Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Hepatology. 2007 Oct;46(4):1187-97.

Fibroblast growth factor 10 is critical for liver growth during embryogenesis and controls hepatoblast survival via beta-catenin activation.

Author information

  • 1Saban Research Institute, Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA.


Fibroblast growth factor (FGF) signaling and beta-catenin activation have been shown to be crucial for early embryonic liver development. This study determined the significance of FGF10-mediated signaling in a murine embryonic liver progenitor cell population as well as its relation to beta-catenin activation. We observed that Fgf10(-/-) and Fgfr2b(-/-) mouse embryonic livers are smaller than wild-type livers; Fgf10(-/-) livers exhibit diminished proliferation of hepatoblasts. A comparison of beta-galactosidase activity as a readout of Fgf10 expression in Fgf10(+/LacZ) mice and of beta-catenin activation in TOPGAL mice, demonstrated peak Fgf10 expression from E9 to E13.5 coinciding with peak beta-catenin activation. Flow cytometric isolation and marker gene expression analysis of LacZ(+) cells from E13.5 Fgf10(+/LacZ) and TOPGAL livers, respectively, revealed that Fgf10 expression and beta-catenin signaling occur distinctly in stellate/myofibroblastic cells and hepatoblasts, respectively. Moreover, hepatoblasts express Fgfr2b, which strongly suggests they can respond to recombinant FGF10 produced by stellate cells. Fgfr2b(-/-)/TOPGAL(+/+) embryonic livers displayed less beta-galactosidase activity than livers of Fgfr2b(+/+)/TOPGAL(+/+) littermates. In addition, cultures of whole liver explants in Matrigel or cell in suspension from E12.5 TOPGAL(+/+)mice displayed a marked increase in beta-galactosidase activity and cell survival upon treatment with recombinant FGF10, indicating that FGFR (most likely FGFR2B) activation is upstream of beta-catenin signaling and promote hepatoblast survival.


Embryonic stellate/myofibroblastic cells promote beta-catenin activation in and survival of hepatoblasts via FGF10-mediated signaling. We suggest a role for stellate/myofibroblastic FGF10 within the liver stem cell niche in supporting the proliferating hepatoblast.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Wiley Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk