Life Sciences Research for Lifelong Health

Publications

The Babraham Institute Publications database contains details of all publications resulting from our research groups and scientific services.

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Title / Authors / Details Open Access Download

Mapping long-range promoter contacts in human cells with high-resolution capture Hi-C.
Mifsud B, Tavares-Cadete F, Young AN, Sugar R, Schoenfelder S, Ferreira L, Wingett SW, Andrews S, Grey W, Ewels PA, Herman B, Happe S, Higgs A, LeProust E, Follows GA, Fraser P, Luscombe NM, Osborne CS

Transcriptional control in large genomes often requires looping interactions between distal DNA elements, such as enhancers and target promoters. Current chromosome conformation capture techniques do not offer sufficiently high resolution to interrogate these regulatory interactions on a genomic scale. Here we use Capture Hi-C (CHi-C), an adapted genome conformation assay, to examine the long-range interactions of almost 22,000 promoters in 2 human blood cell types. We identify over 1.6 million shared and cell type-restricted interactions spanning hundreds of kilobases between promoters and distal loci. Transcriptionally active genes contact enhancer-like elements, whereas transcriptionally inactive genes interact with previously uncharacterized elements marked by repressive features that may act as long-range silencers. Finally, we show that interacting loci are enriched for disease-associated SNPs, suggesting how distal mutations may disrupt the regulation of relevant genes. This study provides new insights and accessible tools to dissect the regulatory interactions that underlie normal and aberrant gene regulation.

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Nature genetics, , 1546-1718, , 2015

PMID: 25938943


Open Access

Keeping methylation at bay.
Kelsey G

A hallmark of CpG islands is their unmethylated state, and determining how DNA methylation can invade these elements is therefore important for understanding developmental gene regulation and disease. A new study shows that FBXL10, a protein commonly altered by mutation in leukemia, is part of a mechanism that blocks methylation of CpG islands.

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Nature genetics, 47, 1546-1718, 427-8, 2015

PMID: 25916897


Lineage relationship of CD8(+) T cell subsets is revealed by progressive changes in the epigenetic landscape.
Crompton JG, Narayanan M, Cuddapah S, Roychoudhuri R, Ji Y, Yang W, Patel SJ, Sukumar M, Palmer DC, Peng W, Wang E, Marincola FM, Klebanoff CA, Zhao K, Tsang JS, Gattinoni L, Restifo NP

To better elucidate epigenetic mechanisms that correlate with the dynamic gene expression program observed upon T-cell differentiation, we investigated the genomic landscape of histone modifications in naive and memory CD8(+) T cells. Using a ChIP-Seq approach coupled with global gene expression profiling, we generated genome-wide histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4me3) and H3 lysine 27 (H3K27me3) trimethylation maps in naive, T memory stem cells, central memory cells, and effector memory cells in order to gain insight into how histone architecture is remodeled during T cell differentiation. We show that H3K4me3 histone modifications are associated with activation of genes, while H3K27me3 is negatively correlated with gene expression at canonical loci and enhancers associated with T-cell metabolism, effector function, and memory. Our results also reveal histone modifications and gene expression signatures that distinguish the recently identified T memory stem cells from other CD8(+) T-cell subsets. Taken together, our results suggest that CD8(+) lymphocytes undergo chromatin remodeling in a progressive fashion. These findings have major implications for our understanding of peripheral T-cell ontogeny and the formation of immunological memory.Cellular & Molecular Immunology advance online publication, 27 April 2015; doi:10.1038/cmi.2015.032.

