Article (Scientific journals)
Coxackievirus B4 transplacental infection severely disturbs central tolerogenic mechanisms in the fetal thymus
Halouani, Aymen; Michaux, Helene; Jmii, Habib et al.
2021In Microorganisms, p. 1537
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Keywords :
Coxsackievirus B4; Thymus; In utero infection; Thymic epithelial cells; Central self-tolerance; Transcription factors; Autoantigens; Autoimmunity
Abstract :
[en] Thymus plays a fundamental role in central tolerance establishment, especially during fetal life, through the generation of self-tolerant T cells. This process consists in T cells education by presenting them tissue-restricted autoantigens promiscuously expressed by thymic epithelial cells (TECs), thus preventing autoimmunity. Thymus infection by Coxsackievirus B (CV-B) during fetal life is supposed to disturb thymic functions and, hence, to be an inducing or accelerating factor in the genesis of autoimmunity. To further investigate this hypothesis, in our current study, we analyzed thymic expression of autoantigens, at the transcriptional and protein level, following in utero infection by CV-B4. mRNA expression levels of Igf2 and Myo7, major autoantigens of pancreas and heart, respectively, were analyzed in whole thymus and in enriched TECs together along with both transcription factors, Aire and Fezf2, involved in autoantigens expression in the thymus. Results show that in utero infection by CV-B4 induces a significant decrease in Igf2 and Myo7 expression at both mRNA and protein level in whole thymus and in enriched TECs as well. Moreover, a correlation between viral load and autoantigens expression can be observed in the whole thymus, indicating a direct effect of in utero infection by CV-B4 on autoantigens expression. Together, these results indicate that an in utero infection of the thymus by CV-B4 may interfere with self-tolerance establishment in TECs by decreasing autoantigen expression at both mRNA and protein level and thereby increase the risk of autoimmunity onset.
Research center :
GIGA-I3 - Giga-Infection, Immunity and Inflammation - ULiège
Disciplines :
Endocrinology, metabolism & nutrition
Immunology & infectious disease
Author, co-author :
Halouani, Aymen;  University of Monastir (Tunisia) > Faculty of Pharmacy
Michaux, Helene;  University of Liège > GIGA-I3 Neuroimmuno-Endocrinology
Jmii, Habib;  University of Tunis El Manar > Faculty of Sciences
Trussart, Charlotte ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > GIGA I3 - Immunoendocrinology
Chahbi, Ahlem;  University of Tunis El Manar > Faculty of Sciences
Martens, Henri ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > GIGA I3 - Immunoendocrinology
Renard, Chantal
Aouni, Mahjoub;  University of Monsatir (Tunisia) > Faculty of Pharmacy
Hober, Didier;  Université de Lille > Laboratoire de Virologie EA3610
Geenen, Vincent ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > Centre d'immunologie
Jaïdane, Hela;  University of Monastir (Tunisia) > Faculty of Pharmacy
Language :
English
Title :
Coxackievirus B4 transplacental infection severely disturbs central tolerogenic mechanisms in the fetal thymus
Publication date :
19 July 2021
Journal title :
Microorganisms
eISSN :
2076-2607
Publisher :
Molecular Diversity Preservation International (MDPI), Basel, Switzerland
Pages :
1537
Peer reviewed :
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi
Funders :
Ministère de l'Enseignement Supérieur et de la Recherche (LR99ES27) Tunisie
Erasmus+ Université de Liège
Région wallonne : Direction générale des Technologies, de la Recherche et de l'Energie - DGTRE - THYDIA 181013
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since 03 September 2021

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