Impaired Immune Response in Elderly Burn Patients: New Insights Into the Immune-senescence Phenotype.
ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:Comparing the inflammatory and immunological trajectories in burned adults versus burned elderly patients to gain novel insights and better understanding why elderly have poor outcomes. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA:Despite receiving the same treatment and clinical consideration as all other burn patients, elderly patients continue to have substantially poorer outcomes compared with adults. In light of an aging population, gaining a better understanding of their susceptibility to complications and creating new treatment strategies is imperative. METHODS:We included 130 burn patients (94 adults: <65 years old and 36 elderly: ?65 years old) and 10 healthy controls in this study. Immune activity and expression was assessed using bioplex at various time points. Clinical outcomes such as infection, sepsis, and mortality were prospectively collected. RESULTS:Elderly burn patients had significantly lower burn size but significantly higher Baux scores. Morbidity and mortality was significantly increased in the elderly cohort. Immune biomarkers indicated that elderly are immune compromised and unable to respond with the expected inflammatory response during the early phase after injury. This trajectory changes to a hyperinflammatory pattern during the later phase after burn. These findings are even more pronounced when comparing sepsis versus nonsepsis patients as well as survivors versus nonsurvivors in the elderly. CONCLUSIONS:Elderly burned patients mount a delayed immune and dampened inflammatory response early after burn injury that changes to an augmented response at later time points. Late-onset sepsis and nonsurvivors had an immune exhaustion phenotype, which may represent one of the main mediators responsible for the striking mortality in elderly.
Project description:In the patient with burn injury, older age, larger percentage of total body surface area (TBS) burned, and inhalation injury are established risk factors for death, which typically results from multisystem organ failure and sepsis, implicating burn-induced immune dysregulation as a contributory mechanism. We sought to identify early transcriptomic changes in circulating leukocytes underlying increased mortality associated with these three risk factors.We performed a retrospective analysis of the Glue Grant database. From 2003 to 2010, 324 adults with 20% or greater TBS burned were prospectively enrolled at five US burn centers, and 112 provided blood samples within 1 week after burn. RNA was extracted from pooled leukocytes for hybridization onto Affymetrix HU133 Plus 2.0 GeneChips. A multivariate regression model was constructed to determine risk factors for mortality. Testing for differential gene association associated with age, burn size, and inhalation injury was based on linear models using a fold change threshold of 1.5 and false discovery rate of 0.05.After adjusting for potential confounders, age greater than 60 years (relative risk [RR], 4.53; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.93-6.99), burn size greater than 40% TBS (RR, 4.24; 95% CI, 2.61-6.91), and inhalation injury (RR, 2.08; 95% CI, 1.35-3.21) were independently associated with mortality. No genes were differentially expressed in association with age greater than 60 years or inhalation injury. Fifty-one probe sets representing 39 unique genes were differentially expressed in leukocytes from patients with burn size greater than 40% TBS; these genes were associated with platelet activation and degranulation/exocytosis, and gene-set enrichment analysis suggested increased cellular proliferation and down-regulation of proinflammatory cytokines.Among adults with large burns, older age, increasing burn size, and inhalation injury have a modest effect on the leukocyte transcriptome in the context of the "genomic storm" induced by a 20% or greater than TBS burned. The 39-gene signature we identified may provide novel targets for the development of therapies to reduce morbidity and mortality associated with burns greater than 40% TBS.Epidemiologic study, level III.
Project description:BACKGROUND:During the past decades' sepsis has become the major cause of death in severely burned patients. Despite the importance of burn sepsis, its diagnosis, let alone its prediction, is difficult if not impossible. Recently, we have demonstrated burn patients have increased NLRP3 inflammasome activation in white adipose tissue. We aimed to delineate a unique immune profile that can be used to identify septic outcomes in severely burned patients. METHODS:Adult burn patients (n?=?37) admitted to our burn center between June 2013-2015 were enrolled in this study. White adipose tissue from the site of injury and plasma were collected from severely burned patients (>20% total body surface area) within 96 hours after thermal injury, indiscriminate of sex or age. RESULTS:We found that patients exhibiting aberrantly high levels of proinflammatory interleukin-1? and decreased macrophages at the site of injury are highly susceptible to development of sepsis. Septic patients also had increased anti-inflammatory (interleukin-10, interleukin-1RA) cytokines in plasma. The Septic Predictor Index was generated as a quotient for the site of injury macrophage proportion and interleukin-1? production. All patients who eventually develop sepsis had septic predictor index values >0.5. Septic patients with Septic Predictor Index values >1 all had sepsis onset within 12 days post-injury, whereas patients with Septic Predictor Index values between 0.5-1 all had later onset (>12 days). CONCLUSION:The Septic Predictor Index can determine sepsis onset accurately in thermally injured patients a priori and further enables surgeons to develop clinical studies and focused therapies specifically designed for septic cohorts.
