Deleterious effect of oltipraz on extrahepatic cholestasis in bile duct-ligated mice.
ABSTRACT: Oltipraz (4-methyl-5(pyrazinyl-2)-1-2-dithiole-3-thione), a promising cancer preventive agent, has an antioxidative activity and ability to enhance glutathione biosynthesis, phase II detoxification enzymes and multidrug resistance-associated protein-mediated efflux transporters. Oltipraz can protect against hepatotoxicity caused by carbon tetrachloride, acetaminophen and alpha-naphthylisothiocyanate. Whether oltipraz has hepato-protective effects on obstructive cholestasis is unknown.We administered oltipraz to mice for 5 days prior to bile duct ligation (BDL) for 3 days. Liver histology, liver function markers, bile flow rates and hepatic expression of profibrogenic genes were evaluated.Mice pretreated with oltipraz prior to BDL demonstrated higher levels of serum aminotransferases and more severe liver damage than in control mice. Higher bile flow and glutathione secretion rates were observed in unoperated mice treated with oltipraz than in control mice, suggesting that liver necrosis in oltipraz-treated BDL mice may be related partially to increased bile-acid independent flow and biliary pressure. Oltipraz treatment in BDL mice enhanced ?-smooth muscle actin expression, consistent with activation of hepatic stellate cells and portal fibroblasts. Matrix metalloproteinases (Mmp) 9 and 13 and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (Timp) 1 and 2 levels were increased in the oltipraz-treated BDL group, suggesting that the secondary phase of liver injury induced by oltipraz might be due to excessive Mmp and Timp secretions, which induce remodeling of the extracellular matrix.Oltipraz treatment exacerbates the severity of liver injury following BDL and should be avoided as therapy for extrahepatic cholestatic disorders due to bile duct obstruction.
Project description:Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) is upregulated during hepatic fibrogenesis and considered to promote fibrosis in the injured liver by inhibition of matrix metalloproteases (MMP) and degradation of extracellular matrix. Moreover, TIMP-1 displays anti-apoptotic properties, in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) TIMP-1 serum levels are elevated and high TIMP-1 expression levels in HCC are associated with a poor prognosis. Therefore, TIMP-1 could functionally link fibrogenesis and carcinogenesis in the liver. The aim of our study was to characterize the role of TIMP-1 in hepatic fibrogenesis and carcinogenesis. Experimental hepatic fibrogenesis as well as diethylnitrosamine (DEN) -induced hepatocarcinogenesis were studied in TIMP-1-deficient mice and wild type littermates. Hepatic TIMP-1 expression was upregulated following induction of liver fibrosis by bile duct ligation (BDL) or by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4). Unexpectedly, in comparison to wild type littermates, TIMP-1-deficient mice were not protected from liver fibrosis induced by BDL or CCl4. TIMP-1 expression was significantly higher in HCC nodules than in surrounding liver tissue. However, experimental hepatic carcinogenesis was similar in TIMP-1-deficient mice and wild type littermates following DEN-treatment or combined treatment with DEN and CCl4. Therefore we concluded that TIMP-1 is not essential for hepatic fibrogenesis and carcinogenesis in mice.
Project description:Although many advances have been made in understanding the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis, few options are available for treatment. Casticin, one of the major flavonoids in Fructus Viticis extracts, has shown hepatoprotective potential, but its effects on liver fibrosis are not clear. In this study, we investigated the antifibrotic activity of casticin and its underlying mechanism in vivo and in vitro. Male mice were injected intraperitoneally with carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) or underwent bile duct ligation (BDL) to induce liver fibrosis, followed by treatment with casticin or vehicle. In addition, transforming growth factor-?1(TGF-?1)-activated LX-2 cells were used. In vivo experiments showed that treatment with casticin alone had no toxic effect while significantly attenuating CCl4-or BDL-induced liver fibrosis, as indicated by reductions in the density of fibrosis, hydroxyproline content, expression of ?-SMA and collagen ?1(I) mRNA. Moreover, casticin inhibited LX2 proliferation, induced apoptosis in a time- and dose-dependent manner in vitro. The underlying molecular mechanisms for the effect of casticin involved inhibition of hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation and reduced the expression of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2, MMP-9, tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases (TIMP)-1 and TIMP-2 resulting from blocking TGF-?1/Smad signaling, as well as increased the apoptosis of HSCs. The results suggest that casticin has potential benefits in the attenuation and treatment of liver fibrosis.
