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Heart non-specific effector CD4+ T cells protect from postinflammatory fibrosis and cardiac dysfunction in experimental autoimmune myocarditis


Zarak-Crnkovic, Martina; Kania, Gabriela; Jaźwa-Kusior, Agnieszka; Czepiel, Marcin; Wijnen, Winandus J; Czyż, Jarosław; Müller-Edenborn, Björn; Vdovenko, Daria; Lindner, Diana; Gil-Cruz, Cristina; Bachmann, Marta; Westermann, Dirk; Ludewig, Burkhard; Distler, Oliver; Lüscher, Thomas F; Klingel, Karin; Eriksson, Urs; Błyszczuk, Przemysław (2019). Heart non-specific effector CD4+ T cells protect from postinflammatory fibrosis and cardiac dysfunction in experimental autoimmune myocarditis. Basic Research in Cardiology, 115(1):6.

Abstract

Heart-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells have been implicated in development and progression of myocarditis in mice and in humans. Here, using mouse models of experimental autoimmune myocarditis (EAM) we investigated the role of heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells in the progression of the disease. Heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells were obtained from DO11.10 mice expressing transgenic T cell receptor recognizing chicken ovalbumin. We found that heart infiltrating CD4$^{+}$ T cells expressed exclusively effector (T$_{eff}$) phenotype in the EAM model and in hearts of patients with lymphocytic myocarditis. Adoptive transfer experiments showed that while heart-specific T$_{eff}$ infiltrated the heart shortly after injection, heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ effectively accumulated during myocarditis and became the major heart-infiltrating CD4$^{+}$ T cell subset at later stage. Restimulation of co-cultured heart-specific and heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells with alpha-myosin heavy chain antigen showed mainly Th1/Th17 response for heart-specific T$_{eff}$ and up-regulation of a distinct set of extracellular signalling molecules in heart non-specific T$_{eff}$. Adoptive transfer of heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ in mice with myocarditis did not affect inflammation severity at the peak of disease, but protected the heart from adverse post-inflammatory fibrotic remodelling and cardiac dysfunction at later stages of disease. Furthermore, mouse and human T$_{eff}$ stimulated in vitro with common gamma cytokines suppressed expression of profibrotic genes, reduced amount of α-smooth muscle actin filaments and decreased contraction of cardiac fibroblasts. In this study, we provided a proof-of-concept that heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ cells could effectively contribute to myocarditis and protect the heart from the dilated cardiomyopathy outcome.

Abstract

Heart-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells have been implicated in development and progression of myocarditis in mice and in humans. Here, using mouse models of experimental autoimmune myocarditis (EAM) we investigated the role of heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells in the progression of the disease. Heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells were obtained from DO11.10 mice expressing transgenic T cell receptor recognizing chicken ovalbumin. We found that heart infiltrating CD4$^{+}$ T cells expressed exclusively effector (T$_{eff}$) phenotype in the EAM model and in hearts of patients with lymphocytic myocarditis. Adoptive transfer experiments showed that while heart-specific T$_{eff}$ infiltrated the heart shortly after injection, heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ effectively accumulated during myocarditis and became the major heart-infiltrating CD4$^{+}$ T cell subset at later stage. Restimulation of co-cultured heart-specific and heart non-specific CD4$^{+}$ T cells with alpha-myosin heavy chain antigen showed mainly Th1/Th17 response for heart-specific T$_{eff}$ and up-regulation of a distinct set of extracellular signalling molecules in heart non-specific T$_{eff}$. Adoptive transfer of heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ in mice with myocarditis did not affect inflammation severity at the peak of disease, but protected the heart from adverse post-inflammatory fibrotic remodelling and cardiac dysfunction at later stages of disease. Furthermore, mouse and human T$_{eff}$ stimulated in vitro with common gamma cytokines suppressed expression of profibrotic genes, reduced amount of α-smooth muscle actin filaments and decreased contraction of cardiac fibroblasts. In this study, we provided a proof-of-concept that heart non-specific T$_{eff}$ cells could effectively contribute to myocarditis and protect the heart from the dilated cardiomyopathy outcome.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Rheumatology Clinic and Institute of Physical Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > Center for Molecular Cardiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Physiology
Health Sciences > Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
Health Sciences > Physiology (medical)
Language:English
Date:20 December 2019
Deposited On:21 Jan 2020 13:28
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 12:53
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0300-8428
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00395-019-0766-6
PubMed ID:31863205

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