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Cellular & molecular immunology, , 2042-0226, , 2015

PMID: 25914936


Helsinki alert of biodiversity and health.
von Hertzen L, Beutler B, Bienenstock J, Blaser M, Cani PD, Eriksson J, Färkkilä M, Haahtela T, Hanski I, Jenmalm MC, Kere J, Knip M, Kontula K, Koskenvuo M, Ling C, Mandrup-Poulsen T, von Mutius E, Mäkelä MJ, Paunio T, Pershagen G, Renz H, Rook G, Saarela M, Vaarala O, Veldhoen M, de Vos WM

Urban living in built environments, combined with the use of processed water and food, may not provide the microbial stimulation necessary for a balanced development of immune function. Many chronic inflammatory disorders, including allergic, autoimmune, metabolic, and even some behavioural disorders, are linked to alteration in the human commensal microbiota. Sedentary lifestyle is associated with reduced exposure to a broad spectrum of environmental micro-organisms and surplus energy balance, both risk factors of chronic inflammatory disorders. According to the Biodiversity Hypothesis, an environment with diverse macrobiota and microbiota modifies and enriches the human microbiota, which in turn is crucial in the development and maintenance of appropriate immune function. These issues were discussed in the symposium 'Chronic Inflammation, Lifestyle and Environment', held in Helsinki, 20-22 August 2014, under the sponsorship of the Yrjö Jahnsson Foundation. This paper briefly outlines the recent findings in the context of the environment, lifestyle, and health; discusses the forces that undermine immune tolerance in urban environments; and highlights the possibilities to restore broken immune tolerance among urban dwellers, summarizing the main messages in four statements and calling for actions to combat major public health threats.

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Annals of medicine, , 1365-2060, 1-8, 2015

PMID: 25904094


Accumulation of an Endogenous Tryptophan-Derived Metabolite in Colorectal and Breast Cancers.
Puccetti P, Fallarino F, Italiano A, Soubeyran I, MacGrogan G, Debled M, Velasco V, Bodet D, Eimer S, Veldhoen M, Prendergast GC, Platten M, Bessede A, Guillemin GJ

Tumor immune escape mechanisms are being regarded as suitable targets for tumor therapy. Among these, tryptophan catabolism plays a central role in creating an immunosuppressive environment, leading to tolerance to potentially immunogenic tumor antigens. Tryptophan catabolism is initiated by either indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO-1/-2) or tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase 2 (TDO2), resulting in biostatic tryptophan starvation and l-kynurenine production, which participates in shaping the dynamic relationship of the host's immune system with tumor cells. Current immunotherapy strategies include blockade of IDO-1/-2 or TDO2, to restore efficient antitumor responses. Patients who might benefit from this approach are currently identified based on expression analyses of IDO-1/-2 or TDO2 in tumor tissue and/or enzymatic activity assessed by kynurenine/tryptophan ratios in the serum. We developed a monoclonal antibody targeting l-kynurenine as an in situ biomarker of IDO-1/-2 or TDO2 activity. Using Tissue Micro Array technology and immunostaining, colorectal and breast cancer patients were phenotyped based on l-kynurenine production. In colorectal cancer l-kynurenine was not unequivocally associated with IDO-1 expression, suggesting that the mere expression of tryptophan catabolic enzymes is not sufficiently informative for optimal immunotherapy.

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PloS one, 10, 1932-6203, e0122046, 0

PMID: 25881064


Open Access

5-hydroxymethylcytosine marks promoters in colon that resist DNA hypermethylation in cancer.
Uribe-Lewis S, Stark R, Carroll T, Dunning MJ, Bachman M, Ito Y, Stojic L, Halim S, Vowler SL, Lynch AG, Delatte B, de Bony EJ, Colin L, Defrance M, Krueger F, Silva AL, Ten Hoopen R, Ibrahim AE, Fuks F, Murrell A

The discovery of cytosine hydroxymethylation (5hmC) as a mechanism that potentially controls DNA methylation changes typical of neoplasia prompted us to investigate its behaviour in colon cancer. 5hmC is globally reduced in proliferating cells such as colon tumours and the gut crypt progenitors, from which tumours can arise.