Project description:There are limited murine models of cholestatic liver diseases characterized by chronic biliary obstruction and resumption of bile flow. While murine bile duct ligation (BDL) is a well-established model of obstructive cholestasis, current models of BDL reversal (BDLR) alter biliary anatomy. We aimed to develop a more physiologic model of BDLR to evaluate the time course and mechanism for resolution of hepatic injury after biliary obstruction. In the present study, we restored bile flow into the duodenum without disruption of the gall bladder after murine BDL using biocompatible PE-50 tubing. After establishing the technique, overall survival for BDLR at 7 or 14 days after BDL was 88%. Sham laparotomy was performed in control mice. Laboratory data, liver histology, and hepatic gene expression were compared among BDL, BDLR, and controls. Laboratory evidence of cholestatic liver injury was observed at day 7 after BDL and rapid improvement occurred within 48 hr of BDLR. After BDLR there was also enhanced gene expression for the bile acid transporter Abcb11, however, bile duct proliferation persisted. Assessment of the immune response showed increased gene and protein expression for the general immune cell marker Cd45 in BDLR versus BDL mice suggesting a reparative immune response after BDLR. In summary, we have established a novel murine model of BDLR that allows for the investigation into bile acid and immune pathways responsible for hepatic repair following obstructive cholestasis. Future studies with our model may identify targets for new therapies to improve outcome in pediatric and adult cholestatic liver disease.
Project description:Alterations in apical junctional complexes (AJCs) have been reported in genetic or acquired biliary diseases. The vitamin D nuclear receptor (VDR), predominantly expressed in biliary epithelial cells in the liver, has been shown to regulate AJCs. The aim of our study was thus to investigate the role of VDR in the maintenance of bile duct integrity in mice challenged with biliary-type liver injury. Vdr(-/-) mice subjected to bile duct ligation (BDL) displayed increased liver damage compared to wildtype BDL mice. Adaptation to cholestasis, ascertained by expression of genes involved in bile acid metabolism and tissue repair, was limited in Vdr(-/-) BDL mice. Furthermore, evaluation of Vdr(-/-) BDL mouse liver tissue sections indicated altered E-cadherin staining associated with increased bile duct rupture. Total liver protein analysis revealed that a truncated form of E-cadherin was present in higher amounts in Vdr(-/-) mice subjected to BDL compared to wildtype BDL mice. Truncated E-cadherin was also associated with loss of cell adhesion in biliary epithelial cells silenced for VDR. In these cells, E-cadherin cleavage occurred together with calpain 1 activation and was prevented by the silencing of calpain 1. Furthermore, VDR deficiency led to the activation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) pathway, while EGFR activation by EGF induced both calpain 1 activation and E-cadherin cleavage in these cells. Finally, truncation of E-cadherin was blunted when EGFR signaling was inhibited in VDR-silenced cells.Biliary-type liver injury is exacerbated in Vdr(-/-) mice by limited adaptive response and increased bile duct rupture. These results indicate that loss of VDR restricts the adaptation to cholestasis and diminishes bile duct integrity in the setting of biliary-type liver injury.
Project description:The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of quercetin on hepatic fibrosis, a characteristic response to acute or chronic liver injury. Mice were randomized to bile duct ligation (BDL) or carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) cirrhosis models. Quercetin (100?mg/kg or 200?mg/kg daily) was administered by gavage for 2 or 4 weeks. Liver tissue and blood samples were collected for histological and molecular analysis. The results of our experiments showed that quercetin reduced BDL or CCl4 liver fibrosis, inhibited extracellular matrix formation, and regulated matrix metallopeptidase (MMP)-9 and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-1. Quercetin attenuated liver damage by suppressing the TGF-?1/Smads signaling pathway and activating the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway to inhibit autophagy in BDL- or CCl4- induced liver fibrosis. Quercetin prevented hepatic fibrosis by attenuating hepatic stellate cell activation and reducing autophagy through regulating crosstalk between the TGF-?1/Smads and PI3K/Akt pathways.
