Accumulation of 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine, L-arginine and Glucose Metabolites by Liver Tumor Cells Are the Important Characteristic Features of Metabolic Syndrome and Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis-Associated Hepatocarcinogenesis.
ABSTRACT: To uncover mechanisms and explore novel biomarkers of obesity, type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-associated hepatocarcinogenesis, cellular and molecular alterations in the liver, and hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) were investigated in NASH model 60-week-old Tsumura, Suzuki, Obese Diabetic (TSOD) mice and NASH HCC patients. Markedly elevated lipid deposition, inflammation, fibrosis, and peroxisome proliferation in the liver, preneoplastic lesions, and HCCs of TSOD mice were accompanied by accumulation of polysaccharides in the cellular cytoplasm and nuclei and increase of oxidative DNA damage marker, 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) formation in the liver and altered foci. Metabolomics of TSOD mice HCCs demonstrated significant elevation of the concentration of amino acid L-arginine, phosphocreatine, S-adenosylmethionine/S-adenosylhomocysteine ratio, adenylate, and guanylate energy charges in coordination with tremendous rise of glucose metabolites, mostly fructose 1,6-diphosphate. L-arginine accumulation in HCCs was associated with significant under-expression of arginase 1 (ARG1), suppression of the urea cycle, methionine and putrescine degradation pathways, activation of Ser and Thr kinase Akt AKT, phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K), extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) kinases, ?-catenin, mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), and cell proliferation. Furthermore, clinicopathological analysis in 20 metabolic syndrome/NASH and 80 HCV-positive HCC patients demonstrated significant correlation of negative ARG1 expression with poor tumor differentiation, higher pathological stage, and significant decrease of survival in metabolic syndrome/NASH-associated HCC patients, thus indicating that ARG1 could become a potential marker for NASH HCC. From these results, formation of oxidative stress and 8-OHdG in the DNA and elevation of glucose metabolites and L-arginine due to ARG1 suppression in mice liver cells are the important characteristics of T2DM/NASH-associated hepatocarcinogenesis, which may take part in activating oxidative stress resistance, synthesis of phosphocreatine, cell signaling, methylation, and proliferation.
Project description:Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) can cause liver fibrosis and cirrhosis, with final progression to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in some cases. Various factors have been suggested to be involved in the development of NASH. Considering the many possible contributing factors, we postulated that mechanisms of progression from NASH to HCC could differ depending on the risk factors. In the present study, we applied two mouse models of NASH?HCC and performed histopathological and proteome analyses of mouse liver tumors. Furthermore, to compare the mechanisms of NASH?HCC progression in mice and humans, we investigated HCCs in humans with a background of metabolic syndrome and NASH, as well as HCCs associated with hepatitis virus infection by immunohistochemistry. It was demonstrated that upstream regulators associated with the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway were altered in liver tumors of mice with metabolic syndrome characteristics (TSOD mice) using proteome analysis. Immunohistochemical analysis showed that mTOR was characteristically phosphorylated in liver tumors of TSOD mice and HCCs from metabolic syndrome cases in humans. These results indicated that the mTOR pathway is characteristically activated in liver tumors with metabolic syndrome and NASH, unlike liver tumors with other etiologies.
Project description:Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) has emerged as a common cause of chronic liver disease and virus-independent hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in patients with obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. To reveal the molecular mechanism underlying hepatocarcinogenesis from NASH, microRNA (miRNA) expression profiles were analyzed in STAM mice, a NASH-HCC animal model. MicroRNA expression was also examined in 42 clinical samples of HCC tissue. Histopathological images of the liver of STAM mice at the ages of 6, 8, 12, and 18 weeks showed findings compatible with fatty liver, NASH, liver cirrhosis (LC), and HCC, respectively. Expression of miR-122 in non-tumor LC at the age of 18 weeks was significantly lower than that in LC at the age of 12 weeks. Expression of miR-122 was further decreased in HCCs relative to non-tumor LC at the age of 18 weeks. Expression of miR-122 was also decreased in clinical samples of liver tissue showing macrovesicular steatosis and HCC, being consistent with the findings in the NASH model mice. DNA methylation analysis revealed that silencing of miR-122 was not mediated by DNA hypermethylation of the promoter region. These results suggest that silencing of miR-122 is an early event during hepatocarcinogenesis from NASH, and that miR-122 could be a novel molecular marker for evaluating the risk of HCC in patients with NASH.
