Follicular Lymphoma Tregs Have a Distinct Transcription Profile Impacting Their Migration and Retention in the Malignant Lymph Node.
ABSTRACT: We have previously shown that regulatory T cells (Tregs) infiltrating follicular lymphoma lymph nodes are quantitatively and qualitatively different than those infiltrating normal and reactive nodes. To gain insight into how such Treg populations differ, we performed RNA sequence (RNAseq) analyses on flow sorted Tregs from all three sources. We identify several molecules that could contribute to the observed increased suppressive capacity of follicular lymphoma nodal tregs, including upregulation of CTLA-4, IL-10, and GITR, all confirmed by protein expression. In addition, we identify, and confirm functionally, a novel mechanism by which Tregs target to and accumulate within a human tumor microenvironment, through the down regulation of S1PR1, SELL (L-selectin) and CCR7, potentially resulting in greater lymph node retention. In addition we identify and confirm functionally the upregulation of the chemokine receptor CXCR5 as well as the secretion of the chemokines CXCL13 and IL-16 demonstrating the unique ability of the follicular derived Tregs to localize and accumulate within not only the malignant lymph node, but also localize and accumulate within the malignant B cell follicle itself. Such findings offer significant new insights into how follicular lymphoma nodal Tregs may contribute to the biology of follicular lymphoma and identify several novel therapeutic targets.
Project description:We have previously shown that Tregs infiltrating follicular lymphoma lymph nodes (FLN) are quantitatively and qualitatively different than those infiltrating normal and reactive nodes (NLN, RLN, respectively). To gain insight into how such Treg populations differ, we performed RNA sequence (RNAseq) analyses on flow sorted Tregs from all three sources. We identify several molecules that could contribute to the observed increased suppressive capacity of FLN tregs, including upregulation of CTLA-4, IL-10, and GITR, all confirmed by protein expression. In addition, we identify, and confirm functionally, a novel mechanism by which Tregs target to and accumulate within a human tumor microenvironment, through the down regulation of S1PR1, SELL (L-selectin) and CCR7, potentially resulting in greater lymph node retention. In addition we identify and confirm functionally the upregulation of CXCR5, CXCL13 and IL-16 demonstrating the unique ability of the follicular derived Tregs to localize and accumulate within not only the malignant lymph node, but also localize and accumulate within the malignant B cell follicle itself. Such findings offer significant new insights into how FLN Tregs may contribute to the biology of follicular lymphoma and identify several novel therapeutic targets. Overall design: Cross sectional comparison of transcription profiles of human regulatory T cells from normal lymph nodes (n=10), follicular lymphoma lymph nodes (n=12) and reactive lymph nodes (n=5).
Project description:Classic Hodgkin lymphoma (CHL) characteristically shows few malignant cells in a microenvironment comprised of mixed inflammatory cells. Although CHL is associated with a high cure rate, recent studies have associated poor prognosis with absolute monocyte count in peripheral blood and increased monocyte/macrophages in involved lymph nodes. Thus, the role of monocytic infiltration and macrophage differentiation in the tumor microenvironment of CHL may be more relevant than absolute macrophage numbers to defining prognosis in CHL patients and potentially have therapeutic implications. Most studies identify tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) using markers (e.g., CD68) expressed by macrophages and other mononuclear phagocytes, such as monocytes. In contrast, Class A Scavenger Receptor (SR-A/CD204) is expressed by tissue macrophages but not monocytic precursors. In this study, we examined SR-A expression in CHL (n = 43), and compared its expression with that of other macrophage markers. We confirmed a high prevalence of mononuclear cells that stained with CD68, CD163, and CD14 in CHL lymph nodes. However, SR-A protein expression determined by immunohistochemistry was limited to macrophages localized in sclerotic bands characteristic of nodular sclerosis CHL. In contrast, SR-A protein was readily detectable in lymph nodes with metastatic tumor, extra-nodal CHL, T cell/histiocyte-rich large B cell lymphoma, and resident macrophages in non-malignant tissues, including spleen, lymph node, liver and lung. The results of SR-A protein expression paralleled the expression of SR-A mRNA determined by quantitative RT-PCR. These data provide evidence that tumor-infiltrating monocyte/macrophages in CHL have a unique phenotype that likely depends on the microenvironment of nodal CHL.
