Expression of connexins and pannexins in diseased human liver
Keywords:connexin, pannexin, human liver disease, biopsies
Connexin proteins can form hexameric hemichannels and gap junctions that mediate paracrine and direct intercellular communication, respectively. Gap junction activity is crucial for the maintenance of hepatic homeostasis, while connexin hemichannels become particularly active in liver disease, such as hepatitis, fibrosis, cholestasis or even hepatocellular carcinoma. Channels consisting of connexin-like proteins named pannexins have been directly linked to liver inflammation and cell death. The goal of the present study was to characterize the expression and subcellular localization of connexins and pannexins in liver of patients suffering from various chronic and neoplastic liver diseases. Specifically, real-time quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry analyses were performed on human liver biopsies. It was found that pannexin1 and pannexin2 gene expression are correlated to a certain degree, as is pannexin1 protein expression with connexin32 and connexin43 protein expression. Furthermore, this study is the first to detect pannexin3 in human patient liver biopsies via both immunoblot and immunohistochemistry.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Kaat Leroy, Vânia Vilas-Boas, Eva Gijbels, Bart Vanderborght, Lindsey Devisscher, Bruno Cogliati, Bert Van Den Bossche, Isabelle Colle, Mathieu Vinken
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