Insights from Mendelian Interferonopathies: Comparison of CANDLE, SAVI with AGS, Monogenic Lupus.
ABSTRACT: Autoinflammatory disorders are sterile inflammatory conditions characterized by episodes of early-onset fever and disease-specific patterns of organ inflammation. Recently, the discoveries of monogenic disorders with strong type I interferon (IFN) signatures caused by mutations in proteasome degradation and cytoplasmic RNA and DNA sensing pathways suggest a pathogenic role of IFNs in causing autoinflammatory phenotypes. The IFN response gene signature (IGS) has been associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and other autoimmune diseases. In this review, we compare the clinical presentations and pathogenesis of two IFN-mediated autoinflammatory diseases, CANDLE and SAVI, with Aicardi Goutières syndrome (AGS) and monogenic forms of SLE (monoSLE) caused by loss-of-function mutations in complement 1 (C1q) or the DNA nucleases, DNASE1 and DNASE1L3. We outline differences in intracellular signaling pathways that fuel a pathologic type I IFN amplification cycle. While IFN amplification is caused by predominantly innate immune cell dysfunction in SAVI, CANDLE, and AGS, autoantibodies to modified RNA and DNA antigens interact with tissues and immune cells including neutrophils and contribute to IFN upregulation in some SLE patients including monoSLE, thus justifying a grouping of "autoinflammatory" and "autoimmune" interferonopathies. Understanding of the differences in the cellular sources and signaling pathways will guide new drug development and the use of emerging targeted therapies.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Juvenile dermatomyositis (JDM) is a systemic autoimmune disease with a prominent interferon (IFN) signature, but the pathogenesis of JDM and the etiology of its IFN signature remain unknown. The Mendelian autoinflammatory interferonopathies, Chronic Atypical Neutrophilic Dermatosis with Lipodystrophy and Elevated temperature (CANDLE) and STING-Associated Vasculopathy with onset in Infancy (SAVI), are caused by genetic mutations and have extremely elevated IFN signatures thought to drive pathology. The phenotypic overlap of some clinical features of CANDLE and SAVI with JDM led to the comparison of a standardized interferon-regulated gene score (IRG-S) in JDM and myositis-specific autoantibody (MSA) JDM subgroups, with CANDLE and SAVI.<h4>Methods</h4>A peripheral 28-component IRG-S assessed by NanoString™ in 57 JDM patients subtyped by MSA was compared with IRG-S in healthy controls (HC) and CANDLE/SAVI patients. Principal component analysis (PCA) was performed, and individual genes were evaluated for their contribution to the score. IRG-S were correlated with disease assessments and patient characteristics.<h4>Results</h4>IRG-S in JDM patients were significantly higher than in HC but lower than in CANDLE or SAVI. JDM IRG-S overlapped more with SAVI than CANDLE by PCA. Among MSA groups, anti-MDA5 autoantibody-positive patients' IRG-S overlapped most with SAVI. The IFI27 proportion was significantly higher in SAVI and CANDLE than JDM, but IFIT1 contributed more to IRG-S in JDM. Overall, the contribution of individual interferon-regulated genes (IRG) in JDM was more similar to SAVI. IRG-S correlated moderately with JDM disease activity measures (r<sub>s</sub>?=?0.33-0.47) and more strongly with skin activity (r<sub>s</sub>?=?0.58-0.79) in anti-TIF1 autoantibody-positive patients. Weakness and joint disease activity (multinomial OR 0.91 and 3.3) were the best predictors of high IRG-S.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our findings demonstrate peripheral IRG expression in JDM overlaps with monogenic interferonopathies, particularly SAVI, and correlates with disease activity. Anti-MDA5 autoantibody-positive JDM IRG-S were notably more similar to SAVI. This may reflect both a shared IFN signature, which is driven by IFN-? and STING pathways in SAVI, as well as the shared phenotype of vasculopathy in SAVI and JDM, particularly in anti-MDA5 autoantibody-positive JDM, and indicate potential therapeutic targets for JDM.