Transgenic expression of human neutrophil peptide-1 enhances hepatic fibrosis in mice fed a choline-deficient, L-amino acid–defined diet
Hirofumi Uto, 8-35-1 Sakuragaoka, Kagoshima, Japan
Tel: +81 99 275 5326
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Neutrophils infiltrate the livers of patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Human neutrophil peptides (HNPs) induce cytokine and chemokine production under inflammatory conditions, which may contribute to the progression of NASH. In this study, we focused on the effects of HNP-1 on hepatic steatosis and fibrosis in a mouse model of NASH induced by a choline-deficient, L-amino acid–defined (CDAA) diet.
Materials & Methods
We generated transgenic mice expressing HNP-1 under the control of a β-actin–based promoter. HNP-1 transgenic and wild-type C57BL/6N mice were fed a CDAA diet for 16 weeks to induce hepatic steatosis and fibrosis. Serological and histological features were examined, and the effects of HNP-1 on hepatic stellate cell lines were assessed.
HNP-1 transgenic and wild-type mice fed the CDAA diet showed no significant differences in serum alanine aminotransferase levels or the degree of hepatic steatosis based on Oil red O staining and hepatic triglyceride content. In contrast, Sirius Red and Azan staining showed significantly more severe hepatic fibrosis in HNP-1 transgenic mice compared with wild-type mice. In addition, significantly more α-smooth muscle actin–positive hepatic stellate cells were observed in the transgenic mice than in the wild-type mice. Finally, the proliferation of the LI90 hepatic stellate cell line increased in response to HNP-1.
Our data indicate that HNP-1 enhances hepatic fibrosis in fatty liver by inducing hepatic stellate cell proliferation. Thus, neutrophil-derived HNP-1 may contribute to the progression of NASH.