Neonatal hyperoxia promotes asthma-like features through IL-33-dependent ILC2 responses.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Premature infants often require oxygen supplementation and, therefore, are exposed to oxidative stress. Following oxygen exposure, preterm infants frequently develop chronic lung disease and have a significantly increased risk of asthma. OBJECTIVE:We sought to identify the underlying mechanisms by which neonatal hyperoxia promotes asthma development. METHODS:Mice were exposed to neonatal hyperoxia followed by a period of room air recovery. A group of mice was also intranasally exposed to house dust mite antigen. Assessments were performed at various time points for evaluation of airway hyperresponsiveness, eosinophilia, mucus production, inflammatory gene expression, and TH and group 2 innate lymphoid cell (ILC2) responses. Sera from term- and preterm-born infants were also collected and levels of IL-33 and type 2 cytokines were measured. RESULTS:Neonatal hyperoxia induced asthma-like features including airway hyperresponsiveness, mucus hyperplasia, airway eosinophilia, and type 2 pulmonary inflammation. In addition, neonatal hyperoxia promoted allergic TH responses to house dust mite exposure. Elevated IL-33 levels and ILC2 responses were observed in the lungs most likely due to oxidative stress caused by neonatal hyperoxia. IL-33 receptor signaling and ILC2s were vital for the induction of asthma-like features following neonatal hyperoxia. Serum IL-33 levels correlated significantly with serum levels of IL-5 and IL-13 but not IL-4 in preterm infants. CONCLUSIONS:These data demonstrate that an axis involving IL-33 and ILC2s is important for the development of asthma-like features following neonatal hyperoxia and suggest therapeutic potential for targeting IL-33, ILC2s, and oxidative stress to prevent and/or treat asthma development related to prematurity.
Project description:Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most common cause of infant hospitalizations and severe RSV infections are a significant risk factor for childhood asthma. The pathogenic mechanisms responsible for RSV induced immunopathophysiology remain elusive. Using an age-appropriate mouse model of RSV, we show that IL-33 plays a critical role in the immunopathogenesis of severe RSV, which is associated with higher group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) specifically in neonates. Infection with RSV induced rapid IL-33 expression and an increase in ILC2 numbers in the lungs of neonatal mice; this was not observed in adult mice. Blocking IL-33 with antibodies or using an IL-33 receptor knockout mouse during infection was sufficient to inhibit RSV immunopathogenesis (i.e., airway hyperresponsiveness, Th2 inflammation, eosinophilia, and mucus hyperproduction); whereas administration of IL-33 to adult mice during RSV infection was sufficient to induce RSV disease. Additionally, elevated IL-33 and IL-13 were observed in nasal aspirates from infants hospitalized with RSV; these cytokines declined during convalescence. In summary, IL-33 is necessary, either directly or indirectly, to induce ILC2s and the Th2 biased immunopathophysiology observed following neonatal RSV infection. This study provides a mechanism involving IL-33 and ILC2s in RSV mediated human asthma.
Project description:Asthma is a complex disease that is promoted by dysregulated immunity and the presence of many cytokine and lipid mediators. Despite this, there is a paucity of data demonstrating the combined effects of multiple mediators in asthma pathogenesis. Group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) have recently been shown to play important roles in the initiation of allergic inflammation; however, it is unclear whether lipid mediators, such as cysteinyl leukotrienes (CysLTs), which are present in asthma, could further amplify the effects of IL-33 on ILC2 activation and lung inflammation. In this article, we show that airway challenges with the parent CysLT, leukotriene C4 (LTC4), given in combination with low-dose IL-33 to naive wild-type mice, led to synergistic increases in airway Th2 cytokines, eosinophilia, and peribronchial inflammation compared with IL-33 alone. Further, the numbers of proliferating and cytokine-producing lung ILC2s were increased after challenge with both LTC4 and IL-33. Levels of CysLT1R, CysLT2R, and candidate leukotriene E4 receptor P2Y12 mRNAs were increased in ILC2s. The synergistic effect of LTC4 with IL-33 was completely dependent upon CysLT1R, because CysLT1R-/- mice, but not CysLT2R-/- mice, had abrogated responses. Further, CysLTs directly potentiated IL-5 and IL-13 production from purified ILC2s stimulated with IL-33 and resulted in NFAT1 nuclear translocation. Finally, CysLT1R-/- mice had reduced lung eosinophils and ILC2 responses after exposure to the fungal allergen Alternaria alternata Thus, CysLT1R promotes LTC4- and Alternaria-induced ILC2 activation and lung inflammation. These findings suggest that multiple pathways likely exist in asthma to activate ILC2s and propagate inflammatory responses.