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Monogenic IFN-mediated autoinflammatory diseases present in infancy with systemic inflammation, an IFN response gene signature, inflammatory organ damage, and high mortality. We used the JAK inhibitor baricitinib, with IFN-blocking activity in vitro, to ameliorate disease. METHODS:Between October 2011 and February 2017, 10 patients with CANDLE (chronic atypical neutrophilic dermatosis with lipodystrophy and elevated temperatures), 4 patients with SAVI (stimulator of IFN genes-associated [STING-associated] vasculopathy with onset in infancy), and 4 patients with other interferonopathies were enrolled in an expanded access program. The patients underwent dose escalation, and the benefit was assessed by reductions in daily disease symptoms and corticosteroid requirement. Quality of life, organ inflammation, changes in IFN-induced biomarkers, and safety were longitudinally assessed. RESULTS:Eighteen patients were treated for a mean duration of 3.0 years (1.5-4.9 years). The median daily symptom score decreased from 1.3 (interquartile range [IQR], 0.93-1.78) to 0.25 (IQR, 0.1-0.63) (P < 0.0001). In 14 patients receiving corticosteroids at baseline, daily prednisone doses decreased from 0.44 mg/kg/day (IQR, 0.31-1.09) to 0.11 mg/kg/day (IQR, 0.02-0.24) (P < 0.01), and 5 of 10 patients with CANDLE achieved lasting clinical remission. The patients' quality of life and height and bone mineral density Z-scores significantly improved, and their IFN biomarkers decreased. Three patients, two of whom had genetically undefined conditions, discontinued treatment because of lack of efficacy, and one CANDLE patient discontinued treatment because of BK viremia and azotemia. The most common adverse events were upper respiratory infections, gastroenteritis, and BK viruria and viremia. CONCLUSION:Upon baricitinib treatment, clinical manifestations and inflammatory and IFN biomarkers improved in patients with the monogenic interferonopathies CANDLE, SAVI, and other interferonopathies. Monitoring safety and efficacy is important in benefit-risk assessment. TRIAL REGISTRATION:ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01724580 and NCT02974595. FUNDING:This research was supported by the Intramural Research Program of the NIH, NIAID, and NIAMS. Baricitinib was provided by Eli Lilly and Company, which is the sponsor of the expanded access program for this drug.
Project description:Chronic elevation of interferon (IFN)-response genes (IRG) in a subset of patients with systemic immune-dysregulatory diseases, including the Mendelian Type-I IFN-mediated autoinflammatory diseases and some autoimmune diseases suggest a causative role of excessive IFN signaling in the disease pathogenesis and as target for treatment. We developed a 28-IFN response gene scoring system to calculate either a standardized or geomean score by customizing a NanoString assay to quantify the expression of putative IRGs. The gene targets were selected in patients with the IFN-mediated disease chronic atypical neutrophilic dermatosis with lipodystrophy and elevated temperature (CANDLE) and an adult patient with chronic hepatitis C who received the first dose of pegylated interferon alpha-2a. The putative target genes were validated in patients with STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI), a monogenic autoinflammatory disease caused by gain-of-function mutations in TMEM173 that encodes the viral sensor stimulator of IFN genes (STING), and had low expression in clinically active patients with the monogenic IL-1-mediated autoinflammatory disease, neonatal-onset multisystem inflammatory disease (NOMID) and in healthy controls. The score calculation on the NanoString assay is rapid and showed high reproducibility and low intra-, and interassay variability. The utility of this 28-gene IFN score may be explored in the diagnosis of patients with presumed interferonopathies and as a biomarker to assess disease activity, long-term outcome, and treatment responses.
