Activated Protein C Inhibits Pancreatic Islet Inflammation, Stimulates T Regulatory Cells, and Prevents Diabetes in Non-obese Diabetic (NOD) Mice
Xue, ML; Dervish, S; Harrison, LC; Fulcher, G; Jackson, CJ
JOURNAL OF BIOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY
Activated protein C (aPC) is a natural anticoagulant with strong cyto-protective and anti-inflammatory properties. aPC inhibits pancreatic inflammation and preserves functional islets after intraportal transplantation in mice. Whether aPC prevents the onset or development of type 1 diabetes (T1D) is unknown. In this study, when human recombinant aPC was delivered intraperitoneally, twice weekly for 10 weeks (from week 6 to 15) to non-obese diabetic (NOD) mice, a model for T1D, the incidence of diabetes was reduced from 70% (saline control) to 7.6% by 26 weeks of age. Islets of aPC-treated mice exhibited markedly increased expression of insulin, aPC/protein C, endothelial protein C receptor, and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 when examined by immunostaining. The insulitis score in aPC-treated mice was 50% less than that in control mice. T regulatory cells (Tregs) in the spleen, pancreatic islets, and pancreatic lymph nodes were increased 37, 53, and 59%, respectively, in NOD mice following aPC treatment. These Tregs had potent suppressor function and, after adoptive transfer, delayed diabetes onset in NOD. severe combined immunodeficiency mice. The culture of NOD mouse spleen cells with aPC reduced the secretion of inflammatory cytokines interleukin (IL)-1 beta and interferon-gamma but increased IL-2 and transforming growth factor-beta 1, two cytokines required for Treg differentiation. In summary, our results indicate that aPC prevents T1D in the NOD mouse. The aPC mechanism of action is complex, involving induction of Treg differentiation, inhibition of inflammation, and possibly direct cyto-protective effects on beta cells.
AMER SOC BIOCHEMISTRY MOLECULAR BIOLOGY INC
beta Cell ; Cytokine ; Diabetes ; Inflammation ; Pancreatic Islets ; Transforming Growth Factor beta (TGFbeta) ; NOD Mice ; T Regulatory Cells ; Activated Protein C