Establishment of an Immortalized Human Hepatic Stellate Cell Line to Develop Antifibrotic Therapies

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Abstract:

Because human hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) perform a crucial role in the progress of hepatic fibrosis, it is of great value to establish an immortalized human cell line that exhibits HSC characteristics and grows well in tissue cultures for the development of antifibrotic therapies. Thus, we engineered an immortalized human hepatic stellate cell (HSC) line TWNT-4 by retrovirally inducing human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) into LI 90 cells established from a human liver mesenchymal tumor. Parental LI 90 entered replicative senescence, whereas TWNT-4 showed telomerase activity and proliferated for more than population doubling level (PDL) 200 without any crisis. TWNT-4 expressed platelet-derived growth factor-β receptor (PDGF-βR), α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA), and type I collagen (α1) and was considered to be an activated form of HSCs. Treatment of TWNT-4 cells with either 100 U/ml of IFN-γ or 1 ng/ml of rapamycin (Rapa) for 14 days led to lower expression of type I collagen (α1) at RNA and protein levels. Exposure of TWNT-4 cells to both of IFN-γ (10 U/ml) and Rapa (0.1 ng/ml) for 14 days effectively decreased the expression of type I collagen (α1), PDGF-βR, and α-SMA expression and suppressed TGF-β1 secretion of TWNT-4 cells. We successfully induced apoptosis by transducing TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) into TWNT-4 cells using adenovirus vectors Ad/GT-TRAIL and Ad/PGK-GV-17. These findings suggested that immortalized activated HSC line TWNT-4 would be a useful means to develop antifibrotic therapies.

Keywords: Human hepatic stellate cells; Human telomerase reverse transcriptase; Interferon-γ; Rapamycin; Type I collagen

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/000000003108747064

Affiliations: 1: *Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine, Kawasaki Medical School, 577 Matsushima, Kurashiki 701-0114 Japan 2: †Department of Surgery, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine and Dentistry, 2-5-1 Shikata-cho, Okayama 700-8558, Japan 3: ‡Department of Cell Biology, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine and Dentistry, 2-5-1 Shikata-cho, Okayama 700-8558, Japan

Publication date: January 1, 2003

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

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