Modulation of distinct asthmatic phenotypes in mice by dose-dependent inhalation of microbial products.
ABSTRACT: Humans with asthma display considerable heterogeneity with regard to T helper (Th) 2-associated eosinophilic and Th17-associated neutrophilic inflammation, but the impact of the environment on these different forms of asthma is poorly understood.We studied the nature and longevity of asthma-like responses triggered by inhalation of allergen together with environmentally relevant doses of inhaled lipopolysaccharide (LPS).Ovalbumin (OVA) was instilled into the airways of mice together with a wide range of LPS doses. Following a single OVA challenge, or multiple challenges, animals were assessed for pulmonary cytokine production, airway inflammation, and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR).Mice instilled with OVA together with very low doses (?10?³ ?g) of LPS displayed modest amounts of Th2 cytokines, with associated airway eosinophilia and AHR after a single challenge, and these responses were sustained after multiple OVA challenges. When the higher but still environmentally relevant dose of 10?¹ ?g LPS was used, mice initially displayed similar Th2 responses, as well as Th17-associated neutrophilia. After multiple OVA challenges, however, the 10?¹ ?g LPS animals also accumulated large numbers of allergen-specific T regulatory (Treg) cells with high levels of inducible co-stimulatory molecule (ICOS). As a result, asthma-like features in these mice were shorter-lived than in mice sensitized using lower doses of LPS.The nature and longevity of Th2, Th17, and Treg immune responses to inhaled allergen are dependent on the quantity of LPS inhaled at the time of allergic sensitization. These findings might account in part for the heterogeneity of inflammatory infiltrates seen in lungs of asthmatics.
Project description:With the increase in production and use of engineered nanoparticles (NP; ? 100 nm), safety concerns have risen about the potential health effects of occupational or environmental NP exposure. Results of animal toxicology studies suggest that inhalation of NP may cause pulmonary injury with subsequent acute or chronic inflammation. People with chronic respiratory diseases like asthma or allergic rhinitis may be even more susceptible to toxic effects of inhaled NP. Few studies, however, have investigated adverse effects of inhaled NP that may enhance the development of allergic airway disease.We investigated the potential of polyethylene glycol coated amorphous silica NP (SNP; 90 nm diameter) to promote allergic airway disease when co-exposed during sensitization with an allergen. BALB/c mice were sensitized by intranasal instillation with 0.02% ovalbumin (OVA; allergen) or saline (control), and co-exposed to 0, 10, 100, or 400 ?g of SNP. OVA-sensitized mice were then challenged intranasally with 0.5% OVA 14 and 15 days after sensitization, and all animals were sacrificed a day after the last OVA challenge. Blood and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) were collected, and pulmonary tissue was processed for histopathology and biochemical and molecular analyses.Co-exposure to SNP during OVA sensitization caused a dose-dependent enhancement of allergic airway disease upon challenge with OVA alone. This adjuvant-like effect was manifested by significantly greater OVA-specific serum IgE, airway eosinophil infiltration, mucous cell metaplasia, and Th2 and Th17 cytokine gene and protein expression, as compared to mice that were sensitized to OVA without SNP. In saline controls, SNP exposure did cause a moderate increase in airway neutrophils at the highest doses.These results suggest that airway exposure to engineered SNP could enhance allergen sensitization and foster greater manifestation of allergic airway disease upon secondary allergen exposures. Whereas SNP caused innate immune responses at high doses in non-allergic mice, the adjuvant effects of SNP were found at lower doses in allergic mice and were Th2/Th17 related. In conclusion, these findings in mice suggest that individuals exposed to SNP might be more prone to manifest allergic airway disease, due to adjuvant-like properties of SNP.
