The Francis Crick Institute
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Blimp-1 and c-Maf regulate  Il10 and negatively regulate common and unique proinflammatory gene networks in IL-12 plus IL-27-driven T helper-1 cells.

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journal contribution
posted on 2024-01-02, 11:52 authored by Luke S Cox, Marisol Alvarez-Martinez, Xuemei Wu, Leona Gabryšová, Raphaëlle Luisier, James Briscoe, Nicholas M Luscombe, Anne O'Garra
BACKGROUND: CD4 + Th1 cells producing IFN-γ are required to eradicate intracellular pathogens, however if uncontrolled these cells can cause immunopathology. The cytokine IL-10 is produced by multiple immune cells including Th1 cells during infection and regulates the immune response to minimise collateral host damage. In this study we aimed to elucidate the transcriptional network of genes controlling the expression of Il10 and proinflammatory cytokines, including Ifng in Th1 cells differentiated from mouse naive CD4 + T cells. METHODS: We applied computational analysis of gene regulation derived from temporal profiling of gene expression clusters obtained from bulk RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) of flow cytometry sorted naïve CD4 + T cells from mouse spleens differentiated in vitro into Th1 effector cells with IL-12 and IL-27 to produce Ifng and Il10, compared to IL-27 alone which express Il10 only , or IL-12 alone which express Ifng and no Il10, or medium control driven-CD4 + T cells which do not express effector cytokines . Data were integrated with analysis of active genomic regions from these T cells using an assay for transposase-accessible chromatin with sequencing (ATAC)-seq, integrated with literature derived-Chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP)-seq data and the RNA-seq data, to elucidate the transcriptional network of genes controlling expression of Il10 and pro-inflammatory effector genes in Th1 cells. The co-dominant role for the transcription factors, Prdm1 (encoding Blimp-1) and Maf (encoding c-Maf) , in cytokine gene regulation in Th1 cells, was confirmed using T cells obtained from mice with T-cell specific deletion of these transcription factors. RESULTS: We show that the transcription factors Blimp-1 and c-Maf each have unique and common effects on cytokine gene regulation and not only co-operate to induce Il10 gene expression in IL-12 plus IL-27 differentiated mouse Th1 cells, but additionally directly negatively regulate key proinflammatory cytokines including Ifng, thus providing mechanisms for reinforcement of regulated Th1 cell responses. CONCLUSIONS: These data show that Blimp-1 and c-Maf positively and negatively regulate a network of both unique and common anti-inflammatory and pro-inflammatory genes to reinforce a Th1 response in mice that will eradicate pathogens with minimum immunopathology.


Crick (Grant ID: CC2099, Grant title: Luscombe CC2099) Crick (Grant ID: CC2084, Grant title: O'Garrra CC2084) Crick (Grant ID: CC2032, Grant title: Briscoe CC2032) Wellcome Trust (Grant ID: 215628/Z/19/Z, Grant title: WT 215628/Z/19/Z)