Publications by authors named "Judith Hauptmann"

15 Publications

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IL-17 controls central nervous system autoimmunity through the intestinal microbiome.

Sci Immunol 2021 Feb;6(56)

Institute for Molecular Medicine, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, Mainz, Germany.

Interleukin-17A- (IL-17A) and IL-17F-producing CD4 T helper cells (T17 cells) are implicated in the development of chronic inflammatory diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). T17 cells also orchestrate leukocyte invasion of the central nervous system (CNS) and subsequent tissue damage. However, the role of IL-17A and IL-17F as effector cytokines is still confused with the encephalitogenic function of the cells that produce these cytokines, namely, T17 cells, fueling a long-standing debate in the neuroimmunology field. Here, we demonstrated that mice deficient for IL-17A/F lose their susceptibility to EAE, which correlated with an altered composition of their gut microbiota. However, loss of IL-17A/F in T cells did not diminish their encephalitogenic capacity. Reconstitution of a wild-type-like intestinal microbiota or reintroduction of IL-17A specifically into the gut epithelium of IL-17A/F-deficient mice reestablished their susceptibility to EAE. Thus, our data demonstrated that IL-17A and IL-17F are not encephalitogenic mediators but rather modulators of intestinal homeostasis that indirectly alter CNS-directed autoimmunity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciimmunol.aaz6563DOI Listing
February 2021

Interleukin-1 promotes autoimmune neuroinflammation by suppressing endothelial heme oxygenase-1 at the blood-brain barrier.

Acta Neuropathol 2020 10 11;140(4):549-567. Epub 2020 Jul 11.

Institute for Molecular Medicine, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, Mainz, Germany.

The proinflammatory cytokine interleukin 1 (IL-1) is crucially involved in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS) and its animal model experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). Herein, we studied the role of IL-1 signaling in blood-brain barrier (BBB) endothelial cells (ECs), astrocytes and microglia for EAE development, using mice with the conditional deletion of its signaling receptor IL-1R1. We found that IL-1 signaling in microglia and astrocytes is redundant for the development of EAE, whereas the IL-1R1 deletion in BBB-ECs markedly ameliorated disease severity. IL-1 signaling in BBB-ECs upregulated the expression of the adhesion molecules Vcam-1, Icam-1 and the chemokine receptor Darc, all of which have been previously shown to promote CNS-specific inflammation. In contrast, IL-1R1 signaling suppressed the expression of the stress-responsive heme catabolizing enzyme heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) in BBB-ECs, promoting disease progression via a mechanism associated with deregulated expression of the IL-1-responsive genes Vcam1, Icam1 and Ackr1 (Darc). Mechanistically, our data emphasize a functional crosstalk of BBB-EC IL-1 signaling and HO-1, controlling the transcription of downstream proinflammatory genes promoting the pathogenesis of autoimmune neuroinflammation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00401-020-02187-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7498485PMC
October 2020

Expression of IL-17F is associated with non-pathogenic Th17 cells.

J Mol Med (Berl) 2018 08 29;96(8):819-829. Epub 2018 Jun 29.

University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Institute for Molecular Medicine, 55131, Mainz, Germany.

IL-17A and IL-17F share the highest sequence homology of the IL-17 family and signal via the same IL-17RA/RC receptor heterodimer. To better explore the expression of these two cytokines, we used a double reporter mouse strain (IL-17 mice), where IL-17A expressing cells are marked by enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) while red fluorescence protein (RFP) reports the expression of IL-17F. In steady state, we found that Th17 and γδ T cells only expressed IL-17A, while IL-17F expression was restricted to CD8 T cells (Tc17) and innate lymphoid cells (ILC type 3) of the gut. In experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, the vast majority of CNS-infiltrating Th17 cells expressed IL-17A but not IL-17F. In contrast, anti-CD3-induced, TGF-β-driven Th17 cells in the gut expressed both of these IL-17 cytokines. In line with this, in vitro differentiation of Th17 cells in the presence of IL-1β led primarily to IL-17A expressing T cells, while TGF-β induced IL-17F co-expressing Th17 cells. Our results suggest that expression of IL-17F is associated with non-pathogenic T cells, pointing to a differential function of IL-17A versus IL-17F.

