Oxidative stress and altered gene expression occurs in a metabolic liver disease model
A team of researchers under the direction of Dr. Jeffrey Teckman in the Department of Pediatrics at St. Louis University, have demonstrated that oxidative stress occurs in a genetic model of alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency.
This is the most common genetic liver disorder in children and can lead to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma in adults. Some cases may require liver transplantation. The report, published in the October 2012 issue of Experimental Biology and Medicine, suggests that treatment with antioxidants might be of therapeutic benefit for some individuals.
"We have evidence of oxidative stress in livers from an animal model that expresses the classical Z variant form of alpha-1-antitrypsin. The animal model recapitulates the human liver disease, in which the livers accumulate polymers of alpha-1-antitrypsin mutant Z protein, developing fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma with age", says Dr. Marcus. Potentially, non-invasive treatment involving long-term regulation of antioxidant levels could ameliorate the oxidative stress and retard the advancement of disease.
"This is an exciting new report which may help us understand the extreme variability between different patients with this same, single gene, metabolic liver disease. These findings may inform the pathophysiology of other liver diseases as well", says Dr. Teckman. In clinical studies, liver disease from alpha-1-antitrypsin mutant Z protein has shown considerable variability in severity and progression, suggesting that as yet undescribed genetic modifiers may influence disease development. Based on this study, certain antioxidant enzymes involved in oxidative stress defense could be useful targets for further examination. Using microarray technology, the investigators have identified a number of potential alterations in gene expression pathways that could modify the development of liver pathologies. This information could be useful in defining genetic variants that may influence individual susceptibility and in facilitating the design of appropriate treatments.
Steven R. Goodman, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Experimental Biology and Medicine said, "Teckman and colleagues have demonstrated that oxidative stress occurs in an animal model of Alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency. This suggests that antioxidant treatment may be beneficial in this most common genetic liver disorder in children."
Experimental Biology and Medicine is a journal dedicated to the publication of multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research in the biomedical sciences. The journal was first established in 1903.
Experimental Biology and Medicine is the journal of the Society of Experimental Biology and Medicine. To learn about the benefits of society membership visit www.sebm.org. If you are interested in publishing in the journal please visit http://ebm.rsmjournals.com.
Dr. Nancy Marcus | EurekAlert!
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.
Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...
Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says
What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...
A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.
The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...
A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.
Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...
Key advance for future topological transistors
Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...