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Am J Pathol. 1999 Jun;154(6):1711-20.

Enhanced expression of CD80 (B7-1), CD86 (B7-2), and CD40 and their ligands CD28 and CD154 in fulminant hepatic failure.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, University of Bonn, Germany.


To define a possible role for changes in the regulation of antigen presentation in fulminant hepatic failure (FHF), we studied the expression of co-stimulatory molecules CD80 (B7-1), CD86 (B7-2), and CD40 along with their ligands CD28 and CD154. We analyzed the liver tissue from patients with FHF (n = 18), chronic liver disease (n = 30), and acute hepatitis (n = 3) and from normal controls (n = 9) by immunohistochemistry and examined the temporal relationship between CD80/CD86 and CD40 expression and disease in the mouse models of galactosamine-lipopolysaccharide and galactosamine-tumor-necrosis-factor-induced FHF. In human controls, faint CD80/CD86 immunoreactivity was restricted to Kupffer cells, and CD40 expression was expressed on bile ducts, macrophages, and sinusoidal endothelial cells (SECs). In FHF, immunoreactivity for CD80 and CD86 was observed on significantly higher numbers of cells, including SECs. Increased CD80/CD86 expression corresponded to increased numbers of CD28-positive lymphocytes. The expression of CD40 was also clearly elevated on virtually all cell types in FHF. In both murine models, CD40 and CD80/CD86 expression was up-regulated before tissue damage could be detected. Our data suggest that up-regulated expression of co-stimulatory molecules might lead to an excessive antigen presentation in FHF as an early step in the pathogenesis before the onset of tissue damage.

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