Published online Feb 27, 2011. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v3.i2.45
Revised: December 29, 2010
Accepted: November 6, 2010
Published online: February 27, 2011
AIM: To examine the consequences of cellular fibronectin (cFn) accumulation during alcohol-induced injury, and investigate whether increased cFn could have an effect on hepatocytes (HCs) by producing factors that could contribute to alcohol-induced liver injury.
METHODS: HCs were isolated from rats fed a control or ethanol liquid diet for four to six weeks. Exogenous cFn (up to 7.5 μg/mL) was added to cells cultured for 20 h, and viability (lactate dehydrogenase,LDH), apoptosis (caspase activity) and secretion of proinflammatory cytokines (tumor necrosis factor alpha, TNF-α and interleukin 6 IL-6), matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and their inhibitors (tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases, TIMPs) was determined. Degradation of iodinated cFn was determined over a 3 h time period in the preparations.
RESULTS: cFn degradation is impaired in HCs isolated from ethanol-fed animals, leading to its accumulation in the matrix. Addition of exogenous cFn did not affect viability of HCs from control or ethanol-fed animals, and apoptosis was affected only at the higher concentration. Secretion of MMPs, TIMPs, TNF-α and IL-6, however, was increased by exogenously added cFn, with HCs from ethanol-fed animals showing increased susceptibility compared to the controls.
CONCLUSION: These results suggest that the elevated amounts of cFn observed in alcoholic liver injury can stimulate hepatocytes to produce factors which promote further tissue damage.