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Genome biology, 16, 1474-760X, 69, 2015

PMID: 25853800


Open Access

Absence of SARM1 rescues development and survival of NMNAT2-deficient axons.
Gilley J, Orsomando G, Nascimento-Ferreira I, Coleman MP

SARM1 function and nicotinamide mononucleotide adenylyltransferase 2 (NMNAT2) loss both promote axon degeneration, but their relative relationship in the process is unknown. Here, we show that NMNAT2 loss and resultant changes to NMNAT metabolites occur in injured SARM1-deficient axons despite their delayed degeneration and that axon degeneration specifically induced by NMNAT2 depletion requires SARM1. Strikingly, SARM1 deficiency also corrects axon outgrowth in mice lacking NMNAT2, independently of NMNAT metabolites, preventing perinatal lethality. Furthermore, NAMPT inhibition partially restores outgrowth of NMNAT2-deficient axons, suggesting that the NMNAT substrate, NMN, contributes to this phenotype. NMNAT2-depletion-dependent degeneration of established axons and restricted extension of developing axons are thus both SARM1 dependent, and SARM1 acts either downstream of NMNAT2 loss and NMN accumulation in a linear pathway or in a parallel branch of a convergent pathway. Understanding the pathway will help establish relationships with other modulators of axon survival and facilitate the development of effective therapies for axonopathies.

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Cell reports, 10, 2211-1247, 1974-81, 2015

PMID: 25818290


Open Access

Annual meeting of the EpiGeneSys Network of Excellence - Advancing epigenetics towards systems biology.
Houseley J, Hill CS, Rugg-Gunn PJ

The third annual meeting of the EpiGeneSys network brought together epigenetics and systems biologists to report on collaborative projects that apply quantitative approaches to understanding complex epigenetic processes. The figure shown represents one meeting highlight, which was the unexpected emergence of genotype versus epigenotype in control of cell state.

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BioEssays, 2015, , , , 2015

PMID: 25776341

DOI: 10.1002/bies.201500015


Open Access

Autophagy Controls Acquisition of Aging Features in Macrophages.
Stranks AJ, Hansen AL, Panse I, Mortensen M, Ferguson DJ, Puleston DJ, Shenderov K, Watson AS, Veldhoen M, Phadwal K, Cerundolo V, Simon AK

Macrophages provide a bridge linking innate and adaptive immunity. An increased frequency of macrophages and other myeloid cells paired with excessive cytokine production is commonly seen in the aging immune system, known as 'inflamm-aging'. It is presently unclear how healthy macrophages are maintained throughout life and what connects inflammation with myeloid dysfunction during aging. Autophagy, an intracellular degradation mechanism, has known links with aging and lifespan extension. Here, we show for the first time that autophagy regulates the acquisition of major aging features in macrophages. In the absence of the essential autophagy gene Atg7, macrophage populations are increased and key functions such as phagocytosis and nitrite burst are reduced, while the inflammatory cytokine response is significantly increased - a phenotype also observed in aged macrophages. Furthermore, reduced autophagy decreases surface antigen expression and skews macrophage metabolism toward glycolysis. We show that macrophages from aged mice exhibit significantly reduced autophagic flux compared to young mice. These data demonstrate that autophagy plays a critical role in the maintenance of macrophage homeostasis and function, regulating inflammation and metabolism and thereby preventing immunosenescence. Thus, autophagy modulation may prevent excess inflammation and preserve macrophage function during aging, improving immune responses and reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with inflamm-aging. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

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Journal of innate immunity, , 1662-8128, , 2015

PMID: 25764971


Open Access

Promoting Coordinated Development of Community-Based Information Standards for Modeling in Biology: The COMBINE Initiative.
Hucka M, Nickerson DP, Bader GD, Bergmann FT, Cooper J, Demir E, Garny A, Golebiewski M, Myers CJ, Schreiber F, Waltemath D, Le Novère N

The Computational Modeling in Biology Network (COMBINE) is a consortium of groups involved in the development of open community standards and formats used in computational modeling in biology. COMBINE's aim is to act as a coordinator, facilitator, and resource for different standardization efforts whose domains of use cover related areas of the computational biology space. In this perspective article, we summarize COMBINE, its general organization, and the community standards and other efforts involved in it. Our goals are to help guide readers toward standards that may be suitable for their research activities, as well as to direct interested readers to relevant communities where they can best expect to receive assistance in how to develop interoperable computational models.

