Developmental regulation of myeloerythroid progenitor function by the Lin28b-let-7-Hmga2 axis.
ABSTRACT: For appropriate development, tissue and organ system morphogenesis and maturation must occur in synchrony with the overall developmental requirements of the host. Mistiming of such developmental events often results in disease. The hematopoietic system matures from the fetal state, characterized by robust erythrocytic output that supports prenatal growth in the hypoxic intrauterine environment, to the postnatal state wherein granulocytes predominate to provide innate immunity. Regulation of the developmental timing of these myeloerythroid states is not well understood. In this study, we find that expression of the heterochronic factor Lin28b decreases in common myeloid progenitors during hematopoietic maturation to adulthood in mice. This decrease in Lin28b coincides with accumulation of mature let-7 microRNAs, whose biogenesis is regulated by Lin28 proteins. We find that inhibition of let-7 in the adult hematopoietic system recapitulates fetal erythroid-dominant hematopoiesis. Conversely, deletion of Lin28b or ectopic activation of let-7 microRNAs in the fetal state induces a shift toward adult-like myeloid-dominant output. Furthermore, we identify Hmga2 as an effector of this genetic switch. These studies provide the first detailed analysis of the roles of endogenous Lin28b and let-7 in the timing of hematopoietic states during development.
Project description:Inflammation alters hematopoiesis, often by decreasing erythropoiesis and enhancing myeloid output. The mechanisms behind these changes and how the BM stroma contributes to this process are active areas of research. In this study, we examine these questions in the setting of murine Toxoplasma gondii infection. Our data reveal that infection alters early myeloerythroid differentiation, blocking erythroid development beyond the Pre MegE stage, while expanding the GMP population. IL-6 was found to be a critical mediator of these differences, independent of hepcidin-induced iron restriction. Comparing the BM with the spleen showed that the hematopoietic response was driven by the local microenvironment, and BM chimeras demonstrated that radioresistant cells were the relevant source of IL-6 in vivo. Finally, direct ex vivo sorting revealed that VCAM(+)CD146(lo) BM stromal fibroblasts significantly increase IL-6 secretion after infection. These data suggest that BMSCs regulate the hematopoietic changes during inflammation via IL-6.
Project description:Platelets are essential for hemostasis; however, several studies have identified age-dependent differences in platelet function. To better understand the origins of fetal platelet function, we have evaluated the contribution of the fetal-specific RNA binding protein Lin28b in the megakaryocyte/platelet lineage. Because activated fetal platelets have very low levels of P-selectin, we hypothesized that the expression of platelet P-selectin is part of a fetal-specific hematopoietic program conferred by Lin28b. Using the mouse as a model, we find that activated fetal platelets have low levels of P-selectin and do not readily associate with granulocytes in vitro and in vivo, relative to adult controls. Transcriptional analysis revealed high levels of Lin28b and Hmga2 in fetal, but not adult, megakaryocytes. Overexpression of LIN28B in adult mice significantly reduces the expression of P-selectin in platelets, and therefore identifies Lin28b as a negative regulator of P-selectin expression. Transplantation of fetal hematopoietic progenitors resulted in the production of platelets with low levels of P-selectin, suggesting that the developmental regulation of P-selectin is intrinsic and independent of differences between fetal and adult microenvironments. Last, we observe that the upregulation of P-selectin expression occurs postnatally, and the temporal kinetics of this upregulation are recapitulated by transplantation of fetal hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells into adult recipients. Taken together, these studies identify Lin28b as a new intrinsic regulator of fetal platelet function.
Project description:Based on its physical interactions with histone-modifying enzymes, the transcriptional corepressor Rcor1 has been implicated in the epigenetic regulation blood cell development. Previously, we have demonstrated that Rcor1 is essential for the maturation of definitive erythroid cells and fetal survival. To determine the functional role of Rcor1 in steady-state hematopoiesis in the adult, we used a conditional knockout approach. Here, we show that the loss of Rcor1 expression results in the rapid onset of severe anemia due to a complete, cell autonomous block in the maturation of committed erythroid progenitors. By contrast, both the frequency of megakaryocyte progenitors and their capacity to produce platelets were normal. Although the frequency of common lymphoid progenitors and T cells was not altered, B cells were significantly reduced and showed increased apoptosis. However, Rcor1-deficient bone marrow sustained normal levels of B-cells following transplantation, indicating a non-cell autonomous requirement for Rcor1 in B-cell survival. Evaluation of the myelomonocytic lineage revealed an absence of mature neutrophils and a significant increase in the absolute number of monocytic cells. Rcor1-deficient monocytes were less apoptotic and showed ?100-fold more colony-forming activity than their normal counterparts, but did not give rise to leukemia. Moreover, Rcor1(-/-) monocytes exhibited extensive, cytokine-dependent self-renewal and overexpressed genes associated with hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell expansion including Gata2, Meis1, and Hoxa9. Taken together, these data demonstrate that Rcor1 is essential for the normal differentiation of myeloerythroid progenitors and for appropriately regulating self-renewal activity in the monocyte lineage.
