Desmocollin-2 promotes intestinal mucosal repair by controlling integrin-dependent cell adhesion and migration.
ABSTRACT: The intestinal mucosa is lined by a single layer of epithelial cells that forms a tight barrier, separating luminal antigens and microbes from underlying tissue compartments. Mucosal damage results in a compromised epithelial barrier that can lead to excessive immune responses as observed in inflammatory bowel disease. Efficient wound repair is critical to reestablish the mucosal barrier and homeostasis. Intestinal epithelial cells (IEC) exclusively express the desmosomal cadherins, Desmoglein-2 and Desmocollin-2 (Dsc2) that contribute to mucosal homeostasis by strengthening intercellular adhesion between cells. Despite this important property, specific contributions of desmosomal cadherins to intestinal mucosal repair after injury remain poorly investigated in vivo. Here we show that mice with inducible conditional knockdown (KD) of Dsc2 in IEC (Villin-CreERT2; Dsc2 fl/fl) exhibited impaired mucosal repair after biopsy-induced colonic wounding and recovery from dextran sulfate sodium-induced colitis. In vitro analyses using human intestinal cell lines after KD of Dsc2 revealed delayed epithelial cell migration and repair after scratch-wound healing assay that was associated with reduced cell-matrix traction forces, decreased levels of integrin ?1 and ?4, and altered activity of the small GTPase Rap1. Taken together, these results demonstrate that epithelial Dsc2 is a key contributor to intestinal mucosal wound healing in vivo.
Project description:Desmosomal cadherins mediate cell-cell adhesion in epithelial tissues and have been known to be altered in cancer. We have previously shown that one of the two intestinal epithelial desmosomal cadherins, desmocollin-2 (Dsc2) loss promotes colonic epithelial carcinoma cell proliferation and tumor formation. In this study we show that loss of the other intestinal desmosomal cadherin, desmoglein-2 (Dsg2) that pairs with Dsc2, results in decreased epithelial cell proliferation and suppressed xenograft tumor growth in mice. Dsg2-deficient cells demonstrated a compensatory increase in Dsc2 expression, and small interfering RNA-mediated loss of Dsc2 restored proliferation in Dsg2-deficient cells. Dsg2 downregulation inhibited epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling and cell proliferation through altered phosphorylation of EGFR and downstream extracellular signal-regulated kinase activation in parallel with inhibited EGFR receptor internalization. Additionally, we demonstrated a central role of Dsc2 in controlling EGFR signaling and cell proliferation in intestinal epithelial cells. Consistent with these findings, analyses of human colon cancers demonstrated increased Dsg2 protein expression. Taken together, these data demonstrate that partner desmosomal cadherins Dsg2 and Dsc2 play opposing roles in controlling colonic carcinoma cell proliferation through differential effects on EGFR signaling.
Project description:CD47 is a ubiquitously expressed transmembrane glycoprotein that regulates inflammatory responses and tissue repair. Here, we show that normal mice treated with anti-CD47 antibodies, and Cd47-null mice have impaired intestinal mucosal wound healing. Furthermore, intestinal epithelial cell (IEC)-specific loss of CD47 does not induce spontaneous immune-mediated intestinal barrier disruption but results in defective mucosal repair after biopsy-induced colonic wounding or Dextran Sulfate Sodium (DSS)-induced mucosal damage. In vitro analyses using primary cultures of CD47-deficient murine colonic IEC or human colonoid-derived IEC treated with CD47-blocking antibodies demonstrate impaired epithelial cell migration in wound healing assays. Defective wound repair after CD47 loss is linked to decreased epithelial ?1 integrin and focal adhesion signaling, as well as reduced thrombospondin-1 and TGF-?1. These results demonstrate a critical role for IEC-expressed CD47 in regulating mucosal repair and raise important considerations for possible alterations in wound healing secondary to therapeutic targeting of CD47.
Project description:Epithelial myosin light chain kinase (MLCK)-dependent barrier dysfunction contributes to the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). We reported that epithelial GM-CSF-STAT5 signalling is essential for intestinal homeostatic response to gut injury. However, mechanism, redundancy by STAT5 or cell types involved remained foggy. We here generated intestinal epithelial cell (IEC)-specific STAT5 knockout mice, these mice exhibited a delayed mucosal wound healing and dysfunctional intestinal barrier characterized by elevated levels of NF-?B activation and MLCK, and a reduction of zonula occludens expression in IECs. Deletion of MLCK restored intestinal barrier function in STAT5 knockout mice, and facilitated mucosal wound healing. Consistently, knockdown of stat5 in IEC monolayers led to increased NF-?B DNA binding to MLCK promoter, myosin light chain phosphorylation and tight junction (TJ) permeability, which were potentiated by administration of tumour necrosis factor-? (TNF-?), and prevented by concurrent NF-?B knockdown. Collectively, enterocyte STAT5 signalling protects against TJ barrier dysfunction and promotes intestinal mucosal wound healing via an interaction with NF-?B to suppress MLCK. Targeting IEC STAT5 signalling may be a novel therapeutic approach for treating intestinal barrier dysfunction in IBD.