Key Messages: Naïve mice: CD4 T cells and γδ T cells express IL-17A, and Tc17 cells express IL-17F. Gut ILC3 show differential expression of IL17A and F. Th17 differentiation with TGF-β1 induces IL-17A and F, whereas IL-1β induced cells expressing IL-17A. Th17 cells in EAE in CNS express IL-17A only. Gut Th17 cells induced by anti-CD3 express IL-17A and F together as skin γδ T cells of IMQ-treated mice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00109-018-1662-5DOI Listing
August 2018

Phosphorylation of Argonaute proteins affects mRNA binding and is essential for microRNA-guided gene silencing .

EMBO J 2017 07 23;36(14):2088-2106. Epub 2017 Jun 23.

Biochemistry Center Regensburg (BZR), Laboratory for RNA Biology, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany

Argonaute proteins associate with microRNAs and are key components of gene silencing pathways. With such a pivotal role, these proteins represent ideal targets for regulatory post-translational modifications. Using quantitative mass spectrometry, we find that a C-terminal serine/threonine cluster is phosphorylated at five different residues in human and In human, hyper-phosphorylation does not affect microRNA binding, localization, or cleavage activity of Ago2. However, mRNA binding is strongly affected. Strikingly, on Ago2 mutants that cannot bind microRNAs or mRNAs, the cluster remains unphosphorylated indicating a role at late stages of gene silencing. In , the phosphorylation of the conserved cluster of ALG-1 is essential for microRNA function Furthermore, a single point mutation within the cluster is sufficient to phenocopy the loss of its complete phosphorylation. Interestingly, this mutant retains its capacity to produce and bind microRNAs and represses expression when artificially tethered to an mRNA Altogether, our data suggest that the phosphorylation state of the serine/threonine cluster is important for Argonaute-mRNA interactions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15252/embj.201696386DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5510005PMC
July 2017

Peptide-Based Isolation of Argonaute Protein Complexes Using Ago-APP.

Methods Mol Biol 2017 ;1580:107-116

University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany.

Argonaute (Ago) proteins bind small RNAs such as microRNAs (miRNAs) or short interfering RNAs (siRNAs), which guide them to distinct mRNAs for post-transcriptional gene silencing. Mammalian miRNA-guided gene silencing pathways mainly lead to translational repression and mRNA destabilization. To facilitate these processes, Ago proteins bind members of the GW protein family, which form central interaction platforms for the recruitment of downstream effector proteins. GW proteins use tryptophane residues (W) to bind to the surface of Ago proteins. This high affinity interaction is retained when a short, GST-fused GW peptide is used in biochemical pull-down experiments-an approach referred to as "Ago Affinity Purification by Peptides" (Ago-APP). Since the binding interface is conserved among different paralogues and different species, Ago-APP represents a universal tool to purify Ago proteins and associated small RNAs using samples from species with conserved miRNA pathways.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-6866-4_9DOI Listing
February 2018

The Arabidopsis THO/TREX component TEX1 functionally interacts with MOS11 and modulates mRNA export and alternative splicing events.

Plant Mol Biol 2017 Feb 21;93(3):283-298. Epub 2016 Dec 21.

Department of Cell Biology and Plant Biochemistry, Biochemistry Centre, University of Regensburg, Universitätsstr. 31, 93053, Regensburg, Germany.

Key Message: We identify proteins that associate with the THO core complex, and show that the TEX1 and MOS11 components functionally interact, affecting mRNA export and splicing as well as plant development. TREX (TRanscription-EXport) is a multiprotein complex that plays a central role in the coordination of synthesis, processing and nuclear export of mRNAs. Using targeted proteomics, we identified proteins that associate with the THO core complex of Arabidopsis TREX. In addition to the RNA helicase UAP56 and the mRNA export factors ALY2-4 and MOS11 we detected interactions with the mRNA export complex TREX-2 and multiple spliceosomal components. Plants defective in the THO component TEX1 or in the mRNA export factor MOS11 (orthologue of human CIP29) are mildly affected. However, tex1 mos11 double-mutant plants show marked defects in vegetative and reproductive development. In tex1 plants, the levels of tasiRNAs are reduced, while miR173 levels are decreased in mos11 mutants. In nuclei of mos11 cells increased mRNA accumulation was observed, while no mRNA export defect was detected with tex1 cells. Nevertheless, in tex1 mos11 double-mutants, the mRNA export defect was clearly enhanced relative to mos11. The subnuclear distribution of TEX1 substantially overlaps with that of splicing-related SR proteins and in tex1 plants the ratio of certain alternative splicing events is altered. Our results demonstrate that Arabidopsis TEX1 and MOS11 are involved in distinct steps of the biogenesis of mRNAs and small RNAs, and that they interact regarding some aspects, but act independently in others.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11103-016-0561-9DOI Listing
February 2017

