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Differential Responsiveness of Monocyte and Macrophage Subsets to Interferon.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients exhibit a gene expression program (interferon [IFN] signature) that is attributed to overproduction of type I IFNs by plasmacytoid dendritic cells. Type I IFNs have been thought to play a role in the pathogenesis of SLE. This study was undertaken to examine an unexpected influence of monocyte/macrophages on the IFN signature. METHODS: Proinflammatory (classic) and antiinflammatory (nonclassic) monocyte/macrophages were sorted from mice and analyzed by RNA sequencing and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Type I IFN-α/β/ω receptor (IFNAR-1) expression was determined by qPCR and flow cytometry. Macrophages were stimulated in vitro with IFNα, and pSTAT1was measured. RESULTS: Transcriptional profiling of peritoneal macrophages from mice with pristane-induced SLE unexpectedly indicated a strong IFN signature in classic, but not nonclassic, monocyte/macrophages exposed to the same type I IFN concentrations. Ifnar1 messenger RNA and IFNAR surface staining were higher in classic monocyte/macrophages versus nonclassic monocyte/macrophages (P < 0.0001 and P < 0.05, respectively, by Students t-test). Nonclassic monocyte/macrophages were also relatively insensitive to IFNα-driven STAT1 phosphorylation. Humans exhibited a similar pattern: higher IFNAR expression (P < 0.0001 by Students t-test) and IFNα-stimulated gene expression (P < 0.01 by paired Wilcoxons rank sum test) in classic monocyte/macrophages and lower levels in nonclassic monocyte/macrophages. CONCLUSION: This study revealed that the relative abundance of different monocyte/macrophage subsets helps determine the magnitude of the IFN signature. Responsiveness to IFNα signaling reflects differences in IFNAR expression in classic (high IFNAR) compared to nonclassic (low IFNAR) monocyte/macrophages. Thus, the IFN signature depends on both type I IFN production and the responsiveness of monocyte/macrophages to IFNAR signaling.

Authors: Han S, Zhuang H, Lee PY, Li M, Yang L, Nigrovic PA, Reeves WH.
Journal: Arthritis Rheumatol. 2020 Jan;72(1):100-113
Year: 2020
PubMed: Find in PubMed