Project description:Maintenance of the epithelial barrier in the intestinal tract is necessary to protect the host from the hostile luminal environment. Phospholipase C-? (PLC-?) has been implicated to control myriad signaling cascades. However, the biological effects of selective PLC-? isozymes are poorly understood. We describe novel findings that lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) regulates PLC-?1 and PLC-?2 via two distinct pathways to enhance intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) proliferation and migration that facilitate wound closure and recovery of the intestinal epithelial barrier. LPA acting on the LPA1 receptor promotes IEC migration by facilitating the interaction of G?q with PLC-?2. LPA-induced cell proliferation is PLC-?1 dependent and involves translocation of G?q to the nucleus, where it interacts with PLC-?1 to induce cell cycle progression. An in vivo study using LPA1-deficient mice (Lpar1(-/-)) shows a decreased number of proliferating IECs and migration along the crypt-luminal axis. Additionally, LPA enhances migration and proliferation of IECs in an LPA1-dependent manner, and Lpar1(-/-) mice display defective mucosal wound repair that requires cell proliferation and migration. These findings delineate novel LPA1-dependent lipid signaling that facilitates mucosal wound repair via spatial targeting of distinct PLC-?s within the cell.
Project description:Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) coordinates cellular functions essential for sustaining tissue homeostasis; yet its regulation in the intestine is not well understood. Here, we identify a novel physiological link between Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2 and GJIC through modulation of Connexin-43 (Cx43) during acute and chronic inflammatory injury of the intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) barrier. Data from in vitro studies reveal that TLR2 activation modulates Cx43 synthesis and increases GJIC via Cx43 during IEC injury. The ulcerative colitis-associated TLR2-R753Q mutant targets Cx43 for increased proteasomal degradation, impairing TLR2-mediated GJIC during intestinal epithelial wounding. In vivo studies using mucosal RNA interference show that TLR2-mediated mucosal healing depends functionally on intestinal epithelial Cx43 during acute inflammatory stress-induced damage. Mice deficient in TLR2 exhibit IEC-specific alterations in Cx43, whereas administration of a TLR2 agonist protects GJIC by blocking accumulation of Cx43 and its hyperphosphorylation at Ser368 to prevent spontaneous chronic colitis in MDR1alpha-deficient mice. Finally, adding the TLR2 agonist to three-dimensional intestinal mucosa-like cultures of human biopsies preserves intestinal epithelial Cx43 integrity and polarization ex vivo. In conclusion, Cx43 plays an important role in innate immune control of commensal-mediated intestinal epithelial wound repair.
Project description:Desmosomes and adherens junctions are cadherin-based protein complexes responsible for cell-cell adhesion of epithelial cells. Type 1 cadherins of adherens junctions show specific homophilic adhesion that plays a major role in developmental tissue segregation. The desmosomal cadherins, desmocollin and desmoglein, occur as several different isoforms with overlapping expression in some tissues where different isoforms are located in the same desmosomes. Although adhesive binding of desmosomal cadherins has been investigated in a variety of ways, their interaction in desmosome-forming epithelial cells has not been studied. Here, using extracellular homobifunctional cross-linking, we provide evidence for homophilic and isoform-specific binding between the Dsc2, Dsc3, Dsg2, and Dsg3 isoforms in HaCaT keratinocytes and show that it represents trans interaction. Furthermore, the cross-linked adducts are present in the detergent-insoluble fraction, and electron microscopy shows that extracellular cross-linking probably occurs in desmosomes. We found no evidence for either heterophilic or cis interaction, but neither can be completely excluded by our data. Mutation of amino acid residues Trp-2 and Ala-80 that are important for trans interaction in classical cadherin adhesive binding abolished Dsc2 binding, indicating that these residues are also involved in desmosomal adhesion. These interactions of desmosomal cadherins may be of key importance for their ordered arrangement within desmosomes that we believe is essential for desmosomal adhesive strength and the maintenance of tissue integrity.
