Inflammatory chemokine profiles and their correlations with effector CD4 T cell and regulatory cell subpopulations in cutaneous lupus erythematosus

Silvia Méndez-Flores, Gabriela Hernández-Molina, Daniel Azamar-Llamas, Joaquín Zúñiga, Juanita Romero-Díaz, Janette Furuzawa-Carballeda
Cytokine 2019 March 20, 119: 95-112
We compared the chemokine/receptor expression in skin biopsies of discoid (SLE/DLE) and subacute lupus (SLE/SCLE) and correlated it with tissue and circulating effector CD4 T cells/regulatory cells. Skin biopsies and peripheral blood from 9 active SLE/DLE patients, 9 SLE/SCLE patients, 5 control SLE patients without cutaneous lesions and 10 control healthy donors were included. Clinical skin activity was measured by Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus Disease Area and Severity Index scoring, and systemic activity was measured by a modified SLEDAI-2K excluding the cutaneous items. Pain and pruritus were evaluated by a 10-point visual analogue scale. To determine the frequencies of CXCL-10/CXCR3-, CCL2/CCR2-, CCL17/CCR4-, CCL20/CCR6-, CCL27/CCR10-, CXCL8/CXCR1-, CXCL13/CXCR5-, IL-22-, CD4/IL-17A-, CD4/IL-4-, CD4/IFN-γ-, CD123/IDO-, CD25/Foxp3-, and CD20/IL-10-expressing cells, double immunostaining procedures were performed. Circulating CD4+/CD161-/IL-22+, CD4+/CD161+/IL-17+, CD4+/CD25-/IL-4+, CD4+/CD25-/IFN-γ+, CD4+/CD25hi/Foxp3+, CD3+/CD19+/CD38hi/IL-10+, and CD123+/CD196+/IDO + cells were analyzed by flow cytometry. RESULTS: In the tissue, CXCL10, CXCR5, and CCL20 expression and IL-22+, CD4+/IL-17+, CD4+/IFN-γ + and CD123+/IDO + cell percentages were increased in SLE/DLE versus SLE/SCLE. Circulating CD4+/CD161-/IL-22+, CD4+/CD161+/IL-17+, CD4+/CD25-/IFN-γ+, CD19+/CD38hi/IL-10 + and CD123+/CD196+/IDO + cell percentages were higher in SLE/DLE versus SLE/SCLE. In the tissue, we found positive correlations between CXCR3 and CD4+/IL-17 + cells; CCR2 and CD4+/IFN-γ + cells; and CCR10 and CD123+/IDO + cells in the SLE/DLE patients and between CXCL13 and CD20+/IL-10 + cells in the SLE/SCLE patients. In the peripheral blood, we determined positive correlations between CXCR5 and CD4+/CD25-/IFN-γ + cells; CCL17 and CD4+/CD161-/IL-22 + cells; and CCL17 and CD4+/CD161+/IL-17 + cells in the SLE/DLE patients and between CXCR5 and CD3+/CD19+/CD38hi/IL-10 + cells; CCR2 and CD4+/CD25hi/Foxp3 + cells; and CXCR1 and CD4+/CD25hi/Foxp3 + cells in the SLE/SCLE patients. Positive correlations between the pain score and the expression of CCL2 and CCR6 expression were found in the SLE/SCLE patients. In conclusion, the correlations between the expression of chemokines/receptors and subpopulations of effector/regulatory cells showed differential responses among the cutaneous pathologies.

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