These guidelines are a consensus work of a considerable number of members of the immunology and flow cytometry community. They provide the theory and key practical aspects of flow cytometry enabling immunologists to avoid the common errors that often undermine immunological data. Notably, there are comprehensive sections of all major immune cell types with helpful Tables detailing phenotypes in murine and human cells. The latest flow cytometry techniques and applications are also described, featuring examples of the data that can be generated and, importantly, how the data can be analysed. Furthermore, there are sections detailing tips, tricks and pitfalls to avoid, all written and peer‐reviewed by leading experts in the field, making this an essential research companion.
International audienceThe classical model of hematopoiesis established in the mouse postulates that lymphoid cells originate from a founder population of common lymphoid progenitors. Here, using a modeling approach in humanized mice, we showed that human lymphoid development stemmed from distinct populations of CD127(-) and CD127(+) early lymphoid progenitors (ELPs). Combining molecular analyses with in vitro and in vivo functional assays, we demonstrated that CD127(-) and CD127(+) ELPs emerged independently from lympho-mono-dendritic progenitors, responded differently to Notch1 signals, underwent divergent modes of lineage restriction, and displayed both common and specific differentiation potentials. Whereas CD127(-) ELPs comprised precursors of T cells, marginal zone B cells, and natural killer (NK) and innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), CD127(+) ELPs supported production of all NK cell, ILC, and B cell populations but lacked T potential. On the basis of these results, we propose a "two-family" model of human lymphoid development that differs from the prevailing model of hematopoiesis
Major advances in preventing, delaying or curing individual pathologies are responsible for an increasingly long life span in the developed parts of our planet, and indeed reaching 8–9 decades of life is nowadays extremely frequent. However, medical and sanitary advances have not prevented or delayed the underlying cause of the disparate pathologies occurring in the elderly: aging itself. The identification of the basis of the aging processes that drives the multiple pathologies and loss of function typical of older individuals is a major challenge in current aging research. Among the possible causes, an impairment of the immune system plays a major role, and indeed numerous studies have described immunological changes which occur with age. Far from the intention of being exhaustive, this review will focus on recent advances and views on the role that modifications of cell signalling and remodelling of the immune response play during human aging and longevity, paying particular attention to phenomena which are linked to the so called inflammaging process, such as dysregulation of innate immunity, altered T-cell or B-cell maturation and differentiation, as well as to the implications of immune aging for vaccination strategies in the elderly.
Dominant optic atrophy (DOA) is characterized by retinal ganglion cell degeneration leading to optic neuropathy. A subset of DOA is caused by mutations in the OPA1 gene, encoding for a dynamin-related GTPase required for mitochondrial fusion. The functional consequences of OPA1 mutations in DOA patients are still poorly understood. This study investigated the effect of five different OPA1 pathogenic mutations on the energetic efficiency and mitochondrial network dynamics of skin fibroblasts from patients. Although DOA fibroblasts maintained their ATP levels and grew in galactose medium, i.e. under forced oxidative metabolism, a significant impairment in mitochondrial ATP synthesis driven by complex I substrates was found. Furthermore, balloon-like structures in the mitochondrial reticulum were observed in galactose medium and mitochondrial fusion was completely inhibited in about 50% of DOA fibroblasts, but not in control cells. Respiratory complex assembly and the expression level of complex I subunits were similar in control and DOA fibroblasts. Co-immunoprecipitation experiments revealed that OPA1 directly interacts with subunits of complexes I, II and III, but not IV and with apoptosis inducing factor. The results disclose a novel link between OPA1, apoptosis inducing factor and the respiratory complexes that may shed some light on the pathogenic mechanism of DOA.
Several molecules present in the diet, including flavonoids, can inhibit the growth of cancer cells with an ability to act as “chemopreventers”. Their cancer-preventive effects have been attributed to various mechanisms, including the induction of cell-cycle arrest and/or apoptosis as well as the antioxidant functions. The antioxidant activity of chemopreventers has recently received a great interest, essentially because oxidative stress participates in the initiation and progression of different pathological conditions, including cancer. Since antioxidants are capable of preventing oxidative damage, the wide use of natural food-derived antioxidants is receiving greater attention as potential anti-carcinogens. Among flavonoids, quercetin (Qu) is considered an excellent free-radical scavenging antioxidant, even if such an activity strongly depends on the intracellular availability of reduced glutathione. Apart from antioxidant activity, Qu also exerts a direct, pro-apoptotic effect in tumor cells, and can indeed block the growth of several human cancer cell lines at different phases of the cell cycle. Both these effects have been documented in a wide variety of cellular models as well as in animal models. The high toxicity exerted by Qu on cancer cells perfectly matches with the almost total absence of any damages for normal, non-transformed cells. In this review we discuss the molecular mechanisms that are based on the biological effects of Qu, and their relevance for human health.
Mitochondrial components, including mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), when released extracellularly, can act as "damage-associated molecular pattern" (DAMP) agents and cause inflammation. As many elderly people are characterized by a low-grade, chronic inflammatory status defined "inflamm-aging," we evaluated if circulating mtDNA can contribute to this phenomenon. Eight hundred and thirty-one Caucasian subjects were enrolled in the study, including 429 siblings aged 90-104 (90+ siblings). mtDNA plasma levels increased gradually after the fifth decade of life. In 90+ subjects, mtDNA values of two members of the same sibling relationship were directly correlated, suggesting a role for familiar/genetic background in controlling the levels of circulating mtDNA. The subjects with the highest mtDNA plasma levels had the highest amounts of TNF-α, IL-6, RANTES, and IL-1ra; the subjects with the lowest mtDNA levels had the lowest levels of the same cytokines. In vitro stimulation of monocytes with mtDNA concentrations similar to the highest levels observed in vivo resulted in an increased production of TNF-α, suggesting that mtDNA can modulate the production of proinflammatory cytokines. Our findings therefore show that circulating mtDNA increases with age, and can significantly contribute to the maintenance of the low-grade, chronic inflammation observed in elderly people.
A main feature of cancer cells, when compared to normal ones, is a persistent pro-oxidative state that leads to an intrinsic oxidative stress. Cancer cells have higher levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) than normal cells, and ROS are, in turn, responsible for the maintenance of the cancer phenotype. Persistent ROS stress may induce adaptive stress responses, enabling cancer cells to survive with high levels of ROS and maintain cellular viability. However, excessive ROS levels render cancer cells highly susceptible to quercetin, one of the main dietary flavonoids. Quercetin depletes intracellular glutathione and increases intracellular ROS to a level that can cause cell death.
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