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Results: 7

1.
Figure 4

Figure 4. Generation of IL-18−/− luciferase transgenic C56Bl/6 mice. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. Genomic DNA was isolated from wt, heterozygote or homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mice and amplified by RT PCR with IL-18 and IL-18−/− neo cassette specific primers. No IL-18 gene product (116 bp) was detected in IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 that had been crossed on the luc background.
B. The constitutive expression of the luc transgene is monitored by bioluminescence imaging. Presented is a representative homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mouse with (left) or without (right) the luc transgene.

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
2.
Figure 6

Figure 6. Host but not donor derived IL-18 is the major contributor to elevated IL-18 serum levels during the early phase of acute graft-versus-host disease. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. Serum was collected from the indicated donor/recipient combinations. Wildtype (■) represents the mean IL-18 serum level derived from 5 animals of the C57Bl/6→Balb/c and 5 animals from the Balb/c→C57Bl/6 combination. Donor IL-18−/− (▨) represents the mean IL-18 serum level derived from 5 recipients of the C57Bl/6 IL-18−/−→Balb/c combination and recipient IL-18−/− () represents the mean IL-18 serum level derived from 5 recipient animals of the Balb/c→C57Bl/6 IL-18−/−combinations. IL-18 serum levels are significantly lower when recipients are IL-18 deficient at all indicated time points (p<0.05). On day 8 the IL-18 serum level is significantly reduced in the donor IL-18 group as compared to the wt group (p<0.05).
B. Serum was collected from the indicated donor/recipient combinations. Wildtype (■) represents the mean IFN-γ serum level derived from 5 animals of the C57Bl/6→Balb/c and 5 animals from the Balb/c→C57Bl/6 combinations. Donor IL-18−/− (▨) represents the mean IFN-γ serum level derived from 5 recipients of the C57Bl/6 IL-18−/−→Balb/c combination and recipient IL-18−/− () represents the mean IFN-γ serum level derived from 5 recipient animals of the Balb/c→C57Bl/6 IL-18−/−combination. IFN-γ serum levels are significantly lower when recipients are IL-18 deficient at all indicated time points (p<0.05).

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
3.
Figure 3

Figure 3. CD4+Foxp3+ T cells develop normal and are functionally suppressive in the absence of IL-18. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. The absolute numbers of lymphocytes in the peripheral blood of wt, heterozygote or homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mice were determined. Each data point represents an individual animal. No significant difference between the groups.
B. Relative Foxp3 mRNA expression level in CD4 T cells isolated from the spleens of wt, heterozygote or homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mice (*p=0.24, **p=0.09).
C. Frequency of CD4+Foxp3+ cells isolated from the spleens of wt, heterozygote or homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mice.
D. Treg isolated from the spleens of wt, heterozygote or homozygote IL-18−/− C56Bl/6 mice were used to suppress alloantigen driven proliferation of CD4+CD25 cells (H-2kb) after 72 hours. Stimulator cells were irradiated (30 Gy) CD11c+ APCs (H-2kd). Thymidine incorporation of conventional T cells is significantly reduced when Treg are included in the culture at different ratios. One proliferation analysis of 3 independent experiments is shown.

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
4.
Figure 2

Figure 2. Expression of IL-18Rα on regulatory and conventional T cells. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. The indicated lymphoid organs and the liver were harvested from naïve C57B6 mice. Upper row: CD4+Foxp3+ cells, lower row: CD4+Foxp3 cells. Open histogram: anti-IL-18Rα Ab staining, filled histogram: isotype control staining. One representative of 4 independent experiments is shown. (LN=pooled mesenteric, cervical, axillary and inguinal lymph nodes). Numbers refer to the difference (Δ) between the MFI of the positive stain and the MFI of the isotype (negative) stain.
B. CD4+CD25+ or CD4+CD25 cells (H-2kb) derived from the spleen, were activated by co-culture with irradiated (30 Gy) CD11c+ APCs (H-2kd) for 48 hours and stained for 18Rα and intracellular Foxp3. The presented histograms display gating on CD4+Foxp3+ cells or CD4+Foxp3 cells. Mean fluorescence intensity for 18Rα surface expression increases significantly in both Treg and Tconv during alloantigen activation (MFI no Ag vs alloAg: 65.3±2 vs 127.4±7, p<0.05 and 69.5±3 vs 108.6±2.1, p<0.05, respectively). Solid black line: isotype control.

