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, 8 (5), 1214-1225

MSC-derived Extracellular Vesicles Attenuate Immune Responses in Two Autoimmune Murine Models: Type 1 Diabetes and Uveoretinitis

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MSC-derived Extracellular Vesicles Attenuate Immune Responses in Two Autoimmune Murine Models: Type 1 Diabetes and Uveoretinitis

Taeko Shigemoto-Kuroda et al. Stem Cell Reports.

Abstract

Accumulating evidence shows that extracellular vesicles (EVs) produced by mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) exert their therapeutic effects in several disease models. We previously demonstrated that MSCs suppress autoimmunity in models of type 1 diabetes (T1D) and experimental autoimmune uveoretinitis (EAU). Therefore, here, we investigated the therapeutic potential of MSC-derived EVs using our established mouse models for autoimmune diseases affecting the pancreas and the eye: T1D and EAU. The data demonstrate that MSC-derived EVs effectively prevent the onset of disease in both T1D and EAU. In addition, the mixed lymphocyte reaction assay with MSC-derived EVs indicated that EVs inhibit activation of antigen-presenting cells and suppress development of T helper 1 (Th1) and Th17 cells. These results raise the possibility that MSC-derived EVs may be an alternative to cell therapy for autoimmune disease prevention.

Keywords: Th1; Th17; antigen-presenting cells; autoimmunity; experimental autoimmune uveoretinitis; mesenchymal stem cells; mesenchymal stromal cells.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
MSCs and MSC-derived EVs Delay the Onset of T1D in Mice (A) Experimental scheme. On day 0, MSCs (1 × 106 cells), EVs (3 μg or 30 μg), or vehicle control were intravenously (IV) infused immediately after injection of splenocytes from diabetic NOD mice into NOD/scid mice. On day 4, MSCs, EVs, or vehicle control were infused again. Mice were monitored for hyperglycemia. (B) Diabetes incidence. PBS (n = 18); 3 μg EVs (n = 8); 30 μg EVs (n = 10); HBSS (n = 10); MSCs (n = 10). p Value by Kaplan-Meier estimator.
Figure 2
Figure 2
MSC-derived EVs Suppress Insulitis in Islets (A) The animals from Figure 1B were killed on day 58 (EV-treated group) and day 50 (MSC-treated group) for tissue harvesting and blood collection, respectively. Representative H&E staining of the pancreases. Arrows indicate islet-infiltrating immune cells. The control pancreas (Con) was obtained from age-matched NOD/scid mice. (B) Number of islets in the pancreas per slide (50 mm2; the bar represents the mean + SD; ∗∗p < 0.01, ∗∗∗p < 0.001 by one-way ANOVA with Dunnett's Multiple Comparison Test), the percentage of islets in each of the infiltration categories (no insulitis, score 0; peri-insular [<25%], score 1; 25–50% islets infiltrated, score 2; >50% islet infiltrated, score 3; 100% islet infiltrated, score 4) (∗∗∗∗p < 0.0001 by two-way ANOVA) and insulitis scores (∗∗p < 0.01; ∗∗∗p < 0.001 by one-way ANOVA). Five slides per mouse (three or five mice per group) were analyzed. (C) Expression of insulin in the plasma. The bar represents the mean + SD. p < 0.05, ∗∗p < 0.01 by one-way ANOVA with Tukey's multiple comparison test. (D) Representative immunofluorescence staining for insulin (green) and CD4 (red). Nuclei were counterstained with DAPI (blue). Arrows indicate expression of insulin and arrowheads indicate CD4 signals. Scale bar, 100 μm.
Figure 3
Figure 3
MSCs and MSC-derived EVs Prevent Development of EAU in Mice (A) Experimental scheme. On day 0, EAU was induced by subcutaneous IRBP injection and intraperitoneal pertussis toxin injection. Right after induction, either MSCs (1 × 106 cells) or MSC-derived EVs (30 μg containing 15 × 109 EVs) were injected into the tail vein. As a control, the same volume of PBS was injected. On day 21, the eyeballs and draining cervical lymph nodes were collected for assays. (B) Representative microphotographs of H&E staining of the eyes (100× magnification), and histologic disease scores of retinal pathology. (C) Representative microphotographs of CD3 immunostaining of the eyes (100× magnification), and quantitative data of the number of CD3+ cells infiltrating the retina and vitreous cavity. Dots represent a single animal, and the data are presented as means ± SD. p < 0.05, ∗∗p < 0.01, ∗∗∗∗p < 0.0001 by one-way ANOVA.
Figure 4
Figure 4
MSC-Derived EVs Suppress Th1 and Th17 Development in EAU Mice (A) Relative quantification (RQ) of Th1 and Th17 cytokines in the eyes of the animals from Figure 3A with real-time RT-PCR assays. Data (mean + SD) were obtained from six mice per group. (B) Representative flow cytometry plots and quantitative results for Th1 and Th17 cells in cervical lymph nodes (CLNs) collected from animals as in Figure 3A. Dots indicate a single animal in (B). The bar represents the mean ± SD. p < 0.05, ∗∗p < 0.01, ∗∗∗p < 0.001 by one-way ANOVA.
Figure 5
Figure 5
MSC-Derived EVs Suppress Th1 and Th17 Development in the MLR (A) Splenic Th1 cytokine expressions at day 5 (IFN-γ; n = 3 for MSCs and n = 4 for EVs) and day 2 (IL-12 p70; n = 3 and TNF-α; n = 4) in the MLR with or without MSCs or MSC-derived EVs. Ratio of MSCs to splenocytes = 1:15, 1: 30, and 1: 60. (B) Th17 cytokine expression at day 2 (IL-6; n = 4) and day 5 (IL-6 and IL-17A/F; n = 3) in the MLR with or without MSC-derived EVs. (C) Representative flow cytometry plots of CD4+CD25+FOXP3+ cells in the MLR assay with or without MSC-derived EV treatment. The cells were first gated on CD4 expression and further analyzed for the expression of CD25 and FOXP3. (D) Expression of IL-10 at day 5 in the MLR with or without MSC-derived EVs (n = 4). Dots indicate independent experiments and all values are means ± SD. p < 0.05, ∗∗p < 0.01, ∗∗∗p < 0.001 by one-way ANOVA.
Figure 6
Figure 6
MSC-Derived EVs Suppress Activation of APCs and T Cells in the MLR (A–C) Representative flow cytometry plots (A and B) and quantification (C) of CD80, CD86, CD40, and MHC-class-II-positive cells in CD11c+ cells on day 2 of the MLR assay with or without MSC-derived EV treatment. The cells were first gated on CD11c expression, and further analyzed for the expression of CD80, CD86, CD40, and MHC class II (n = 3). (D) Expression of IL-10 at day 2 in the MLR with or without MSC-derived EVs (n = 3 for control; n = 4 for EVs). (E) Quantification of flow cytometry analysis of CD40, and MHC-class-II-positive cells in CD11c+ cells on day 2 of the MLR assay with CD11c+ responder cells (n = 3). (F) Expression of IL-2 and IFN-γ in CD4-positive cells at day 2 upon CD3/28 bead stimulation (n = 4). Dots indicate independent experiments and all values are means ± SD. p < 0.05, ∗∗p < 0.01, ∗∗∗p < 0.001 by one-way ANOVA.

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