Doherty Institute - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 373
A new way of measuring apoptosis by absolute quantitation of inter-nucleosomally fragmented genomic DNA
(OXFORD UNIV PRESS, 2012-08-01)
Several critical events of apoptosis occur in the cell nucleus, including inter-nucleosomal DNA fragmentation (apoptotic DNA) and eventual chromatin condensation. The generation of apoptotic DNA has become a biochemical hallmark of apoptosis because it is a late 'point of no return' step in both the extrinsic (cell-death receptor) and intrinsic (mitochondrial) apoptotic pathways. Despite investigators observing apoptotic DNA and understanding its decisive role as a marker of apoptosis for over 20 years, measuring it has proved elusive. We have integrated ligation-mediated PCR and qPCR to design a new way of measuring apoptosis, termed ApoqPCR, which generates an absolute value for the amount (picogram) of apoptotic DNA per cell population. ApoqPCR's advances over current methods include a 1000-fold linear dynamic range yet sensitivity to distinguish subtle low-level changes, measurement with a 3- to 4-log improvement in sample economy, and capacity for archival or longitudinal studies combined with high-throughput capability. We demonstrate ApoqPCR's utility in both in vitro and in vivo contexts. Considering the fundamental role apoptosis has in vertebrate and invertebrate health, growth and disease, the reliable measurement of apoptotic nucleic acid by ApoqPCR will be of value in cell biology studies in basic and applied science.
Comparison of HDAC inhibitors in clinical development Effect on HIV production in latently infected cells and T-cell activation
(TAYLOR & FRANCIS INC, 2013-05-01)
OBJECTIVE: We aimed to compare the potential for inducing HIV production and the effect on T-cell activation of potent HDAC inhibitors undergoing clinical investigation. DESIGN: In vitro study RESULTS: The various HDAC inhibitors displayed significant potency differences in stimulating HIV-1 expression from the latently infected cell lines with panobinostat>givinostat ≈belinostat>vorinostat>valproic acid. Panobinostat was significantly more potent than all other HDAC inhibitors and induced virus production even in the very low concentration range 8-31 nM. The proportion of primary T-cells expressing the early activation marker CD69 increased moderately in all HDAC inhibitor-treated cells compared with untreated cells. Finally, proof was obtained that panobinostat, givinostat and belinostat induce virus production in latently infected primary cells at therapeutic concentrations with panobinostat being the most potent stimulator. METHODS: The latently infected cell lines ACH2 and U1 were treated with the HDAC inhibitors panobinostat, givinostat, belinostat, vorinostat and valproic acid. Viral induction was estimated by p24 production. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells from uninfected donors were treated with the HDAC inhibitors and the expression of activation markers on T-cell phenotypes was measured using flow cytometry. Finally, the ability of givinostat, belinostat and panobinostat to reactivate latent HIV-1 expression in primary T-cells was investigated employing a CCL19-induced latent primary CD4+ T cell infection model. CONCLUSION: At therapeutic concentrations panobinostat stimulate HIV-1 expression in latently infected cells with greater potency than other HDAC inhibitors undergoing clinical investigation. These findings warrant further investigation and panobinostat is now being advanced into clinical testing against latent HIV infection.
The interaction of macrophage and non-macrophage tropic isolates of HIV-1 with thymic and tonsillar dendritic cells in vitro
(ROCKEFELLER UNIV PRESS, 1996-04-01)
Dendritic cells isolated from thymus and tonsil were tested for susceptibility to HIV-1 strains that are tropic for macrophages or for T cell lines. DCs were purified by cell sorting and before infection expressed high levels of CD4 and HLA-DR and lacked markers for T, B, NK cells, or macrophages. Viral entry and reverse transcription was found after pulsing with strains of HIV-1 that could infect macrophages. During the first 36 h the PCR signals for gag sequences increased in DCs and macrophages. In contrast little if any viral DNA was found after pulsing macrophages or DCs with HIV-1 that was able to infect T cell lines. DCs pulsed with HIV-1 were able to transmit infection to responding T cells during an allogeneic or superantigen response. Selection for virus able to infect lymphoid DCs and other DCs expressing CD4 and its transfer to T cells during subsequent immune responses may provide a mechanism for the observed predominance of macrophage-tropic HIV-1 after in vivo transmission.
