Publications by authors named "Marie-Theres Kastner"

13 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Heterosubtypic, cross-reactive immunity to human Cytomegalovirus glycoprotein B.

Clin Exp Immunol 2022 Apr 8. Epub 2022 Apr 8.

Department of Medicine I, Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Austria.

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) genome is highly variable and heterosubtypic immunity should be considered in vaccine development since it can enhance protection in a cross-reactive manner. Here, we developed a protein array to evaluate heterosubtypic immunity to CMV glycoprotein B (gB) in natural infection and vaccination. DNA sequences of four antigenic domains (AD1, AD2, AD4/5 and AD5) of gB were amplified from six reference and 12 clinical CMV strains, and the most divergent genotypes were determined by phylogenetic analysis. Assigned genotypes were in vitro translated and immobilized on protein array. Then, we tested immune response of variable serum groups (primarily infected patients, reactivated CMV infections and healthy individuals with latent CMV infection, as well gB-vaccinated rabbits) with protein in situ array (PISA). Serum antibodies of all patient cohorts and gB-vaccinated rabbits recognized many genetic variants of ADs on protein array, including but not limited to the subtype of infecting strain. High-grade cross-reactivity was observed. In several patients, we observed none or neglectable immune response to AD1 and AD2, while the same patients showed high antibody response to AD4/5 and AD5. Among the primary infected patients, AD5 was the predominant antigenic domain, in antibody response. The most successful CMV vaccine to date contains gB and demonstrates only 50% efficacy. In this study, we showed that heterosubtypic and cross-reactive immunity to CMV gB is extensive. Therefore, the failure of CMV gB vaccines cannot be explained by a highly, strain-specific immunity. Our observations suggest that other CMV antigens should be addressed in vaccine design.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cei/uxac031DOI Listing
April 2022

Oral Abundance of Actinomyces spp. in Breast Cancer Patients.

Oncology 2022 20;100(4):221-227. Epub 2022 Jan 20.

Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Department of Medicine I, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Objectives: Pathophysiology of medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (MRONJ) is still unclear, and disease development is associated with adverse reaction of bisphosphonates and denosumab, and Actinomyces spp. as well. In this study, we evaluated the abundance of Actinomyces spp. in breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy compared to healthy controls.

Methods: Oropharyngeal samples were collected from treatment-naive early-stage breast cancer patients, who were scheduled for standard of care therapy (eight samples throughout chemotherapy, one prior to radiotherapy and one after a year of start), as well as from healthy controls at matched timepoints. We quantified Actinomyces spp. in the samples with a highly sensitive and specific quantitative polymerase chain reaction.

Results: Twenty-one patients and 16 healthy subjects were enrolled. Forty-eight percent of patients suffered from estrogen receptor-positive/progesterone receptor-positive or -negative/human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-negative disease, 38% were HER2-positive, and 14% were triple-negative. Comparison of Actinomyces spp. loads in cancer patients and healthy controls did not reveal significant difference. Fluctuations on bacterial quantity were observed in both groups over time. Tumor receptor status or different chemotherapy schemes of patients were not correlated with a particular pattern on abundance of Actinomyces spp.

Conclusions: We suggest that Actinomyces spp. are not the initiative factors in MRONJ development. These bacteria are not altered in abundance during chemotherapy, but they behave opportunistic when there is a bone disruption in the oropharynx in the first place caused by antiresorptive drugs or dental trauma and proliferate in their new niche. Thus, Actinomyces spp. plays a latter role in MRONJ development, rather than a primary causative one.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000522070DOI Listing
April 2022

Protein Phosphatase 1 Regulates Human Cytomegalovirus Protein Translation by Restraining AMPK Signaling.

Front Microbiol 2021 15;12:698603. Epub 2021 Jul 15.

Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Department of Medicine I, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) carries the human protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) and other human proteins important for protein translation in its tegument layer for a rapid supply upon infection. However, the biological relevance behind PP1 incorporation and its role during infection is unclear. Additionally, PP1 is a difficult molecular target due to its promiscuity and similarities between the catalytic domain of multiple phosphatases. In this study, we circumvented these shortcomings by using 1E7-03, a small molecule protein-protein interaction inhibitor, as a molecular tool of noncatalytic PP1 inhibition. 1E7-03 treatment of human fibroblasts severely impaired HCMV replication and viral protein translation. More specifically, PP1 inhibition led to the deregulation of metabolic signaling pathways starting at very early time points post-infection. This effect was at least partly mediated by the prevention of AMP-activated protein kinase dephosphorylation, leading to elongation factor 2 hyperphosphorylation and reduced translation rates. These findings reveal an important mechanism of PP1 for lytic HCMV infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2021.698603DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8320725PMC
July 2021

Cytomegalovirus Infection Downregulates Vitamin D Receptor in Patients Undergoing Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation.

Transplantation 2021 07;105(7):1595-1602

Department of Internal Medicine I, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Background: Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is a potentially curative option for patients with hematologic diseases but is associated with high mortality and morbidity. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is common in HSCT patients and modulates vitamin D metabolism in vitro. We aimed at validating CMV-associated vitamin D metabolism in vivo in HSCT.

Methods: Patients treated for significant CMV viremia after HSCT were evaluated for CMV load before, during, and after antiviral treatment. RNA was isolated from whole-blood samples to test for regulation of key components of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) pathway during different phases of CMV viremia.

Results: CMV viremia developed a mean time of 102 (±34) d post-HSCT. Maximum levels of CMV-DNA reached a mean of 5668 (±7257) copies/mL. VDR expression was downregulated to a mean of 64.3% (±42.5%) relative to the VDR expression pre-CMV viremia (P = 0.035) and lagged in recovery following antiviral treatment. Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2 mRNA was upregulated to 225.4% during CMV viremia relative to the expression pre-CMV viremia (P = 0.012) but not TLR6/7/8 and the TLR-adaptor protein MyD88. Levels of 25-OH vitamin D were reduced in all viremic patients (48.0 ± 4.8 versus 25.1 ± 3.7 ng/mL) and were even lower after periods of CMV viremia compared with the control group (48.3 ± 3.5 versus 17.8 ± 1.8 ng/mL; P = 0.008).

Conclusions: CMV viremia is associated with significant dysregulation of vitamin D metabolism in HSCT patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/TP.0000000000003448DOI Listing
July 2021

Association of Cytokeratin 5 and Claudin 3 expression with BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutations in women with early breast cancer.

BMC Cancer 2019 Jul 15;19(1):695. Epub 2019 Jul 15.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Comprehensive Cancer Center, Medical University of Vienna, 1090, Vienna, Austria.

Background: It is important to identify biomarkers associated with BRCA mutation in women with early breast cancer (BC) to improve early identification of mutation carriers. Thus, in this study, we examined the protein expression of claudin (CLDN) 3, CLDN4, CLDN7, and E-cadherin. Moreover, we analyzed additional histopathological variables and their associations in familial BC.

Methods: Immunohistochemical analysis for CLDNs and E-cadherin was performed on 237 BC cases of three different subsets of BC tumors: 62 from BRCA1 mutation carriers, 59 from BRCA2 mutation carriers, and 116 tumors from patients with BRCA wild type (WT) as controls. Histopathological data were also analyzed in the different subgroups. Logistic regression and receiver operation characteristic (ROC) curve were conducted to investigate factors associated with BRCA tumors.

Results: Expression of CLDN3 positively correlated with BRCA-mutated BC. CLDN3 was expressed in 58% of BRCA1-mutated tumors compared to only 7% in BRCA2-mutated tumors (p < 0.001) and 1% in WT tumors (p < 0.001). CK5 and CK14 expression were also more likely to arise in BRCA1 tumors (44 and 16%, respectively) than in the control group (8 and 4%) (p < 0.001, p = 0.012, respectively). We also found a significantly higher proportion of CK5+ among BRCA1 tumors (44%) in comparison with BRCA2-related BC (8%) (p < 0.001). In addition, there was a significant difference between both groups regarding CK14: positive expression in 16 and 5%, respectively (p = 0.030). CK5 and CK14 did not differ between the BRCA2 group and the WT tumors significantly. In a multivariate regression model, expression of CK5 (Odds ratio (OR): 6.46; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.52-27.43; p = 0.011), and CLDN3 (OR: 200.48; 95% CI: 21.52-1867.61; p < 0.001) were associated with BRCA1 mutation status.

