5 years ago

Microbiota promotes systemic T-cell survival through suppression of an apoptotic factor [Immunology and Inflammation]

Microbiota promotes systemic T-cell survival through suppression of an apoptotic factor [Immunology and Inflammation]
Ryan M. O’Connell, Charisse Petersen, W. Zac Stephens, Jason L. Kubinak, Rickesha Bell, Alberto Bosque, Camille L. Novis, June L. Round, Thomas E. Lane, Robert S. Fuȷinami, Raymond Soto

Symbiotic microbes impact the severity of a variety of diseases through regulation of T-cell development. However, little is known regarding the molecular mechanisms by which this is accomplished. Here we report that a secreted factor, Erdr1, is regulated by the microbiota to control T-cell apoptosis. Erdr1 expression was identified by transcriptome analysis to be elevated in splenic T cells from germfree and antibiotic-treated mice. Suppression of Erdr1 depends on detection of circulating microbial products by Toll-like receptors on T cells, and this regulation is conserved in human T cells. Erdr1 was found to function as an autocrine factor to induce apoptosis through caspase 3. Consistent with elevated levels of Erdr1, germfree mice have increased splenic T-cell apoptosis. RNA sequencing of Erdr1-overexpressing cells identified the up-regulation of genes involved in Fas-mediated cell death, and Erdr1 fails to induce apoptosis in Fas-deficient cells. Importantly, forced changes in Erdr1 expression levels dictate the survival of auto-reactive T cells and the clinical outcome of neuro-inflammatory autoimmune disease. Cellular survival is a fundamental feature regulating appropriate immune responses. We have identified a mechanism whereby the host integrates signals from the microbiota to control T-cell apoptosis, making regulation of Erdr1 a potential therapeutic target for autoimmune disease.

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