Comparison of Bone and Renal Effects In HIV-infected Adults Switching to Abacavir or Tenofovir Based Therapy in a Randomized Trial
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2012-03-29)
INTRODUCTION: Our objective was to compare the bone and renal effects among HIV-infected patients randomized to abacavir or tenofovir-based combination anti-retroviral therapy. METHODS: In an open-label randomized trial, HIV-infected patients were randomized to switch from zidovudine/lamivudine (AZT/3TC) to abacavir/lamivudine (ABC/3TC) or tenofovir/emtricitabine (TDF/FTC). We measured bone mass density (BMD) and bone turnover biomarkers (osteocalcin, osteocalcin, procollagen type 1 N-terminal propeptide (P1NP), alkaline phosphatase, type I collagen cross-linked C-telopeptide (CTx), and osteoprotegerin). We assessed renal function by estimated creatinine clearance, plasma cystatin C, and urinary levels of creatinine, albumin, cystatin C, and neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL). The changes from baseline in BMD and renal and bone biomarkers were compared across study arms. RESULTS: Of 40 included patients, 35 completed 48 weeks of randomized therapy and follow up. BMD was measured in 33, 26, and 27 patients at baseline, week 24, and week 48, respectively. In TDF/FTC-treated patients we observed significant reductions from baseline in hip and lumbar spine BMD at week 24 (-1.8% and -2.5%) and week 48 (-2.1% and -2.1%), whereas BMD was stable in patients in the ABC/3TC arm. The changes from baseline in BMD were significantly different between study arms. All bone turnover biomarkers except osteoprotegerin increased in the TDF/FTC arm compared with the ABC/3TC arm, but early changes did not predict subsequent loss of BMD. Renal function parameters were similar between study arms although a small increase in NGAL was detected among TDF-treated patients. CONCLUSION: Switching to TDF/FTC-based therapy led to decreases in BMD and increases in bone turnover markers compared with ABC/3TC-based treatment. No major difference in renal function was observed. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00647244.
Administration of a Toll-Like Receptor 9 Agonist Decreases the Proviral Reservoir in Virologically Suppressed HIV-Infected Patients
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2013-04-26)
Toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists can reactivate HIV from latently infected cells in vitro. We aimed to investigate the TLR-9 agonist, CPG 7909's in vivo effect on the proviral HIV reservoir and HIV-specific immunity. This was a post-hoc analysis of a double-blind randomized controlled vaccine trial. HIV-infected adults were randomized 1:1 to receive pneumococcal vaccines with or without 1 mg CPG 7909 as adjuvant at 0, 3 and 9 months. In patients on suppressive antiretroviral therapy we quantified proviral DNA at 0, 3, 4, 9, and 10 months (31 subjects in the CPG group and 37 in the placebo-adjuvant group). Furthermore, we measured HIV-specific antibodies, characterized T cell phenotypes and HIV-specific T cell immunity. We observed a mean reduction in proviral DNA in the CPG group of 12.6% (95% CI: -23.6-0.0) following each immunization whereas proviral DNA in the placebo-adjuvant group remained largely unchanged (6.7% increase; 95% CI: -4.2-19.0 after each immunization, p = 0.02). Among participants with additional cryo-preserved PBMCs, HIV-specific CD8+ T cell immunity as indicated by increased expression of degranulation marker CD107a and macrophage inflammatory protein 1β (MIP1β) tended to be up-regulated following immunization with CPG 7909 compared with placebo as adjuvant. Further, increasing proportion of HIV-specific CD107a and MIP1β-expressing CD8+ T cells were strongly correlated with decreasing proviral load. No changes were observed in T cell phenotype distribution, HIV-specific CD4+ T cell immunity, or HIV-specific antibodies. TLR9-adjuvanted pneumococcal vaccination decreased proviral load. Reductions in proviral load correlated with increasing levels of HIV specific CD8+ T cells. Further investigation into the potential effect of TLR9 agonists on HIV latency is warranted.
LILRA2 selectively modulates LPS-mediated cytokine production and inhibits phagocytosis by monocytes.
(Public Library of Science (PLoS), 2012)
The activating immunoglobulin-like receptor, subfamily A, member 2 (LILRA2) is primarily expressed on the surface of cells of the innate immunity including monocytes, macrophages, neutrophils, basophils and eosinophils but not on lymphocytes and NK cells. LILRA2 cross-linking on monocytes induces pro-inflammatory cytokines while inhibiting dendritic cell differentiation and antigen presentation. A similar activating receptor, LILRA4, has been shown to modulate functions of TLR7/9 in dendritic cells. These suggest a selective immune regulatory role for LILRAs during innate immune responses. However, whether LILRA2 has functions distinct from other receptors of the innate immunity including Toll-like receptor (TLR) 4 and FcγRI remains unknown. Moreover, the effects of LILRA2 on TLR4 and FcγRI-mediated monocyte functions are not elucidated. Here, we show activation of monocytes via LILRA2 cross-linking selectively increased GM-CSF production but failed to induce IL-12 and MCP-1 production that were strongly up-regulated by LPS, suggesting functions distinct from TLR4. Interestingly, LILRA2 cross-linking on monocytes induced similar amounts of IL-6, IL-8, G-CSF and MIP-1α but lower levels of TNFα, IL-1β, IL-10 and IFNγ compared to those stimulated with LPS. Furthermore, cross-linking of LILRA2 on monocytes significantly decreased phagocytosis of IgG-coated micro-beads and serum opsonized Escherichia coli but had limited effect on phagocytosis of non-opsonized bacteria. Simultaneous co-stimulation of monocytes through LILRA2 and LPS or sequential activation of monocytes through LILRA2 followed by LPS led lower levels of TNFα, IL-1β and IL-12 production compared to LPS alone, but had additive effect on levels of IL-10 and IFNγ but not on IL-6. Interestingly, LILRA2 cross-linking on monocytes caused significant inhibition of TLR4 mRNA and protein, suggesting LILRA2-mediated suppression of LPS responses might be partly via regulation of this receptor. Taken together, we provide evidence that LILRA2-mediated activation of monocytes is significantly different to LPS and that LILRA2 selectively modulates LPS-mediated monocyte activation and FcγRI-dependent phagocytosis.
