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Cancer Res. 1987 Oct 15;47(20):5469-75.

In situ hybridization studies on expression of albumin and alpha-fetoprotein during the early stage of neoplastic transformation in rat liver.

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1
Laboratory of Experimental Carcinogenesis, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland 20892.

Abstract

The expressions of albumin and alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) genes were studied in early preneoplastic liver lesions produced by the Solt-Farber protocol using "in situ" hybridization with single stranded RNA probes. In normal rat liver, albumin was expressed at a lower level in the centrilobular than in the periportal areas of the liver acinus, whereas the bile duct epithelium did not show any expression. Five weeks after initiation with diethylnitrosamine, islands of hepatocytes were present which showed heterogeneous expression of albumin and were surrounded by cells comprised of albumin negative hepatocytes and oval cells. gamma-Glutamyltranspeptidase positive foci of enzyme altered cells were located in albumin positive areas. Albumin expression gradually decreased in permanent nodules but increased in the hepatocytes outside the nodules during the first five months after initiation with diethylnitrosamine. Remodeling nodules, which were partly gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase and albumin positive, were also present. However, no consistent correlation was found between gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase positive and albumin negative areas during the first 5 months after initiation. Occasionally, cells showing an elevated expression of albumin were found in permanent nodules. These cells were located in the vicinity of oval type cells, which also showed a weak expression of albumin. AFP was expressed at high level in oval cells 5 weeks after the initiation. However, oval cells observed at later time points, either around the neoplastic nodules or inside the nodules showed only low expression of AFP. Hepatocytes in the enzyme-altered foci and in neoplastic nodules were always negative for AFP. The presence of strongly albumin positive cells inside the neoplastic nodules in close proximity to oval type cells suggests that these cells may be derived from primitive "stem-cell"-like oval cells.

PMID:
2443240
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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