Project description:The immune-suppressive features often possessed by invasive tumors hamper effective anti-tumor immunity. In this context, tumor-infiltrating regulatory T cells (Tregs) have been widely implied, principally as unwanted suppressors of anti-tumor immune responses. However, while many studies have focused on tumor-infiltrating Tregs, the function and signaling of Tregs in tumor-associated lymph nodes is largely unknown. In this study, we set out to clarify how immune signaling in lymph nodes is impacted by its contact to the tumour. Because muscle-invasive urothelial bladder cancer (MIBC) represent an immunogenic cancer were Tregs are accumulated and sentinel nodes (SNs) can be efficiently detected, we explored the protein expression of T-cells in SNs and non-SNs of MIBC patients. Proteomic analysis of Tregs and effector T-cells in SN and non-draining lymph nodes found SN-Tregs in MIBC patients to up-regulate growth and immune signaling pathways, the cytokine IL-16 being central in the signaling network. Experimental validation showed that in Tregs, tumoral factors increase IL-16 processing into bioactive forms and increase FOXP3 expression. In conclusion, altered IL-16 processing caused by tumour-released factors stimulate expansion of SN-Tregs in MIBC, creating an immunosuppressive environment and contributing to immune escape.
Project description:Nodal marginal zone lymphoma is a poorly defined entity in the World Health Organization classification, based largely on criteria of exclusion and the diagnosis often remains subjective. Follicular lymphoma lacking t(14;18) has similar characteristics which results in a major potential diagnostic overlap which this study aims to dissect. Four subgroups of lymphoma samples (n=56) were analyzed with high-resolution array comparative genome hybridization: nodal marginal zone lymphoma, t(14;18)-negative follicular lymphoma, localized t(14:18)-positive follicular lymphoma and disseminated t(14;18)-positive follicular lymphoma. Gains on chromosomes 7, 8 and 12 were observed in all subgroups. The mean number of aberrations was higher in disseminated t(14;18)-positive follicular lymphoma than in localized t(14:18)-positive follicular lymphoma (P<0.01) and the majority of alterations in localized t(14:18)-positive follicular lymphoma were also found in disseminated t(14;18)-positive follicular lymphoma. Nodal marginal zone lymphoma was marked by 3q gains with amplifications of four genes. A different overall pattern of aberrations was seen in t(14;18)-negative follicular lymphoma compared to t(14;18)-positive follicular lymphoma. t(14;18)-negative follicular lymphoma is characterized by specific (focal) gains on chromosome 3, as observed in nodal marginal zone lymphoma. Our results support the notion that localized t(14:18)-positive follicular lymphoma represents an early phase of disseminated t(14;18)-positive follicular lymphoma. t(14;18)-negative follicular lymphoma bears aberrations that are more like those in nodal marginal zone lymphoma, suggesting a relation between these groups.
Project description:Cytokine production is essential for follicular dendritic cell (FDC) maintenance and organization of germinal centres. In follicular lymphoma, FDCs are often disarrayed and may lack antigens indicative of terminal differentiation. We investigated the in situ distribution of cells producing lymphotoxin-beta (LTB), lymphotoxin-alpha (LTA), and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNFA) transcripts in human reactive lymph nodes and in follicular lymphomas with follicular or diffuse growth pattern. LTB was the cytokine most abundantly produced in germinal centres. LTB was present in nearly 90% of germinal centre cells whereas LTA and TNFA were detected in 30 and 50%, respectively. Moreover, the amount of LTB expressed in reactive germinal centre cells was 80-fold higher than that of LTA and 20-fold higher than that of TNFA. LTB-positive cells were more numerous in the germinal centre dark zone, whereas expression of the FDC proteins CD21, CD23, VCAM, and CXCL13 was more intense in the light zone. Tumour cells of follicular lymphomas produced less LTB than reactive germinal centre cells. The results of the in situ study were confirmed by RT-PCR; LTB was significantly more abundant in reactive lymph nodes than in follicular lymphoma, with the lowest values detected in predominantly diffuse follicular lymphoma. In neoplastic follicles, low production of LTB by tumour B cells was associated with weaker expression of CD21+/CD23+ by FDCs. Our findings detail for the first time the distribution of LTA-, LTB-, and TNFA-producing cells in human reactive germinal centres and in follicular lymphoma. They suggest the possibility that impaired tumour-cell LTB production may represent a determinant of FDC phenotype loss and for defective follicular organization in follicular lymphoma.
