Publications by authors named "Sandy Pelletier"

7 Publications

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IFN-λ3 polymorphism indirectly influences NK cell phenotype and function during acute HCV infection.

Immun Inflamm Dis 2016 Sep 16;4(3):376-88. Epub 2016 Aug 16.

Centre de Recherche du Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CRCHUM)MontréalQuébecCanada; Département de médecineFaculté de médecineUniversité de MontréalMontréalQuébecCanada.

Introduction: Polymorphisms in the type III interferon IFN-λ3 and the killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor (KIR) genes controlling the activity of natural killer (NK) cells can predict spontaneous resolution of acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. We hypothesized that IFN-λ3 polymorphism may modulate NK cell function during acute HCV.

Methods: We monitored the plasma levels of type III IFNs in relation to the phenotype and the function of NK cells in a cohort of people who inject drugs (PWID) during acute HCV infection with different outcomes.

Results: Early acute HCV was associated with high variability in type III IFNs plasma levels and the favorable IFN-λ3 CC genotype was associated with higher viral loads. Reduced expression of Natural Killer Group Protein 2A (NKG2A) was associated with lower IFN-λ3 plasma levels and the CC genotype. IFN-γ production by NK cells was higher in individuals with the CC genotype during acute infection but this did not prevent viral persistence. IFN-λ3 plasma levels did not correlate with function of NK cells and IFN-λ3 prestimulation did not affect NK cell activation and function.

Conclusions: These results suggest that IFN-λ3 polymorphism indirectly influences NK cell phenotype and function during acute HCV but other factors may act in concert to determine the outcome of the infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/iid3.122DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5004291PMC
September 2016

Sustained hyperresponsiveness of dendritic cells is associated with spontaneous resolution of acute hepatitis C.

J Virol 2013 Jun 10;87(12):6769-81. Epub 2013 Apr 10.

Centre de Recherche du Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal, Hôpital St-Luc, Montréal, Quebec, Canada.

Some studies have reported that dendritic cells (DCs) may be dysfunctional in a subset of patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. However, the function of DCs during acute HCV infection and their role in determining infectious outcome remain elusive. Here, we examined the phenotype and function of myeloid DCs (mDCs) and plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs) during acute HCV infection. Three groups of injection drug users (IDUs) at high risk of HCV infection were studied: an uninfected group, a group with acute HCV infection with spontaneous resolution, and a group with acute infection with chronic evolution. We examined the frequency, maturation status, and cytokine production capacity of DCs in response to the Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and TLR7/8 ligands lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and single-stranded RNA (ssRNA), respectively. Several observations could distinguish HCV-negative IDUs and acute HCV resolvers from patients with acute infection with chronic evolution. First, we observed a decrease in the frequency of mature CD86(+), programmed death-1 receptor ligand-positive (PDL1(+)), and PDL2(+) pDCs. This phenotype was associated with the increased sensitivity of pDCs from resolvers and HCV-negative IDUs versus the group with acute infection with chronic evolution to ssRNA stimulation in vitro. Second, LPS-stimulated mDCs from resolvers and HCV-negative IDUs produced higher levels of cytokines than mDCs from the group with acute infection with chronic evolution. Third, mDCs from all patients with acute HCV infection, irrespective of their outcomes, produced higher levels of cytokines during the early acute phase in response to ssRNA than mDCs from healthy controls. However, this hyperresponsiveness was sustained only in spontaneous resolvers. Altogether, our results suggest that the immature pDC phenotype and sustained pDC and mDC hyperresponsiveness are associated with spontaneous resolution of acute HCV infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JVI.02445-12DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3676083PMC
June 2013

Altered thymic function during interferon therapy in HCV-infected patients.

PLoS One 2012 16;7(4):e34326. Epub 2012 Apr 16.

Département de Virologie, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.

Interferon alpha (IFNα) therapy, despite good efficacy in curing HCV infection, leads to major side effects, in particular inducement of a strong peripheral T-cell lymphocytopenia. We here analyze the early consequences of IFNα therapy on both thymic function and peripheral T-cell homeostasis in patients in the acute or chronic phase of HCV-infection as well as in HIV/HCV co-infected patients. The evolution of T-cell subsets and T-cell homeostasis were estimated by flow cytometry while thymic function was measured through quantification of T-cell receptor excision circles (TREC) and estimation of intrathymic precursor T-cell proliferation during the first four months following the initiation of IFNα therapy. Beginning with the first month of therapy, a profound lymphocytopenia was observed for all T-cell subsets, including naïve T-cells and recent thymic emigrants (RTE), associated with inhibition of intrathymic precursor T-cell proliferation. Interleukin (IL)-7 plasma concentration rapidly dropped while lymphocytopenia progressed. This was neither a consequence of higher consumption of the cytokine nor due to its neutralization by soluble CD127. Decrease in IL-7 plasma concentration under IFNα therapy correlated with the decline in HCV viral load, thymic activity and RTE concentration in blood. These data demonstrate that IFNα-based therapy rapidly impacts on thymopoiesis and, consequently, perturbs T-cell homeostasis. Such a side effect might be detrimental for the continuation of IFNα therapy and may lead to an increased level of infectious risk, in particular in HIV/HCV co-infected patients. Altogether, this study suggests the therapeutic potential of IL-7 in the maintenance of peripheral T-cell homeostasis in IFNα-treated patients.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0034326PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3328332PMC
November 2012

A view to natural killer cells in hepatitis C.