IL-1 signaling is critical for expansion but not generation of autoreactive GM-CSF+ Th17 cells.

EMBO J 2017 01 8;36(1):102-115. Epub 2016 Nov 8.

Institute for Molecular Medicine, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, Mainz, Germany

Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is implicated in numerous pathologies, including multiple sclerosis and its animal model experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). However, the exact mechanism by which IL-1 is involved in the generation of pathogenic T cells and in disease development remains largely unknown. We found that following EAE induction, pertussis toxin administration leads to IL-1 receptor type 1 (IL-1R1)-dependent IL-1β expression by myeloid cells in the draining lymph nodes. This myeloid-derived IL-1β did not vitally contribute to the generation and plasticity of Th17 cells, but rather promoted the expansion of a GM-CSF Th17 cell subset, thereby enhancing its encephalitogenic potential. Lack of expansion of GM-CSF-producing Th17 cells led to ameliorated disease in mice deficient for IL-1R1 specifically in T cells. Importantly, pathogenicity of IL-1R1-deficient T cells was fully restored by IL-23 polarization and expansion in vitro Therefore, our data demonstrate that IL-1 functions as a mitogenic mediator of encephalitogenic Th17 cells rather than qualitative inducer of their generation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15252/embj.201694615DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5210124PMC
January 2017

Argonaute Family Protein Expression in Normal Tissue and Cancer Entities.

PLoS One 2016 12;11(8):e0161165. Epub 2016 Aug 12.

Institute of Biochemistry, Emil-Fischer-Zentrum, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany.

The members of the Argonaute (AGO) protein family are key players in miRNA-guided gene silencing. They enable the interaction between small RNAs and their respective target mRNA(s) and support the catalytic destruction of the gene transcript or recruit additional proteins for downstream gene silencing. The human AGO family consists of four AGO proteins (AGO1-AGO4), but only AGO2 harbors nuclease activity. In this study, we characterized the expression of the four AGO proteins in cancer cell lines and normal tissues with a new mass spectrometry approach called AGO-APP (AGO Affinity Purification by Peptides). In all analyzed normal tissues, AGO1 and AGO2 were most prominent, but marked tissue-specific differences were identified. Furthermore, considerable changes during development were observed by comparing fetal and adult tissues. We also identified decreased overall AGO expression in melanoma derived cell lines compared to other tumor cell lines and normal tissues, with the largest differences in AGO2 expression. The experiments described in this study suggest that reduced amounts of AGO proteins, as key players in miRNA processing, have impact on several cellular processes. Deregulated miRNA expression has been attributed to chromosomal aberrations, promoter regulation and it is known to have a major impact on tumor development and progression. Our findings will further increase our basic understanding of the molecular basis of miRNA processing and its relevance for disease.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0161165PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4982624PMC
August 2017

The Slicer Activity of ARGONAUTE1 Is Required Specifically for the Phasing, Not Production, of Trans-Acting Short Interfering RNAs in Arabidopsis.

Plant Cell 2016 07 27;28(7):1563-80. Epub 2016 Jun 27.