Project description:In humans, immune responses to inhaled aeroallergens develop in the lung and draining lymph nodes. Many animal models of asthma bypass this route and instead use intraperitoneal injections of allergen using aluminum hydroxide as an adjuvant.We investigated whether allergic sensitization through the airway elicits immune responses qualitatively different than those arising in the peritoneum.Mice were sensitized to allergen through the airway using low-dose LPS as an adjuvant, or through the peritoneum using aluminum hydroxide as an adjuvant. After a single allergen challenge, ELISA and flow cytometry were used to measure cytokines and leukocyte subsets. Invasive measurements of airway resistance were used to measure allergen-induced airway hyperreactivity (AHR).Sensitization through the peritoneum primed strong Th2 responses and eosinophilia, but not AHR, after a single allergen challenge. By contrast, allergic sensitization through the airway primed only modest Th2 responses, but strong Th17 responses. Th17 cells homed to the lung and released IL-17 into the airway on subsequent encounter with inhaled allergen. As a result, these mice developed IL-17-dependent airway neutrophilia and AHR. This AHR was neutrophil-dependent because it was abrogated in CXCR2-deficient mice and also in wild-type mice receiving a neutrophil-depleting antibody. Individually, neither IL-17 nor ongoing Th2 responses were sufficient to confer AHR, but together they acted synergistically to promote neutrophil recruitment, eosinophil recruitment and AHR.Allergic sensitization through the airway primes modest Th2 responses but strong Th17 responses that promote airway neutrophilia and acute AHR. These findings support a causal role for neutrophils in severe asthma.
Project description:Recent published studies have highlighted the complexity of the immune response to allergens, and the various asthma phenotypes that arise as a result. Although the interplay of regulatory and effector immune cells responding to allergen would seem to dictate the nature of the asthmatic response, little is known regarding how tolerance versus reactivity to allergen occurs in the lung. The vast majority of mouse models study allergen encounter in naive animals, and therefore exclude the possibility that previous encounters with allergen may influence future sensitization. To address this, we studied sensitization to the model allergen OVA in mice in the context of pre-existing tolerance to OVA. Allergen sensitization by either systemic administration of OVA with aluminum hydroxide or mucosal administration of OVA with low-dose LPS was suppressed in tolerized animals. However, higher doses of LPS induced a mixed Th2 and Th17 response to OVA in both naive and tolerized mice. Of interest, tolerized mice had more pronounced Th17-type inflammation than did naive mice receiving the same sensitization, suggesting pre-existing tolerance altered the inflammatory phenotype. These data show that a pre-existing tolerogenic immune response to allergen can affect subsequent sensitization in the lung. These findings have potential significance for understanding late-onset disease in individuals with severe asthma.
Project description:Allergic asthma is thought to stem largely from maladaptive T helper 2 (Th2) responses to inhaled allergens, which in turn lead to airway eosinophilia and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR). However, many individuals with asthma have airway inflammation that is predominantly neutrophilic and resistant to treatment with inhaled glucocorticoids. An improved understanding of the molecular basis of this form of asthma might lead to improved strategies for its treatment. Here, we identify novel roles of the adaptor protein, TRIF (TIR-domain-containing adapter-inducing interferon-?), in neutrophilic responses to inhaled allergens. In different mouse models of asthma, Trif-deficient animals had marked reductions in interleukin (IL)-17, airway neutrophils, and AHR compared with wild-type (WT) mice, whereas airway eosinophils were generally similar in these two strains. Compared with lung dendritic cells (DCs) from WT mice, lung DCs from Trif-deficient mice displayed impaired lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced migration to regional lymph nodes, lower levels of the costimulatory molecule, CD40, and produced smaller amounts of the T helper 17 (Th17)-promoting cytokines, IL-6, and IL-1?. When cultured with allergen-specific, naive T cells, Trif-deficient lung DCs stimulated robust Th2 cell differentiation but very weak Th1 and Th17 cell differentiation. Together, these findings reveal a TRIF-CD40-Th17 axis in the development of IL-17-associated neutrophilic asthma.
Project description:Chitin is a potent adjuvant in the development of immune response to inhaled allergens in the airways. According to other studies, chitin is known as multi-faced adjuvants which can induce Th2 responses. Recently, we found that TNF-? is a key mediator in the development of Th2 cell response to inhaled allergens. Here, we evaluated the immunologic mechanisms in the development of airway hypersensitivity to inhaled allergens, enhanced by house dust mite (HDM)-derived chitin.The role of TNF-? and TLRs was evaluated in an airway hypersensitivity mouse model induced by a sensitization with an allergen (ovalbumin, OVA) and HDM-derived chitin using mice with the null mutation of target genes.The present study showed that airway sensitization with HDM-derived chitin plus OVA enhanced OVA-induced airway inflammation v. OVA alone. This phenotype was associated with the increased expression of Th1, Th2, and Th17 cytokines and also with the enhanced production of OVA-specific IgE, IgG1, and IgG2a. As for T cell responses, OVA-specific Th2 cell response, enhanced by chitin, was abolished by the treatment of chitinase, whereas Th1 and Th17 cell responses enhanced by this treatment. Moreover, the null mutation of the TNF-? gene revealed similar effects as the chitinase treatment. In contrast, all the OVA-specific T cell responses, enhanced by chitin, were blocked by the absence of TLR2, but not of TLR1, TLR4, or TLR6.In conclusion, these data suggest that HDM-derived chitin may enhance airway hypersensitivity to inhaled allergens, via the TLR2-dependent pathway, and that chitin-induced TNF-? can be a key mediator in the development of Th2 cell response to inhaled allergens.