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Frontiers in bioengineering and biotechnology, 3, 2296-4185, 19, 2015

PMID: 25759811


Open Access

The pluripotent regulatory circuitry connecting promoters to their long-range interacting elements.
Schoenfelder S, Furlan-Magaril M, Mifsud B, Tavares-Cadete F, Sugar R, Javierre BM, Nagano T, Katsman Y, Sakthidevi M, Wingett SW, Dimitrova E, Dimond A, Edelman LB, Elderkin S, Tabbada K, Darbo E, Andrews S, Herman B, Higgs A, LeProust E, Osborne CS, Mitchell JA, Luscombe NM, Fraser P

The mammalian genome harbors up to one million regulatory elements often located at great distances from their target genes. Long-range elements control genes through physical contact with promoters and can be recognized by the presence of specific histone modifications and transcription factor binding. Linking regulatory elements to specific promoters genome-wide is currently impeded by the limited resolution of high-throughput chromatin interaction assays. Here we apply a sequence capture approach to enrich Hi-C libraries for >22,000 annotated mouse promoters to identify statistically significant, long-range interactions at restriction fragment resolution, assigning long-range interacting elements to their target genes genome-wide in embryonic stem cells and fetal liver cells. The distal sites contacting active genes are enriched in active histone modifications and transcription factor occupancy, whereas inactive genes contact distal sites with repressive histone marks, demonstrating the regulatory potential of the distal elements identified. Furthermore, we find that coregulated genes cluster nonrandomly in spatial interaction networks correlated with their biological function and expression level. Interestingly, we find the strongest gene clustering in ES cells between transcription factor genes that control key developmental processes in embryogenesis. The results provide the first genome-wide catalog linking gene promoters to their long-range interacting elements and highlight the complex spatial regulatory circuitry controlling mammalian gene expression.

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Genome research, 25, 1549-5469, 582-97, 2015

PMID: 25752748


Open Access

Social parasitism and the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution.
Cini A, Patalano S, Segonds-Pichon A, Busby GB, Cervo R, Sumner S

Contrasting phenotypes arise from similar genomes through a combination of losses, gains, co-option and modifications of inherited genomic material. Understanding the molecular basis of this phenotypic diversity is a fundamental challenge in modern evolutionary biology. Comparisons of the genes and their expression patterns underlying traits in closely related species offer an unrivaled opportunity to evaluate the extent to which genomic material is reorganized to produce novel traits. Advances in molecular methods now allow us to dissect the molecular machinery underlying phenotypic diversity in almost any organism, from single-celled entities to the most complex vertebrates. Here we discuss how comparisons of social parasites and their free-living hosts may provide unique insights into the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution. Social parasites evolve from a eusocial ancestor and are specialized to exploit the socially acquired resources of their closely-related eusocial host. Molecular comparisons of such species pairs can reveal how genomic material is re-organized in the loss of ancestral traits (i.e., of free-living traits in the parasites) and the gain of new ones (i.e., specialist traits required for a parasitic lifestyle). We define hypotheses on the molecular basis of phenotypes in the evolution of social parasitism and discuss their wider application in our understanding of the molecular basis of phenotypic diversity within the theoretical framework of phenotypic plasticity and shifting reaction norms. Currently there are no data available to test these hypotheses, and so we also provide some proof of concept data using the paper wasp social parasite/host system (Polistes sulcifer-Polistes dominula). This conceptual framework and first empirical data provide a spring-board for directing future genomic analyses on exploiting social parasites as a route to understanding the evolution of phenotypic specialization.

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Frontiers in genetics, 6, , 32, 2015

PMID: 25741361


Open Access

The interplay of effector and regulatory T cells in cancer.
Roychoudhuri R, Eil RL, Restifo NP

Regulatory T (Treg) cells suppress effector T (Teff) cells and prevent immune-mediated rejection of cancer. Much less appreciated are mechanisms by which Teff cells antagonize Treg cells. Herein, we consider how complex reciprocal interactions between Teff and Treg cells shape their population dynamics within tumors. Under states of tolerance, including during tumor escape, suppressed Teff cells support Treg cell populations through antigen-dependent provision of interleukin (IL)-2. During immune activation, Teff cells can lose this supportive capacity and directly antagonize Treg cell populations to neutralize their immunosuppressive function. While this latter state is rarely achieved spontaneously within tumors, we propose that therapeutic induction of immune activation has the potential to stably disrupt immunosuppressive population states resulting in durable cancer regression.

