Mycobacterium tuberculosis continues to cause devastating levels of mortality due to tuberculosis (TB). The failure to control TB stems from an incomplete understanding of the highly specialized strategies that M. tuberculosis utilizes to modulate host immunity and thereby persist in host lungs. Here, we show that M. tuberculosis induced the expression of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO), an enzyme involved in tryptophan catabolism, in macrophages and in the lungs of animals (mice and macaque) with active disease. In a macaque model of inhalation TB, suppression of IDO activity reduced bacterial burden, pathology, and clinical signs of TB disease, leading to increased host survival. This increased protection was accompanied by increased lung T cell proliferation, induction of inducible bronchus-associated lymphoid tissue and correlates of bacterial killing, reduced checkpoint signaling, and the relocation of effector T cells to the center of the granulomata. The enhanced killing of M. tuberculosis in macrophages in vivo by CD4+ T cells was also replicated in vitro, in cocultures of macaque macrophages and CD4+ T cells. Collectively, these results suggest that there exists a potential for using IDO inhibition as an effective and clinically relevant host-directed therapy for TB.
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Jan 2 2018|
- T cell