The demonstrated ability to differentiate both human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) into hepatocyte-like cells (HLCs) holds great promise for both regenerative medicine and liver disease research. Here, we determined that, despite an immature phenotype, differentiated HLCs are permissive to hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and mount an interferon response to HCV infection in vitro. HLCs differentiated from hESCs and hiPSCs could be engrafted in the liver parenchyma of immune-deficient transgenic mice carrying the urokinase-type plasminogen activator gene driven by the major urinary protein promoter. The HLCs were maintained for more than 3 months in the livers of chimeric mice, in which they underwent further maturation and proliferation. These engrafted and expanded human HLCs were permissive to in vivo infection with HCV-positive sera and supported long-term infection of multiple HCV genotypes. Our study demonstrates efficient engraftment and in vivo HCV infection of human stem cell–derived hepatocytes and provides a model to study chronic HCV infection in patient-derived hepatocytes, action of antiviral therapies, and the biology of HCV infection.
Arnaud Carpentier, Abeba Tesfaye, Virginia Chu, Ila Nimgaonkar, Fang Zhang, Seung Bum Lee, Snorri S. Thorgeirsson, Stephen M. Feinstone, T. Jake Liang
Hepatosteatosis is characterized by an aberrant accumulation of triglycerides in the liver; however, the factors that drive obesity-induced fatty liver remain largely unknown. Here, we demonstrated that the secreted cell adhesion protein periostin is markedly upregulated in livers of obese rodents and humans. Notably, overexpression of periostin in the livers of WT mice promoted hepatic steatosis and hypertriglyceridemia. Conversely, both genetic ablation of periostin and administration of a periostin-neutralizing antibody dramatically improved hepatosteatosis and hypertriglyceridemia in obese mice. Overexpression of periostin resulted in reduced expression of peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor α (PPARα), a master regulator of fatty acid oxidation, and activation of the JNK signaling pathway. In mouse primary hepatocytes, inhibition of α6β4 integrin prevented activation of JNK and suppression of PPARα in response to periostin. Periostin-dependent activation of JNK resulted in activation of c-Jun, which prevented RORα binding and transactional activation at the
Yan Lu, Xing Liu, Yang Jiao, Xuelian Xiong, E Wang, Xiaolin Wang, Zhijian Zhang, Huijie Zhang, Lingling Pan, Youfei Guan, Dongsheng Cai, Guang Ning, Xiaoying Li
The MAP kinase kinase kinase TGFβ-activated kinase 1 (TAK1) is activated by TLRs, IL-1, TNF, and TGFβ and in turn activates IKK-NF-κB and JNK, which regulate cell survival, growth, tumorigenesis, and metabolism. TAK1 signaling also upregulates AMPK activity and autophagy. Here, we investigated TAK1-dependent regulation of autophagy, lipid metabolism, and tumorigenesis in the liver. Fasted mice with hepatocyte-specific deletion of
Sayaka Inokuchi-Shimizu, Eek Joong Park, Yoon Seok Roh, Ling Yang, Bi Zhang, Jingyi Song, Shuang Liang, Michael Pimienta, Koji Taniguchi, Xuefeng Wu, Kinji Asahina, William Lagakos, Mason R. Mackey, Shizuo Akira, Mark H. Ellisman, Dorothy D. Sears, Jerrold M. Olefsky, Michael Karin, David A. Brenner, Ekihiro Seki
A precise equilibrium between cellular differentiation and proliferation is fundamental for tissue homeostasis. Maintaining this balance is particularly important for the liver, a highly differentiated organ with systemic metabolic functions that is endowed with unparalleled regenerative potential. Carcinogenesis in the liver develops as the result of hepatocellular de-differentiation and uncontrolled proliferation. Here, we identified
María Elizalde, Raquel Urtasun, María Azkona, María U. Latasa, Saioa Goñi, Oihane García-Irigoyen, Iker Uriarte, Victor Segura, María Collantes, Mariana Di Scala, Amaia Lujambio, Jesús Prieto, Matías A. Ávila, Carmen Berasain
Transcriptional coregulators are important components of nuclear receptor (NR) signaling machinery and provide additional mechanisms for modulation of NR activity. Expression of a mutated nuclear corepressor 1 (NCoR1) that lacks 2 NR interacting domains (NCoRΔID) in the liver leads to elevated expression of genes regulated by thyroid hormone receptor (TR) and liver X receptor (LXR), both of which control hepatic cholesterol metabolism. Here, we demonstrate that expression of NCoRΔID in mouse liver improves dietary cholesterol tolerance in an LXRα-independent manner. NCoRΔID-associated cholesterol tolerance was primarily due to diminished intestinal cholesterol absorption as the result of changes in the composition and hydrophobicity of the bile salt pool. Alterations of the bile salt pool were mediated by increased expression of genes encoding the bile acid metabolism enzymes CYP27A1 and CYP3A11 as well as canalicular bile salt pump ABCB11. We have determined that these genes are regulated by thyroid hormone and that TRβ1 is recruited to their regulatory regions. Together, these data indicate that interactions between NCoR1 and TR control a specific pathway involved in regulation of cholesterol metabolism and clearance.