Project description:Sortilin 1 (Sort1) is an intracellular trafficking receptor that mediates protein sorting in the endocytic or secretory pathways. Recent studies revealed a role of Sort1 in the regulation of cholesterol and bile acid (BA) metabolism. This study further investigated the role of Sort1 in modulating BA detoxification and cholestatic liver injury in bile duct ligated mice. We found that Sort1 knockout (KO) mice had attenuated liver injury 24?h after bile duct ligation (BDL), which was mainly attributed to less bile infarct formation. Sham-operated Sort1 KO mice had about 20% larger BA pool size than sham-operated wildtype (WT) mice, but 24?h after BDL Sort1 KO mice had significantly attenuated hepatic BA accumulation and smaller BA pool size. After 14 days BDL, Sort1 KO mice showed significantly lower hepatic BA concentration and reduced expression of inflammatory and fibrotic marker genes, but similar degree of liver fibrosis compared with WT mice. Unbiased quantitative proteomics revealed that Sort1 KO mice had increased hepatic BA sulfotransferase 2A1, but unaltered phase-I BA metabolizing cytochrome P450s or phase-III BA efflux transporters. Consistently, Sort1 KO mice showed elevated plasma sulfated taurocholate after BDL. Finally, we found that liver Sort1 was repressed after BDL, which may be due to BA activation of farnesoid x receptor. In conclusion, we report a role of Sort1 in the regulation of hepatic BA detoxification and cholestatic liver injury in mice. The mechanisms underlying increased hepatic BA elimination in Sort1 KO mice after BDL require further investigation.
Project description:Ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) is used to treat primary biliary cirrhosis, intrahepatic cholestasis, and other cholestatic conditions. Although much has been learned about the molecular basis of the disease pathophysiology, our understanding of the effects of UDCA remains unclear. Possibly underlying its cytoprotective, anti-apoptotic, anti-oxidative effects, UDCA was reported to regulate the expression of TNF? and other inflammatory cytokines. However, it is not known if this effect involves also modulation of ADAM family of metalloproteinases, which are responsible for release of ectodomains of inflammatory cytokines from the cell surface. We hypothesized that UDCA modulates ADAM17 activity, resulting in amelioration of cholestasis in a murine model of bile duct ligation (BDL).The effect of UDCA on ADAM17 activity was studied using the human liver hepatocellular carcinoma cell line HepG2. Untransfected cells or cells ectopically expressing human ADAM17 were cultured with or without UDCA and further activated using phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate (PMA). The expression and release of ADAM17 substrates, TNF?, TGF?, and c-Met receptor (or its soluble form, sMet) were evaluated using ELISA and quantitative real-time (qRT) PCR. Immunoblotting analyses were conducted to evaluate expression and activation of ADAM17 as well as the level of ERK1/2 phosphorylation after UDCA treatment. The regulation of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) by UDCA was studied using zymography and qRT-PCR. A mouse model of acute cholestasis was induced by common BDL technique, during which mice received daily orogastric gavage with either UDCA or vehicle only. Liver injury was quantified using alkaline phosphatase (ALP), relative liver weight, and confirmed by histological analysis. ADAM17 substrates in sera were assessed using a bead multiplex assay.UDCA decreases amount of shed TNF?, TGF?, and sMet in cell culture media and the phosphorylation of ERK1/2. These effects are mediated by the reduction of ADAM17 activity in PMA stimulated cells although the expression ADAM17 is not affected. UDCA reduced the level of the mature form of ADAM17. Moreover, UDCA regulates the expression of TIMP-1 and gelatinases activity in PMA stimulated cells. A BDL-induced acute cholangitis model was characterized by increased relative liver weight, serum levels of ALP, sMet, and loss of intracellular glycogen. UDCA administration significantly decreased ALP and sMet levels, and reduced relative liver weight. Furthermore, hepatocytes of UDCA-treated animals retained their metabolic activity as evidenced by the amount of glycogen storage.The beneficial effect of UDCA appears to be mediated in part by the inhibition of ADAM17 activation and, thus, the release of TNF?, a strong pro-inflammatory factor. The release of other ADAM17 substrates, TGF? and sMet, are also regulated this way, pointing to a general impact on the release of ADAM17 substrates, which are pivotal for liver regeneration and function. In parallel, UDCA upregulates TIMP-1 that in turn inhibits matrix metalloproteinases, which destroy the hepatic ECM in diseased liver. This control of extracellular matrix turnover represents an additional beneficial path of UDCA treatment.
