Format

Send to

Choose Destination
J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2015 Mar;30(3):638-45. doi: 10.1111/jgh.12720.

Inconsistent hepatic antifibrotic effects with the iron chelator deferasirox.

Author information

1
School of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation, Greenslopes Private Hospital, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND AIM:

Development of effective antifibrotic treatments that can be translated to clinical practice is an important challenge in contemporary hepatology. A recent report on β-thalassemia patients demonstrated that deferasirox treatment reversed or stabilized liver fibrosis independent of its iron-chelating properties. In this study, we investigated deferasirox in cell and animal models to better understand its potential antifibrotic effects.

METHODS:

The LX-2 stellate cell line was treated with 5 μM or 50 μM deferasirox (Exjade, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Australia, North Ryde, NSW, Australia) for up to 120 h. Three-week-old multidrug resistance 2 null (Mdr2(-/-) ) mice received oral deferasirox or vehicle for 4 weeks (30 mg/kg/day). Cells and liver tissue were collected for assessment of fibrosis and fibrogenic gene expression.

RESULTS:

In LX-2 cells treated with 50 μM deferasirox for 12 h, α1(I)procollagen expression was decreased by 25%, with maximal reductions (10-fold) seen following 24-120 h of treatment. Similarly, α-smooth muscle actin (αSMA) expression was significantly lower. Alterations in matrix remodeling genes, specifically decreased expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2 and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-2, were observed. There was no significant difference in hepatic hydroxyproline content in Mdr2(-/-) mice following deferasirox administration (vehicle: 395 ± 27 μg/g vs deferasirox: 421 ± 33 μg/g). Similarly, no changes in the expression of fibrogenic genes were observed.

CONCLUSION:

Despite reductions in α1(I)procollagen and αSMA expression and alterations in matrix degradation genes in LX-2 cells, deferasirox did not exhibit antifibrotic activity in Mdr2(-/-) mice. Given the positive outcomes seen in human trials, it may be appropriate to study deferasirox in other animal models of fibrosis and/or for a longer duration of therapy.

KEYWORDS:

animal models; iron-chelating agents; liver fibrosis; stellate cells

PMID:
25168203
DOI:
10.1111/jgh.12720
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center