Gastroenterology 2011 Oct 27;141(4):1144-8. Epub 2011 Aug 27.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2011.08.025DOI Listing
October 2011

Increased degranulation of natural killer cells during acute HCV correlates with the magnitude of virus-specific T cell responses.

J Hepatol 2010 Nov 17;53(5):805-16. Epub 2010 Jul 17.

Centre de Recherche du Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal , Hôpital St-Luc, Montréal, QC, Canada.

Background & Aims: Natural killer (NK) cells provide early defense against viral infections by killing infected cells and producing cytokines that inhibit viral replication. NK cells also interact with dendritic cells (DCs) and this reciprocal interaction regulates both innate and adaptive immunity. Genetic studies have suggested that NK cell activity is a determinant of HCV infectious outcome but a functional correlation has not been established. We hypothesized that increased NK cell activity during acute HCV infection correlates with spontaneous viral clearance.

Methods: We used multiparametric flow cytometry to monitor longitudinally the phenotype and the activity of NK cells in a cohort of intravenous drug users following HCV exposure. Three groups were studied: acute HCV with chronic evolution (n = 13), acute resolving HCV (n = 11), and exposed un-infected individuals (n = 10). We examined the expression of several NK cell-activating and -inhibiting receptors, IFN-γ production and CD107a degranulation upon stimulation, and the kinetics of NK cell responses relative to T cell responses.

Results: We observed decreased expression of the inhibitory NKG2A receptor in NK cells following spontaneous HCV clearance. In addition, we observed increased NK cell degranulation during acute HCV irrespective of infectious outcome. NK cell peak responses preceded or coincided with peak T cell responses. Furthermore, NK cell degranulation correlated with the magnitude of HCV-specific T cells.

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate that NK cells are activated during acute HCV regardless of infection outcome and may play an indirect role through induction and priming of T cell responses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhep.2010.05.013DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4178223PMC
November 2010

Human activated T lymphocytes modulate IDO expression in tumors through Th1/Th2 balance.

J Immunol 2009 Dec;183(12):7752-60

Research Centre, Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal-Hôpital Notre-Dame, Université de Montréal and Institut du Cancer de Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Previous cancer vaccination approaches have shown some efficiency in generating measurable immune responses, but they have rarely led to tumor regression. It is therefore possible that tumors emerge with the capacity to down-regulate immune counterparts, through the local production of immunosuppressive molecules, such as IDO. Although it is known that IDO exerts suppressive effects on T cell functions, the mechanisms of IDO regulation in tumor cells remain to be characterized. Here, we demonstrate that activated T cells can induce functional IDO expression in breast and kidney tumor cell lines, and that this is partly attributable to IFN-gamma. Moreover, we found that IL-13, a Th2 cytokine, has a negative modulatory effect on IDO expression. Furthermore, we report IDO expression in the majority of breast and kidney carcinoma samples, with infiltration of activated Th1-polarized T cells in human tumors. These findings demonstrate complex control of immune activity within tumors. Future immune therapeutic interventions should thus include strategies to counteract these negative mechanisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.0901004DOI Listing
December 2009

TGF-alpha as a candidate tumor antigen for renal cell carcinomas.

Cancer Immunol Immunother 2009 Aug 4;58(8):1207-18. Epub 2008 Dec 4.

Department of Medicine, CRCHUM-Hôpital Notre-Dame, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.

Objectives: Patients with renal cell carcinomas (RCC) have few treatment options, underscoring the importance of developing new approaches such as immunotherapy. However, few tumor associated antigens (TAA), which can be targeted by immunotherapy, have been identified for this type of cancer. von Hippel-Lindau clear cell RCC (VHL(-/-)RCC) are characterized by mutations in the VHL tumor suppressor gene. Loss of VHL function causes the overexpression of transforming growth factor (TGF)-alpha, leading us to hypothesize that TGF-alpha could be a potential TAA for immunotherapy of kidney cancer, which was evaluated in this study.

Methods And Results: We first confirmed the absent or weak expression of TGF-alpha in important normal tissues as well as its overexpression in 61% of renal tumors in comparison to autologous normal kidney tissues. In addition, we demonstrated the immunogenicity of TGF-alpha, by expanding many T cell lines specific for certain TGF-alpha peptides or the mature TGF-alpha protein, when presented by major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules on the surface of antigen-presenting cells. Interestingly, some of these TGF-alpha-specific T cells were polyfunctionals and secreted IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha and IL-2.

Conclusion: We have shown that TGF-alpha is a valid candidate TAA, which should allow the development of a targeted immunotherapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00262-008-0630-2DOI Listing
August 2009