Project description:To uncover mechanisms of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) associated hepatocarcinogenesis, we compared the proteomes of human NASH-associated liver biopsies, resected hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and HCCs of HCV? patients with normal liver tissue of patients with gastrointestinal tumor metastasis, in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded samples obtained after surgery in our hospital during the period from 2006 to 2011. In addition, proteome analysis of liver tumors in male STAM NASH-model mice was performed. Similar changes in the proteome spectrum such as overexpression of enzymes involved in lipid, cholesterol and bile acid biosynthesis and examples associated with suppression of fatty acid oxidation and catabolism, alcohol metabolism, mitochondrial function as well as low expression levels of cytokeratins 8 and 18 were observed in both human NASH biopsies and NASH HCCs, but not HCV? HCCs. Alterations in downstream protein expression pointed to significant activation of transforming growth factor ?, SMAD family member 3, ?-catenin, Nrf2, SREBP-LXR? and nuclear receptor-interacting protein 1 (NRIP1), and inhibition of PPARs and p53 in human NASH biopsies and/or HCCs, suggesting their involvement in accumulation of lipids, development of fibrosis, oxidative stress, cell proliferation and suppression of apoptosis in NASH hepatocarcinogenesis. In STAM mice, PPARs inhibition was not obvious, while expression of cytokeratins 8 and 18 was elevated, indicative of essential differences between human and mouse NASH pathogenesis.
Project description:The prevalence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is still high worldwide because liver diseases could develop into HCC. Recent reports indicate nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NAFLD&NASH) and primary biliary cirrhosis and primary sclerosing cholangitis (PBC&PSC) are significant of HCC. Therefore, understanding the cellular mechanisms of the pathogenesis and hepatocarcinogenesis from normal liver cells to HCC through NAFLD&NASH or PBC&PSC is a priority to prevent the progression of liver damage and reduce the risk of further complications. By the genetic and epigenetic data mining and the system identification through next-generation sequencing data and its corresponding DNA methylation profiles of liver cells in normal, NAFLD&NASH, PBC&PSC, and HCC patients, we identified the genome-wide real genetic and epigenetic networks (GENs) of normal, NAFLD&NASH, PBC&PSC, and HCC patients. In order to get valuable insight into these identified genome-wide GENs, we then applied a principal network projection method to extract the corresponding core GENs for normal liver cells, NAFLD&NASH, PBC&PSC, and HCC. By comparing the signal transduction pathways involved in the identified core GENs, we found that the hepatocarcinogenesis through NAFLD&NASH was induced through DNA methylation of HIST2H2BE, HSPB1, RPL30, and ALDOB and the regulation of miR-21 and miR-122, and the hepatocarcinogenesis through PBC&PSC was induced through DNA methylation of RPL23A, HIST2H2BE, TIMP1, IGF2, RPL30, and ALDOB and the regulation of miR-29a, miR-21, and miR-122. The genetic and epigenetic changes in the pathogenesis and hepatocarcinogenesis potentially serve as potential diagnostic biomarkers and/or therapeutic targets.
Project description:A mass spectrometric analysis platform has been developed to determine whether glycosylation patterns of alpha-1 acid glycoprotein (AGP) could be used as a marker for early detection of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in different etiologies, i.e. non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), alcoholic liver disease (ALC), and hepatitis C virus (HCV). MALDI-MS profiling of N-glycans of AGP purified from 20 μL of patient serum in HCC (n = 72) and liver cirrhosis (n = 58) showed that a unique trifucosylated tetra-antennary glycan (m/z 3490.76) was predominantly identified in HCCs but was absent in healthy subjects and the majority of cirrhosis patients. Receiver operation characteristic (ROC) curve analysis showed that the trifucosylated N-glycan of AGP (triFc_AGP) could differentiate HCC from cirrhosis with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.707, 0.726 and 0.751 for NASH, ALC and HCV, respectively. When combining triFc_AGP with INR and AFP, the panel had the greatest benefit in detection of NASH-related HCCs, with a significantly improved AUC of 0.882 for all NASH HCCs and 0.818 for early NASH HCCs compared to AFP alone (0.761 and 0.641, respectively). Moreover, triFc_AGP could serve as a potential marker for monitoring AFP-negative HCC patients.
