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Special Issue "Immunomodulatory Compounds"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Chemical Biology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2018)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Günter Lochnit

Protein Analytics, Institute of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Justus-Liebig-University Giessen, Giessen, Germany
Website | E-Mail
Interests: protein analytics; mass spectrometry; C. Elegans; nematodes; parasitology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nature has developed, during evolution, a broad variety of immunomodulatory compounds, e.g., to facilitate invasion and/or persistence of pathogens and parasites. The characterization of these compounds have provided new insights into immunology, parasitology and various diseases, such as autoimmune diseases. The development of chemical analogues of these naturally-occurring compounds has opened a new field of drug development and medical therapy.

The scope of this Special Issue is to give an overview of this field, comprising the detection and characterization of naturally-occurring immunomodulatory compounds, their application in medicine and veterinary medicine, and the development of chemical analogues and their therapeutic perspectives.

Prof. Dr. Günter Lochnit
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Immunology
  • Immunomodulation
  • Parasitology
  • autoimmune diseases
  • inflammation
  • pharmacology
  • immunotherapy
  • hepatic targeting

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Biological Activity of the Carrier as a Factor in Immunogen Design for Haptens
Molecules 2018, 23(11), 2977; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23112977
Received: 21 October 2018 / Revised: 27 October 2018 / Accepted: 29 October 2018 / Published: 14 November 2018
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Abstract
Immunoanalytical methods are frequently employed in the detection of hazardous small molecular weight compounds. However, antibody development for these molecules is a challenge, because they are haptens and cannot induce a humoral immune response in experimental animals. Immunogenic forms of haptens are usually
[...] Read more.
Immunoanalytical methods are frequently employed in the detection of hazardous small molecular weight compounds. However, antibody development for these molecules is a challenge, because they are haptens and cannot induce a humoral immune response in experimental animals. Immunogenic forms of haptens are usually prepared by conjugating them to a protein carrier which serves as an immune stimulator. However, the carrier is usually considered merely as a bulk mass, and its biological activity is ignored. Here, we induced an endocytic receptor, transferrin receptor, by selecting its ligand as a carrier protein to enhance antibody production. We conjugated aflatoxin, a potent carcinogenic food contaminant, to transferrin and evaluated its potential to stimulate antibody production with respect to ovalbumin conjugates. Transferrin conjugates induced aflatoxin-specific immune responses in the second immunization, while ovalbumin conjugates reached similar antibody titers after 5 injections. Monoclonal antibodies were successfully developed with mice immunized with either of the conjugates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessArticle Failure of the Anti-Inflammatory Parasitic Worm Product ES-62 to Provide Protection in Mouse Models of Type I Diabetes, Multiple Sclerosis, and Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Molecules 2018, 23(10), 2669; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23102669
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 24 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 October 2018 / Published: 17 October 2018
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Abstract
Parasitic helminths and their isolated secreted products show promise as novel treatments for allergic and autoimmune conditions in humans. Foremost amongst the secreted products is ES-62, a glycoprotein derived from Acanthocheilonema viteae, a filarial nematode parasite of gerbils, which is anti-inflammatory by
[...] Read more.
Parasitic helminths and their isolated secreted products show promise as novel treatments for allergic and autoimmune conditions in humans. Foremost amongst the secreted products is ES-62, a glycoprotein derived from Acanthocheilonema viteae, a filarial nematode parasite of gerbils, which is anti-inflammatory by virtue of covalently-attached phosphorylcholine (PC) moieties. ES-62 has been found to protect against disease in mouse models of rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and airway hyper-responsiveness. Furthermore, novel PC-based synthetic small molecule analogues (SMAs) of ES-62 have recently been demonstrated to show similar anti-inflammatory properties to the parent molecule. In spite of these successes, we now show that ES-62 and its SMAs are unable to provide protection in mouse models of certain autoimmune conditions where other helminth species or their secreted products can prevent disease development, namely type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis and inflammatory bowel disease. We speculate on the reasons underlying ES-62’s failures in these conditions and how the negative data generated may help us to further understand ES-62’s mechanism of action. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessArticle 1,4-β-d-Glucomannan from Dendrobium officinale Activates NF-кB via TLR4 to Regulate the Immune Response
Molecules 2018, 23(10), 2658; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23102658
Received: 15 September 2018 / Revised: 12 October 2018 / Accepted: 14 October 2018 / Published: 16 October 2018
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Abstract
2,3-O-acetylated-1,4-β-d-glucomannan (DOP-1-1) is a polysaccharide isolated from the stem of Dendrobium officinale. DOP-1-1 has been demonstrated to have remarkable immunomodulatory properties, but little is known about the influence of its structural diversity on bioactivity (and even
[...] Read more.