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Current opinion in immunology, 33C, 1879-0372, 101-111, 2015

PMID: 25728990


The RNA-binding protein HuR is essential for the B cell antibody response.
Diaz-Muñoz MD, Bell SE, Fairfax K, Monzon-Casanova E, Cunningham AF, Gonzalez-Porta M, Andrews SR, Bunik VI, Zarnack K, Curk T, Heggermont WA, Heymans S, Gibson GE, Kontoyiannis DL, Ule J, Turner M

Post-transcriptional regulation of mRNA by the RNA-binding protein HuR (encoded by Elavl1) is required in B cells for the germinal center reaction and for the production of class-switched antibodies in response to thymus-independent antigens. Transcriptome-wide examination of RNA isoforms and their abundance and translation in HuR-deficient B cells, together with direct measurements of HuR-RNA interactions, revealed that HuR-dependent splicing of mRNA affected hundreds of transcripts, including that encoding dihydrolipoamide S-succinyltransferase (Dlst), a subunit of the 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase (α-KGDH) complex. In the absence of HuR, defective mitochondrial metabolism resulted in large amounts of reactive oxygen species and B cell death. Our study shows how post-transcriptional processes control the balance of energy metabolism required for the proliferation and differentiation of B cells.

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Nature immunology, 16, 1529-2916, 415-25, 2015

PMID: 25706746


Open Access

Capture Hi-C identifies the chromatin interactome of colorectal cancer risk loci.
Jäger R, Migliorini G, Henrion M, Kandaswamy R, Speedy HE, Heindl A, Whiffin N, Carnicer MJ, Broome L, Dryden N, Nagano T, Schoenfelder S, Enge M, Yuan Y, Taipale J, Fraser P, Fletcher O, Houlston RS

Multiple regulatory elements distant from their targets on the linear genome can influence the expression of a single gene through chromatin looping. Chromosome conformation capture implemented in Hi-C allows for genome-wide agnostic characterization of chromatin contacts. However, detection of functional enhancer-promoter interactions is precluded by its effective resolution that is determined by both restriction fragmentation and sensitivity of the experiment. Here we develop a capture Hi-C (cHi-C) approach to allow an agnostic characterization of these physical interactions on a genome-wide scale. Single-nucleotide polymorphisms associated with complex diseases often reside within regulatory elements and exert effects through long-range regulation of gene expression. Applying this cHi-C approach to 14 colorectal cancer risk loci allows us to identify key long-range chromatin interactions in cis and trans involving these loci.

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Nature communications, 6, 2041-1723, 6178, 2015

PMID: 25695508


Open Access

Beyond the genome.

Nature, 518, 1476-4687, 273, 2015

PMID: 25693522


Feeding immunity: skepticism, delicacies and delights.
Veldhoen M, Veiga-Fernandes H

Immunologists studying the relationship between nutrition and immunological function face many challenges. We discuss here some of the historical skepticism with which nutritional research has often been faced and the complexities that need to be overcome in order to provide meaningful mechanistic insights.

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Nature immunology, 16, 1529-2916, 215-219, 2015

PMID: 25689432


Prmt5: a guardian of the germline protects future generations.
Berrens RV, Reik W

The EMBO journal, 34, 1460-2075, 689-90, 2015

PMID: 25687507


Open Access

Super-enhancers delineate disease-associated regulatory nodes in T cells.
Vahedi G, Kanno Y, Furumoto Y, Jiang K, Parker SC, Erdos MR, Davis SR, Roychoudhuri R, Restifo NP, Gadina M, Tang Z, Ruan Y, Collins FS, Sartorelli V, O'Shea JJ

