Phenotypic Approaches to Identify Inhibitors of B Cell Activation.
ABSTRACT: An EPIC label-free phenotypic platform was developed to explore B cell receptor (BCR) and CD40R-mediated B cell activation. The phenotypic assay measured the association of RL non-Hodgkin's lymphoma B cells expressing lymphocyte function-associated antigen 1 (LFA-1) to intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1)-coated EPIC plates. Anti-IgM (immunoglobulin M) mediated BCR activation elicited a response that was blocked by LFA-1/ICAM-1 specific inhibitors and a panel of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitors. LFA-1/ICAM-1 association was further increased on coapplication of anti-IgM and mega CD40L when compared to individual application of either. Anti-IgM, mega CD40L, or the combination of both displayed distinct kinetic profiles that were inhibited by treatment with a BTK inhibitor. We also established a FLIPR-based assay to measure B cell activation in Ramos Burkitt's lymphoma B cells and an RL cell line. Anti-IgM-mediated BCR activation elicited a robust calcium response that was inhibited by a panel of BTK inhibitors. Conversely, CD40R activation did not elicit a calcium response in the FLIPR assay. Compared to the FLIPR, the EPIC assay has the propensity to identify inhibitors of both BCR and CD40R-mediated B cell activation and may provide more pharmacological depth or novel mechanisms of action for inhibition of B cell activation.
Project description:Dysregulation of B cell receptor (BCR) signalling is a hallmark of chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) pathology, and targeting BCR pathway kinases has brought great therapeutic advances. Activation of the BCR in lymphoid organs has been associated with CLL cell proliferation and survival, leading to progressive disease. While these responses are mediated predominantly by IgM, the role of IgD is less clear. Seeking to uncover downstream consequences of individual and combined stimulation of the two BCR isotypes, we found an amplification of IgD expression and IgD-mediated calcium signalling by previous stimulation of IgM in CLL. Furthermore, no heterologous downmodulation of the isotypes, as observed in healthy donors, was present. Only marginal downregulation of the expression of various chemokine receptors by ?-IgM and ?-IgD stimulation was found as compared to normal B cells. Consistently, calcium responses of CLL cells to different chemokines were only weakly affected by preceding BCR activation. In contrast, migration towards the two homeostatic chemokines CXCL12 and CCL21 was differentially regulated by IgM and IgD. While IgM activation reduced migration of CLL cells towards CXCL12, but not CCL21, IgD activation predominantly impacted on CCL21 but not CXCL12-mediated chemotaxis. This indicates that the preference for one chemokine over the other may depend on the functional presence of the two isotypes in CLL. Inhibitors against the kinases Syk, Lyn, and Btk antagonised both BCR- and chemokine-induced calcium signals.
Project description:B cell activation via the B cell receptor (BCR) signalosome involves participation of signaling molecules such as BTK and BLNK. Genetic defects in these molecules are known to impair B cell differentiation and subsequently lead to agammaglobulinemia. Here we identified novel mutations in BTK and BLNK in two unrelated patients that perturb the intrinsic B-cell receptor signaling pathway and lead to selective IgM deficiency, whereas production of other immunoglobulin isotypes and IgG antibody response remain intact. Currently it is unknown how BCR signaling strength affects mature B cell development in humans. Both patients show reduced levels of BCR signalosome phosphorylation as well as impaired BCR-dependent Ca2+ influx, which was accompanied by a marked decrease in IgD+IgM+CD27+ MZ-like B-cells. We further describe reduced expression of essential B cell differentiation factors such as BAFF-R and T-Bet in the patients' B-cells, which might contribute to the observed deficiency of MZ-like B cells. MZ-like B cells are known to produce natural IgM antibodies that play an essential role in immune homeostasis. By using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) technology and a synthetic blood group A trisaccharide as antigen we were able to show that both patients lack the presence of anti-blood group A IgM considered to be prototypical natural antibodies whereas IgG levels were normal. Antibody binding dynamics and binding affinity of anti-blood group A IgG were comparable between patients and healthy controls. These results indicate that human IgM deficiency can be associated with signaling defects in the BCR signalosome, defective production of natural IgM antibodies in the blood group A/B/0 system and abnormalities in B cell development.
Project description:Cross-linking of the B-cell receptor (BCR) induces transcriptional activation of immediate early genes (IEGs) including EGR1 and DUSP2 in chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL). Here, we have shown that this transcriptional activation correlated with histone H3 threonine 6 and 11 phosphorylation. Both transcription and histone post-translational modifications are repressed by ibrutinib, a small molecule inhibitor used in CLL treatment. Moreover, we have identified the death-associated protein kinase 3 (DAPK3), as the kinase mediating these histone phosphorylation marks in response to activation of the BCR signalling pathway with this kinase being recruited to RNA polymerase II in an anti-IgM-dependent manner. DAPK inhibition mimics ibrutinib-induced repression of both IEG mRNA and histone H3 phosphorylation and has anti-proliferative effect comparable to ibrutinib in CLL in vitro. DAPK inhibitor does not repress transcription itself but impacts on mRNA processing and has a broader anti-tumour effect than ibrutinib, by repressing both anti-IgM- and CD40L-dependent activation.
Project description:BTK plays a critical role in the B cell receptor mediated inflammatory signaling in the rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Through a rational design approach we discovered a highly selective and potent BTK kinase inhibitor (CHMFL-BTK-11) which exerted its inhibitory efficacy through a covalent bond with BTK Cys481. CHMFL-BTK-11 potently blocked the anti-IgM stimulated BCR signaling in the Ramos cell lines and isolated human primary B cells. It significantly inhibited the LPS stimulated TNF-? production in the human PBMC cells but only weakly affecting the normal PBMC cell proliferation. In the adjuvant-induced arthritis rat model, CHMFL-BTK-11 ameliorated the inflammatory response through blockage of proliferation of activated B cells, inhibition of the secretion of the inflammatory factors such as IgG1, IgG2, IgM, IL-6 and PM? phagocytosis, stimulation of secretion of IL-10. The high specificity of CHMFL-BTK-11 makes it a useful pharmacological tool to further detect BTK mediated signaling in the pathology of RA.
Project description:B cells activated by nucleic acid-sensing TLR7 and TLR9 proliferate and secrete immune globulins. Memory B cells are presumably more responsive due to higher TLR expression levels, but selectivity and differential outcomes remain largely unknown. In this study, peripheral blood human B cells were stimulated by TLR7 or TLR9 ligands, with or without IFN-?, and compared with activators CD40L plus IL-21, to identify differentially responsive cell populations, defined phenotypically and by BCR characteristics. Whereas all activators induced differentiation and Ab secretion, TLR stimulation expanded IgM(+) memory and plasma cell lineage committed populations, and favored secretion of IgM, unlike CD40L/IL-21, which drove IgM and IgG more evenly. Patterns of proliferation similarly differed, with CD40L/IL-21 inducing proliferation of most memory and naive B cells, in contrast with TLRs that induced robust proliferation in a subset of these cells. On deep sequencing of the IgH locus, TLR-responsive B cells shared patterns of IgHV and IgHJ usage, clustering apart from CD40L/IL-21 and control conditions. TLR activators, but not CD40L/IL-21, similarly promoted increased sharing of CDR3 sequences. TLR-responsive B cells were characterized by more somatic hypermutation, shorter CDR3 segments, and less negative charges. TLR activation also induced long positively charged CDR3 segments, suggestive of autoreactive Abs. Testing this, we found culture supernatants from TLR-stimulated B cells to bind HEp-2 cells, whereas those from CD40L/IL-21-stimulated cells did not. Human B cells possess selective sensitivity to TLR stimulation, with distinctive phenotypic and genetic signatures.