2,3-O-acetylated-1,4-β-d-glucomannan (DOP-1-1) is a polysaccharide isolated from the stem of Dendrobium officinale. DOP-1-1 has been demonstrated to have remarkable immunomodulatory properties, but little is known about the influence of its structural diversity on bioactivity (and even less about the exact mechanism underlying its immune responses). First, DOP-1-1 was stabilized at different temperatures and pH conditions based on differential scanning calorimetry and size exclusion-chromatography–high-performance liquid chromatography. Then, a detailed study on the effects of DOP-1-1 on a human leukemia monocytic cell line (THP-1) under normal conditions was undertaken. DOP-1-1 promoted the translocation of nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) and degradation of IκB proteins. The expression of genes and proteins closely associated with the immune, survival and apoptotic functions of NF-κB were analyzed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Furthermore, CCL4 and IP10 were confirmed to be the novel targets of the immune response stimulated by DOP-1-1. The phosphorylation of NF-кB was inhibited by treatment with a toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) antagonist (TAK-242) and myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88) inhibitor (ST2825). These data suggested: (i) the O-acetylated glucomannan DOP-1-1 is present in the steady state in low-pH solutions; (ii) DOP-1-1 can induce an immune response through NF-кB mediated by a TLR4 signaling pathway; and (iii) CCL4 and IP10 could be the novel targets of the immune response stimulated by O-acetylated glucomannan. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessCommunication The Response of IL-17-Producing B Cells to ArtinM Is Independent of Its Interaction with TLR2 and CD14
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2339; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092339
Received: 30 July 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 29 August 2018 / Published: 13 September 2018
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Abstract
ArtinM, a d-mannose-binding lectin from Artocarpus heterophyllus, activates antigen-presenting cells by recognizing Toll-like receptor (TLR)2 and cluster of differentiation (CD)14 N-glycans, induces cytokine production, and promotes type 1 T helper (Th1) immunity, a process that plays an assisting role in
[...] Read more.
ArtinM, a d-mannose-binding lectin from Artocarpus heterophyllus, activates antigen-presenting cells by recognizing Toll-like receptor (TLR)2 and cluster of differentiation (CD)14 N-glycans, induces cytokine production, and promotes type 1 T helper (Th1) immunity, a process that plays an assisting role in the combat against fungal infections. We recently demonstrated that ArtinM stimulates CD4+ T cells to produce interleukin (IL)-17 through direct interaction with CD3. Here, we further investigated the effects of ArtinM on the production of IL-17 by B cell activation. We showed that ArtinM activates murine B cells, increasing IL-17 and IL-12p40 production. The direct effect of ArtinM was sufficient to induce IL-17 production in B cells, and we did not find differences in the levels of IL-17 between the B cells purified from the wild-type (WT) and knockout (KO) mice for TLR2 or CD14 in the presence of ArtinM. Thus, the effects of ArtinM on splenic B cells through carbohydrate recognition may contribute to Th17 immunity; however, the mechanism involved is not associated with the interaction of ArtinM with TLR2 and CD14. The current work represents a pioneering effort in the understanding of the induction of IL-17 by lectins in B cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessArticle Phosphocholine-Modified Lipooligosaccharides of Haemophilus influenzae Inhibit ATP-Induced IL-1β Release by Pulmonary Epithelial Cells
Molecules 2018, 23(8), 1979; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23081979
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 19 July 2018 / Accepted: 27 July 2018 / Published: 8 August 2018
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Abstract
Phosphocholine-modified bacterial cell wall components are virulence factors enabling immune evasion and permanent colonization of the mammalian host, by mechanisms that are poorly understood. Recently, we demonstrated that free phosphocholine (PC) and PC-modified lipooligosaccharides (PC-LOS) from Haemophilus influenzae, an opportunistic pathogen of
[...] Read more.
Phosphocholine-modified bacterial cell wall components are virulence factors enabling immune evasion and permanent colonization of the mammalian host, by mechanisms that are poorly understood. Recently, we demonstrated that free phosphocholine (PC) and PC-modified lipooligosaccharides (PC-LOS) from Haemophilus influenzae, an opportunistic pathogen of the upper and lower airways, function as unconventional nicotinic agonists and efficiently inhibit the ATP-induced release of monocytic IL-1β. We hypothesize that H. influenzae PC-LOS exert similar effects on pulmonary epithelial cells and on the complex lung tissue. The human lung carcinoma-derived epithelial cell lines A549 and Calu-3 were primed with lipopolysaccharide from Escherichia coli followed by stimulation with ATP in the presence or absence of PC or PC-LOS or LOS devoid of PC. The involvement of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors was tested using specific antagonists. We demonstrate that PC and PC-LOS efficiently inhibit ATP-mediated IL-1β release by A549 and Calu-3 cells via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing subunits α7, α9, and/or α10. Primed precision-cut lung slices behaved similarly. We conclude that H. influenzae hijacked an endogenous anti-inflammatory cholinergic control mechanism of the lung to evade innate immune responses of the host. These findings may pave the way towards a host-centered antibiotic treatment of chronic airway infections with H. influenzae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Heat Shock Proteins as Immunomodulants
Molecules 2018, 23(11), 2846; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23112846
Received: 15 October 2018 / Revised: 30 October 2018 / Accepted: 30 October 2018 / Published: 1 November 2018
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Abstract
Heat shock proteins (Hsps) are conserved molecules whose main role is to facilitate folding of other proteins. Most Hsps are generally stress-inducible as they play a particularly important cytoprotective role in cells exposed to stressful conditions. Initially, Hsps were generally thought to occur
[...] Read more.
