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Toxicology. 2009 Jan 8;255(1-2):6-14. doi: 10.1016/j.tox.2008.09.016. Epub 2008 Sep 27.

D-Dopachrome tautomerase is a candidate for key proteins to protect the rat liver damaged by carbon tetrachloride.

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Department of Preventive Medicine, Institute of Health Biosciences, the University of Tokushima Graduate School, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.


Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) is known to induce liver damage. Animal experiments with CCl4 injections have revealed many findings, especially mechanisms of liver damage and liver regeneration. Recently, proteomic approaches have been introduced in various studies to evaluate the quantitative and qualitative changes in the comprehensive proteome level. The aim of this research is to elucidate the key protein for liver damage, liver protection and liver regeneration by using proteomic techniques. 50 % (v/v) CCl4 in corn oil was administered intraperitoneally to adult male rats at a dose of 4ml/kg body weight. Approximately 24h after the injection, the liver was removed and extracted proteins were analyzed with cleavable isotope coded affinity tag (cICAT) reagents, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) and mass spectrometry (MS). A twelvefold increase in D-dopachrome tautomerase (DDT) was indicated. This enzyme has been reported to be involved in the biosynthesis of melanin, an antioxidant. According to the histological analysis, melanin levels were increased in un-damaged hepatocytes of CCl4-treated rats. These results suggest that the increase in DDT is a response to liver damage, accelerates melanin biosynthesis and protects the liver from oxidative stress induced by CCl4.

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