Project description:BACKGROUND:IL-33 plays an important role in the development of experimental asthma. OBJECTIVE:We sought to study the role of the IL-33 receptor suppressor of tumorigenicity 2 (ST2) in the persistence of asthma in a mouse model. METHODS:We studied allergen-induced experimental asthma in ST2 knockout (KO) and wild-type control mice. We measured airway hyperresponsiveness by using flexiVent; inflammatory indices by using ELISA, histology, and real-time PCR; and type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) in lung single-cell preparations by using flow cytometry. RESULTS:Airway hyperresponsiveness was increased in allergen-treated ST2 KO mice and comparable with that in allergen-treated wild-type control mice. Peribronchial and perivascular inflammation and mucus production were largely similar in both groups. Persistence of experimental asthma in ST2 KO mice was associated with an increase in levels of thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), IL-9, and IL-13, but not IL-5, in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. Expectedly, ST2 deletion caused a reduction in IL-13+ CD4 T cells, forkhead box P3-positive regulatory T cells, and IL-5+ ILC2s. Unexpectedly, ST2 deletion led to an overall increase in innate lymphoid cells (CD45+lin-CD25+ cells) and IL-13+ ILC2s, emergence of a TSLP receptor-positive IL-9+ ILC2 population, and an increase in intraepithelial mast cell numbers in the lung. An anti-TSLP antibody abrogated airway hyperresponsiveness, inflammation, and mucus production in allergen-treated ST2 KO mice. It also caused a reduction in innate lymphoid cell, ILC2, and IL-9+ and IL-13+ ILC2 numbers in the lung. CONCLUSIONS:Genetic deletion of the IL-33 receptor paradoxically increases TSLP production, which stimulates the emergence of IL-9+ and IL-13+ ILC2s and mast cells and leads to development of chronic experimental asthma. An anti-TSLP antibody abrogates all pathologic features of asthma in this model.
Project description:Coexistence of chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) with asthma appears to impair asthma control. Type-2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) respond to the cytokines of thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), interleukin (IL)-25 and IL-33, thus contributing to airway diseases such as CRS and asthma. We investigate whether the augmented Th2-cytokines in CRS might be related to sinonasal tract ILC2s corresponding to enhanced IL-25, IL-33 and TSLP release in severe asthmatics, and be involved in asthma control. Twenty-eight asthmatics (12 non-severe and 16 severe) with CRS receiving nasal surgery were enrolled. The predicted FEV1 inversely associated with CRS severity of CT or endoscopy scores. Higher expression of Th2-driven cytokines (IL-4, IL-5, IL-9, and IL-13), TSLP, IL-25 and IL-33 in nasal tissues was observed in severe asthma. Severe asthmatics had higher ILC2 cell counts in their nasal tissues. ILC2 counts were positively correlated with Th2-cytokines. Nasal surgery significantly improved asthma control and lung function decline in severe asthma and CRS. The higher expression of IL-33/ILC2 axis-directed type 2 immune responses in nasal tissue of CRS brought the greater decline of lung function in severe asthma. ILC2-induced the upregulated activity of Th2-related cytokines in asthmatics with CRS may contribute to a recalcitrant status of asthma control.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Asthma in a mouse model spontaneously resolves after cessation of allergen exposure. We developed a mouse model in which asthma features persisted for 6 months after cessation of allergen exposure. OBJECTIVE:We sought to elucidate factors contributing to the persistence of asthma. METHODS:We used a combination of immunologic, genetic, microarray, and pharmacologic approaches to dissect the mechanism of asthma persistence. RESULTS:Elimination of T cells though antibody-mediated depletion or lethal irradiation and transplantation of recombination-activating gene (Rag1)(-/-) bone marrow in mice with chronic asthma resulted in resolution of airway inflammation but not airway hyperreactivity or remodeling. Elimination of T cells and type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) through lethal irradiation and transplantation of Rag2(-/-)?c(-/-) bone marrow or blockade of IL-33 resulted in resolution of airway inflammation and hyperreactivity. Persistence of asthma required multiple interconnected feedback and feed-forward circuits between ILC2s and epithelial cells. Epithelial IL-33 induced ILC2s, a rich source of IL-13. The latter directly induced epithelial IL-33, establishing a positive feedback circuit. IL-33 autoinduced, generating another feedback circuit. IL-13 upregulated IL-33 receptors and facilitated IL-33 autoinduction, thus establishing a feed-forward circuit. Elimination of any component of these circuits resulted in resolution of chronic asthma. In agreement with the foregoing, IL-33 and ILC2 levels were increased in the airways of asthmatic patients. IL-33 levels correlated with disease severity. CONCLUSIONS:We present a critical network of feedback and feed-forward interactions between epithelial cells and ILC2s involved in maintaining chronic asthma. Although T cells contributed to the severity of chronic asthma, they were redundant in maintaining airway hyperreactivity and remodeling.
