Gastrointestinal acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) occurring after allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplant is an allo-reactive T cell and inflammatory cytokine driven organ injury with epithelial apoptosis as 1 of its hallmark findings and is associated with significant mortality. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha-induced protein 8 (TNFAIP8 or TIPE) acts as a negative mediator of apoptosis via inhibition of caspase-3 activation, promotes cell proliferation and Tipe−/−
deficiency is associated with increased inflammation.
To evaluate the role of TIPE in acute GVHD, naive C57BL/6 and Tipe−/−
C57BL/6 mice were conditioned with 1000 cGy single dose total body irradiation, followed by transplantation of 10 million bone marrow cells and 20 million splenocytes from either syngeneic C57BL/6 or allogeneic BALB/c donors.
Allo TIPE-deficient mice developed exacerbated gut GVHD compared with allo controls and had significantly decreased survival (6 wk overall survival: 85% versus 37%; P
< 0.05), higher clinical GVHD scores, more profound weight loss, increased serum proinflammatory cytokines (interleukin-17A, TNF, interleukin-6, and interferon-γ). T-cell infiltration into the ileum was increased; epithelial proliferation was decreased along with significantly higher levels of chemokines KC and monokine induced by gamma interferon. Using bone marrow chimeric experiments, TIPE was found to have a role in both hematopoietic and nonhematopoietic cells.
Absence of TIPE results in excessive inflammation and tissue injury after allo-HCT, supporting that TIPE confers immune homeostasis and has tissue-protective function during the development of gut GVHD and may be a potential future target to prevent or treat this complication after allogeneic HCT.