Growth Ability and Repopulation Efficiency of Transplanted Hepatic Stem Cells, Progenitor Cells, and Mature Hepatocytes in Retrorsine-Treated Rat Livers
Abstract:Cell-based therapies as an alternative to liver transplantation have been anticipated for the treatment of potentially fatal liver diseases. Not only mature hepatocytes (MHs) but also hepatic stem/progenitor cells are considered as candidate cell sources. However, whether the stem/progenitor cells have an advantage to engraft and repopulate the recipient liver compared with MHs has not been comprehensively assessed. Therefore, we used Thy1+ (oval) and CD44+ (small hepatocytes) cells isolated from GalN-treated rat livers as hepatic stem and progenitor cells, respectively. Cells from dipeptidylpeptidase IV (DPPIV)+ rat livers were transplanted into DPPIV− livers treated with retrorsine following partial hepatectomy. Both stem and progenitor cells could differentiate into hepatocytes in host livers. In addition, the growth of the progenitor cells was faster than that of MHs until days 14. However, their repopulation efficiency in the long term was very low, since the survival period of the progenitor cells was much shorter than that of MHs. Most foci derived from Thy1+ cells disappeared within 2 months. Many cells expressed senescence-associated β-galactosidase in 33% of CD44-derived foci at day 60, whereas the expression was observed in 13% of MH-derived ones. The short life of the cells may be due to their cellular senescence. On the other hand, the incorporation of sinusoidal endothelial cells into foci and sinusoid formation, which might be correlated to hepatic maturation, was completed faster in MH-derived foci than in CD44-derived ones. The survival of donor cells may have a close relation to not only early integration into hepatic plates but also the differentiated state of the cells at the time of transplantation.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Department of Tissue Development and Regeneration, Research Institute for Frontier Medicine, Sapporo Medical University School of Medicine, Sapporo, Japan
Publication date: 2012-01-01
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