Project description:Mice with genetic deletion of the cholesterol transporter ATP binding cassette G1 (ABCG1) have pulmonary lipidosis and enhanced innate immune responses in the airway. Whether ABCG1 regulates adaptive immune responses to the environment is unknown. To this end, Abcg1(+/+) and Abcg1(-/-) mice were sensitized to OVA via the airway using low-dose LPS as an adjuvant, and then challenged with OVA aerosol. Naive Abcg1(-/-) mice displayed increased B cells, CD4(+) T cells, CD8(+) T cells, and dendritic cells (DCs) in lung and lung-draining mediastinal lymph nodes, with lung CD11b(+) DCs displaying increased CD80 and CD86. Upon allergen sensitization and challenge, the Abcg1(-/-) airway, compared with Abcg1(+/+), displayed reduced Th2 responses (IL-4, IL-5, eosinophils), increased neutrophils and IL-17, but equivalent airway hyperresponsiveness. Reduced Th2 responses were also found using standard i.p. OVA sensitization with aluminum hydroxide adjuvant. Mediastinal lymph nodes from airway-sensitized Abcg1(-/-) mice produced reduced IL-5 upon ex vivo OVA challenge. Abcg1(-/-) CD4(+) T cells displayed normal ex vivo differentiation, whereas Abcg1(-/-) DCs were found paradoxically to promote Th2 polarization. Th17 cells, IL-17(+) ??T cells, and IL-17(+) neutrophils were all increased in Abcg1(-/-) lungs, suggesting Th17 and non-Th17 sources of IL-17 excess. Neutralization of IL-17 prior to challenge normalized eosinophils and reduced neutrophilia in the Abcg1(-/-) airway. We conclude that Abcg1(-/-) mice display IL-17-mediated suppression of eosinophilia and enhancement of neutrophilia in the airway following allergen sensitization and challenge. These findings identify ABCG1 as a novel integrator of cholesterol homeostasis and adaptive immune programs.
Project description:Experimental evidence and epidemiological studies indicate that exposure to endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (eLPS) or other TLR agonists prevent asthma. We have previously shown in the OVA-model of asthma that eLPS administration during alum-based allergen sensitization blocked the development of lung TH2 immune responses via MyD88 pathway and IL-12/IFN-? axis. In the present work we determined the effect of eLPS exposure during sensitization to a natural airborne allergen extract derived from the house dust mite Blomia tropicalis (Bt). Mice were subcutaneously sensitized with Bt allergens co-adsorbed onto alum with or without eLPS and challenged twice intranasally with Bt. Cellular and molecular parameters of allergic lung inflammation were evaluated 24 h after the last Bt challenge. Exposure to eLPS but not to ultrapure LPS (upLPS) preparation during sensitization to Bt allergens decreased the influx of eosinophils and increased the influx of neutrophils to the airways. Inhibition of airway eosinophilia was not observed in IFN-?deficient mice while airway neutrophilia was not observed in IL-17RA-deficient mice as well in mice lacking MyD88, CD14, TLR4 and, surprisingly, TLR2 molecules. Notably, exposure to a synthetic TLR2 agonist (PamCSK4) also induced airway neutrophilia that was dependent on TLR2 and TLR4 molecules. In the OVA model, exposure to eLPS or PamCSK4 suppressed OVA-induced airway inflammation. Our results suggest that B. tropicalis allergens engage TLR4 that potentiates TLR2 signaling. This dual TLR activation during sensitization results in airway neutrophilic inflammation associated with increased frequency of lung TH17 cells. Our work highlight the complex interplay between bacterial products, house dust mite allergens and TLR signaling in the induction of different phenotypes of airway inflammation.