Conclusions: Our data suggests that CLDN3, CK5, and CK14 in combination with ER, PR and HER2 are associated with BRCA1 mutation status.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12885-019-5908-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6631579PMC
July 2019

Differential Claudin 3 and EGFR Expression Predicts BRCA1 Mutation in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.

Cancer Invest 2018 24;36(7):378-388. Epub 2018 Aug 24.

c Kathleen Cuningham Foundation Consortium for research into Familial Breast cancer, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre , Parkville , Australia.

BRCA-1 mutation-associated triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) has been hypothesized to exhibit a phenotype that is distinct from non-mutation carriers. We have analyzed immunohistochemically detected cytokeratins 5 and 14, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), claudin (CLDN) 3, 4, and 7, and E-cadherin in 57 TNBC (32 BRCA1 and 8 BRCA2 tumors, 17 WT tumors). Positive staining of CLDN3 and negative EGFR expression in TNBC are associated with a BRCA1 mutation. EGFR and CLDN3 expression was able to predict the presence of BRCA1 mutation (area under curve 0.802, p < 0.001). This could help in guiding the decision for BRCA testing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/07357907.2018.1499934DOI Listing
October 2018

The Human Gastric Microbiome Is Predicated upon Infection with .

Front Microbiol 2017 14;8:2508. Epub 2017 Dec 14.

Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine I, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

The human gastric lumen is one of the most hostile environments of the human body suspected to be sterile until the discovery of (H.p.). State of the art next generation sequencing technologies multiply the knowledge on H.p. functional genomics as well as on the colonization of supposed sterile human environments like the gastric habitat. Here we studied in a prospective, multicenter, clinical trial the 16S rRNA gene amplicon based bacterial microbiome in a total of 30 homogenized and frozen gastric biopsy samples from eight geographic locations. The evaluation of the samples for H.p. infection status was done by histopathology and a specific PCR assay. CagA status was determined by a CagA-specific PCR assay. Patients were grouped accordingly as H.p.-negative, H.p.-positive but CagA-negative and H.p.-positive and CagA-positive ( = 10, respectively). Here we show that H.p. infection of the gastric habitat dominates the gastric microbiota in most patients and is associated with a significant decrease of the microbial alpha diversity from H.p. negative to H.p. positive with CagA as a considerable factor. The genera , and are significantly different between the H.p.-positive and H.p.-negative sample groups. Differences in microbiota found between CagA-positive and CagA-negative patients were not statistically significant and need to be re-evaluated in larger sample cohorts. In conclusion, H.p. infection dominates the gastric microbiome in a multicentre cohort of patients with varying diagnoses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2017.02508DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5735373PMC
December 2017

Absence of CMV viremia in high-grade glioma patients under low dosage glucocorticoid treatment.

Neuro Oncol 2017 09;19(9):1280-1282

Department of Medicine I, Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria; Department of Medicine I, Division of Oncology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/neuonc/nox065DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5570214PMC
September 2017

Viruses comprise an extensive pool of mobile genetic elements in eukaryote cell cultures and human clinical samples.

FASEB J 2017 05 8;31(5):1987-2000. Epub 2017 Feb 8.

Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine 1, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria;

Viruses shape a diversity of ecosystems by modulating their microbial, eukaryotic, or plant host metabolism. The complexity of virus-host interaction networks is progressively fathomed by novel metagenomic approaches. By using a novel metagenomic method, we explored the virome in mammalian cell cultures and clinical samples to identify an extensive pool of mobile genetic elements in all of these ecosystems. Despite aseptic treatment, cell cultures harbored extensive and diverse phage populations with a high abundance of as yet unknown and uncharacterized viruses (viral dark matter). Unknown phages also predominated in the oropharynx and urine of healthy individuals and patients infected with cytomegalovirus despite demonstration of active cytomegalovirus replication. The novelty of viral sequences correlated primarily with the individual evaluated, whereas relative abundance of encoded protein functions was associated with the ecologic niches probed. Together, these observations demonstrate the extensive presence of viral dark matter in human and artificial ecosystems.-Thannesberger, J., Hellinger, H.-J., Klymiuk, I., Kastner, M.-T., Rieder, F. J. J., Schneider, M., Fister, S., Lion, T., Kosulin, K., Laengle, J., Bergmann, M., Rattei, T., Steininger, C. Viruses comprise an extensive pool of mobile genetic elements in eukaryote cell cultures and human clinical samples.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1096/fj.201601168RDOI Listing
May 2017

Human cytomegalovirus phosphoproteins are hypophosphorylated and intrinsically disordered.

J Gen Virol 2017 Mar 1;98(3):471-485. Epub 2017 Apr 1.

Department of Medicine I, Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Protein phosphorylation has important regulatory functions in cell homeostasis and is tightly regulated by kinases and phosphatases. The tegument of human cytomegalovirus (CMV) contains not only several proteins reported to be extensively phosphorylated but also cellular protein phosphatases (PP1 and PP2A). To investigate this apparent inconsistency, we evaluated the phosphorylation status of the tegument proteins pUL32 and pp65 by enzymatic dephosphorylation and MS. Enzymatic dephosphorylation with bacterial λ phosphatase, but not with PP1, shifted the pUL32-specific signal on reducing SDS-PAGE from ~150 to ~148 kDa, a mass still much larger than the ~118 kDa obtained from our diffusion studies and from the calculated protein mass of ~113 kDa. Remarkably, inhibition of phosphatases through treatment with the phosphatase inhibitors calyculin A and okadaic acid resulted in a shift to ~190 or ~180 kDa, respectively, indicating that a considerable number of potential phosphorylated residues on pUL32 are not phosphorylated under normal conditions. MS revealed a general state of hypophosphorylation of CMV phosphoproteins with only 17 phosphorylated residues detected on pUL32 and 19 on pp65, respectively. Moreover, bioinformatics analysis shows that the C-terminal two-thirds of pUL32 are intrinsically disordered and that most phosphorylations map to this region. In conclusion, we show that important CMV tegument proteins are indeed phosphorylated, though to a lesser extent than previously reported, and the difference in mobility on SDS-PAGE and calculated mass of pUL32 may not be attributed to phosphorylation but more likely due to the partially intrinsically disordered nature of pUL32.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/jgv.0.000675DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5705059PMC
March 2017

Microbial Cryptotopes are Prominent Targets of B-cell Immunity.

Sci Rep 2016 08 19;6:31657. Epub 2016 Aug 19.

Department of Medicine I, Div. of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

B-cell recognition of microbial antigens may be limited by masking of epitopes within three-dimensional structures (cryptotopes). Here we report that unmasking of cryptotopes by unfolding whole cytomegalovirus (CMV) antigen preparations with the chaotropic reagent Urea and probing with immune sera from healthy individuals (n = 109) increased ELISA signals by 36% in comparison to folded CMV antigens (P < 0.001). ELISA signals increased also significantly upon unfolding of S. aureus or E. coli antigens, whereas unfolded influenza H1N1 or respiratory syncitial virus antigens yielded reduced or unchanged reactivity in comparison to folded ones, respectively. Blocking of CMV cryptotope-specific Abs by incubation of an immunoglobuline preparation and three sera with unfolded CMV antigens enhanced clearly the neutralizing capacity of this immunoglobuline preparation against CMV infection. Thus, B-cell immunity frequently targets cryptotopes on CMV but these Abs are non-neutralizing, may reduce the neutralizing effectiveness of pathogen-specific Abs, and increase during immune maturation following primary CMV infection. The observation of functional consequences of Abs specific for cryptotopes may open whole new avenues to a better understanding of the humoral immune response to CMV and development of more effective vaccines and immunoglobuline preparations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep31657DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4990913PMC
August 2016

Human cytomegalovirus infection downregulates vitamin-D receptor in mammalian cells.