Project description:Early-life human rhinovirus infection has been linked to asthma development in high-risk infants and children. Nevertheless, the role of rhinovirus infection in the initiation of asthma remains unclear.We hypothesized that, in contrast to infection of mature BALB/c mice, neonatal infection with rhinovirus promotes an IL-25-driven type 2 response, which causes persistent mucous metaplasia and airways hyperresponsiveness.Six-day-old and 8-week-old BALB/c mice were inoculated with sham HeLa cell lysate or rhinovirus. Airway responses from 1 to 28 days after infection were assessed by using quantitative PCR, ELISA, histology, immunofluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry, and methacholine responsiveness. Selected mice were treated with a neutralizing antibody to IL-25.Compared with mature mice, rhinovirus infection in neonatal mice increased lung IL-13 and IL-25 production, whereas IFN-?, IL-12p40, and TNF-? expression was suppressed. In addition, the population of IL-13-secreting type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) was expanded with rhinovirus infection in neonatal but not mature mice. ILC2s were the major cell type secreting IL-13 in neonates. Finally, anti-IL-25 neutralizing antibody attenuated ILC2 expansion, mucous hypersecretion, and airways responsiveness.These findings suggest that early-life viral infection could contribute to asthma development by provoking age-dependent, IL-25-driven type 2 immune responses.
Project description:Atopic diseases, including asthma, exacerbate type 2 immune responses and involve a number of immune cell types, including regulatory T (Treg) cells and the emerging type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s). Although ILC2s are potent producers of type 2 cytokines, the regulation of ILC2 activation and function is not well understood.In the present study, for the first time, we evaluate how Treg cells interact with pulmonary ILC2s and control their function.ILC2s and Treg cells were evaluated by using in vitro suppression assays, cell-contact assays, and gene expression panels. Also, human ILC2s and Treg cells were adoptively transferred into NOD SCID ?C-deficient mice, which were given isotype or anti-inducible T-cell costimulator ligand (ICOSL) antibodies and then challenged with IL-33 and assessed for airway hyperreactivity.We show that induced Treg cells, but not natural Treg cells, effectively suppress the production of the ILC2-driven proinflammatory cytokines IL-5 and IL-13 both in vitro and in vivo. Mechanistically, our data reveal the necessity of inducible T-cell costimulator (ICOS)-ICOS ligand cell contact for Treg cell-mediated ILC2 suppression alongside the suppressive cytokines TGF-? and IL-10. Using a translational approach, we then demonstrate that human induced Treg cells suppress syngeneic human ILC2s through ICOSL to control airway inflammation in a humanized ILC2 mouse model.These findings suggest that peripheral expansion of induced Treg cells can serve as a promising therapeutic target against ILC2-dependent asthma.
