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PD-1 signaling affects cristae morphology and leads to mitochondrial dysfunction in human CD8+ T lymphocytes

AuthorsOgando, Jesús; Sáez, María E; Santos, Javier ; Nuevo-Tapioles, Cristina ; Gut, Marta; Esteve-Codina, Anna; Heath, Simon; González-Pérez, Antonio; Cuezva, José M; Lacalle, Rosa A; Mañes, Santos
Issue Date13-Jun-2019
PublisherBioMed Central
CitationJournal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer. 2019 Jun 13;7(1):151
AbstractAbstract Background Binding of the programmed death-1 (PD-1) receptor to its ligands (PD-L1/2) transduces inhibitory signals that promote exhaustion of activated T cells. Blockade of the PD-1 pathway is widely used for cancer treatment, yet the inhibitory signals transduced by PD-1 in T cells remain elusive. Methods Expression profiles of human CD8+ T cells in resting, activated (CD3 + CD28) and PD-1-stimulated cells (CD3 + CD28 + PD-L1-Fc) conditions were evaluated by RNA-seq. Bioinformatic analyses were used to identify signaling pathways differentially regulated in PD-1-stimulated cells. Metabolic analyses were performed with SeaHorse technology, and mitochondrial ultrastructure was determined by transmission electron microscopy. PD-1-regulated mitochondrial genes were silenced using short-hairpin RNA in primary cells. Blue native gel electrophoresis was used to determine respiratory supercomplex assembly. Results PD-1 engagement in human CD8+ T cells triggers a specific, progressive genetic program different from that found in resting cells. Gene ontology identified metabolic processes, including glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS), as the main pathways targeted by PD-1. We observed severe functional and structural alterations in the mitochondria of PD-1-stimulated cells, including a reduction in the number and length of mitochondrial cristae. These cristae alterations were associated with reduced expression of CHCHD3 and CHCHD10, two proteins that form part of the mitochondrial contact site and cristae organizing system (MICOS). Although PD-1-stimulated cells showed severe cristae alterations, assembly of respiratory supercomplexes was unexpectedly greater in these cells than in activated T cells. CHCHD3 silencing in primary CD8+ T cells recapitulated some effects induced by PD-1 stimulation, including reduced mitochondrial polarization and interferon-γ production following T cell activation with anti-CD3 and -CD28 activating antibodies. Conclusions Our results suggest that mitochondria are the main targets of PD-1 inhibitory activity. PD-1 reprograms CD8+ T cell metabolism for efficient use of fatty acid oxidation; this mitochondrial phenotype might explain the long-lived phenotype of PD-1-engaged T cells.
Appears in Collections:Colección Biomed Central-Chemistry Central-Springer Open
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