Between Immunology And Tolerance: Controlling Immune Responses Employing Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells


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PhD thesis: a PhD thesis.
Between Immunology And Tolerance: Controlling Immune Responses Employing Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells
Haller S.
Acha-Orbea H.
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Université de Lausanne, Faculté de biologie et médecine
Départment de Biochimie Faculté de Biologie et Médecin Chemin des Boveresses 155 CH-1066 Epalinges
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Dendritic cells (DCs) are the most efficient antigen presenting cells, they provide co-stimulation, are able to secrete various proinflammatory cytokines and therefore play a pivotal role in shaping adaptive immune responses. Moreover, they are important for the promotion and maintenance of central and peripheral tolerance through several mechanisms like the induction of anergy or apoptosis in effector T cells or by promoting regulatory T cells.
The murine CD8α+ (MuTu) dendritic cell line was previously derived and described in our laboratory. The MuTu cell line has been shown to maintain phenotypical and functional characteristics of endogenous CD8α+ DCs. They are able to cross-present exogenous antigens to CD8+ T cells and produce interleukin (IL-) 12 upon engagement of Toll like receptors. The cell line constitutes an infinite source of homogenous, phenotypically well-defined dendritic cells. This allows us to investigate the role and potential of specific molecules in the induction as well as regulation of immune responses by DCs in a rational and standardized way.
In a first project the MuTu dendritic cell line was transduced in order to stably express the immunosuppressive molecules IL-10, IL-35 or the active form of TGF-β (termed IL-10+DC, IL-35+DC or actTGFβ+DC). We investigated the capability of these potentially suppressive or tolerogenic dendritic cell lines to induce immune tolerance and explore the mechanisms behind tolerance induction. The expression of TGF-β by the DC line did not affect the phenotype of the DCs itself. In contrast, IL-10+ and IL-35+DCs were found to exhibit lower expression of co-stimulatory molecules and MHC class I and II, as well as reduced secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines upon activation. In vitro co-culture with IL-35+, IL10+ or active TGFβ+ DCs interfered with function and proliferation of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. Furthermore, IL-35 and active TGF-β expressing DC lines induced regulatory phenotype on CD4+ T cells in vitro without or with expression of Foxp3, respectively. In different murine cancer models, vaccination with IL-35 or active TGF-β expressing DCs resulted in faster tumor growth. Interestingly, accelerated tumor growth could be observed when IL-35-expressing DCs were injected into T cell-deficient RAG-/- mice. IL-10expressing DCs however, were found to rather delay tumor growth. Besides the mentioned autocrine effects of IL-35 expression on the DC line itself, we surprisingly observed that the expression of IL-35 or the addition of IL-35 containing medium enhances neutrophil survival and induces proliferation of endothelial cells. Our findings indicate that the cytokine IL-35 might not only be a potent regulator of adaptive immune responses, but it also implies IL-35 to mediate diverse effects on an array of cellular targets. This abilities make IL-35 a promising target molecule not only for the treatment of auto-inflammatory disease but also to improve anti-cancer immunotherapies. Indeed, by applying active TGFβ+ in murine autoimmune encephalitis we were able to completely inhibit the development of the disease, whereas IL-35+DCs reduced disease incidence and severity. Furthermore, the preventive transfer of IL-35+DCs delayed rejection of transplanted skin to the same extend as the combination of IL-10/actTGF-β expressing DCs. Thus, the expression of a single tolerogenic molecule can be sufficient to interfere with the adequate activation and function of dendritic cells and of co-cultured T lymphocytes. The respective mechanisms of tolerance induction seem to be different for each of the investigated molecule. The application of a combination of multiple tolerogenic molecules might therefore evoke synergistic effects in order to overcome (auto-) immunity.
In a second project we tried to improve the immunogenicity of dendritic cell-based cancer vaccines using two different approaches. First, the C57BL/6 derived MuTu dendritic cell line was genetically modified in order to express the MHC class I molecule H-2Kd. We hypothesized that the expression of BALB/c specific MHC class I haplotype (H-2Kd) should allow the priming of tumor-specific CD8+ T cells by the otherwise allogeneic dendritic cells. At the same time, the transfer of these H-2Kd+ DCs into BALB/c mice was thought to evoke a strong inflammatory environment that might act as an "adjuvant", helping to overcome tumor induced immune suppression. Using this so called "semi-allogeneic" vaccination approach, we could demonstrate that the delivery of tumor lysate pulsed H-2Kd+ DCs significantly delayed tumor growth when compared to autologous or allogeneic vaccination. However, we were not able to coherently elucidate the cellular mechanisms underlying the observed effect. Second, we generated MuTu DC lines which stably express the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-2, IL-12 or IL-15. We investigated whether the combination of DC vaccination and local delivery of pro-inflammatory cytokines might enhance tumor specific T cell responses. Indeed, we observed an enhanced T cell proliferation and activation when they were cocultured in vitro with IL-12 or IL-2-expressing DCs. But unfortunately we could not observe a beneficial or even synergistic impact on tumor development when cytokine delivery was combined with semi-allogeneic DC vaccination.
Immune Tolerance, Dendritic Cells, Interleukin-35, Interleukin-10, Transforming Growth Factor b
Create date
14/04/2015 11:11
Last modification date
20/08/2019 14:35
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