Dendritic cells orchestrate the crosstalk between innate and adaptive immunity. CD8α+ dendritic cells present antigens to CD8+ T cells and elicit cytotoxic T cell responses to viruses, bacteria and tumours 1 . Although lineage-specific transcriptional regulators of CD8α+ dendritic cell development have been identified 2 , the molecular pathways that selectively orchestrate CD8α+ dendritic cell function remain elusive. Moreover, metabolic reprogramming is important for dendritic cell development and activation 3,4 , but metabolic dependence and regulation of dendritic cell subsets are largely uncharacterized. Here we use a data-driven systems biology algorithm (NetBID) to identify a role of the Hippo pathway kinases Mst1 and Mst2 (Mst1/2) in selectively programming CD8α+ dendritic cell function and metabolism. Our NetBID analysis reveals a marked enrichment of the activities of Hippo pathway kinases in CD8α+ dendritic cells relative to CD8α− dendritic cells. Dendritic cell-specific deletion of Mst1/2—but not Lats1 and Lats2 (Lats1/2) or Yap and Taz (Yap/Taz), which mediate canonical Hippo signalling—disrupts homeostasis and function of CD8+ T cells and anti-tumour immunity. Mst1/2-deficient CD8α+ dendritic cells are impaired in presentation of extracellular proteins and cognate peptides to prime CD8+ T cells, while CD8α− dendritic cells that lack Mst1/2 have largely normal function. Mechanistically, compared to CD8α− dendritic cells, CD8α+ dendritic cells exhibit much stronger oxidative metabolism and critically depend on Mst1/2 signalling to maintain bioenergetic activities and mitochondrial dynamics for their functional capacities. Further, selective expression of IL-12 by CD8α+ dendritic cells depends on Mst1/2 and the crosstalk with non-canonical NF-κB signalling. Our findings identify Mst1/2 as selective drivers of CD8α+ dendritic cell function by integrating metabolic activity and cytokine signalling, and highlight that the interplay between immune signalling and metabolic reprogramming underlies the unique functions of dendritic cell subsets.
Nature – Springer Journals
Published: May 30, 2018
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