that Tim-3 and Tim-4 up-regulation on tumor associated dendritic cells and macrophages attenuated the anti-tumor effects of cancer vaccines and chemotherapy. Moreover, co-blockage of Tim-3 and PD-1, Tim-3 and CD137, Tim-3 and carcinoembryonic antigen cell adhesion molecule 1 (CEACAM1) could enhance cell-mediated immunity in advanced tumor, and combined treatment with anti-Tim-3 and anti-Tim-4 mAbs further increase the efficacy of cancer vaccines. The therapeutic manipulation of TIM-3 and TIM-4 may provide a novel strategy to improve the clinical efficacy of cancer immunotherapy.
Project description:BACKGROUNDS AND AIMS:Prion diseases are a group of infectious neurodegenerative diseases characterized by neuronal death and degeneration. Human leukocyte antigen-B-associated transcript 3 (BAT3) is an important apoptosis regulator. We therefore investigated the interactions between BAT3 and prion protein and the potential role of BAT3 in PrP106-126-induced apoptosis. METHODS:BAT3 and prion protein were overexpressed in Hela, Neuro2A, or primary neuronal cells by transfection with BAT3-HA or PRNP-EGFP expression plasmids and their relationship studied by immunofluorescence and Western blotting. The effect of BAT3 on PrP106-126-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis was detected by the CCK-8 assay and terminal-deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated nick end labeling (TUNEL) assay. The expression of cytochrome c and Bcl-2 was examined by Western blotting. RESULTS:BAT3 interacted with prion protein and enhanced PrP expression. After PrP106-126 peptide treated, BAT3 was transported from the nucleus to cytoplasm, increased cell viability, and protected neurons from PrP106-126-induced apoptosis through stabilizing the level of Bcl-2 protein and inhibiting the release of cytochrome c to cytoplasm. CONCLUSIONS:Our present data showed a novel molecular mechanism of PrP106-126-induced apoptotic process regulation through the overexpression of BAT3, which may be important for the basic regulatory mechanism of neuron survival in prion diseases and associated neurodegenerative diseases in vivo.