Enhancers regulate spatiotemporal gene expression and impart cell-specific transcriptional outputs that drive cell identity. Super-enhancers (SEs), also known as stretch-enhancers, are a subset of enhancers especially important for genes associated with cell identity and genetic risk of disease. CD4(+) T cells are critical for host defence and autoimmunity. Here we analysed maps of mouse T-cell SEs as a non-biased means of identifying key regulatory nodes involved in cell specification. We found that cytokines and cytokine receptors were the dominant class of genes exhibiting SE architecture in T cells. Nonetheless, the locus encoding Bach2, a key negative regulator of effector differentiation, emerged as the most prominent T-cell SE, revealing a network in which SE-associated genes critical for T-cell biology are repressed by BACH2. Disease-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms for immune-mediated disorders, including rheumatoid arthritis, were highly enriched for T-cell SEs versus typical enhancers or SEs in other cell lineages. Intriguingly, treatment of T cells with the Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor tofacitinib disproportionately altered the expression of rheumatoid arthritis risk genes with SE structures. Together, these results indicate that genes with SE architecture in T cells encompass a variety of cytokines and cytokine receptors but are controlled by a 'guardian' transcription factor, itself endowed with an SE. Thus, enumeration of SEs allows the unbiased determination of key regulatory nodes in T cells, which are preferentially modulated by pharmacological intervention.

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Nature, , 1476-4687, , 2015

PMID: 25686607


Deletion of AU-Rich Elements within the Bcl2 3'UTR Reduces Protein Expression and B Cell Survival In Vivo.
Díaz-Muñoz MD, Bell SE, Turner M

Post-transcriptional mRNA regulation by RNA binding proteins (RBPs) associated with AU-rich elements (AREs) present in the 3' untranslated region (3'UTR) of specific mRNAs modulates transcript stability and translation in eukaryotic cells. Here we have functionally characterised the importance of the AREs present within the Bcl2 3'UTR in order to maintain Bcl2 expression. Gene targeting deletion of 300 nucleotides of the Bcl2 3'UTR rich in AREs diminishes Bcl2 mRNA stability and protein levels in primary B cells, decreasing cell lifespan. Generation of chimeric mice indicates that Bcl2-ARE∆/∆ B cells have an intrinsic competitive disadvantage compared to wild type cells. Biochemical assays and predictions using a bioinformatics approach show that several RBPs bind to the Bcl2 AREs, including AUF1 and HuR proteins. Altogether, association of RBPs to Bcl2 AREs contributes to Bcl2 protein expression by stabilizing Bcl2 mRNA and promotes B cell maintenance.

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PloS one, 10, 1932-6203, e0116899, 2015

PMID: 25680182


Open Access

Speed and sensitivity of phototransduction in Drosophila depend on degree of saturation of membrane phospholipids.
Randall AS, Liu CH, Chu B, Zhang Q, Dongre SA, Juusola M, Franze K, Wakelam MJ, Hardie RC

Drosophila phototransduction is mediated via a G-protein-coupled PLC cascade. Recent evidence, including the demonstration that light evokes rapid contractions of the photoreceptors, suggested that the light-sensitive channels (TRP and TRPL) may be mechanically gated, together with protons released by PLC-mediated PIP2 hydrolysis. If mechanical gating is involved we predicted that the response to light should be influenced by altering the physical properties of the membrane. To achieve this, we used diet to manipulate the degree of saturation of membrane phospholipids. In flies reared on a yeast diet, lacking polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), mass spectrometry showed that the proportion of polyunsaturated phospholipids was sevenfold reduced (from 38 to ∼5%) but rescued by adding a single species of PUFA (linolenic or linoleic acid) to the diet. Photoreceptors from yeast-reared flies showed a 2- to 3-fold increase in latency and time to peak of the light response, without affecting quantum bump waveform. In the absence of Ca(2+) influx or in trp mutants expressing only TRPL channels, sensitivity to light was reduced up to ∼10-fold by the yeast diet, and essentially abolished in hypomorphic G-protein mutants (Gαq). PLC activity appeared little affected by the yeast diet; however, light-induced contractions measured by atomic force microscopy or the activation of ectopic mechanosensitive gramicidin channels were also slowed ∼2-fold. The results are consistent with mechanosensitive gating and provide a striking example of how dietary fatty acids can profoundly influence sensory performance in a classical G-protein-coupled signaling cascade.

