3 years ago

Autophagy-related protein Vps34 controls the homeostasis and function of antigen cross-presenting CD8{alpha}+ dendritic cells [Immunology and Inflammation]

Autophagy-related protein Vps34 controls the homeostasis and function of antigen cross-presenting CD8{alpha}+ dendritic cells [Immunology and Inflammation]
Eric Sebzda, Vrajesh V. Parekh, Luc Van Kaer, Jianhua Zhang, Sudheer K. Pabbisetty, Jennifer Martinez, Lan Wu

The class III PI3K Vacuolar protein sorting 34 (Vps34) plays a role in both canonical and noncanonical autophagy, key processes that control the presentation of antigens by dendritic cells (DCs) to naive T lymphocytes. We generated DC-specific Vps34-deficient mice to assess the contribution of Vps34 to DC functions. We found that DCs from these animals have a partially activated phenotype, spontaneously produce cytokines, and exhibit enhanced activity of the classic MHC class I and class II antigen-presentation pathways. Surprisingly, these animals displayed a defect in the homeostatic maintenance of splenic CD8α+ DCs and in the capacity of these cells to cross-present cell corpse-associated antigens to MHC class I-restricted T cells, a property that was associated with defective expression of the T-cell Ig mucin (TIM)-4 receptor. Importantly, mice deficient in the Vps34-associated protein Rubicon, which is critical for a noncanonical form of autophagy called “Light-chain 3 (LC3)-associated phagocytosis” (LAP), lacked such defects. Finally, consistent with their defect in the cross-presentation of apoptotic cells, DC-specific Vps34-deficient animals developed increased metastases in response to challenge with B16 melanoma cells. Collectively, our studies have revealed a critical role of Vps34 in the regulation of CD8α+ DC homeostasis and in the capacity of these cells to process and present antigens associated with apoptotic cells to MHC class I-restricted T cells. Our findings also have important implications for the development of small-molecule inhibitors of Vps34 for therapeutic purposes.

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