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Proof of concept study of mass cytometry in septic shock patients reveals novel immune alterations

Gossez, M., Rimmelé, T., Andrieu, T. et al.

Innovative single cell technologies such as mass cytometry (CyTOF) widen possibilities to deeply improve characterisation of immune alterations mechanisms in human diseases. So far, CyTOF has not been used in sepsis – a condition characterized by complex immune disorders. Here, we evaluated feasibility of CyTOF analysis in patients with septic shock. We designed a mass cytometry panel of 25 extracellular markers to study mononuclear cells from 5 septic shock patients and 5 healthy donors. We explored single-cell data with global and specific unsupervised approaches such as heatmaps, SPADE and viSNE. We first validated relevance of our CyTOF results by highlighting established immune hallmarks of sepsis, such as decreased monocyte HLA-DR expression and increased expressions of PD1 and PD-L1 on CD4 T cells and monocytes. We then showed that CyTOF analysis reveals novel aspects of sepsis-induced immune alterations, e.g. B cell shift towards plasma cell differentiation and uniform response of several monocyte markers defining an immune signature in septic patients. This proof of concept study demonstrates CyTOF suitability to analyse immune features of septic patients. Mass cytometry could thus represent a powerful tool to identify novel pathophysiological mechanisms and therapeutic targets for immunotherapy in septic shock patients.

Citation

Gossez, M., Rimmelé, T., Andrieu, T. et al. "Proof of concept study of mass cytometry in septic shock patients reveals novel immune alterations" Scientific Reports (2018): 17,296