Project description:Intestinal epithelial barrier properties are maintained by a junctional complex consisting of tight junctions (TJ), adherens junctions (AJ) and desmosomes. Desmoglein 2 (Dsg2), an adhesion molecule of desmosomes and the only Dsg isoform expressed in enterocytes, is required for epithelial barrier properties and may contribute to barrier defects in Crohn's disease. Here, we identified extradesmosomal Dsg2 on the surface of polarized enterocytes by Triton extraction, confocal microscopy, SIM and STED. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) revealed Dsg2-specific binding events along the cell border on the surface of enterocytes with a mean unbinding force of around 30pN. Binding events were blocked by an inhibitory antibody targeting Dsg2 which under same conditions activated p38MAPK but did not reduce cell cohesion. In enterocytes deficient for Dsg2, p38MAPK activity was reduced and both barrier integrity and reformation were impaired. Dsc2 rescue did not restore p38MAPK activity indicating that Dsg2 is required. Accordingly, direct activation of p38MAPK in Dsg2-deficient cells enhanced barrier reformation demonstrating that Dsg2-mediated activation of p38MAPK is crucial for barrier function. Collectively, our data show that Dsg2, beside its adhesion function, regulates intestinal barrier function via p38MAPK signalling. This is in contrast to keratinocytes and points towards tissue-specific signalling functions of desmosomal cadherins.
Project description:Rapid repair of epithelial wounds is essential for intestinal homeostasis, and involves cell proliferation and migration, which in turn are mediated by multiple cellular signaling events including PKC activation. PKC isoforms have been implicated in regulating cell proliferation and migration, however, the role of PKCs in intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) wound healing is still not completely understood. In the current work we used phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), a well recognized agonist of classical and non-conventional PKC subfamilies to investigate the effect of PKC activation on IEC wound healing. We found that PMA treatment of wounded IEC monolayers resulted in 5.8±0.7-fold increase in wound closure after 24 hours. The PMA effect was specifically mediated by PKC?II, as its inhibition significantly diminished the PMA-induced increase in wound closure. Furthermore, we show that the PKC?II-mediated increase in IEC wound closure after PMA stimulation was mediated by increased cell spreading/cell migration but not proliferation. Cell migration was mediated by PKC?II dependent actin cytoskeleton reorganization, enhanced formation of lamellipodial extrusions at the leading edge and increased activation of the focal adhesion protein, paxillin. These findings support a role for PKC?II in IEC wound repair and further demonstrate the ability of epithelial cells to migrate as a sheet thereby efficiently covering denuded surfaces to recover the intestinal epithelial barrier.
Project description:The desmosomal cadherins, desmogleins (Dsgs) and desmocollins (Dscs), comprise the adhesive core of intercellular junctions known as desmosomes. Although these adhesion molecules are known to be critical for tissue integrity, mechanisms that coordinate their trafficking into intercellular junctions to regulate their proper ratio and distribution are unknown. We demonstrate that Dsg2 and Dsc2 both exhibit microtubule-dependent transport in epithelial cells but use distinct motors to traffic to the plasma membrane. Functional interference with kinesin-1 blocked Dsg2 transport, resulting in the assembly of Dsg2-deficient junctions with minimal impact on distribution of Dsc2 or desmosomal plaque components. In contrast, inhibiting kinesin-2 prevented Dsc2 movement and decreased its plasma membrane accumulation without affecting Dsg2 trafficking. Either kinesin-1 or -2 deficiency weakened intercellular adhesion, despite the maintenance of adherens junctions and other desmosome components at the plasma membrane. Differential regulation of desmosomal cadherin transport could provide a mechanism to tailor adhesion strength during tissue morphogenesis and remodeling.
Project description:Wound healing of the gastrointestinal mucosa is essential for the maintenance of gut homeostasis and integrity. Enteric glial cells play a major role in regulating intestinal barrier function, but their role in mucosal barrier repair remains unknown. The impact of conditional ablation of enteric glia on dextran sodium sulfate (DSS)-induced mucosal damage and on healing of diclofenac-induced mucosal ulcerations was evaluated in vivo in GFAP-HSVtk transgenic mice. A mechanically induced model of intestinal wound healing was developed to study glial-induced epithelial restitution. Glial-epithelial signaling mechanisms were analyzed by using pharmacological inhibitors, neutralizing antibodies, and genetically engineered intestinal epithelial cells. Enteric glial cells were shown to be abundant in the gut mucosa, where they associate closely with intestinal epithelial cells as a distinct cell population from myofibroblasts. Conditional ablation of enteric glia worsened mucosal damage after DSS treatment and significantly delayed mucosal wound healing following diclofenac-induced small intestinal enteropathy in transgenic mice. Enteric glial cells enhanced epithelial restitution and cell spreading in vitro. These enhanced repair processes were reproduced by use of glial-conditioned media, and soluble proEGF was identified as a secreted glial mediator leading to consecutive activation of epidermal growth factor receptor and focal adhesion kinase signaling pathways in intestinal epithelial cells. Our study shows that enteric glia represent a functionally important cellular component of the intestinal epithelial barrier microenvironment and that the disruption of this cellular network attenuates the mucosal healing process.