Project description:PURPOSE:Mortality and morbidity rates of elderly burn patients remain high despite numerous advancements in modern burn care. While prior studies have offered first insights on the biochemical changes in elderly burn patients compared to adults, the underlying cellular responses remain largely unknown. In this study, we aim to characterize the transcriptome of elderly burn patients and compare it to adult burn patients to obtain insights into the underlying molecular responses post-burn and to elucidate the effect of advanced age on the acute burn response. MATERIALS AND METHODS:Microarray data obtained from the Glue Grant Trauma-Related Database was obtained from blood specimens for ten elderly patients (n = 10), each with a set of two sex and total body surface area (TBSA) matched adult controls (n = 20), during the acute phase post-burn. Adult and elderly demographics and clinical outcomes were contrasted using using the Chi-Square test, Fisher's Exact Test, or two-sample t-tests, as appropriate (p<0.05). Enrichment and heat maps were generated to compare gene expression in elderly versus adult burn patients. RESULTS:Supervised analysis identified multiple genes that were differentially expressed between the elderly and adult groups. Pathway analysis and heatmap generation suggest that elderly patients share a distinct hypo-inflammatory response in the acute post-burn phase with downregulation of a number of immune-related pathways, including those related to antigen processing, specifically via MHC class I, ubiquitination and proteasome degradation (p<0.001, FDR < .001). Cell signalling pathways, such as NF-?B, C-type lectin receptor, and T cell receptor signalling were also significantly downregulated in elderly burn patients, as well as those relating to antiviral immunity (p<0.001, FDR < .001). Many genes which were observed to be upregulated in elderly patients with high TBSA burn injuries were associated with destruction-related cellular pathways such as complement activation and immunoglobulin production (p<0.005, FDR <0.01). CONCLUSIONS:The altered inflammatory and immune responses at the transcriptome level in elderly patients after burn are indicative of a failure in elderly burn patients to initiate an appropriate inflammatory and stress response during the acute phase post-burn.
Project description:Background: Sepsis, a leading cause of morbidity and mortality, is not a homogeneous disease but rather a syndrome encompassing many heterogeneous pathophysiologies. Patient factors including genetics predispose to poor outcomes, though current clinical characterizations fail to identify those at greatest risk of progression and mortality. Results: The Community Acquired Pneumonia and Sepsis Outcome Diagnostic study enrolled 1,152 subjects with suspected sepsis. We sequenced peripheral blood RNA of 129 representative subjects with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) or sepsis (infection with SIRS), including 78 sepsis survivors and 28 sepsis nonsurvivors, who had previously undergone plasma proteomic and metabolomic profiling. The expression of 338 genes differed between subjects with SIRS and those with sepsis, primarily reflective of immune activation in sepsis. The expression of 1,238 genes differed with sepsis outcome: Nonsurvivors had lower expression of many immune function-related genes. Functional genetic variants associated with sepsis mortality were sought based on a common disease – rare variant hypothesis. VPS9D1, whose expression was increased in sepsis survivors, had a higher burden of missense variants in sepsis survivors, and these were associated with altered expression of 3,799 genes, primarily reflecting Golgi and endosome biology. Conclusions: Host response in sepsis survivors – activation of immune response-related genes – was muted in sepsis nonsurvivors. The association of sepsis survival with robust immune response and presence of missense variants in VPS9D1 warrants replication and further functional studies. We sequenced peripheral blood RNA of 129 representative subjects with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS, n=23) or sepsis (infection with SIRS), including 78 sepsis survivors and 28 sepsis nonsurvivors, who had previously undergone plasma proteomic and metabolomic profiling.
