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Surgery. 2001 Mar;129(3):255-66.

Expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase in the liver of bile duct-ligated Wistar rats with modulation by lymphomononuclear cells.

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  • 1Cardiovascular Research and Hypertension Laboratory, Fundación Jiménez Díaz, Madrid, Spain.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The current study evaluated whether biliary tract obstruction stimulates inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) protein expression in the liver and analyzed the implication of lymphomononuclear cells and interleukin-4 (IL-4).

METHODS:

Male Wistar rats were used. Bile flow interruption was achieved by a complete division of the extrapancreatic common bile duct. iNOS expression was determined by both the Western blot technique and immunohistochemistry.

RESULTS:

iNOS protein was markedly expressed in the liver 7 days after bile duct obstruction. Treatment with thymostimulin (TP-1), a partially purified thymic extract, reduced the intensity of the expression of iNOS protein in the liver after bile duct ligation. Recent data have suggested that IL-4 attenuates iNOS protein expression. We then analyzed the involvement of this anti-inflammatory cytokine on the modulation of iNOS expression in the liver. The liver from rats that underwent bile duct ligation (BDL) showed a lower content of IL-4 than that of sham-operated (SO) rats. TP-1 treatment increased the content of IL-4 in the liver. Liver slices incubated in vitro with Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 10 microg/mL) stimulated the expression of iNOS protein. The level of LPS-induced iNOS expression was reduced by lymphomononuclear cells obtained from sham-operated animals. However, lymphomononuclear cells isolated from BDL rats potentiated the induction of iNOS expression by LPS-stimulated liver. However, lymphomononuclear cells from TP-1-treated BDL rats failed to modify LPS-stimulated iNOS expression. The different effect of lymphomononuclear cells on the modulation of iNOS expression in the liver was associated with their ability to generate IL-4.

CONCLUSIONS:

The liver of jaundiced rats markedly expressed iNOS protein, which was associated to modifications in the content of IL-4 in the liver. Furthermore, lymphomononuclear cells modulate iNOS protein expression in the liver by a mechanism in which IL-4 is involved.

PMID:
11231453
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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