J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 2017 01 9;165(Pt B):356-362. Epub 2016 Aug 9.

Department of Medicine I, Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria. Electronic address:

Vitamin D (VD) is essential for the human body and involved in a wide variety of critical physiological processes including bone, muscle, and cardiovascular health, as well as innate immunity and antimicrobial responses. Here, we elucidated the significance of the VD system in cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection, which is one of the most common opportunistic infections in immunocompromised or -suppressed patients. We found that expression of vitamin D receptor (VDR) was downregulated in CMV-infected cells within 12h [hrs] post infection [p.i.] to 12% relative to VDR expression in mock-infected fibroblasts and did not recover during the CMV replication cycle of 96h. None of the biologically active metabolites of VD, cholecalciferol, calcidiol, or calcitriol, inhibit CMV replication significantly in human fibroblasts. In a feedback loop, expression of CYP24A1 dropped to 3% by 12h p.i. and expression of CYP27B1 increased gradually during the replication cycle of CMV to 970% probably as a consequence of VDR inhibition. VDR expression was not downregulated during influenza virus or adenovirus replication. The potent synthetic vitamin D analog EB-1089 was not able to inhibit CMV replication or antagonize its effect on VDR expression. Only CMV replication, and none of the other viral pathogens evaluated, inhibited the vitamin D system in vitro. In view of the pleiotropism of VDR, CMV-mediated downregulation may have far-reaching virological, immunological, and clinical implications and thus warrant further evaluations in vitro and in vivo.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsbmb.2016.08.002DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5705058PMC
January 2017

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients have a preserved cytomegalovirus-specific antibody response despite progressive hypogammaglobulinemia.

PLoS One 2013 23;8(10):e78925. Epub 2013 Oct 23.

Department of Medicine I, Div. of Hematology and Hemostaseology, Comprehensive Cancer Center (CCC), Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is characterized by progressive hypogammaglobulinemia predisposing affected patients to a variety of infectious diseases but paradoxically not to cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease. Moreover, we found reactivity of a panel of CLL recombinant antibodies (CLL-rAbs) encoded by a germ-line allele with a single CMV protein, pUL32, despite differing antibody binding motifs. To put these findings into perspective, we studied prospectively relative frequency of viremia, kinetics of total and virus-specific IgG over time, and UL32 genetic variation in a cohort of therapy-naive patients (n=200). CMV-DNA was detected in 3% (6/200) of patients. The decay of total IgG was uniform (mean, 0.03; SD, 0.03) and correlated with that of IgG subclasses 1-4 in the paired samples available (n=64; p<0.001). Total CMV-specific IgG kinetics were more variable (mean, 0,02; SD, 0,06) and mean decay values differed significantly from those of total IgG (p=0.034). Boosts of CMV-specific antibody levels were observed in 49% (22/45) of CMV-seropositive patients. In contrast, VZV- and EBV-specific IgG levels decayed in parallel with total IgG levels (p=0.003 and p=0.001, respectively). VZV-specific IgG even became undetectable in 18% (9/50) of patients whereas CMV-specific ones remained detectable in all seropositive patients. The observed CMV-specific IgG kinetics were predicated upon the highly divergent kinetics of IgG specific for individual antigens - glycoprotein B-specific IgG were boosted in 51% and pUL32-specific IgG in 32% of patients. In conclusion, CLL patients have a preserved CMV-specific antibody response despite progressive decay of total IgG and IgG subclasses. CMV-specific IgG levels are frequently boosted in contrast to that of other herpesviruses indicative of a higher rate of CMV reactivation and antigen-presentation. In contrast to the reactivity of multiple different CLL-rAbs with pUL32, boosts of humoral immunity are triggered apparently by other CMV antigens than pUL32, like glycoprotein B.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0078925PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3806856PMC
February 2015
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