Project description:Ultrasound measurements of brachial artery reactivity in response to stagnant ischemia provide estimates of microvascular function and conduit artery endothelial function. We hypothesized that brachial artery reactivity would independently predict severe sepsis and severe sepsis mortality.This was a combined case-control and prospective cohort study. We measured brachial artery reactivity in 95 severe sepsis patients admitted to the medical and surgical intensive care units of an academic medical center and in 52 control subjects without acute illness. Measurements were compared in severe sepsis patients versus control subjects and in severe sepsis survivors versus nonsurvivors. Multivariable analyses were also conducted.Hyperemic velocity (centimeters per cardiac cycle) and flow-mediated dilation (percentage) were significantly lower in severe sepsis patients versus control subjects (hyperemic velocity: severe sepsis = 34 (25 to 48) versus controls = 63 (52 to 81), P < 0.001; flow-mediated dilation: severe sepsis = 2.65 (0.81 to 4.79) versus controls = 4.11 (3.06 to 6.78), P < 0.001; values expressed as median (interquartile range)). Hyperemic velocity, but not flow-mediated dilation, was significantly lower in hospital nonsurvivors versus survivors (hyperemic velocity: nonsurvivors = 25 (16 to 28) versus survivors = 39 (30 to 50), P < 0.001; flow-mediated dilation: nonsurvivors = 1.90 (0.68 to 3.41) versus survivors = 2.96 (0.91 to 4.86), P = 0.12). Lower hyperemic velocity was independently associated with hospital mortality in multivariable analysis (odds ratio = 1.11 (95% confidence interval = 1.04 to 1.19) per 1 cm/cardiac cycle decrease in hyperemic velocity; P = 0.003).Brachial artery hyperemic blood velocity is a noninvasive index of microvascular function that independently predicts mortality in severe sepsis. In contrast, brachial artery flow-mediated dilation, reflecting conduit artery endothelial function, was not associated with mortality in our severe sepsis cohort. Brachial artery hyperemic velocity may be a useful measurement to identify patients who could benefit from novel therapies designed to reverse microvascular dysfunction in severe sepsis and to assess the physiologic efficacy of these treatments.
Project description:Hyperglycemia and insulin resistance have been shown to increase morbidity and mortality in severely burned patients, and glycemic control appears essential to improve clinical outcomes. However, to date no prospective randomized study exists that determines whether intensive insulin therapy is associated with improved post-burn morbidity and mortality.To determine whether intensive insulin therapy is associated with improved post-burn morbidity.A total of 239 severely burned pediatric patients with burns over greater than 30% of their total body surface area were randomized (block randomization 1:3) to intensive insulin treatment (n = 60) or control (n = 179).Demographics, clinical outcomes, sepsis, glucose metabolism, organ function, and inflammatory, acute-phase, and hypermetabolic responses were determined. Demographics were similar in both groups. Intensive insulin treatment significantly decreased the incidence of infections and sepsis compared with controls (P < 0.05). Furthermore, intensive insulin therapy improved organ function as indicated by improved serum markers, DENVER2 scores, and ultrasound (P < 0.05). Intensive insulin therapy alleviated post-burn insulin resistance and the vast catabolic response of the body (P < 0.05). Intensive insulin treatment dampened inflammatory and acute-phase responses by deceasing IL-6 and acute-phase proteins compared with controls (P < 0.05). Mortality was 4% in the intensive insulin therapy group and 11% in the control group (P = 0.14).In this prospective randomized clinical trial, we showed that intensive insulin therapy improves post-burn morbidity. Clinical trial registered with www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT00673309).
Project description:The inflammatory response induced by burn injury contributes to increased incidence of infections, sepsis, organ failure, and mortality. Thus, monitoring postburn inflammation is of paramount importance but, so far, there are no reliable biomarkers available to monitor and/or predict infectious complications after burn. As interleukin 8 (IL-8) is a major mediator for inflammatory responses, the aim of our study was to determine whether IL-8 expression can be used to predict postburn sepsis, infections, and mortality. Plasma cytokines, acute-phase proteins, constitutive proteins, and hormones were analyzed during the first 60 days after injury from 468 pediatric burn patients. Demographics and clinical outcome variables (length of stay, infection, sepsis, multiorgan failure [MOF], and mortality) were recorded. A cutoff level for IL-8 was determined using receiver operating characteristic analysis. Statistical significance is set at P < 0.05. Receiver operating characteristic analysis identified a cutoff level of 234 pg/mL for IL-8 for survival. Patients were grouped according to their average IL-8 levels relative to this cutoff and stratified into high (H) (n = 133) and low (L) (n = 335) groups. In the L group, regression analysis revealed a significant predictive value of IL-8 to percent of total body surface area burned and incidence of MOF (P < 0.001). In the H group, IL-8 levels were able to predict sepsis (P < 0.002). In the H group, elevated IL-8 was associated with increased inflammatory and acute-phase responses compared with the L group (P < 0.05). High levels of IL-8 correlated with increased MOF, sepsis, and mortality. These data suggest that serum levels of IL-8 may be a valid biomarker for monitoring sepsis, infections, and mortality in burn patients.