Project description:Janus kinases (JAKs) are regulators of signaling through cytokine receptors. The importance of JAK1/3 signaling on TH2 differentiation and development of lung allergic responses has not been investigated.We sought to examine a selective JAK1/3 inhibitor (R256) on differentiation of TH subsets in vitro and on development of ovalbumin (OVA)-induced airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and inflammation in an experimental model of asthma.A selective JAK1/3 inhibitor was used to assay the importance of this pathway on induction of TH1, TH2, and TH17 differentiation in vitro. In vivo, the effects of inhibiting JAK1/3 signaling were examined by administering the inhibitor during the sensitization or allergen challenge phases in the primary challenge model or just before provocative challenge in the secondary challenge model. Airway inflammation and AHR were examined after the last airway challenge.In vitro, R256 inhibited differentiation of TH2 but not TH1 or TH17 cells, which was associated with downregulation of signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) 6 and STAT5 phosphorylation. However, once polarized, TH2 cells were unaffected by the inhibitor. In vivo, R256 administered during the OVA sensitization phase prevented the development of AHR, airway eosinophilia, mucus hypersecretion, and TH2 cytokine production without changes in TH1 and TH17 cytokine levels, indicating that selective blockade of TH2 differentiation was critical. Inhibitor administration after OVA sensitization but during the challenge phases in the primary or secondary challenge models similarly suppressed AHR, airway eosinophilia, and mucus hypersecretion without any reduction in TH2 cytokine production, suggesting the inhibitory effects were downstream of TH2 cytokine receptor signaling pathways.Targeting the TH2-dependent JAK/STAT activation pathway represents a novel therapeutic approach for the treatment of asthma.
Project description:Human asthma is a heterogeneous disease characterized by the expression of both Th2 and Th17 cytokines. In vitro and in vivo studies have shown a reciprocal regulation between Th2 and Th17 pathways, suggesting a potential induction of neutrophil-promoting Th17 inflammation in the absence of a Th2 response. Alternaria alternata is a clinically relevant allergen that is associated with severe and fatal asthma exacerbations. Exposure to A. alternata is characterized by a predominant Th2 response, but can also induce the production of factors associated with Th17 responses (e.g., CXCL8) from epithelial cells. Using a mouse model, we found that wild-type mice develop an eosinophilic Th2 airway disease in response to A. alternata exposure, whereas IL-4-, IL-13-, and STAT6-deficient mice exhibit a primarily neutrophilic response. Neutrophilic asthma in STAT6-/- mice was accompanied by elevated lung levels of TNF-?, CXCL1, CXCL2, and CXCL5, and was steroid resistant. Neutralization of Th17 signaling only partially reduced neutrophil numbers and total airway inflammation. Airway neutrophilia developed in RAG-deficient and CD4-depleted BALB/c mice, suggesting that the suppression of neutrophil responses is dependent on Th2 cytokine production by T cells and that airway neutrophilia is primarily an innate response to allergen. These results highlight the importance of combination therapies for treatment of asthma and establish a role for factors other than IL-17 as targets for neutrophilic asthma.
Project description:Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) contributes to asthma exacerbations and development of inhaled corticosteroid insensitivity. Complete resistance to systemic corticosteroids is rare, and most patients lie on a continuum of steroid responsiveness. This study aimed to examine the sensitivity of combined ovalbumin- (Ova) and LPS-induced functional and inflammatory responses to inhaled and systemic corticosteroid in conscious guinea pigs to test the hypothesis that the route of administration affects sensitivity. Guinea pigs were sensitized to Ova and challenged with inhaled Ova alone or combined with LPS. Airway function was determined by measuring specific airway conductance via whole-body plethysmography. Airway hyper-responsiveness to histamine was determined before and 24 hours post-Ova challenge. Airway inflammation and underlying mechanisms were determined from bronchoalveolar lavage cell counts and lung tissue cytokines. Vehicle or dexamethasone was administered by once-daily i.p. injection (5, 10, or 20 mg/kg) or twice-daily inhalation (4 or 20 mg/ml) for 6 days before Ova challenge or Ova with LPS. LPS exacerbated Ova-induced responses, elongating early asthmatic responses (EAR), prolonging histamine bronchoconstriction, and further elevating airway inflammation. Intraperitoneal dexamethasone (20 mg/kg) significantly reduced the elongated EAR and airway inflammation but not the increased bronchoconstriction to histamine. In contrast, inhaled dexamethasone (20 mg/ml), which inhibited responses to Ova alone, did not significantly reduce functional and inflammatory responses to combined Ova and LPS. Combined Ova and LPS-induced functional and inflammatory responses are insensitive to inhaled, but they are only partially sensitive to systemic, dexamethasone. This finding suggests that the route of corticosteroid administration may be important in determining corticosteroid sensitivity of asthmatic responses.