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Cell. 1991 Jul 26;66(2):245-56.

Complete hepatic regeneration after somatic deletion of an albumin-plasminogen activator transgene.

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Laboratory of Reproductive Physiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.


We previously demonstrated that expression of an albumin-urokinase-type plasminogen activator (Alb-uPA) fusion construct in transgenic mice resulted in elevated plasma uPA concentration, hypofibrinogenemia, and neonatal hemorrhaging. Two lines of Alb-uPA mice were established in which only one half of the transgenic pups died at birth; surprisingly, plasma uPA concentrations in survivors gradually returned to normal by 2 months of age. The basis for this phenomenon is DNA rearrangement within hepatocytes that affects the transgene tandem array and abolishes transgene expression. Transgene-deficient cells selectively proliferate relative to surrounding liver, and this process culminates in replacement of the entire liver by clonal hepatic nodules derived from transgene-deficient progenitor cells. In some cases as few as two nodules can reconstitute over 90% of liver mass, highlighting the remarkable regenerative capacity of individual liver cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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