Inna Astapova, Preeti Ramadoss, Ricardo H. Costa-e-Sousa, Felix Ye, Kaila A. Holtz, Yingxia Li, Michele W. Niepel, David E. Cohen, Anthony N. Hollenberg
Understanding the molecular pathogenesis of inflammatory liver disease is essential to design efficient therapeutic approaches. In hepatocytes, the dimeric transcription factor c-JUN/AP-1 is a major mediator of cell survival during hepatitis, although functions for other JUN proteins in liver disease are less defined. Here, we found that JUNB was specifically expressed in human and murine immune cells during acute liver injury. We analyzed the molecular function of JUNB in experimental models of hepatitis, including administration of concanavalin A (ConA) or α-galactosyl-ceramide, which induce liver inflammation and injury. Mice specifically lacking JUNB in hepatocytes displayed a mild increase in ConA-induced liver damage. However, targeted deletion of
Martin K. Thomsen, Latifa Bakiri, Sebastian C. Hasenfuss, Rainer Hamacher, Lola Martinez, Erwin F. Wagner
When regenerative processes cannot keep pace with cell death, functional epithelia are replaced by scar. Scarring is characterized by both excessive accumulation of fibrous matrix and persistent outgrowth of cell types that accumulate transiently during successful wound healing, including myofibroblasts (MFs) and progenitors. This suggests that signaling that normally directs these cells to repair injured epithelia is deregulated. To evaluate this possibility, we examined liver repair during different types of liver injury after Smoothened (SMO), an obligate intermediate in the Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway, was conditionally deleted in cells expressing the MF-associated gene, α
Gregory A. Michelotti, Guanhua Xie, Marzena Swiderska, Steve S. Choi, Gamze Karaca, Leandi Krüger, Richard Premont, Liu Yang, Wing-Kin Syn, Daniel Metzger, Anna Mae Diehl
Patients with cholestatic disease exhibit pruritus and analgesia, but the mechanisms underlying these symptoms are unknown. We report that bile acids, which are elevated in the circulation and tissues during cholestasis, cause itch and analgesia by activating the GPCR TGR5. TGR5 was detected in peptidergic neurons of mouse dorsal root ganglia and spinal cord that transmit itch and pain, and in dermal macrophages that contain opioids. Bile acids and a TGR5-selective agonist induced hyperexcitability of dorsal root ganglia neurons and stimulated the release of the itch and analgesia transmitters gastrin-releasing peptide and leucine-enkephalin. Intradermal injection of bile acids and a TGR5-selective agonist stimulated scratching behavior by gastrin-releasing peptide– and opioid-dependent mechanisms in mice. Scratching was attenuated in
Farzad Alemi, Edwin Kwon, Daniel P. Poole, TinaMarie Lieu, Victoria Lyo, Fiore Cattaruzza, Ferda Cevikbas, Martin Steinhoff, Romina Nassini, Serena Materazzi, Raquel Guerrero-Alba, Eduardo Valdez-Morales, Graeme S. Cottrell, Kristina Schoonjans, Pierangelo Geppetti, Stephen J. Vanner, Nigel W. Bunnett, Carlos U. Corvera
A genetic variant in PNPLA3 (PNPLA3I148M), a triacylglycerol (TAG) hydrolase, is a major risk factor for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD); however, the mechanism underlying this association is not known. To develop an animal model of PNPLA3-induced fatty liver disease, we generated transgenic mice that overexpress similar amounts of wild-type PNPLA3 (PNPLA3WT) or mutant PNPLA3 (PNPLA3I148M) either in liver or adipose tissue. Overexpression of the transgenes in adipose tissue did not affect liver fat content. Expression of PNPLA3I148M, but not PNPLA3WT, in liver recapitulated the fatty liver phenotype as well as other metabolic features associated with this allele in humans. Metabolic studies provided evidence for 3 distinct alterations in hepatic TAG metabolism in PNPLA3I148M transgenic mice: increased formation of fatty acids and TAG, impaired hydrolysis of TAG, and relative depletion of TAG long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids. These findings suggest that PNPLA3 plays a role in remodeling TAG in lipid droplets, as they accumulate in response to food intake, and that the increase in hepatic TAG levels associated with the I148M substitution results from multiple changes in hepatic TAG metabolism. The development of an animal model that recapitulates the metabolic phenotype of the allele in humans provides a new platform in which to elucidate the role of PNLPA3I148M in NAFLD.
John Zhong Li, Yongcheng Huang, Ruchan Karaman, Pavlina T. Ivanova, H. Alex Brown, Thomas Roddy, Jose Castro-Perez, Jonathan C. Cohen, Helen H. Hobbs
Alcoholic liver disease (ALD) is characterized by steatosis and upregulation of proinflammatory cytokines, including IL-1β. IL-1β, type I IL-1 receptor (IL-1R1), and IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) are all important regulators of the IL-1 signaling complex, which plays a role in inflammation. Furthermore, IL-1β maturation is dependent on caspase-1 (Casp-1). Using IL-1Ra–treated mice as well as 3 mouse models deficient in regulators of IL-1β activation (Casp-1 and ASC) or signaling (IL-1R1), we found that IL-1β signaling is required for the development of alcohol-induced liver steatosis, inflammation, and injury. Increased IL-1β was due to upregulation of Casp-1 activity and inflammasome activation. The pathogenic role of IL-1 signaling in ALD was attributable to the activation of the inflammasome in BM-derived Kupffer cells. Importantly, in vivo intervention with a recombinant IL-1Ra blocked IL-1 signaling and markedly attenuated alcohol-induced liver inflammation, steatosis, and damage. Furthermore, physiological doses of IL-1β induced steatosis, increased the inflammatory and prosteatotic chemokine MCP-1 in hepatocytes, and augmented TLR4-dependent upregulation of inflammatory signaling in macrophages. In conclusion, we demonstrated that Casp-1–dependent upregulation of IL-1β and signaling mediated by IL-1R1 are crucial in ALD pathogenesis. Our findings suggest a potential role of IL-1R1 inhibition in the treatment of ALD.
Jan Petrasek, Shashi Bala, Timea Csak, Dora Lippai, Karen Kodys, Victoria Menashy, Matthew Barrieau, So-Yun Min, Evelyn A. Kurt-Jones, Gyongyi Szabo