Protosappanin A protects against experimental autoimmune myocarditis, and induces metabolically reprogrammed tolerogenic DCs.


Department of Cardiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, China; The Key Laboratory of Myocardial Ischemia, Harbin Medical University, Ministry of Education, Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, China. Electronic address: [Email]


Autoimmune myocarditis is an immune-mediated myocardial injury that evolves into dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Protosappanin A (PrA), an immunosuppressive compound, induces immune tolerance in cardiac transplantation. However, whether PrA confers protective immunosuppression on experimental autoimmune myocarditis (EAM) is unknown. In this study, PrA treatment remarkably suppressed cardiac inflammatory cell infiltration and ameliorated cardiac remodeling in EAM mice. Additionally, PrA treatment reduced splenic T cells response, and induced expansion of immunosuppressive regulatory T cells (Tregs). Meanwhile, PrA induced the splenic dendritic cells (DCs) into a tolerogenic state with reduced co-stimulatory molecules, increased the production of tolerogenic cytokines in vivo. PrA also reprogrammed the metabolism of splenic DCs to a more glycolytic phenotype. To further investigate the effect of PrA on the functional and metabolic phenotype of DCs, the compound was added into the in vitro culture of MyHC-α-loaded DCs. These cells switched to a tolerogenic state and a metabolic profile similar to that found in cells during in ex vivo experiments. Treatment with glycolytic inhibitor 2-DG significantly reversed PrA-mediated DC tolerogenic properties, suggesting that glycolysis is indispensable for PrA-conditioned DCs to maintain their tolerogenic properties. Notably, PrA-conditioned DC vaccinations dampened EAM progress, and promoted Tregs expansion. Similarly, tolerogenic and metabolic patterns were also observed in PrA-modified human DC. In conclusion, PrA endows DC with a tolerogenic profile via glycolytic reprogramming, thereby inducing expansion of immunosuppressive Tregs, and preventing EAM progress. Our results suggested that PrA may confer immunosuppressive and protective effects on EAM by metabolically reprogramming DCs, which could contribute to the development of a new potential immunotherapy for the treatment of EAM and immune-related disorders.


Autoimmune myocarditis,Glycolysis,Protosappanin A,Tolerogenic DC,Treg,

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