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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2003 Apr 11;303(3):954-61.

Increased expression of O-acetyl disialoganglioside synthase during rat liver fibrogenesis relates to stellate cell activation.

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  • 1Medicinal Resources Research Center, College of Pharmacy, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Jeonbuk 570-749, Republic of Korea.


The activation of the hepatic stellate cell (HSC) is a key step in liver fibrogenesis. Utilizing large scale sequencing of a 3'-directed cDNA library, we investigated expression profiles of quiescent and activated rat HSCs. During the activation process, O-acetyl disialoganglioside synthase (OAcGD3S) was identified as one of the significant upregulated factors. Upregulation of OAcGD3S in cultured HSCs was confirmed by both Northern and Western blot analyses. OAcGD3S expression in models of experimental liver fibrosis was investigated at the mRNA level using RT-PCR. The expression of OAcGD3S protein in activated rat HSCs and in experimental fibrotic livers was demonstrated by immunohistochemistry. In situ hybridization revealed OAcGD3S mRNA expression in areas of ductular proliferation. Furthermore, O-acetyl GD3 protein was detected in activated rat HSCs and human cirrhosis livers. This study shows that OAcGD3S is strongly expressed during liver fibrogenesis and HSCs seem to be the major cellular sources of OAcGD3S in the liver.

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