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Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome (HPS) types 1 and 4 are caused by defective vesicle trafficking. The mechanism for Crohn's disease-like inflammation, lung fibrosis, and macrophage lipid accumulation in these patients remains enigmatic. The aim of this study is to understand the cellular basis of inflammation in HPS-1. We performed mass cytometry, proteomic and transcriptomic analyses to investigate peripheral blood cells and serum of HPS-1 patients. Using spatial transcriptomics, granuloma-associated signatures in the tissue of an HPS-1 patient with granulomatous colitis were dissected. In vitro studies were conducted to investigate anti-microbial responses of HPS-1 patient macrophages and cell lines. Monocytes of HPS-1 patients exhibit an inflammatory phenotype associated with dysregulated TNF, IL-1α, OSM in serum, and monocyte-derived macrophages. Inflammatory macrophages accumulate in the intestine and granuloma-associated macrophages in HPS-1 show transcriptional signatures suggestive of a lipid storage and metabolic defect. We show that HPS1 deficiency leads to an altered metabolic program and Rab32-dependent amplified mTOR signaling, facilitated by the accumulation of mTOR on lysosomes. This pathogenic mechanism translates into aberrant bacterial clearance, which can be rescued with mTORC1 inhibition. Rab32-mediated mTOR signaling acts as an immuno-metabolic checkpoint, adding to the evidence that defective bioenergetics can drive hampered anti-microbial activity and contribute to inflammation.

Original publication




Journal article


Mucosal Immunol

Publication Date





1431 - 1446


Humans, Hermanski-Pudlak Syndrome, Proteomics, Inflammation, TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases, Lipids