Project description:Studies over the past decade have revealed a central role for innate immune sensors in autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases. cGAS, a cytosolic DNA sensor, detects both foreign and host DNA and generates a second-messenger cGAMP, which in turn binds and activates stimulator of IFN genes (STING), leading to induction of type I interferons and inflammatory cytokines. Recently, gain-of-function mutations in STING have been identified in patients with STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI). SAVI patients present with early-onset systemic inflammation and interstitial lung disease, resulting in pulmonary fibrosis and respiratory failure. Here, we describe two independent SAVI mouse models, harboring the two most common mutations found in patients. A direct comparison of these strains reveals a hierarchy of immune abnormalities, lung inflammation and fibrosis, which do not depend on either IFN-?/? receptor signaling or mixed lineage kinase domain-like pseudokinase (MLKL)-dependent necroptotic cell death pathways. Furthermore, radiation chimera experiments reveal how bone marrow from the V154M mutant mice transfer disease to the WT host, whereas the N153S does not, indicating mutation-specific disease outcomes. Moreover, using radiation chimeras we find that T cell lymphopenia depends on T cell-intrinsic expression of the SAVI mutation. Collectively, these mutant mice recapitulate many of the disease features seen in SAVI patients and highlight mutation-specific functions of STING that shed light on the heterogeneity observed in SAVI patients.
Project description:Autosomal recessive mutations in proteasome subunit β 8 (PSMB8), which encodes the inducible proteasome subunit β5i, cause the immune-dysregulatory disease chronic atypical neutrophilic dermatosis with lipodystrophy and elevated temperature (CANDLE), which is classified as a proteasome-associated autoinflammatory syndrome (PRAAS). Here, we identified 8 mutations in 4 proteasome genes, PSMA3 (encodes α7), PSMB4 (encodes β7), PSMB9 (encodes β1i), and proteasome maturation protein (POMP), that have not been previously associated with disease and 1 mutation in PSMB8 that has not been previously reported. One patient was compound heterozygous for PSMB4 mutations, 6 patients from 4 families were heterozygous for a missense mutation in 1 inducible proteasome subunit and a mutation in a constitutive proteasome subunit, and 1 patient was heterozygous for a POMP mutation, thus establishing a digenic and autosomal dominant inheritance pattern of PRAAS. Function evaluation revealed that these mutations variably affect transcription, protein expression, protein folding, proteasome assembly, and, ultimately, proteasome activity. Moreover, defects in proteasome formation and function were recapitulated by siRNA-mediated knockdown of the respective subunits in primary fibroblasts from healthy individuals. Patient-isolated hematopoietic and nonhematopoietic cells exhibited a strong IFN gene-expression signature, irrespective of genotype. Additionally, chemical proteasome inhibition or progressive depletion of proteasome subunit gene transcription with siRNA induced transcription of type I IFN genes in healthy control cells. Our results provide further insight into CANDLE genetics and link global proteasome dysfunction to increased type I IFN production.
Project description:Gain-of-function mutations in the STING-encoding gene TMEM173 are central to the pathology of the autoinflammatory disorder STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI). Furthermore, excessive activity of the STING signaling pathway is associated with autoinflammatory diseases, including systemic lupus erythematosus and Aicardi-Goutières syndrome (AGS). Two independent studies recently identified pharmacological inhibitors of STING. Strikingly, both types of compounds are reactive nitro-containing electrophiles that target STING palmitoylation, a posttranslational modification necessary for STING signaling. As a consequence, the activation of downstream signaling molecules and the induction of type I interferons were inhibited. The compounds were effective at ameliorating inflammation in a mouse model of AGS and in blocking the production of type I interferons in primary fibroblasts from SAVI patients. This mini-review focuses on the roles of palmitoylation in STING activation and signaling and as a pharmaceutical target for drug development.
Project description:The adaptor molecule stimulator of IFN genes (STING) is central to production of type I IFNs in response to infection with DNA viruses and to presence of host DNA in the cytosol. Excessive release of type I IFNs through STING-dependent mechanisms has emerged as a central driver of several interferonopathies, including systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Aicardi-Goutières syndrome (AGS), and stimulator of IFN genes-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI). The involvement of STING in these diseases points to an unmet need for the development of agents that inhibit STING signaling. Here, we report that endogenously formed nitro-fatty acids can covalently modify STING by nitro-alkylation. These nitro-alkylations inhibit STING palmitoylation, STING signaling, and subsequently, the release of type I IFN in both human and murine cells. Furthermore, treatment with nitro-fatty acids was sufficient to inhibit production of type I IFN in fibroblasts derived from SAVI patients with a gain-of-function mutation in STING. In conclusion, we have identified nitro-fatty acids as endogenously formed inhibitors of STING signaling and propose for these lipids to be considered in the treatment of STING-dependent inflammatory diseases.