DENDRITIC CELLS FRESHLY ISOLATED FROM HUMAN BLOOD EXPRESS CD4 AND MATURE INTO TYPICAL IMMUNOSTIMULATORY DENDRITIC CELLS AFTER CULTURE IN MONOCYTE-CONDITIONED MEDIUM
(ROCKEFELLER UNIV PRESS, 1993-09-01)
A procedure has been developed to isolate dendritic cells to a high degree of purity from fresh blood. Prior enrichment methods have relied upon an initial 1-2-d culture period. Purified fresh isolates lack the characteristic morphology, phenotype, and immunostimulatory function of dendritic cells. The purified cells have the appearance of medium sized lymphocytes and express substantial levels of CD4, but lack the T cell molecules CD3, CD8, and T cell receptor. When placed in culture, the cells mature in a manner resembling the previously described, cytokine-dependent maturation of epidermal dendritic cells (Langerhans cells). The cells enlarge and exhibit many cell processes, express much higher levels of major histocompatibility complex class II and a panel of accessory molecules for T cell activation, and become potent stimulators of the mixed leukocyte reaction. Among the many changes during this maturation process are a fall in CD4 and the appearance of high levels of B7/BB1, the costimulator for enhanced interleukin 2 production in T cells. These changes are not associated with cell proliferation, but are dependent upon the addition of monocyte-conditioned medium. We suggest that the freshly isolated CD4-positive blood dendritic cells are recent migrants from the bone marrow, and that subsequent maturation of the lineage occurs in tissues in situ upon appropriate exposure to cytokines.
Evaluation of cardiovascular biomarkers In HIV-infected patients switching to abacavir or tenofovir based therapy
(BIOMED CENTRAL LTD, 2011-10-04)
BACKGROUND: Our objective was to evaluate and compare the effect of abacavir on levels of biomarkers associated with cardiovascular risk. METHODS: In an open-label randomized trial, HIV-infected patients were randomized 1:1 to switch from zidovudine/lamivudine to abacavir/lamivudine or tenofovir/emtricitabine. In the present analysis, we measured levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), soluble vascular adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), E-selectin, and myeloperoxidase (MPO) at baseline and 4, 12, and 48 weeks after randomization. D-dimer and fasting lipids were measured at baseline and weeks 12 and 48. Levels of biomarkers at all time points and changes from baseline were compared across study arms using Wilcoxon rank sum test. RESULTS: Of 40 included patients, 35 completed 48 weeks of randomized therapy and follow up. Levels of E-selectin (P=0.004) and sVCAM-1 (P=0.041) increased transiently from baseline to week 4 in the abacavir arm compared with the tenofovir arm, but no long-term increases were detected. We found no significant differences between study arms in the levels or changes in the levels of sICAM-1, MPO, d-dimer, IL-6, or hs-CRP. Levels of total cholesterol and high density lipoprotein (HDL) increased in the abacavir arm relative to the tenofovir arm, but no difference was found in total cholesterol/HDL ratio. CONCLUSION: In patients randomized to abacavir-based HIV-treatment transient increases were seen in the plasma levels of E-selectin and sVCAM-1 compared with treatment with tenofovir, but no difference between study arms was found in other biomarkers associated with endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, or coagulation. The clinical significance of these findings is uncertain. TRIAL REGESTRATION: Clinicaltrials.gov identifier: NCT00647244.
