Nonmyeloablative conditioning using total lymphoid irradiation (TLI) and rabbit antithymocyte serum (ATS) (the murine preclinical equivalent of antithymocyte globulin [ATG]) facilitates immune tolerance after bone marrow transplantation (BMT) across major histocompatibility complex (MHC) disparities and may be a useful strategy for nonmalignant disorders. We previously reported that donor effector T-cell function and graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) are regulated via recipient invariant natural killer T-cell (iNKT) interleukin-4-driven expansion of donor Foxp31 naturally occurring regulatory T cells (Tregs). This occurs via recipient iNKT-and STAT6-dependent expansion of recipient myeloid dendritic cells (MDCs) that induce contact-dependent expansion of donor Treg through PD-1/PD ligand signaling. After TLI/ATS1BMT,Gr-1lowCD11c1MDCs and Gr-1highCD11cneg myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) were enriched in GVHD target organs. We now report that the recovery of both recipient MDSCs (P < .01) and MDCs (P < .01) is significantly increased when the alkylator cyclophosphamide (CTX) is added to TLI/ATS conditioning. In a BALB/c→B6 lethal GVHD model, adoptive transfer of MDSCs from TLI/ATS/CTX-conditioned recipients is associated with significantly improved GVHD colitis and survival (P < .001), conversion of MDSCs to PD ligand-expressing MDCs, and increased donor naturally occurring Treg recovery (P < .01) compared with control treatment. Using BALB/c donors and b-Thalassemic HW-80 recipients, we found significantly improved rates of engraftment and GVHD following TLI/ATS/CTX compared with TLI/ATS, lethal or sublethal total body irradiation/ATS/CTX, or CTX/ATS conditioning. These data provide preclinical support for trials of TLI/ATG/alkylator regimens for MHC-mismatched BMT for hemoglobinopathies. The data also delineate innate immune mechanisms by which TLI/ATS/CTX conditioning may augment transplantation tolerance.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology