Hepatic stellate cell-derived platelet-derived growth factor receptor-alpha-enriched extracellular vesicles promote liver fibrosis in mice through SHP2.
ABSTRACT: Liver fibrosis is characterized by the activation and migration of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs), followed by matrix deposition. Recently, several studies have shown the importance of extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from liver cells, such as hepatocytes and endothelial cells, in liver pathobiology. While most of the studies describe how liver cells modulate HSC behavior, an important gap exists in the understanding of HSC-derived signals and more specifically HSC-derived EVs in liver fibrosis. Here, we investigated the molecules released through HSC-derived EVs, the mechanism of their release, and the role of these EVs in fibrosis. Mass spectrometric analysis showed that platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) receptor-alpha (PDGFR?) was enriched in EVs derived from PDGF-BB-treated HSCs. Moreover, patients with liver fibrosis had increased PDGFR? levels in serum EVs compared to healthy individuals. Mechanistically, in vitro tyrosine720-to-phenylalanine mutation on the PDGFR? sequence abolished enrichment of PDGFR? in EVs and redirected the receptor toward degradation. Congruently, the inhibition of Src homology 2 domain tyrosine phosphatase 2, the regulatory binding partner of phosphorylated tyrosine720, also inhibited PDGFR? enrichment in EVs. EVs derived from PDGFR?-overexpressing cells promoted in vitro HSC migration and in vivo liver fibrosis. Finally, administration of Src homology 2 domain tyrosine phosphatase 2inhibitor, SHP099, to carbon tetrachloride-administered mice inhibited PDGFR? enrichment in serum EVs and reduced liver fibrosis. CONCLUSION:PDGFR? is enriched in EVs derived from PDGF-BB-treated HSCs in an Src homology 2 domain tyrosine phosphatase 2-dependent manner and these PDGFR?-enriched EVs participate in development of liver fibrosis. (Hepatology 2018;68:333-348).
Project description:Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and transforming growth factor-? (TGF-?) signaling are required for hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation under pathological conditions such as liver metastatic tumor growth. These two signaling pathways are functionally divergent; PDGF signaling promotes proliferation and migration of HSCs, and TGF-? induces transdifferentiation of quiescent HSCs into myofibroblasts. Although PDGF signaling is implicated in TGF-?-mediated epithelial mesenchymal transition of tumor cells, the role of PDGF receptors in TGF-? activation of HSCs has not been investigated. Here we report that PDGF receptor-? (PDGFR-?) is required for TGF-? signaling of cultured human HSCs although HSCs express both PDGF-? and -? receptors. PDGFR-? knockdown inhibits TGF-?-induced phosphorylation and nuclear accumulation of SMAD2 with no influence on AKT or ERK phosphorylation associated with noncanonical TGF-? signaling. PDGFR-? knockdown suppresses TGF-? receptor I (T?RI) but increases T?RII gene transcription. At the protein level, PDGFR-? is recruited to T?RI/T?RII complexes by TGF-? stimulation. PDGFR-? knockdown blocks TGF-?-mediated internalization of T?RII and induces accumulation of T?RII at the plasma membrane, thereby inhibiting TGF-? phosphorylation of SMAD2. Functionally, knockdown of PDGFR-? reduces paracrine effects of HSCs on colorectal cancer cell proliferation and migration in vitro. In mice and patients, colorectal cancer cell invasion of the liver induces upregulation of PDGFR-? of HSCs. In summary, our finding that PDGFR-? knockdown inhibits SMAD-dependent TGF-? signaling by repressing T?RI transcriptionally and blocking endocytosis of TGF-? receptors highlights a convergence of PDGF and TGF-? signaling for HSC activation and PDGFR-? as a therapeutic target for liver metastasis and other settings of HSC activation.
Project description:<h4>Introduction</h4>CD248 (endosialin) is a stromal cell marker expressed on fibroblasts and pericytes. During liver injury, myofibroblasts are the main source of fibrotic matrix.<h4>Objective</h4>To determine the role of CD248 in the development of liver fibrosis in the rodent and human setting.<h4>Design</h4>CD248 expression was studied by immunostaining and quantitative PCR in both normal and diseased human and murine liver tissue and isolated hepatic stellate cells (HSCs). Hepatic fibrosis was induced in CD248(-/-) and wild-type controls with carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) treatment.<h4>Results</h4>Expression of CD248 was seen in normal liver of humans and mice but was significantly increased in liver injury using both immunostaining and gene expression assays. CD248 was co-expressed with a range of fibroblast/HSC markers including desmin, vimentin and ?-smooth muscle actin (?-SMA) in murine and human liver sections. CD248 expression was restricted to isolated primary murine and human HSC. Collagen deposition and ?-SMA expression, but not inflammation and neoangiogenesis, was reduced in CD248(-/-) mice compared with wild-type mice after CCl4 treatment. Isolated HSC from wild-type and CD248(-/-) mice expressed platelet-derived growth factor receptor ? (PDGFR-?) and PDGFR-? at similar levels. As expected, PDGF-BB stimulation induced proliferation of wild-type HSC, whereas CD248(-/-) HSC did not demonstrate a proliferative response to PDGF-BB. Abrogated PDGF signalling in CD248(-/-) HSC was confirmed by significantly reduced c-fos expression in CD248(-/-) HSC compared with wild-type HSC.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our data show that deletion of CD248 reduces susceptibility to liver fibrosis via an effect on PDGF signalling, making it an attractive clinical target for the treatment of liver injury.
Project description:Background: Hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) are the primary collagen-secreting cells in the liver. While HSCs are the major cell type involved in the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis, hepatic macrophages also play an important role in mediating fibrogenesis and fibrosis resolution. Previously, we observed a reduction in HSC activation, proliferation, and collagen synthesis following exposure to human amnion epithelial cells (hAEC) and hAEC-conditioned media (hAEC-CM). This suggested that specific factors secreted by hAEC might be effective in ameliorating liver fibrosis. hAEC-derived extracellular vesicles (hAEC-EVs), which are nanosized (40-100 nm) membrane bound vesicles, may act as novel cell-cell communicators. Accordingly, we evaluated the efficacy of hAEC-EV in modulating liver fibrosis in a mouse model of chronic liver fibrosis and in human HSC. Methods: The hAEC-EVs were isolated and characterized. C57BL/6 mice with CCl4-induced liver fibrosis were administered hAEC-EV, hAEC-CM, or hAEC-EV depleted medium (hAEC-EVDM). LX2 cells, a human HSC line, and bone marrow-derived mouse macrophages were exposed to hAEC-EV, hAEC-CM, and hAEC-EVDM. Mass spectrometry was used to examine the proteome profile of each preparation. Results: The extent of liver fibrosis and number of activated HSCs were reduced significantly in CCl4-treated mice given hAEC-EVs, hAEC-CM, and hAEC EVDM compared to untreated controls. Hepatic macrophages were significantly decreased in all treatment groups, where a predominant M2 phenotype was observed. Human HSCs cultured with hAEC-EV and hAEC-CM displayed a significant reduction in collagen synthesis and hAEC-EV, hAEC-CM, and hAEC-EVDM altered macrophage polarization in bone marrow-derived mouse macrophages. Proteome analysis showed that 164 proteins were unique to hAEC-EV in comparison to hAEC-CM and hAEC-EVDM, and 51 proteins were co-identified components with the hAEC-EV fraction. Conclusion: This study provides novel data showing that hAEC-derived EVs significantly reduced liver fibrosis and macrophage infiltration to an extent similar to hAEC-EVDM and hAEC-CM. hAEC-EV-based therapy may be a potential therapeutic option for liver fibrosis.
Project description:Identifying effective anti-fibrotic therapies is a major clinical need that remains unmet. In the present study, roseotoxin B was shown to possess an improving effect on cholestatic liver fibrosis in bile duct-ligated mice, as proved by histochemical and immunohistochemical staining, hepatic biochemical parameters, and TUNEL apoptotic cell detection in tissue sections. Using cellular thermal shift assay, computational molecular docking, microscale thermophoresis technology, and surface plasmon resonance biosensor, we confirmed that PDGFR-? was a direct target of roseotoxin B in fibrotic livers. Of note, human tissue microarrays detected pathologically high expression of p-PDGFR-? in liver samples of ~80% of patients with liver fibrosis and cirrhosis. PDGF-B/PDGFR-? pathway promotes transdifferentiation and excessive proliferation of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs), which is a very crucial driver for liver fibrosis. Meaningfully, roseotoxin B blocked the formation of PDGF-BB/PDGFR-?? complex by targeting the D2 domain of PDGFR-?, thereby inhibiting the PDGF-B/PDGFR-? pathway in HSCs. In summary, our study provided roseotoxin B as a unique candidate agent for the treatment of liver fibrosis.
Project description:Concomitant expressions of glycan-binding proteins and their bound glycans regulate many pathophysiologic processes, but this issue has not been addressed in liver fibrosis. Activation of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) is a rate-limiting step in liver fibrosis and is an important target for liver fibrosis therapy. We previously reported that galectin (Gal)-1, a ?-galactoside-binding protein, regulates myofibroblast homeostasis in oral carcinoma and wound healing, but the role of Gal-1 in HSC migration and activation is unclear. Herein, we report that Gal-1 and its bound glycans were highly expressed in fibrotic livers and activated HSCs. The cell-surface glycome of activated HSCs facilitated Gal-1 binding, which upon recognition of the N-glycans on neuropilin (NRP)-1, activated platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)- and transforming growth factor (TGF)-?-like signals to promote HSC migration and activation. In addition, blocking endogenous Gal-1 expression suppressed PDGF- and TGF-?1-induced signaling, migration, and gene expression in HSCs. Methionine and choline-deficient diet (MCD)-induced collagen deposition and HSC activation were attenuated in Gal-1-null mice compared to wild-type mice. In summary, we concluded that glycosylation-dependent Gal-1/NRP-1 interactions activate TGF-? and PDGF-like signaling to promote the migration and activation of HSCs. Therefore, targeting Gal-1/NRP-1 interactions could be developed into liver fibrosis therapy.
Project description:The scaffold protein synectin plays a critical role in the trafficking and regulation of membrane receptor pathways. As platelet-derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR) is essential for hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation and liver fibrosis, we sought to determine the role of synectin on the PDGFR pathway and development of liver fibrosis. Mice with deletion of synectin from HSC were found to be protected from liver fibrosis. mRNA sequencing revealed that knockdown of synectin in HSC demonstrated reductions in the fibrosis pathway of genes, including PDGFR-?. Chromatin IP assay of the PDGFR-? promoter upon synectin knockdown revealed a pattern of histone marks associated with decreased transcription, dependent on p300 histone acetyltransferase. Synectin knockdown was found to downregulate PDGFR-? protein levels, as well, but through an alternative mechanism: protection from autophagic degradation. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed that ubiquitination of specific PDGFR-? lysine residues was responsible for its autophagic degradation. Furthermore, functional studies showed decreased PDGF-dependent migration and proliferation of HSC after synectin knockdown. Finally, human cirrhotic livers demonstrated increased synectin protein levels. This work provides insight into differential transcriptional and posttranslational mechanisms of synectin regulation of PDGFRs, which are critical to fibrogenesis.
Project description:Progression of fibrosis and the development of cirrhosis are responsible for the liver related morbidity and mortality associated with chronic liver diseases. There is currently a great unmet need for effective anti-fibrotic strategies. Stem cells play a central role in wound healing responses to restore liver homeostasis following injury. Here we tested the hypothesis that extracellular vesicles (EVs) isolated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) modulate hepatic stellate cell (HSCs) activation and may have anti-fibrotic effects. Human iPSCs were generated by reprogramming primary skin fibroblasts. EVs were isolated by differential centrifugation, quantified by flow cytometry (FACS) and characterized by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and electron microscopy (TEM). Primary human HSCs were activated with TGF? (10 ng/mL) and exposed to iPSC-EVs. Efficacy of iPSC-EVs was tested on HSC in vitro and in two murine models of liver injury (CCl4 and bile duct ligation). Characterization of iPSC-derived EVs by flow cytometry identified a large population of EVs released by iPSC, primarily with a diameter of 300 nm and that could be visualized by TEM as round, cup-shaped objects. Fluorescent tracing assays detected iPSC-EVs in HSC cytosol after a short incubation and EV uptake by HSCs resulted in both decrease of pro-fibrogenic markers ?SMA, CollagenI?1, Fibronectin and TIMP-1 and HSC pro-fibrogenic responses such as chemotaxis and proliferation. Genomics analyses of iPSC-EV miRNA cargo revealed 22 highly expressed miRNAs, among which miR-92a-3p resulted the most abundant. Transcriptome analysis identified 60 genes down-modulated and 235 up-regulated in TGF-?-primed HSC in presence or absence of iPSC-EVs. Intravenous injection of iPSC-EVs in CCl4 and bile duct ligation-induced liver fibrosis resulted in anti-fibrotic effects at protein and gene levels. Results of this study identify iPSC-EVs as a novel anti-fibrotic approach that may reduce or reverse liver fibrosis in patients with chronic liver disease.
Project description:Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) has been implicated in the progression of many chronic liver diseases leading to fibrosis; however, the role of TNF in fibrogenesis is controversial and the specific contribution of TNF receptors to hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation remains to be established. Using HSCs from wild-type, TNF-receptor-1 (TNFR1) knockout, TNF-receptor-2 (TNFR2) knockout, or TNFR1/R2 double-knockout (TNFR-DKO) mice, we show that loss of both TNF receptors reduced procollagen-?1(I) expression, slowed down HSC proliferation, and impaired platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced promitogenic signaling in HSCs. TNFR-DKO HSCs exhibited decreased AKT phosphorylation and in vitro proliferation in response to PDGF. These effects were reproduced in TNFR1 knockout, but not TNFR2 knockout, HSCs. In addition, matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) expression was dependent on TNF binding to TNFR1 in primary mouse HSCs. These results were validated in the human HSC cell line, LX2, using neutralizing antibodies against TNFR1 and TNFR2. Moreover, in vivo liver damage and fibrogenesis after bile-duct ligation were reduced in TNFR-DKO and TNFR1 knockout mice, compared to wild-type or TNFR2 knockout mice.TNF regulates HSC biology through its binding to TNFR1, which is required for HSC proliferation and MMP-9 expression. These data indicate a regulatory role for TNF in extracellular matrix remodeling and liver fibrosis, suggesting that targeting TNFR1 may be of benefit to attenuate liver fibrogenesis.
Project description:PDGF-dependent hepatic stellate cell (HSC) recruitment is an essential step in liver fibrosis and the sinusoidal vascular changes that accompany this process. However, the mechanisms that regulate PDGF signaling remain incompletely defined. Here, we found that in two rat models of liver fibrosis, the axonal guidance molecule neuropilin-1 (NRP-1) was upregulated in activated HSCs, which exhibit the highly motile myofibroblast phenotype. Additionally, NRP-1 colocalized with PDGF-receptor beta (PDGFRbeta) in HSCs both in the injury models and in human and rat HSC cell lines. In human HSCs, siRNA-mediated knockdown of NRP-1 attenuated PDGF-induced chemotaxis, while NRP-1 overexpression increased cell motility and TGF-beta-dependent collagen production. Similarly, mouse HSCs genetically modified to lack NRP-1 displayed reduced motility in response to PDGF treatment. Immunoprecipitation and biochemical binding studies revealed that NRP-1 increased PDGF binding affinity for PDGFRbeta-expressing cells and promoted downstream signaling. An NRP-1 neutralizing Ab ameliorated recruitment of HSCs, blocked liver fibrosis in a rat model of liver injury, and also attenuated VEGF responses in cultured liver endothelial cells. In addition, NRP-1 overexpression was observed in human specimens of liver cirrhosis caused by both hepatitis C and steatohepatitis. These studies reveal a role for NRP-1 as a modulator of multiple growth factor targets that regulate liver fibrosis and the vascular changes that accompany it and may have broad implications for liver cirrhosis and myofibroblast biology in a variety of other organ systems and disease conditions.
Project description:RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) play a major role in the control of messenger RNA (mRNA) turnover and translation rates. We examined the role of the RBP, human antigen R (HuR), during cholestatic liver injury and hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation. HuR silencing attenuated fibrosis development in vivo after BDL, reducing liver damage, oxidative stress, inflammation, and collagen and alpha smooth muscle actin (?-SMA) expression. HuR expression increased in activated HSCs from bile duct ligation mice and during HSC activation in vitro, and HuR silencing markedly reduced HSC activation. HuR regulated platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced proliferation and migration and controlled the expression of several mRNAs involved in these processes (e.g., Actin, matrix metalloproteinase 9, and cyclin D1 and B1). These functions of HuR were linked to its abundance and cytoplasmic localization, controlled by PDGF, by extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase activation as well as ERK/LKB1 (liver kinase B1) activation, respectively. More important, we identified the tumor suppressor, LKB1, as a novel downstream target of PDGF-induced ERK activation in HSCs. HuR also controlled transforming growth factor beta (TGF-?)-induced profibrogenic actions by regulating the expression of TGF-?, ?-SMA, and p21. This was likely the result of an increased cytoplasmic localization of HuR, controlled by TGF-?-induced p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase activation. Finally, we found that HuR and LKB1 (Ser428) levels were highly expressed in activated HSCs in human cirrhotic samples.Our results show that HuR is important for the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis development in the cholestatic injury model, for HSC activation, and for the response of activated HSC to PDGF and TGF-?.