The Depsipeptide Romidepsin Reverses HIV-1 Latency In Vivo
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2015-09-01)
UNLABELLED: Pharmacologically-induced activation of replication competent proviruses from latency in the presence of antiretroviral treatment (ART) has been proposed as a step towards curing HIV-1 infection. However, until now, approaches to reverse HIV-1 latency in humans have yielded mixed results. Here, we report a proof-of-concept phase Ib/IIa trial where 6 aviremic HIV-1 infected adults received intravenous 5 mg/m2 romidepsin (Celgene) once weekly for 3 weeks while maintaining ART. Lymphocyte histone H3 acetylation, a cellular measure of the pharmacodynamic response to romidepsin, increased rapidly (maximum fold range: 3.7–7.7 relative to baseline) within the first hours following each romidepsin administration. Concurrently, HIV-1 transcription quantified as copies of cell-associated un-spliced HIV-1 RNA increased significantly from baseline during treatment (range of fold-increase: 2.4–5.0; p = 0.03). Plasma HIV-1 RNA increased from <20 copies/mL at baseline to readily quantifiable levels at multiple post-infusion time-points in 5 of 6 patients (range 46–103 copies/mL following the second infusion, p = 0.04). Importantly, romidepsin did not decrease the number of HIV-specific T cells or inhibit T cell cytokine production. Adverse events (all grade 1–2) were consistent with the known side effects of romidepsin. In conclusion, romidepsin safely induced HIV-1 transcription resulting in plasma HIV-1 RNA that was readily detected with standard commercial assays demonstrating that significant reversal of HIV-1 latency in vivo is possible without blunting T cell-mediated immune responses. These finding have major implications for future trials aiming to eradicate the HIV-1 reservoir. TRIAL REGISTRATION: clinicaltrials.gov NTC02092116.
Activation of Latent Human Immunodeficiency Virus by the Histone Deacetylase Inhibitor Panobinostat: A Pilot Study to Assess Effects on the Central Nervous System
(OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC, 2015-12-01)
In a substudy of a clinical trial, we assessed whether activation of latent human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) by the histone deacetylase inhibitor panobinostat had detrimental effects on the central nervous system (CNS). Adults infected with HIV received oral panobinostat 20 mg 3 times per week every other week for 8 weeks. In cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), we assayed panobinostat concentration, HIV RNA, and the level of neuroinflammatory or degenerative biomarkers in 11 individuals before and during study therapy. Neither panobinostat nor HIV RNA was detected in CSF. In addition, there was no change from baseline in CSF biomarkers. Thus, panobinostat administration was not associated with CNS adverse effects as assessed by CSF biomarkers.
High prevalence of PI resistance in patients failing second-line ART in Vietnam
(OXFORD UNIV PRESS, 2016-03-01)
BACKGROUND: There are limited data from resource-limited settings on antiretroviral resistance mutations that develop in patients failing second-line PI ART. METHODS: We performed a cross-sectional virological assessment of adults on second-line ART for ≥6 months between November 2006 and December 2011, followed by a prospective follow-up over 2 years of patients with virological failure (VF) at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Vietnam. VF was defined as HIV RNA concentrations ≥1000 copies/mL. Resistance mutations were identified by population sequencing of the pol gene and interpreted using the 2014 IAS-USA mutation list and the Stanford algorithm. Logistic regression modelling was performed to identify predictors of VF. RESULTS: Two hundred and thirty-one patients were enrolled in the study. The median age was 32 years; 81.0% were male, 95.7% were on a lopinavir/ritonavir-containing regimen and 22 (9.5%) patients had VF. Of the patients with VF, 14 (64%) carried at least one major protease mutation [median: 2 (IQR: 1-3)]; 13 (59%) had multiple protease mutations conferring intermediate- to high-level resistance to lopinavir/ritonavir. Mutations conferring cross-resistance to etravirine, rilpivirine, tipranavir and darunavir were identified in 55%, 55%, 45% and 27% of patients, respectively. Higher viral load, adherence <95% and previous indinavir use were independent predictors of VF. The 2 year outcomes of the patients maintained on lopinavir/ritonavir included: death, 7 (35%); worsening virological/immunological control, 6 (30%); and virological re-suppression, 5 (25%). Two patients were switched to raltegravir and darunavir/ritonavir with good HIV control. CONCLUSIONS: High-prevalence PI resistance was associated with previous indinavir exposure. Darunavir plus an integrase inhibitor and lamivudine might be a promising third-line regimen in Vietnam.
The variant call format and VCFtools
(OXFORD UNIV PRESS, 2011-08-01)
SUMMARY: The variant call format (VCF) is a generic format for storing DNA polymorphism data such as SNPs, insertions, deletions and structural variants, together with rich annotations. VCF is usually stored in a compressed manner and can be indexed for fast data retrieval of variants from a range of positions on the reference genome. The format was developed for the 1000 Genomes Project, and has also been adopted by other projects such as UK10K, dbSNP and the NHLBI Exome Project. VCFtools is a software suite that implements various utilities for processing VCF files, including validation, merging, comparing and also provides a general Perl API. AVAILABILITY: http://vcftools.sourceforge.net