Project description:Vitamin D deficiency is common among the general population. It is also observed in up to 76% of critically ill patients. Despite the high prevalence of hypovitaminosis D in critical illness, vitamin D is often overlooked by medical staff as the clinical implications and consequences of vitamin D deficiency in acute contexts remain to be fully understood. Vitamin D has a broad range of pleotropic effects on various processes and systems including the immune-inflammatory response. 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D), has been shown to promote a tolerogenic immune response limiting deleterious inflammatory effects, modulation of the innate immune system, and enhancement of anti-microbial peptides. Vitamin D deficiency is frequently observed in critically ill patients and has been related to extrinsic causes (i.e., limited sunlight exposure), magnitude of injury/illness, or the treatment started by medical doctors including fluid resuscitation. Low levels of vitamin D in critically ill patients have been associated with sepsis, organ failure, and mortality. Despite this, there are subpopulations of critical illness, such as burn patients, where the literature regarding vitamin D status and its influence on outcomes remain insufficient. Thermal injury results in damage to both burned and non-burned tissues, as well as induces an exaggerated and persistent immune-inflammatory and hypermetabolic response. In this review, we propose potential mechanisms in which burn injury affects the vitamin D status and summarizes current literature investigating the influence of vitamin D status on outcomes. In addition, we reviewed the literature and trials investigating vitamin D supplementation in critically ill patients and discuss the therapeutic potential of vitamin D supplementation in burn and critically ill patients. We also highlight current limitations of studies that have investigated vitamin D status and supplementation in critical illness. Thermal injury influences vitamin D status. More studies investigating vitamin D depletion in burn patients and its influence on prognosis, via standardized methodology, are required to reach definitive conclusions and influence clinical practice.
Project description:Severe burn injuries initiate a cascade of downstream events, culminating in multiple organ dysfunction, sepsis, and even death. The elderly are in particular vulnerable to such outcomes, due primarily to a scarcity of knowledge on trauma progression at the biomolecular level in this population. Mitochondria, the cellular powerhouses, have been increasingly scrutinized recently for their contribution to trauma outcomes. We hypothesized that elderly have a worse outcome compared to adult patients due to failed recovery of hepatic mitochondria. Using a murine model of burn injury, Seahorse respirometry and functional proteomic assays, we demonstrate the impact of thermal trauma on hepatic mitochondrial respiration in adult and aged mice. While the mitochondria in adults rebound from the initial insult within 7days of the injury, the older animals display delayed recovery of mitochondrial bioenergetics accompanied by uncoupling and an oxidative environment. This is associated with a state of increased protein oxidation and nitrosylation, along with increases in circulating mtDNA, a known damage-associated molecular pattern. These findings suggest that hepatic mitochondria fail to normalize after trauma in aged mice and we suggest that this cellular failure is associated with organ damage and subsequently increased morbidity and mortality in elderly burn patients.
Project description:Extensively burned patients often suffer from sepsis, a complication that enhances post-burn hypermetabolism and contributes to increased incidence of multiple organ failure, morbidity and mortality. Despite the clinical importance of burn sepsis, the molecular and cellular mechanisms of such infection-related metabolic derangements and organ dysfunction are still largely unknown. We recently found that upon endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, the white adipose tissue (WAT) interacts with the liver via inflammatory and metabolic signals leading to profound hepatic alterations, including hepatocyte apoptosis and hepatic fatty infiltration. We therefore hypothesized that burn plus infection causes an increase in lipolysis of WAT after major burn, partially through induction of ER stress, contributing to hyperlipidemia and profound hepatic lipid infiltration. We used a two-hit rat model of 60% total body surface area scald burn, followed by intraperitoneal injection of Pseudomonas Aeruginosa-derived lipopolysaccharide (LPS) 3 days post-burn. One day later, animals were sacrificed and liver and epididymal WAT (EWAT) samples were collected for gene expression, protein analysis and histological study of inflammasome activation, ER stress, apoptosis and lipid metabolism. Our results showed that burn plus LPS profoundly increased lipolysis in WAT associated with significantly increased hepatic lipid infiltration. Burn plus LPS augmented ER stress by upregulating CHOP and activating ATF6, inducing NLRP3 inflammasome activation and leading to increased apoptosis and lipolysis in WAT with a distinct enzymatic mechanism related to inhibition of AMPK signaling. In conclusion, burn sepsis causes profound alterations in WAT and liver which are associated with changes in organ function and structure.