Project description:PURPOSE:The aim of this study was to investigate DNA methylation alterations in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-related hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs). METHODS:Genome-wide DNA methylation analysis was performed using the Infinium Human Methylation 450 K BeadChip, and levels of mRNA expression were analyzed by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR. RESULTS:Compared to 36 samples of normal control liver tissue (C), DNA methylation alterations were observed on 19,281 probes in 22 samples of cancerous tissue (T) obtained from patients showing histological features compatible with NASH in their non-cancerous liver tissue (N). Among those probes, 1396 were located within CpG islands or their shores and shelves, designed around the transcription start sites of 726 genes. In representative genes, such as DCAF4L2, CKLF, TRIM4, PRC1, UBE2C and TUBA1B, both DNA hypomethylation and mRNA overexpression were observed in T samples relative to C samples, and the levels of DNA methylation and mRNA expression were inversely correlated with each other. DNA hypomethylation occurred even in N samples at the precancerous NASH stage, and this was inherited by or further strengthened in T samples. DNA hypomethylation of DCAF4L2, CKLF and UBE2C was observed in both NASH-related and viral hepatitis-related HCCs, whereas that of TRIM4, PRC1 and TUBA1B occurred in a NASH-related HCC-specific manner. DNA hypomethylation and/or mRNA overexpression of these genes was frequently associated with the necroinflammatory grade of NASH and was correlated with poorer tumor differentiation. CONCLUSION:DNA methylation alterations may occur under the necroinflammatory conditions characteristic of NASH and participate in NASH-related hepatocarcinogenesis through aberrant expression of tumor-related genes.
Project description:Obesity increases the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) especially in men, but the molecular mechanism remains obscure. Here, we show that an androgen receptor (AR)-driven oncogene, cell cycle-related kinase (CCRK), collaborates with obesity-induced pro-inflammatory signaling to promote non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-related hepatocarcinogenesis. Lentivirus-mediated Ccrk ablation in liver of male mice fed with high-fat high-carbohydrate diet abrogates not only obesity-associated lipid accumulation, glucose intolerance and insulin resistance, but also HCC development. Mechanistically, CCRK fuels a feedforward loop by inducing STAT3-AR promoter co-occupancy and transcriptional up-regulation, which in turn activates mTORC1/4E-BP1/S6K/SREBP1 cascades via GSK3? phosphorylation. Moreover, hepatic CCRK induction in transgenic mice stimulates mTORC1-dependent G-csf expression to enhance polymorphonuclear myeloid-derived suppressor cell recruitment and tumorigenicity. Finally, the STAT3-AR-CCRK-mTORC1 pathway components are concordantly over-expressed in human NASH-associated HCCs. These findings unveil the dual roles of an inflammatory-CCRK circuitry in driving metabolic and immunosuppressive reprogramming through mTORC1 activation, thereby establishing a pro-tumorigenic microenvironment for HCC development.
Project description:Considerable effort has been made in elucidating the mechanism and functional significance of high levels of aerobic glycolysis in cancer cells, commonly referred to as the Warburg effect. Here we investigated whether the gluconeogenic pathway is significantly modulated in hepatocarcinogenesis, resulting in altered levels of glucose homeostasis. To test this possibility, we used a mouse model (mice fed a choline-deficient diet) that develops nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), preneoplastic nodules, and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), along with human primary HCCs and HCC cells. This study demonstrated marked reduction in the expressions of G6pc, Pepck, and Fbp1 encoding the key gluconeogenic enzymes glucose-6-phosphatase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, fructose-1,6-phosphatase, respectively, and the transcription factor Pgc-1? in HCCs developed in the mouse model that correlated with reduction in serum glucose in tumor-bearing mice. The messenger RNA (mRNA) levels of these genes were also reduced by ?80% in the majority of primary human HCCs compared with matching peritumoral livers. The expression of microRNA (miR)-23a, a candidate miR targeting PGC-1? and G6PC, was up-regulated in the mouse liver tumors as well as in primary human HCC. We confirmed PGC-1? and G6PC as direct targets of miR-23a and their expressions negatively correlated with miR-23a expression in human HCCs. G6PC expression also correlated with tumor grade in human primary HCCs. Finally, this study showed that the activation of interleukin (IL)-6-Stat3 signaling caused the up-regulation of miR-23a expression in HCC.Based on these data, we conclude that gluconeogenesis is severely compromised in HCC by IL6-Stat3-mediated activation of miR-23a, which directly targets PGC-1? and G6PC, leading to decreased glucose production.