Project description:Signaling through stimulator of interferon genes (STING) leads to the production of type I interferons (IFN-Is) and inflammatory cytokines. A gain-of-function mutation in STING was identified in an autoinflammatory disease (STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy; SAVI). The expression of cyclic GMP-AMP, DNA-activated cGAS-STING pathway, increased in a proportion of patients with SLE. The STING signaling pathway may be a candidate for targeted therapy in SLE. Here, we demonstrated that disruption of STING signaling ameliorated lupus development in Fcgr2b-deficient mice. Activation of STING promoted maturation of conventional dendritic cells and differentiation of plasmacytoid dendritic cells via LYN interaction and phosphorylation. The inhibition of LYN decreased the differentiation of STING-activated dendritic cells. Adoptive transfer of STING-activated bone marrow-derived dendritic cells into the FCGR2B and STING double-deficiency mice restored lupus phenotypes. These findings provide evidence that the inhibition of STING signaling may be a candidate targeted treatment for a subset of patients with SLE.
Project description:Chronic atypical neutrophilic dermatosis with lipodystrophy and elevated temperature (CANDLE) syndrome is a newly characterized autoinflammatory disorder, caused by mutations in PSMB8. It is characterized by early-onset fevers, accompanied by a widespread, violaceous, and often annular cutaneous eruption. Although the exact pathogenesis of this syndrome is still obscure, it is postulated that the inflammatory disease manifestations stem from excess secretion of interferons. Based on preliminary blood cytokine and gene expression studies, the signature seems to come mostly from type I interferons, which are proposed to lead to the recruitment of immature myeloid cells into the dermis and subcutis. In this study, we systematically analyzed skin biopsies from 6 patients with CANDLE syndrome by routine histopathology and immunohistochemistry methods. Skin lesions showed the presence of extensive mixed dermal and subcutaneous inflammatory infiltrate, composed of mononuclear cells, atypical myeloid cells, neutrophils, eosinophils, and some mature lymphocytes. Positive LEDER and myeloperoxidase staining supported the presence of myeloid cells. Positive CD68/PMG1 and CD163 staining confirmed the existence of histiocytes and monocytic macrophages in the inflammatory infiltrate. CD123 staining was positive, demonstrating the presence of plasmacytoid dendritic cells. Uncovering the unique histopathological and immunohistochemical features of CANDLE syndrome provides tools for rapid and specific diagnosis of this disorder and further insight into the pathogenesis of this severe life-threatening condition.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:Mutations affecting the TMEM173 gene cause STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI). No standard immunosuppressive treatment approach is able to control disease progression in patients with SAVI. We studied the efficacy and safety of targeting type I IFN signaling with the Janus kinase inhibitor, ruxolitinib. METHODS:We used DNA sequencing to identify mutations in TMEM173 in patients with peripheral blood type I IFN signature. The JAK1/2 inhibitor ruxolitinib was administered on an off-label basis. RESULTS:We identified three patients with SAVI presenting with skin involvement and progressive severe interstitial lung disease. Indirect echocardiographic signs of pulmonary hypertension were present in one case. Following treatment with ruxolitinib, we observed improvements of respiratory function including increased forced vital capacity in two patients, with discontinuation of oxygen therapy and resolution of echocardiographic abnormalities in one case. Efficacy was persistent in one patient and only transitory in the other two patients. Clinical control of skin complications was obtained, and one patient discontinued steroid treatment. One patient, who presented with kidney involvement, showed resolution of hematuria. One patient experienced increased recurrence of severe viral respiratory infections. Monitoring of peripheral blood type I interferon signature during ruxolitinib treatment did not show a stable decrease. CONCLUSIONS:We conclude that targeting type I IFN receptor signaling may represent a promising therapeutic option for a subset of patients with SAVI syndrome and severe lung involvement. However, the occurrence of viral respiratory infection might represent an important cautionary note for the application of such form of treatment.