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Pediatr Res. 2008 Jun;63(6):667-73. doi: 10.1203/PDR.0b013e318170a6b5.

Expression of hepatocyte transporters and nuclear receptors in children with early and late-stage biliary atresia.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, National Taiwan University College of Medicine and Hospital, Taipei, 10002 Taiwan.

Abstract

To investigate how the liver adapts to chronic obstructive cholestasis, liver samples from infants with early- and late-stage cholestasis were analyzed for changes in the levels of hepatocyte transporters and nuclear receptors. At early-stage cholestasis, most canalicular transporters and sinusoidal uptake transporters were downregulated, including bile salt export pump (BSEP, ABCB11), multidrug resistant protein 3 (MDR3, ABCB4), multidrug-resistant associated protein 2 (MRP2, ABCC2), sodium-dependent taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP, SLC10A1), organic anion transporter (OATP, SLCO1A2), and nuclear receptor farnesoid X receptor (FXR, NR1H4). At late-stage cholestasis, FXR-BSEP levels returned to normal, MDR3 and MDR1 (ABCB1) were upregulated, and MRP-2 was downregulated. In addition, alternative sinusoidal efflux transporters, organic solute transporter alpha/beta (OSTalpha/beta) and MRP4 were upregulated, and pregnane X receptor (PXR, NR1I2) levels decreased. Cytochrome enzyme P450 7A1 was markedly downregulated at both early and late-stage cholestasis. An analysis of the long-term prognosis of 18 patients revealed lower PXR and constitutive androstane receptor (CAR, NR1I3) levels in the poor prognosis group. In conclusion, at long-term cholestasis, hepatocyte bile efflux was through sinusoidal and canalicular transporters, with FXR-BSEP levels maintained and PXR downregulated. Low PXR and CAR levels were associated with poor prognosis.

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