Project description:Reactivation of fetal hemoglobin (HbF) holds therapeutic potential for sickle cell disease and ?-thalassemias. In human erythroid cells and hematopoietic organs, LIN28B and its targeted let-7 microRNA family, demonstrate regulated expression during the fetal-to-adult developmental transition. To explore the effects of LIN28B in human erythroid cell development, lentiviral transduction was used to knockdown LIN28B expression in erythroblasts cultured from human umbilical cord CD34+ cells. The subsequent reduction in LIN28B expression caused increased expression of let-7 and significantly reduced HbF expression. Conversely, LIN28B overexpression in cultured adult erythroblasts reduced the expression of let-7 and significantly increased HbF expression. Cellular maturation was maintained including enucleation. LIN28B expression in adult erythroblasts increased the expression of ?-globin, and the HbF content of the cells rose to levels >30% of their hemoglobin. Expression of carbonic anhydrase I, glucosaminyl (N-acetyl) transferase 2, and miR-96 (three additional genes marking the transition from fetal-to-adult erythropoiesis) were reduced by LIN28B expression. The transcription factor BCL11A, a well-characterized repressor of ?-globin expression, was significantly down-regulated. Independent of LIN28B, experimental suppression of let-7 also reduced BCL11A expression and significantly increased HbF expression. LIN28B expression regulates HbF levels and causes adult human erythroblasts to differentiate with a more fetal-like phenotype.
Project description:MLL rearrangements are translocation mutations that cause both acute lymphoblastic leukemia and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). These translocations can occur as sole clonal driver mutations in infant leukemias, suggesting that fetal or neonatal hematopoietic progenitors may be exquisitely sensitive to transformation by MLL fusion proteins. To test this possibility, we used transgenic mice to induce one translocation product, MLL-ENL, during fetal, neonatal, juvenile and adult stages of life. When MLL-ENL was induced in fetal or neonatal mice, almost all died of AML. In contrast, when MLL-ENL was induced in adult mice, most survived for >1 year despite sustained transgene expression. AML initiation was most efficient when MLL-ENL was induced in neonates, and even transient suppression of MLL-ENL in neonates could prevent AML in most mice. MLL-ENL target genes were induced more efficiently in neonatal progenitors than in adult progenitors, consistent with the distinct AML initiation efficiencies. Interestingly, transplantation stress mitigated the developmental barrier to leukemogenesis. Since fetal/neonatal progenitors were highly competent to initiate MLL-ENL-driven AML, we tested whether Lin28b, a fetal master regulator, could accelerate leukemogenesis. Surprisingly, Lin28b suppressed AML initiation rather than accelerating it. This may explain why MLL rearrangements often occur before birth in human infant leukemia patients, but transformation usually does not occur until after birth, when Lin28b levels decline. Our findings show that the efficiency of MLL-ENL-driven AML initiation changes through the course of pre- and postnatal development, and developmental programs can be manipulated to impede transformation.
Project description:Myelopoiesis and lymphopoiesis are controlled by haematopoietic growth factors, including cytokines, and chemokines that bind to G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). Regulators of G-protein signalling (RGSs) are a protein family that can act as GTPase-activating proteins for G(alphai)- and G(alphaq)-class proteins. We have identified a new member of the R4 subfamily of RGS proteins, RGS18. RGS18 contains clusters of hydrophobic and basic residues, which are characteristic of an amphipathic helix within its first 33 amino acids. RGS18 mRNA was most highly abundant in megakaryocytes, and was also detected specifically in haematopoietic progenitor and myeloerythroid lineage cells. RGS18 mRNA was not detected in cells of the lymphoid lineage. RGS18 was also highly expressed in mouse embryonic 15-day livers, livers being the principal organ for haematopoiesis at this stage of fetal development. RGS1, RGS2 and RGS16, other members of the R4 subfamily, were expressed in distinct progenitor and mature myeloerythroid and lymphoid lineage blood cells. RGS18 was shown to interact specifically with the G(alphai-3) subunit in membranes from K562 cells. Furthermore, overexpression of RGS18 inhibited mitogen-activated-protein kinase activation in HEK-293/chemokine receptor 2 cells treated with monocyte chemotactic protein-1. In yeast cells, RGS18 overexpression complemented a pheromone-sensitive phenotype caused by mutations in the endogeneous yeast RGS gene, SST2. These data demonstrated that RGS18 was expressed most highly in megakaryocytes, and can modulate GPCR pathways in both mammalian and yeast cells in vitro. Hence RGS18 might have an important role in the regulation of megakaryocyte differentiation and chemotaxis.