Heat shock proteins (Hsps) are conserved molecules whose main role is to facilitate folding of other proteins. Most Hsps are generally stress-inducible as they play a particularly important cytoprotective role in cells exposed to stressful conditions. Initially, Hsps were generally thought to occur intracellulary. However, recent work has shown that some Hsps are secreted to the cell exterior particularly in response to stress. For this reason, they are generally regarded as danger signaling biomarkers. In this way, they prompt the immune system to react to prevailing adverse cellular conditions. For example, their enhanced secretion by cancer cells facilitate targeting of these cells by natural killer cells. Notably, Hsps are implicated in both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory responses. Their effects on immune cells depends on a number of aspects such as concentration of the respective Hsp species. In addition, various Hsp species exert unique effects on immune cells. Because of their conservation, Hsps are implicated in auto-immune diseases. Here we discuss the various metabolic pathways in which various Hsps manifest immune modulation. In addition, we discuss possible experimental variations that may account for contradictory reports on the immunomodulatory function of some Hsps. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Immunomodulators Inspired by Nature: A Review on Curcumin and Echinacea
Molecules 2018, 23(11), 2778; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23112778
Received: 29 September 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 24 October 2018 / Published: 26 October 2018
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Abstract
The immune system is an efficient integrated network of cellular elements and chemicals developed to preserve the integrity of the organism against external insults and its correct functioning and balance are essential to avoid the occurrence of a great variety of disorders. To
[...] Read more.
The immune system is an efficient integrated network of cellular elements and chemicals developed to preserve the integrity of the organism against external insults and its correct functioning and balance are essential to avoid the occurrence of a great variety of disorders. To date, evidence from literature highlights an increase in immunological diseases and a great attention has been focused on the development of molecules able to modulate the immune response. There is an enormous global demand for new effective therapies and researchers are investigating new fields. One promising strategy is the use of herbal medicines as integrative, complementary and preventive therapy. The active components in medical plants have always been an important source of clinical therapeutics and the study of their molecular pharmacology is an enormous challenge since they offer a great chemical diversity with often multi-pharmacological activity. In this review, we mainly analysed the immunomodulatory/antinflammatory activity of Echinacea spp. and Curcuma longa, focusing on some issues of the phytochemical research and on new possible strategies to obtain novel agents to supplement the present therapies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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Open AccessReview Immunomodulatory Action of Substituted 1,3,4-Thiadiazines on the Course of Myocardial Infarction
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1611; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071611
Received: 11 June 2018 / Revised: 29 June 2018 / Accepted: 30 June 2018 / Published: 2 July 2018
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Abstract
This review focuses on the biological action of the compounds from the group of substituted 1,3,4-thiadiazines on stress response and myocardial infarction. The aim of this review is to propose the possible mechanisms of action of 1,3,4-thiadiazines and offer prospectives in the development
[...] Read more.
This review focuses on the biological action of the compounds from the group of substituted 1,3,4-thiadiazines on stress response and myocardial infarction. The aim of this review is to propose the possible mechanisms of action of 1,3,4-thiadiazines and offer prospectives in the development of new derivatives as therapeutic agents. It is known, that compounds that have biological effects similar to those used as antidepressants can down-regulate the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines, up-regulate the release of anti-inflammatory ones and affect cell recruitment, which allows them to be considered immunomodulators as well. The results of pharmacological evaluation, in silico studies, and in vivo experiments of several compounds from the group of substituted 1,3,4-thiadiazines with antidepressant properties are presented. It is proposed that the cardioprotective effects of substituted 1,3,4-thiadiazines might be explained by the peculiarities of their multi-target action: the ability of the compounds to interact with various types of receptors and transporters of dopaminergic, serotonergic and acetylcholinergic systems and to block the kinase signal pathway PI3K-AKT. The described effects of substituted 1,3,4-thiadiazines suggest that it is necessary to search for a new agents for limiting the peripheral inflammatory/ischemic damage through the entral mechanisms of stress reaction and modifying pro-inflammatory cytokine signaling pathways in the brain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunomodulatory Compounds)
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