Department of Biology, University of Copenhagen, DK-2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark

ARGONAUTE1 (AGO1) mediates posttranscriptional silencing by microRNAs (miRNAs) and short interfering RNAS (siRNAs). AGO1-catalyzed RNA cleavage (slicing) represses miRNA targets, but current models also highlight the roles of slicing in formation of siRNAs and siRNA-AGO1 complexes. miRNA-guided slicing is required for biogenesis of phased, trans-acting siRNAs (tasiRNAs), whose cleaved precursor fragments are converted to double-stranded RNA by RNA-dependent RNA polymerase 6 (RDR6). In addition, unwinding of duplex siRNA bound to AGO1 requires passenger strand cleavage in vitro. In this study, we analyze how mutation of four metal ion-coordinating residues of Arabidopsis thaliana AGO1 affects slicer activity in vitro and siRNA function in vivo. We show that while all four residues are required for slicer activity, they do not contribute equally to catalysis. Moreover, passenger strand cleavage is required for assembly of active AGO1-siRNA complexes in vivo, and many AGO1-bound siRNAs are trimmed in the absence of slicer activity. Remarkably, seedlings defective in AGO1 slicer activity produce abundant siRNAs from tasiRNA loci in vivo. These siRNAs depend on RDR6 and SUPPRESSOR OF GENE SILENCING3, but unlike wild-type tasiRNAs, they are unphased. These results demonstrate that slicing is solely required for phase definition of tasiRNAs, and they strongly support recruitment of RDR6 by AGO1 rather than by cleavage fragments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1105/tpc.16.00121DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4981131PMC
July 2016

Biochemical isolation of Argonaute protein complexes by Ago-APP.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2015 Sep 8;112(38):11841-5. Epub 2015 Sep 8.

Biochemistry Center Regensburg, Laboratory for RNA Biology, University of Regensburg, 93053 Regensburg, Germany;

During microRNA (miRNA)-guided gene silencing, Argonaute (Ago) proteins interact with a member of the TNRC6/GW protein family. Here we used a short GW protein-derived peptide fused to GST and demonstrate that it binds to Ago proteins with high affinity. This allows for the simultaneous isolation of all Ago protein complexes expressed in diverse species to identify associated proteins, small RNAs, or target mRNAs. We refer to our method as "Ago protein Affinity Purification by Peptides" (Ago-APP). Furthermore, expression of this peptide competes for endogenous TNRC6 proteins, leading to global inhibition of miRNA function in mammalian cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1506116112DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4586862PMC
September 2015

The role of IL-17 in CNS diseases.

Acta Neuropathol 2015 May 26;129(5):625-37. Epub 2015 Feb 26.

Institute for Molecular Medicine, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, Obere Zahlbacher Straße 67, 55131, Mainz, Germany,

Cytokines of the IL-17 family are uniquely placed on the border between immune cells and tissue. Although IL-17 was originally found to induce the activation and mobilization of neutrophils to sites of inflammation, its tissue-specific function is not yet fully understood. The best-studied IL-17 family members, IL-17A and IL-17F, are both typically produced by immune cells such as Th17, γδ T cells and innate lymphoid cells group 3. However, the cells that respond to these cytokines are mostly found in inflamed tissue. As seen in psoriatic skin lesions or in joints of rheumatoid arthritis patients, high levels of IL-17 have been detected in the central nervous system (CNS) during inflammatory responses. Here, we provide a general review of the molecular function of IL-17 and its role in the CNS in particular. Of the different inflammatory conditions of the CNS, we found multiple sclerosis (MS) to be the one most associated with the presence of Th17 cells and IL-17. In particular, many studies using the murine model for MS, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, found a clear association of Th17 and IL-17 with disease severity and progression. We summarize the recent advances made in correlating the presence of IL-17 with impaired blood-brain barrier integrity as well as the activation of astrocytes and microglia and the consequences for disease progression. There is also evidence that IL-17 plays a pathogenic role in the post-ischemic phase of stroke as well as its experimental model. We review the limited but promising data on the sources of post-stroke IL-17 production and its effects on CNS-resident target cells. In addition to MS and stroke, there is also evidence linking high levels of IL-17 to depression, as a frequent comorbidity of several inflammatory diseases, as well as to different types of infections of the CNS. The evidence we supply here suggests that inhibiting the function of the IL-17 cytokine family could have a beneficial effect on pathogenic conditions in the CNS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00401-015-1402-7DOI Listing
May 2015

Generation of catalytic human Ago4 identifies structural elements important for RNA cleavage.

RNA 2014 Oct 11;20(10):1532-8. Epub 2014 Aug 11.

