Activation of LANCL2 by BT-11 Ameliorates IBD by Supporting Regulatory T Cell Stability Through Immunometabolic Mechanisms

Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2018 Aug 16;24(9):1978-1991. doi: 10.1093/ibd/izy167.


Background: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) afflicts 5 million people and is increasing in prevalence. There is an unmet clinical need for safer and effective treatments for IBD. The BT-11 is a small molecule oral therapeutic that ameliorates IBD by targeting lanthionine synthetase C-like 2 (LANCL2) and has a benign safety profile in rats.

Methods: Mdr1a-/-, dextran sodium sulphate , and adoptive transfer mouse models of colitis were employed to validate therapeutic efficacy and characterize the mechanisms of therapeutic efficacy of BT-11. In vitro cultures of CD4+ T cell differentiation and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells from Crohn's disease patients were used to determine its potential for human translation.

Results: BT-11 reduces inflammation in multiple mouse models of IBD. Oral treatment with BT-11 increases the numbers of lamina propria regulatory T cells (Tregs) in a LANCL2-dependent manner. In vitro, BT-11 increases the differentiation in Treg phenotypes, the upregulation of genes implicated in Treg cell stability, and conditions Treg cells to elicit greater suppressive actions. These immunoregulatory effects are intertwined with the ability of BT-11 to regulate late stage glycolysis and tricarboxylic acid cycle. Immunometabolic mechanistic findings translate into human peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy individuals and Crohn's disease patients.

Conclusions: BT-11 is a safe, efficacious oral therapeutic for IBD with a human translatable mechanism of action that involves activation of LANCL2, immunometabolic modulation of CD4+ T cell subsets leading to stable regulatory phenotypes in the colonic LP.

Keywords: LANCL2; immunometabolism; inflammatory bowel disease; regulatory T cells.

MeSH terms

  • Adoptive Transfer
  • Animals
  • Benzimidazoles / administration & dosage*
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Colitis / chemically induced
  • Colitis / drug therapy*
  • Colitis / immunology*
  • Colon / drug effects
  • Crohn Disease / drug therapy
  • Crohn Disease / immunology
  • Dextran Sulfate
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Mucosa / drug effects
  • Membrane Proteins / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Phenotype
  • Phosphate-Binding Proteins / drug effects*
  • Piperazines / administration & dosage*
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / drug effects
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / drug effects*


  • Benzimidazoles
  • LANCL2 protein, mouse
  • Membrane Proteins
  • N,N-bis(benzimidazolylpicolinoyl)piperazine
  • Phosphate-Binding Proteins
  • Piperazines
  • Dextran Sulfate