Project description:Increased production of fetal hemoglobin (HbF) can ameliorate the severity of sickle cell disease and ?-thalassemia1. BCL11A represses the genes encoding HbF and regulates human hemoglobin switching through variation in its expression during development2-7. However, the mechanisms underlying the developmental expression of BCL11A remain mysterious. Here we show that BCL11A is regulated at the level of messenger RNA (mRNA) translation during human hematopoietic development. Despite decreased BCL11A protein synthesis earlier in development, BCL11A mRNA continues to be associated with ribosomes. Through unbiased genomic and proteomic analyses, we demonstrate that the RNA-binding protein LIN28B, which is developmentally expressed in a pattern reciprocal to that of BCL11A, directly interacts with ribosomes and BCL11A mRNA. Furthermore, we show that BCL11A mRNA translation is suppressed by LIN28B through direct interactions, independently of its role in regulating let-7 microRNAs, and that BCL11A is the major target of LIN28B-mediated HbF induction. Our results reveal a previously unappreciated mechanism underlying human hemoglobin switching that illuminates new therapeutic opportunities.
Project description:Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) execute self-renewal divisions throughout fetal and adult life, although some of their properties do alter. Here we analyzed the magnitude and timing of changes in the self-renewal properties and differentiated cell outputs of transplanted HSCs obtained from different sources during development. We also assessed the expression of several "stem cell" genes in corresponding populations of highly purified HSCs. Fetal and adult HSCs displayed marked differences in their self-renewal, differentiated cell output, and gene expression properties, with persistence of a fetal phenotype until 3 weeks after birth. Then, 1 week later, the HSCs became functionally indistinguishable from adult HSCs. The same schedule of changes in HSC properties occurred when HSCs from fetal or 3-week-old donors were transplanted into adult recipients. These findings point to the existence of a previously unrecognized, intrinsically regulated master switch that effects a developmental change in key HSC properties.
Project description:Mast cells (MCs) are critical components of the innate immune system and important for host defense, allergy, autoimmunity, tissue regeneration and tumor progression. Dysregulated MC development leads to systemic mastocytosis (SM), a clinically variable but often devastating family of hematologic disorders. Here we report that induced expression of Lin28, a heterochronic gene and pluripotency factor implicated in driving a fetal hematopoietic program, caused MC accumulation in adult mice in target organs such as the skin and peritoneal cavity. In vitro assays revealed a skewing of myeloid commitment in LIN28B-expressing hematopoietic progenitors, with increased levels of LIN28B in common myeloid and basophil-MC progenitors altering gene expression patterns to favor cell fate choices that enhanced MC specification. In addition, LIN28B-induced MCs appeared phenotypically and functionally immature, and in vitro assays suggested a slowing of MC terminal differentiation in the context of LIN28B upregulation. Finally, interrogation of human MC leukemia samples revealed upregulation of LIN28B in abnormal MCs from patients with SM. This work identifies Lin28 as a novel regulator of innate immune function and a new protein of interest in MC disease.
Project description:Pentatransmembrane glycoprotein prominin-1 (CD133) is expressed at the cell surface of multiple somatic stem cells, and it is widely used as a cell surface marker for the isolation and characterization of human hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and cancer stem cells. CD133 has been linked on a cell biological basis to stem cell-fate decisions in human HSCs and emerges as an important physiological regulator of stem cell maintenance and expansion. Its expression and physiological relevance in the murine hematopoietic system is nevertheless elusive. We show here that CD133 is expressed by bone marrow-resident murine HSCs and myeloid precursor cells with the developmental propensity to give rise to granulocytes and monocytes. However, CD133 is dispensable for the pool size and function of HSCs during steady-state hematopoiesis and after transplantation, demonstrating a substantial species difference between mouse and man. Blood cell numbers in the periphery are normal; however, CD133 appears to be a modifier for the development of growth-factor responsive myeloerythroid precursor cells in the bone marrow under steady state and mature red blood cells after hematopoietic stress. Taken together, these studies show that CD133 is not a critical regulator of hematopoietic stem cell function in mouse but that it modifies frequencies of growth-factor responsive hematopoietic progenitor cells during steady state and after myelotoxic stress in vivo.