Biochemistry Center Regensburg (BZR), Laboratory for RNA Biology, University of Regensburg, 93053 Regensburg, Germany

Argonaute proteins bind small RNAs and mediate cleavage of complementary target RNAs. The human Argonaute protein Ago4 is catalytically inactive, although it is highly similar to catalytic Ago2. Here, we have generated Ago2-Ago4 chimeras and analyzed their cleavage activity in vitro. We identify several specific features that inactivate Ago4: the catalytic center, short sequence elements in the N-terminal domain, and an Ago4-specific insertion in the catalytic domain. In addition, we show that Ago2-mediated cleavage of the noncanonical miR-451 precursor can be carried out by any catalytic human Ago protein. Finally, phylogenetic analyses establish evolutionary distances between the Ago proteins. Interestingly, these distances do not fully correlate with the structural changes inactivating them, suggesting functional adaptations of individual human Ago proteins.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1261/rna.045203.114DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4174435PMC
October 2014

Argonaute regulation: two roads to the same destination.

Dev Cell 2013 Jun;25(6):553-4

Biochemistry Center Regensburg (BZR), Laboratory for RNA Biology, University of Regensburg, Universitätsstrasse 31, 93053 Regensburg, Germany.

Reporting recently in Nature and Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, Shen et al. (2013) and Smibert et al. (2013) uncover mechanisms for Argonaute (Ago) protein regulation. Smibert et al. find that microRNA availability controls Ago levels, and Shen et al. show that epidermal growth factor receptor-mediated Ago2 phosphorylation affects Ago loading.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.devcel.2013.06.009DOI Listing
June 2013

Turning catalytically inactive human Argonaute proteins into active slicer enzymes.

Nat Struct Mol Biol 2013 Jul 12;20(7):814-7. Epub 2013 May 12.

Biochemistry Center Regensburg, Laboratory for RNA Biology, University of Regensburg, Germany.

Argonaute proteins interact with small RNAs that guide them to complementary target RNAs, thus leading to inhibition of gene expression. Some but not all Argonaute proteins are endonucleases and can cleave the complementary target RNA. Here, we have mutated inactive human Ago1 and Ago3 and generated catalytic Argonaute proteins. We find that two short sequence elements at the N terminus are important for activity. In addition, PIWI-domain mutations in Ago1 may misarrange the catalytic center. Our work helps in understanding of the structural requirements that make an Argonaute protein an active endonucleolytic enzyme.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nsmb.2577DOI Listing
July 2013

Ciliated sensory hair cell formation and function require the F-BAR protein syndapin I and the WH2 domain-based actin nucleator Cobl.

J Cell Sci 2013 Jan 30;126(Pt 1):196-208. Epub 2012 Nov 30.

Institute of Biochemistry I, Jena University Hospital/Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, 07743 Jena, Germany.

During development, general body plan information must be translated into distinct morphologies of individual cells. Shaping cells is thought to involve cortical cytoskeletal components and Bin-Amphiphysin-Rvs167 (BAR) superfamily proteins. We therefore conducted comprehensive side-by-side loss-of-function studies of zebrafish orthologs of the F-BAR protein syndapin I and the actin nucleator Cobl. Zebrafish syndapin I associates with Cobl. The loss-of-function phenotypes of these proteins were remarkably similar and suggested a common function. Both cobl- and syndapin I-morphant fish showed severe swimming and balance-keeping defects, reflecting an impaired organization and function of the lateral line organ. Their lateral line organs lacked several neuromasts and showed an impaired functionality of the sensory hair cells within the neuromasts. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that sensory hair cells of both cobl- and syndapin I-morphant animals showed defects in the formation of both microtubule-dependent kinocilia and F-actin-rich stereocilia. Consistent with the kinocilia defects in sensory hair cells, body length was shortened and the development of body laterality, a process depending on motile cilia, was also impaired. Interestingly, Cobl and syndapin I both localized to the base of forming cilia. Rescue experiments demonstrated that proper formation of ciliated sensory hair cell rosettes relied on Cobl's syndapin I-binding Cobl homology domain, the actin-nucleating C-terminus of Cobl and the membrane curvature-inducing F-BAR domain of syndapin I. Our data thus suggest that the formation of distinct types of ciliary structures relies on membrane topology-modulating mechanisms that are based on F-BAR domain functions and on complex formation of syndapin I with the actin nucleator Cobl.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/jcs.111674DOI Listing
January 2013