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The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 35, 1529-2401, 2731-46, 2015

PMID: 25673862


Open Access

Immunomodulation of Selective Naive T Cell Functions by p110δ Inactivation Improves the Outcome of Mismatched Cell Transplantation.
Doisne JM, Hüber CM, Okkenhaug K, Colucci F

Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) can treat certain hematologic malignancies due to the graft versus leukemia (GvL) effect but is complicated by graft versus host disease (GvHD). Expression of the p110δ catalytic subunit of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase pathway is restricted to leukocytes, where it regulates proliferation, migration, and cytokine production. Here, in a mouse model of fully mismatched hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT), we show that genetic inactivation of p110δ in T cells leads to milder GvHD, whereas GvL is preserved. Inactivation of p110δ in human lymphocytes reduced T cell allorecognition. We demonstrate that both allostimulation and granzyme B expression were dependent on p110δ in naive T cells, which are the main mediators of GvHD, whereas memory T cells were unaffected. Strikingly, p110δ is not mandatory for either naive or memory T cells to mediate GvL. Therefore, immunomodulation of selective naive T cell functions by p110δ inactivation improves the outcome of allogeneic HSCT.

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Cell reports, , 2211-1247, , 2015

PMID: 25660021


Open Access

Quantitative and logic modelling of molecular and gene networks.
Le Novère N

Behaviours of complex biomolecular systems are often irreducible to the elementary properties of their individual components. Explanatory and predictive mathematical models are therefore useful for fully understanding and precisely engineering cellular functions. The development and analyses of these models require their adaptation to the problems that need to be solved and the type and amount of available genetic or molecular data. Quantitative and logic modelling are among the main methods currently used to model molecular and gene networks. Each approach comes with inherent advantages and weaknesses. Recent developments show that hybrid approaches will become essential for further progress in synthetic biology and in the development of virtual organisms.

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Nature reviews. Genetics, 16, 1471-0064, 146-58, 2015

PMID: 25645874


Global Reorganization of the Nuclear Landscape in Senescent Cells.
Chandra T, Ewels PA, Schoenfelder S, Furlan-Magaril M, Wingett SW, Kirschner K, Thuret JY, Andrews S, Fraser P, Reik W

Cellular senescence has been implicated in tumor suppression, development, and aging and is accompanied by large-scale chromatin rearrangements, forming senescence-associated heterochromatic foci (SAHF). However, how the chromatin is reorganized during SAHF formation is poorly understood. Furthermore, heterochromatin formation in senescence appears to contrast with loss of heterochromatin in Hutchinson-Gilford progeria. We mapped architectural changes in genome organization in cellular senescence using Hi-C. Unexpectedly, we find a dramatic sequence- and lamin-dependent loss of local interactions in heterochromatin. This change in local connectivity resolves the paradox of opposing chromatin changes in senescence and progeria. In addition, we observe a senescence-specific spatial clustering of heterochromatic regions, suggesting a unique second step required for SAHF formation. Comparison of embryonic stem cells (ESCs), somatic cells, and senescent cells shows a unidirectional loss in local chromatin connectivity, suggesting that senescence is an endpoint of the continuous nuclear remodelling process during differentiation.

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Cell reports, , 2211-1247, , 2015

PMID: 25640177


Open Access

SPARQL-enabled identifier conversion with Identifiers.org.
Wimalaratne SM, Bolleman J, Juty N, Katayama T, Dumontier M, Redaschi N, Le Novère N, Hermjakob H, Laibe C

On the Semantic Web, in life sciences in particular, data is often distributed via multiple resources. Each of these sources is likely to use their own IRI (International Resource Identifier) for conceptually the same resource or database record. The lack of correspondence between identifiers introduces a barrier when executing federated SPARQL queries across life science data.

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Bioinformatics (Oxford, England), , 1367-4811, , 2015

PMID: 25638809


Open Access