Project description:Dehydroandrographolide (DA) is the main contributor to the therapeutic properties of the medicinal plant Andrographis paniculata (AP). However, it is unknown whether DA has a hepatoprotective effect on obstructive cholestasis in mice and humans.We administered DA to mice for 5 days prior to bile duct ligation (BDL) and for the 7 days. Liver function markers, liver histology and necrosis, compensatory responses of hepatocytes, liver fibrosis and the expression of hepatic fibrogenesis markers were evaluated in BDL mice and/or human LX-2 cells.Mice treated with DA demonstrated lower levels of serum alanine transarninase (ALT), milder liver damage, liver necrosis and fibrosis formation than in vehicle control with carboxymethylcellulose (CMC) mice after BDL. DA treatment also enhanced the Mrp3 expression of hepatocytes but not Mrp4 following BDL. Further, DA treatment in BDL mice significantly reduced liver mRNA and/or protein expression of Tgf-?, Col1a1, ?-Sma and Mmp2. This result was also supported by hydroxyproline analysis. The molecular mechanisms of DA treatment were also assessed in human hepatic stellate cell line (LX-2 cell). DA treatment significantly inhibited Tgf-?-induced Col1a1, Mmp2 and ?-Sma expression in human LX-2 cells. These data suggested that DA treatment reduced liver damage through development of a hepatic adaptive response and inhibition of the activation of HSCs, which led to a reduction in liver fibrosis formation in BDL mice.DA treatment protected against liver damage and fibrosis following BDL and might be an effective therapy for extrahepatic cholestasis due to bile duct obstruction.
Project description:Development of portal hypertension (PHT) is a central prognostic factor in patients with cirrhosis. Circulating microparticles (MPs) are released by hepatocytes in a caspase-dependent manner, are increased in circulation of patients with cirrhosis, and contribute to PHT via induction of impaired vasoconstrictor responses. Here, we tested the hypothesis that emricasan, a pan-caspase inhibitor, ameliorates PHT and reduction in release of MPs. We used a short-term and long-term protocol following common bile-duct ligation (BDL) in C57BL/6 mice (10 and 20 days, respectively). Mice were treated daily via intraperitoneal injection with 10 mg/kg/day of emricasan or placebo. Circulating MP levels were analyzed using flow cytometry and function via ex vivo angiogenesis assays. In contrast to BDL-placebo group, nearly all BDL-emricasan-treated mice survived after long-term BDL. Assessment of portal pressure showed a significant increase in BDL-placebo mice compared to sham-placebo mice. In contrast, BDL-emricasan mice had significantly lower levels of portal pressure compared to BDL-placebo mice. Although emricasan treatment resulted in a decrease in fibrosis, the changes did not reach statistical significance, suggesting that the effects on PHT are at least in part independent of the anti-fibrotic effects of the drug. Following short-term BDL, hepatocellular cell death as well as liver fibrosis had improved and circulating MPs were significantly reduced in BDL-emricasan mice compared to BDL-placebo. Circulating MPs from BDL-placebo mice induced endothelial cell activation, and this was significantly reduced in MPs from BDL-emricasan mice. Our results indicate that emricasan treatment improves survival and PHT in a murine model of long-term BDL. Emricasan is a promising agent for the treatment of PHT. KEY MESSAGE:Emricasan, a pan-caspase inhibitor, improves survival and portal hypertension induced by long-term bile-duct ligation (BDL) in mice Emricasan reduces liver damage, hepatocyte death, and fibrosis, following short-term BDL in mice, and these changes are associated with a decrease in circulating microparticle (MPs) Circulating MPs from BDL-placebo but not from BDL-emiricasan-treated mice activate endothelial cells ex vivo.
Project description:This study clarified the role of Cygb, the fourth globin in mammals originally discovered in rat hepatic stellate cells (HSCs), in cholestatic liver disease. Bile duct ligation (BDL) augmented inflammatory reactions as revealed by increased infiltrating neutrophils, CD68+-macrophages, and chemokine expression in Cygb-/- mice. In these mice, impairment of bile canalicular indicated by the loss of CD10 expression, down-regulation of bile salt transporters, increased total bile acid, and massive apoptotic and necrotic hepatocytes occurred with the release of cytochrome c, activation of caspase 3, resulting in reduced animal survival compared to wild-type mice. In Cygb-/- mouse liver, all of NO metabolites and oxidative stress were increased. Treatment with NO inhibitor restrained all above phenotypes and restored CD10 expression in BDL Cygb-/- mice, while administration of NO donor aggravated liver damage in BDL-wild type mice to the same extent of BDL-Cygb-/- mice. N-acetylcysteine administration had a negligible effect in all groups. In mice of BDL for 1-3 weeks, expression of all fibrosis-related markers was significantly increased in Cygb-/- mice compared with wild-type mice. Thus, Cygb deficiency in HSCs enhances hepatocyte damage and inflammation in early phase and fibrosis development in late phase in mice subjected to BDL, presumably via altered NO metabolism.