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J Neuroinflammation. 2020 Feb 19;17(1):68. doi: 10.1186/s12974-019-1676-0.

c-Met is expressed by highly autoreactive encephalitogenic CD8+ cells.

Author information

1
Department of Pathology and Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland.
2
Department of Pathology and Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland. patrice.lalive@hcuge.ch.
3
Department of Neurosciences, Division of Neurology, University Hospital of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland. patrice.lalive@hcuge.ch.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

CD8+ T lymphocytes are critical mediators of neuroinflammatory diseases. Understanding the mechanisms that govern the function of this T cell population is crucial to better understanding central nervous system autoimmune disease pathology. We recently identified a novel population of highly cytotoxic c-Met-expressing CD8+ T lymphocytes and found that hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) limits effective murine cytotoxic T cell responses in cancer models. Here, we examined the role of c-Met-expressing CD8+ T cells by using a MOG35-55 T cell-mediated EAE model.

METHODS:

Mice were subcutaneously immunized with myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein peptide (MOG)35-55 in complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA). Peripheral and CNS inflammation was evaluated at peak disease and chronic phase, and c-Met expression by CD8 was evaluated by flow cytometry and immunofluorescence. Molecular, cellular, and killing function analysis were performed by real-time PCR, ELISA, flow cytometry, and killing assay.

RESULTS:

In the present study, we observed that a fraction of murine effector CD8+ T cells expressed c-Met receptor (c-Met+CD8+) in an experimental autoimmune encephalitis (EAE) model. Phenotypic and functional analysis of c-Met+CD8+ T cells revealed that they recognize the encephalitogenic epitope myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein37-50. We demonstrated that this T cell population produces higher levels of interferon-γ and granzyme B ex vivo and that HGF directly restrains the cytolytic function of c-Met+CD8+ T cells in cell-mediated cytotoxicity reactions CONCLUSIONS: Altogether, our findings suggest that the HGF/c-Met pathway could be exploited to modulate CD8+ T cell-mediated neuroinflammation.

KEYWORDS:

CD8+ T cell; EAE; HGF; MS; Neuroinflammation; c-Met

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