Critical role of tumor necrosis factor receptor 1, but not 2, in hepatic stellate cell proliferation, extracellular matrix remodeling, and liver fibrogenesis§

Authors

  • Núria Tarrats,

    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
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  • Anna Moles,

    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
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  • Albert Morales,

    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
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  • Carmen García-Ruiz,

    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
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  • José C. Fernández-Checa,

    Corresponding author
    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
    2. Research Center for Alcoholic Liver and Pancreatic Diseases, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
    • or Montserrat Marí, Ph.D., Liver Unit, Hospital Clinic, C/Villarroel 170, 08036 Barcelona, Spain
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    • fax: 34-93-363-8301

  • Montserrat Marí

    1. IDIBAPS, Liver Unit-Hospital Clínic, CIBEREHD, and Department of Cell Death and Proliferation, IIBB-CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
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    • These authors share senior authorship.


  • Potential conflict of interest: Nothing to report.

  • The work was supported by grants PI09/00056, PI10/02114 (Instituto de Salud Carlos III), 2008-02199, and 2009-11417 (Plan Nacional de I+D), Spain; and P50-AA-11999 (Research Center for Liver and Pancreatic Diseases, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health).

Abstract

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-α1(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. Conclusion: 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. (HEPATOLOGY 2011;)

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