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Eur J Cell Biol. 1986 Mar;40(1):86-93.

The acute-phase induction of alpha 2-macroglobulin in rat hepatocyte primary cultures: action of a hepatocyte-stimulating factor, triiodothyronine and dexamethasone.


During inflammation a number of liver-derived plasma proteins increases in concentration. In the rat these so-called acute-phase proteins are mainly proteinase inhibitors, such as alpha 1-proteinase inhibitor, alpha 1-acute-phase globulin and alpha 2-macroglobulin. At present, the mechanisms responsible for the enhanced synthesis of acute-phase proteins are poorly understood. Therefore, we have studied the induction of alpha 2-macroglobulin synthesis in rat hepatocyte primary cultures. Adrenaline, triiodothyronine, estradiol and progesterone were tested for their ability to stimulate alpha 2-macroglobulin synthesis. Only triiodothyronine induced alpha 2-macroglobulin synthesis markedly. However, the presence of dexamethasone was a prerequisite for alpha 2-macroglobulin induction indicating a permissive action of glucocorticoids. Besides glucocorticoids and triiodothyronine a non-dialyzable factor (HSF) derived from rat Kupffer cells or human peripheral blood monocytes was found to be able to stimulate alpha 2-macroglobulin synthesis in hepatocytes. Equal amounts of HSF activity were found in conditioned media from lipopolysaccharide-stimulated and unstimulated rat Kupffer cells as well as in human monocytes. Since the supernatants of unstimulated rat Kupffer cells or human monocytes did not exhibit interleukin 1 activity, HSF activity distinct from interleukin 1 must exist. No HSF activity was found in media conditioned by rat Kupffer cells which had been treated with dexamethasone. Hepatocyte primary cultures were incubated with [35S]methionine-labeled proteins secreted by rat Kupffer cells. A 30 kDa polypeptide was found to be bound to or internalized by rat hepatocytes.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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