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Title: The role of integrin αvβ8 on human monocytes and macrophages in intestinal immune homeostasis
Author: Shuttleworth, Elinor
ISNI:       0000 0004 7657 5572
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2018
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Intestinal immune cells remain tolerant to the trillions of commensal bacteria present in the gut, with perturbations of this process implicated in development of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The cytokine TGF-β is a key factor promoting intestinal immune tolerance, but is secreted in a latent state that requires activation to function. Binding of TGF-β to the integrin αvβ8 is a principal mechanism of TGF-β activation, with mouse models demonstrating a crucial role for αvβ8 expression by dendritic cells and regulatory T cells in intestinal immune regulation. Despite this evidence, very little is known regarding the importance of this activating integrin in human intestinal homeostasis. Utilising flow cytometry here we find that integrin αvβ8 is highly expressed on peripheral blood monocytes with highest levels on intermediate CD14++CD16+ monocytes. Upon monocyte to macrophage differentiation high β8 expression is observed on anti-inflammatory M-CSF differentiated macrophages versus pro-inflammatory GM-CSF macrophages. In monocytes, expression of β8 is upregulated by specific bacterial TLR ligands. Utilising a TGF-β reporter cell line both monocytes and M-CSF MDM display an enhanced ability to activate TGF-β in an αvβ8-dependent manner. Data presented here indicate that macrophage αvβ8-dependent TGF-β activation does not alter expression of surface markers associated with a tolerogenic macrophage phenotype, phagocytosis, or production of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10; nor does TGF-β appear to influence the metabolic profile of macrophages, key differences of which are associated with pro- or anti-inflammatory phenotype. However, the previously undescribed finding of integrin αvβ8 expression on human monocytes and macrophages, which was subsequently confirmed in intestinal populations and found to be downregulated in inflamed IBD mucosa, may highlight an important functional pathway in intestinal immune homeostasis and represent a potential future therapeutic target in IBD.
Supervisor: Mclaughlin, John ; Travis, Mark Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Macrophage ; IBD ; Integrin avß8 ; Monocyte ; TGF-ß