Project description:Follicular lymphoma (FL) is characterized genetically by a significant intraclonal diversity of rearranged immunoglobulin heavy chain (IGH) genes and a substantial cell migration activity (follicular trafficking). Recently, in situ follicular neoplasia (ISFN), characterized by accumulations of immunohistochemically strongly BCL2-positive, t(14;18)+ clonal B cells confined to germinal centers in reactive lymph nodes, has been identified as a precursor lesion of FL with low risk of progression to manifest FL. The extent of ongoing somatic hypermutation of rearranged IGH genes and interfollicular trafficking in ISFN is not known. In this study we performed an in depth analysis of clonal evolution and cell migration patterns in a case of pure ISFN involving multiple lymph nodes. Using laser microdissection and next generation sequencing (NGS) we documented significant intraclonal diversity of the rearranged IGH gene and extensive interfollicular migration between germinal centers of the same lymph node as well as between different lymph nodes. Furthermore, we identified N-glycosylation motifs characteristic for FL in the CDR3 region.
Project description:A 72-year-old woman presented with symptomatic anemia without abdominal symptoms. She had no history of abdominal surgery or use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Enhanced computed tomography of the abdomen revealed swelling of multiple intraperitoneal lymph nodes and a high density of mesenteric adipose tissue. Fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG-) positron emission tomography showed high FDG accumulation at the intraperitoneal lymph nodes. Double-balloon enteroscopy detected severe stenosis with an annular ulcer in the lower ileum. She was diagnosed with ileal follicular lymphoma based on histologic examination and fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of the biopsy specimen. The ileal ulcer was successfully treated by chemotherapy with rituximab and bendamustine for 1 year. We strongly recommend consideration of gastrointestinal follicular lymphoma in the differential diagnosis of annular ulcers in the small intestine.
Project description:Regulatory Foxp3(+) CD4 T cells (Tregs) prevent spontaneous inflammation in the lungs, inhibit allergic and asthmatic responses, and contribute to tolerance to inhaled allergens. Additionally, Tregs have previously been shown to suppress the CD8 T cell response during persistent virus infections. However, little is known concerning the role that Tregs play in modulating the adaptive immune response during acute respiratory virus infections. We show following acute respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection that Foxp3(+) CD4 Tregs rapidly accumulate in the lung-draining mediastinal lymph nodes and lungs. BrdU incorporation studies indicate that Tregs undergo proliferation that contributes to their accumulation in the lymph nodes and lungs. Following an acute RSV infection, pulmonary Tregs modulate CD25 expression and acquire an activated phenotype characterized as CD11a(high), CD44(high), CD43(glyco+), ICOS(+), and CTLA-4(+). Surprisingly, in vivo depletion of Tregs prior to RSV infection results in delayed virus clearance concomitant with an early lag in the recruitment of RSV-specific CD8 T cells into the lungs. Additionally, Treg depletion results in exacerbated disease severity, including increased weight loss, morbidity, and enhanced airway restriction. In Treg-depleted mice there is an increase in the frequency of RSV-specific CD8 T cells that coproduce IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha, which may contribute to enhanced disease severity. These results indicate that pulmonary Tregs play a critical role in limiting immunopathology during an acute pulmonary virus infection by influencing the trafficking and effector function of virus-specific CD8 T cells in the lungs and draining lymph nodes.