Project description:Early-life respiratory viral infection is a risk factor for asthma development. Rhinovirus (RV) infection of 6-d-old mice, but not mature mice, causes mucous metaplasia and airway hyperresponsiveness that are associated with the expansion of lung type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) and are dependent on IL-13 and the innate cytokine IL-25. However, contributions of the other innate cytokines, IL-33 and thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), to the observed asthma-like phenotype have not been examined. We reasoned that IL-33 and TSLP expression are also induced by RV infection in immature mice and are required for maximum ILC2 expansion and mucous metaplasia. We inoculated 6-d-old BALB/c (wild-type) and TSLP receptor-knockout mice with sham HeLa cell lysate or RV. Selected mice were treated with neutralizing Abs to IL-33 or recombinant IL-33, IL-25, or TSLP. ILC2s were isolated from RV-infected immature mice and treated with innate cytokines ex vivo. RV infection of 6-d-old mice increased IL-33 and TSLP protein abundance. TSLP expression was localized to the airway epithelium, whereas IL-33 was expressed in epithelial and subepithelial cells. RV-induced mucous metaplasia, ILC2 expansion, airway hyperresponsiveness, and epithelial cell IL-25 expression were attenuated by anti-IL-33 treatment and in TSLP receptor-knockout mice. Administration of intranasal IL-33 and TSLP was sufficient for mucous metaplasia. Finally, TSLP was required for maximal ILC2 gene expression in response to IL-25 and IL-33. The generation of mucous metaplasia in immature RV-infected mice involves a complex interplay among the innate cytokines IL-25, IL-33, and TSLP.
Project description:Asthma is a heterogeneous airway inflammatory disease characterized by increased airway hyperreactivity (AHR) to specific and unspecific stimuli. Group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2)s are type-2 cytokine secreting cells capable of inducing eosinophilic lung inflammation and AHR independent of adaptive immunity. Remarkably, reports show that ILC2s are increased in the blood of human asthmatics as compared to healthy donors. Nevertheless, whether ILC2 expression of adhesion molecules regulates ILC2 trafficking remains unknown. Our results show that IL-33-activated ILC2s not only express LFA-1 but also strikingly LFA-1 ligand ICAM-1. Both LFA-1-/- and ICAM-1-/- mice developed attenuated AHR in response to IL-33 intranasal challenge, associated with a lower airway inflammation and less lung ILC2 accumulation compared to controls. Our mixed bone marrow chimera studies however revealed that ILC2 expression of LFA-1 - but not ICAM-1 - was required for their accumulation in the inflamed lungs. Importantly, we found that LFA-1 remarkably controlled ILC2 homing to the lungs, suggesting that LFA-1 is involved in ILC2 trafficking to the lungs. Our exploratory transcriptomic analysis further revealed that ICAM-1 deficiency on ILC2s significantly affects their effector functions. While it downregulated pro-inflammatory cytokines such as Il5, Il9, Il13, and Csf2, it however notably also upregulated cytokines including Il10 both at the transcriptomic and protein levels. These findings provide novel avenues for future investigations, as modulation of LFA-1 and/or ICAM-1 represents an unappreciated regulatory mechanism for ILC2 trafficking and cytokine production respectively, potentially serving as therapeutic target for ILC2-dependent diseases such as allergic asthma.
Project description:Here we investigated the role of NFAT-interacting protein (NIP)-45, an Interleukin (IL)-4 inducing Transcription Factor, and its impact on the differentiation of Group 2 Innate -Lymphoid -Cells (ILC2s) in the pathogenesis of asthma. NIP45, a transcription factor regulating NFATc1 activity, mRNA was found to be induced in the Peripheral Blood mononuclear cells (PMBCs) of asthmatic pre-school children with allergies and in the peripheral blood CD4+ T cells from adult asthmatic patients. In PBMCs of asthmatic and control children, NIP45 mRNA directly correlated with NFATc1 but not with T-bet. Targeted deletion of NIP45 in mice resulted in a protective phenotype in experimental asthma with reduced airway mucus production, airway hyperresponsiveness and eosinophils. This phenotype was reversed by intranasal delivery of recombinant r-IL-33. Consistently, ILC2s and not GATA3+ CD4+ T-cells were decreased in the lungs of asthmatic NIP45-/- mice. Reduced cell number spleen ILC2s could be differentiated from NIP45-/- as compared to wild-type mice after in vivo injection of a microcircle-DNA vector expressing IL-25 and decreased cytokines and ILC2 markers in ILC2 differentiated from the bone marrow of NIP45-/- mice. NIP45 thus emerges as a new therapeutic target for the resolution of the airway pathology, down-regulation of ILC2s and mucus production in asthma.