Project description:The aim of this study was to clarify the significance of DNA methylation alterations during non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-related hepatocarcinogenesis. Single-CpG-resolution genome-wide DNA methylation analysis was performed on 264 liver tissue samples using the Illumina Infinium HumanMethylation450 BeadChip. After Bonferroni correction, 3331 probes showed significant DNA methylation alterations in 113 samples of non-cancerous liver tissue showing NASH (NASH-N) as compared with 55 samples of normal liver tissue (NLT). Principal component analysis using the 3331 probes revealed distinct DNA methylation profiles of NASH-N samples that were different from those of NLT samples and 37 samples of non-cancerous liver tissue showing chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis associated with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection (viral-N). Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis identified 194 probes that were able to discriminate NASH-N samples from viral-N samples with area under the curve values of more than 0.95. Jonckheere-Terptsra trend test revealed that DNA methylation alterations in NASH-N samples from patients without hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) were inherited by or strengthened in NASH-N samples from patients with HCC, and then inherited by or further strengthened in 22 samples of NASH-related HCC (NASH-T) themselves. NASH- and NASH-related HCC-specific DNA methylation alterations, which were not evident in viral-N samples and 37 samples of HCC associated with HBV or HCV infection, were observed in tumor-related genes, such as WHSC1, and were frequently associated with mRNA expression abnormalities. These data suggested that NASH-specific DNA methylation alterations may participate in NASH-related multistage hepatocarcinogenesis.
Project description:UNLABELLED:MicroRNAs (miRs) are conserved, small (20-25 nucleotide) noncoding RNAs that negatively regulate expression of messenger RNAs (mRNAs) at the posttranscriptional level. Aberrant expression of certain microRNAs plays a causal role in tumorigenesis. Here, we report identification of hepatic microRNAs that are dysregulated at early stages of feeding C57BL/6 mice choline-deficient and amino acid-defined (CDAA) diet that is known to promote nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-induced hepatocarcinogenesis after 84 weeks. Microarray analysis identified 30 hepatic microRNAs that are significantly (P < or = 0.01) altered in mice fed CDAA diet for 6, 18, 32, and 65 weeks compared with those fed choline-sufficient and amino acid-defined (CSAA) diet. Real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis demonstrated up-regulation of oncogenic miR-155, miR-221/222, and miR-21 and down-regulation of the most abundant liver-specific miR-122 at early stages of hepatocarcinogenesis. Western blot analysis showed reduced expression of hepatic phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) and CCAAT/enhancer binding protein beta (C/EBPbeta), respective targets of miR-21 and miR-155, in these mice at early stages. DNA binding activity of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) that transactivates miR-155 gene was significantly (P = 0.002) elevated in the liver nuclear extract of mice fed CDAA diet. Furthermore, the expression of miR-155, as measured by in situ hybridization and real-time RT-PCR, correlated with diet-induced histopathological changes in the liver. Ectopic expression of miR-155 promoted growth of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells, whereas its depletion inhibited cell growth. Notably, miR-155 was significantly (P = 0.0004) up-regulated in primary human HCCs with a concomitant decrease (P = 0.02) in C/EBPbeta level compared with matching liver tissues. CONCLUSION:Temporal changes in microRNA profile occur at early stages of CDAA diet-induced hepatocarcinogenesis. Reciprocal regulation of specific oncomirs and their tumor suppressor targets implicate their role in NASH-induced hepatocarcinogenesis and suggest their use in the diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy of liver cancer.