Project description:Adenoviral transduction with CD40L and poxviral transduction with B7-1, ICAM-1, and LFA-3 (TRICOM) have been used to enhance the antigen-presenting capacity of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells. This study compares the same vector (modified vaccinia virus strain Ankara (MVA)) encoding CD40L or TRICOM for its ability to enhance the immunogenicity of CLL cells. CLL cells from some patients showed differential responses to each vector in terms of induction of autologous T-cell responses. This study supports the rationale for the use of CLL cells modified ex vivo with pre-specified recombinant MVA vectors as a whole tumor-cell vaccine for immunotherapy in CLL patients.
Project description:Pre-B cells undergo apoptosis unless they are rescued by pre-B cell receptor-dependent survival signals. We previously showed that the BCR-ABL1 kinase that is expressed in pre-B lymphoblastic leukemia bypasses selection for pre-B cell receptor-dependent survival signals. Investigating possible interference of BCR-ABL1 with pre-B cell receptor signaling, we found that neither SYK nor SLP65 can be phosphorylated in response to pre-B cell receptor engagement. Instead, Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) is constitutively phosphorylated by BCR-ABL1. Activated BTK is essential for survival signals that otherwise would arise from the pre-B cell receptor, including activation of PLCgamma1, autonomous Ca2+ signaling, STAT5-phosphorylation, and up-regulation of BCLX(L). Inhibition of BTK activity specifically induces apoptosis in BCR-ABL1+ leukemia cells to a similar extent as inhibition of BCR-ABL1 kinase activity itself. However, BCR-ABL1 cannot directly bind to full-length BTK. Instead, BCR-ABL1 induces the expression of a truncated splice variant of BTK that acts as a linker between the two kinases. As opposed to full-length BTK, truncated BTK lacks kinase activity yet can bind to BCR-ABL1 through its SRC-homology domain 3. Acting as a linker, truncated BTK enables BCR-ABL1-dependent activation of full-length BTK, which initiates downstream survival signals and mimics a constitutively active pre-B cell receptor.
Project description:Lymphocyte activation triggers adhesiveness of lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1 (LFA-1; integrin ?(L)?(2)) for intercellular adhesion molecules (ICAMs) on endothelia or antigen-presenting cells. Whether the activation signal, after transmission through multiple domains to the ligand-binding ?I domain, results in affinity changes for ligand has been hotly debated. Here, we present the first comprehensive measurements of LFA-1 affinities on T lymphocytes for ICAM-1 under a broad array of activating conditions. Only a modest increase in affinity for soluble ligand was detected after activation by chemokine or T-cell receptor ligation, conditions that primed LFA-1 and robustly induced lymphocyte adhesion to ICAM-1 substrates. By stabilizing well-defined LFA-1 conformations by Fab, we demonstrate the absolute requirement of the open LFA-1 headpiece for adhesiveness and high affinity. Interaction of primed LFA-1 with immobilized but not soluble ICAM-1 triggers energy-dependent affinity maturation of LFA-1 to an adhesive, high affinity state. Our results lend support to the traction or translational motion dependence of integrin activation.
Project description:To search for rapid changes in gene expression following BCR activation, we performed DNA microarray analysis of activated splenic B cells with and without anti-IgM treatment for 3 hour. The expression of a remarkably large set of genes differed significantly. Overall design: Primary B-lymphocytes were purified from mouse spleens and stimulated with IL-4 (Pepro-Tech) and CD40L (R&D Systems) as indicated at 5 ng/ml and 200 ng/ml, respectively. The BCR of stimulated cells was activated by incubation with goat F(ab’)2 anti-mouse IgM (Southern Biotechnologies) at 2.5 μg/ml for 3 hour.
Project description:To search for rapid changes in gene expression following BCR activation, we performed DNA microarray analysis of activated splenic B cells with and without anti-IgM treatment for 1 and 2 hour. Primary B-lymphocytes were purified from mouse spleens and stimulated with IL-4 (Pepro-Tech) and CD40L (R&D Systems) as indicated at 5 ng/ml and 200 ng/ml, respectively. The BCR of stimulated cells was activated by incubation with goat F(ab’)2 anti-mouse IgM (Southern Biotechnologies) at 2.5 μg/ml for 3 hour.