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
5.
Figure 7

Figure 7. IL-18 deficiency of the recipient increases expansion CD4 T cell but not Treg cells. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. C57Bl/6 wt or IL18−/− mice were given 5 × 106 TCD-BM cells and 2 × 106 luciferase transgenic (luc+) CD4+CD25high Treg cells (both H-2kq) after lethal irradiation with 800 cGy. Expansion of luc+ Treg cells is depicted in 3 representative recipients per group on days 6 and 10 after BMT.
B. Expansion of luciferase labeled Treg cells was quantified in emitted photons over total body area at serial time points after BMT.
BLI signal intensity of mice receiving TCD-BM (●, n=15), with T cells from wt donors transplanted into wt recipients (△, n=15) or with T cells from wt donors transplanted into IL18−/− recipients (□, n=15).
C. Expansion of luc+ Treg cells is depicted in 3 representative recipients per group on days 6 and 10 after BMT.
D. Expansion of luc+ Treg cells was quantified in emitted photons over total body area at serial time points after BMT.
BLI signal intensity of mice receiving TCD-BM (●, n=15), with Treg from wt donors transplanted into wt recipients (△, n=15) or with T cells from wt donors transplanted into IL18−/− recipients (□, n=15). T cell expansion signal is significantly higher in the IL18−/− recipients as compared to the wt recipients at the indicated time points (* p< 0.05).

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
6.
Figure 1

Figure 1. IL-18 deficiency of the recipient enhances graft-versus-host disease severity. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. C57Bl/6 wt or IL18−/− mice were given 5 × 106 TCD-BM cells and 2 × 106 CD4+ T cells (both H-2kq) after lethal irradiation with 800 cGy.
Weight change of mice receiving TCD-BM (●, n=15), with T cells from wt donors transplanted into wt recipients (△, n=15) or with T cells from wt donors transplanted into IL18−/− recipients (□, n=15).
B. Ten days after transplantation, mice from the indicated group were sacrificed for histological examination. Representative colon sections stained by conventional H&E of mice receiving TCD-BM (i), wt→wt (ii) or wt→IL-18 deficient recipients (iii) are shown. GvHD tissue damage manifests as crypt abscess (arrow) and mucosal denudation (asterix). IL-18 deficiency of the host leads to more severe histopathological GvHD damage of the colon with multiple crypt abscesses. Magnification is x200. Cumulative histopathology scoring from small bowel, large bowel and liver tissue samples harvested on day 10 after BMT from 3 representative animals per group is shown (*p<0.05).
C. Survival of mice receiving TCD-BM alone (●, n= 5) with T cells from wt donors transplanted into IL-18 deficient (□, n= 5) or wt (△, n= 5) recipients. Percentage survival of C57Bl/6 recipients is significantly reduced when IL-18−/− as compared to wt recipients are used (□ versus △, p=0.027). Survival data from one of three independent experiments is shown.

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.
7.
Figure 5

Figure 5. IL-18 deficiency of the donor does not impact CD4 T cell expansion and graft-versus-host disease severity. From: Host derived interleukin-18 differentially impacts regulatory and conventional T cell expansion during acute graft-versus-host disease.

A. Balb/c mice were given 5 × 106 TCD-BM cells and 8 × 105 CD4+ T cells (both H-2kb) after lethal irradiation with 800 cGy.
Survival of mice receiving wt TCD-BM alone (●, n= 5), with T cells from wt donors (△, n=5) or TCD-BM and T cells from IL-18 deficient donors (□, n=5). Percentage survival of Balb/c recipients is not different when IL-18−/− donors are used (△ versus □, NS). Survival data from one of three independent experiments is shown.
B. Expansion of luciferase labeled T cells was quantified in emitted photons over total body area at serial time points after BMT.
BLI signal intensity of mice receiving TCD-BM (●, n=5), with T cells from wt donors (△, n=5) or TCD-BM and T cells from IL-18 deficient donors (□, n=5).
C. Ten days after transplantation, mice from the indicated groups were sacrificed for histological examination. Representative colon sections stained by conventional H&E of mice receiving TCD-BM (i), with T cells from wt donors (ii) or IL-18 deficient donors (iii) are shown. GvHD tissue damage manifests as crypt abscess (arrow) and mucosal denudation (asterix). Comparable histopathological GvHD damage is seen when the donor is IL-18 deficient. Magnification is x200. Cumulative histopathology scoring from small bowel, large bowel and liver tissue samples harvested on day 10 after BMT from 3 representative animals per group is shown (NS=not significant).

Robert Zeiser, et al. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. ;13(12):1427-1438.

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