GROWTH CONTROL OF NORMAL AND CIRRHOTIC HEPATOCYTES

Summary

Principal Investigator: Kevin Behrns
Abstract: Liver cirrhosis has an increasing incidence and prevalence in the United States and is closely associated with the development of hepatocellular carcinoma, which has a dismal long-term prognosis. The mechanisms that lead to dysregulated cirrhotic hepatocyte growth are unknown. In our K08 and R03 awards we hypothesized that cirrhotic hepatocytes would be less sensitive to pro-apoptotic agents. We demonstrated that murine cirrhotic hepatocytes exhibited markedly decreased apoptosis after treatment with transforming growth factor beta (TGFbeta), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFalpha), and ultraviolet radiation. Gene expression profiles revealed decreased anti-oxidant gene expression. This is a curious finding in face of known increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) in CCI4-treated hepatocytes. In normal hepatocytes, we found that TGFbeta-induced apoptosis was dependent on increased ROS, caspase-8 activation, and the mitochondrial permeability transition (MPT). Cirrhotic hepatocytes exhibited no ROS burst, caspase activation, or MPT. Pre-treatment with the anti-oxidant, trolox, however, permitted TGFbeta-induced apoptosis in cirrhotic hepatocytes suggesting that markedly increased ROS in cirrhotic hepatocytes may protect against apoptosis. Furthermore in SmadS wild-type and knockout mice, we showed that SmadS was necessary for ROS generation and apoptosis. Also, changes in cirrhotic hepatocyte sensitivity to apoptosis may be due to altered extracellular matrix and integrin expression in the cirrhotic liver. In preliminary experiments, we have shown that CCI4-treated mouse hepatocytes have novel expression of the integrin alpha6beta1 compared to normal hepatocytes. These changes may mediate growth related signaling through focal adhesion kinase and related pathways. In this proposal we plan to investigate the following: (1) To determine differences between the TGFbeta-induced apoptotic and Smad signaling pathways that account for cirrhotic hepatocyte resistance to apoptosis. (2) To assess alterations in integrin expression and extracellular matrix related survival signaling pathways in normal and cirrhotic hepatocytes. (3) To determine if cirrhotic human hepatocytes are resistant to TGFbeta-induced apoptosis via mechanisms that are operative in a murine model.
Funding Period: ----------------2010 - ---------------2011-
more information: NIH RePORT

Top Publications

  1. pmc Basal reactive oxygen species determine the susceptibility to apoptosis in cirrhotic hepatocytes
    Jay Raval
    Department of Surgery, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA
    Free Radic Biol Med 41:1645-54. 2006
  2. pmc Murine cirrhosis induces hepatocyte epithelial mesenchymal transition and alterations in survival signaling pathways
    Takashi Nitta
    Department of Surgery, Division of General and Gastrointestinal GI Surgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
    Hepatology 48:909-19. 2008
  3. ncbi Quantitative in vivo imaging of non-viral-mediated gene expression and RNAi-mediated knockdown
    Garrett R Rettig
    Division of Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry, College of Pharmacy, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA
    Methods Mol Biol 574:155-71. 2009

Detail Information

Publications4

  1. pmc Basal reactive oxygen species determine the susceptibility to apoptosis in cirrhotic hepatocytes
    Jay Raval
    Department of Surgery, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA
    Free Radic Biol Med 41:1645-54. 2006
    ..In conclusion, cirrhotic hepatocytes have a nonfocal distribution of ROS. However, normal and cirrhotic hepatocytes exhibit mitochondrial localization of ROS that is necessary for apoptosis...
  2. pmc Murine cirrhosis induces hepatocyte epithelial mesenchymal transition and alterations in survival signaling pathways
    Takashi Nitta
    Department of Surgery, Division of General and Gastrointestinal GI Surgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
    Hepatology 48:909-19. 2008
    ..CLDH demonstrated increased basal p-extracellular signal-regulated kinase expression that was independent of Smad and PI3K/Akt signaling. Inhibition of the MAPK pathway produced a marked increase in CLDH apoptosis...
  3. ncbi Quantitative in vivo imaging of non-viral-mediated gene expression and RNAi-mediated knockdown
    Garrett R Rettig
    Division of Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry, College of Pharmacy, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA
    Methods Mol Biol 574:155-71. 2009
    ....