Higher Serum Alanine Transaminase Levels in Male Urokinase-Type Plasminogen Activator-Transgenic Mice Are Associated With Improved Engraftment of Hepatocytes but not Liver Sinusoidal Endothelial Cells.

Fomin ME, Beyer AI, Publicover J, Lu K, Bakkour S, Simmons G, Muench MO
Source: Cell Medicine
Publication Date: (2016)
Issue: 9(3): 117-125
Research Area:
Cells used in publication:
Hepatocyte, human
Species: human
Tissue Origin: liver
The effects of sex on the degree of liver damage and human cell engraftment were investigated in immunodeficient urokinase-type plasminogen activator-transgenic (uPA-NOG) mice. Liver damage, measured by serum alanine transaminase (ALT) levels, was compared in male and female uPA-NOG mice of different ages. Male mice had significantly higher ALT levels than females with a median of 334 versus 158 U/L in transgenic homozygous mice, respectively. Mice were transplanted with human adult hepatocytes or fetal liver cells and analyzed for any correlation of engraftment of hepatocytes, liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (LSECs), and hematopoietic cells with the degree of liver damage. Hepatocyte engraftment was measured by human albumin levels in the mouse serum. Higher ALT levels correlated with higher hepatocyte engraftment, resulting in albumin levels in male mice that were 9.6 times higher than in females. LSEC and hematopoietic cell engraftment were measured by flow cytometric analysis of the mouse liver and bone marrow. LSEC and hematopoietic engraftment did not differ between male and female transplant recipients. Thus, the sex of uPA-NOG mice affects the degree of liver damage, which is reflected in the levels of human hepatocyte engraftment. However, the high levels of LSEC engraftment observed in uPA-NOG mice are not further improved among male mice, suggesting that a lower threshold of liver damage is sufficient to enhance endothelial cell engraftment. Previously described sex differences in human hematopoietic stem cell engraftment in immunodeficient mice were not observed in this model.