Because syndecan-4 (SD-4) is expressed by some (but not all) T cells following activation and serves as the exclusive ligand of dendritic cell-associated heparan sulfate proteoglycan-dependent integrin ligand (DC-HIL), we envisioned the DC-HIL/SD-4 pathway to be a therapeutic target for conditions mediated by selectively activated T cells. We conjugated soluble DC-HIL receptor with the toxin saporin (SAP; DC-HIL-SAP) and showed it to bind activated (but not resting) T cells and become internalized by and deplete SD-4+ T cells. In hapten-sensitized mice, DC-HIL-SAP injected i.v. prior to hapten challenge led to markedly suppressed contact hypersensitivity responses that lasted 3 wk and were restricted to the hapten to which the mice were originally sensitized. Such suppression was not observed when DC-HIL-SAP was applied during sensitization. Moreover, the same infusion of DC-HIL-SAP produced almost complete disappearance of SD-4+ cells in haptenated skin and a 40% reduction of such cells within draining lymph nodes. Our results provide a strong rationale for exploring use of toxin-conjugated DC-HIL to treat activated T cell-driven disease in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy