Effect of sex-specific differences on function of induced hepatocyte-like cells generated from male and female mouse embryonic fibroblasts

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Effect of sex-specific differences on function of induced hepatocyte-like cells generated from male and female mouse embryonic fibroblasts
I Ullah; Y Shin; Y Kim; K B Oh; S Hwang; Y I Kim; Jeong Woong Lee; T Y Hur; S Lee; S A Ock
Bibliographic Citation
Stem Cell Research & Therapy, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 79-79
Publication Year
Background: The liver is one of the vital organs involved in detoxification and metabolism. The sex-based differences between the functionality of male and female liver have been previously reported, i.e., male's liver are good in alcohol clearance and lipid metabolism, while female's liver are better in cholesterol metabolism. To date, studies on novel drug toxicity have not considered the sex-specific dimorphic nature of the liver. However, the use of hepatocyte-like cells to treat liver diseases has increased recently. Methods: Mouse embryos were isolated from a pregnant female C57BL/6J mouse where mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) were isolated from back skin tissue of each embryo. MEFs were transduced with human transcription factors hHnf1α, hHnf4α, and hFoxa3 using the lentiviral system. The transduced MEFs were further treated with hepatocyte-conditioned media followed by its analysis through RT-qPCR, immunofluorescence, functional assays, and finally whole-transcriptome RNA sequencing analysis. For in vivo investigation, the mouse hepatocyte-like cells (miHep) were transplanted into CCl4-induced acute liver mouse model. Results: In this study, we evaluated the sex-specific effect of miHep induced from male- and female-specific mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). We observed miHeps with a polygonal cytoplasm and bipolar nucleus and found that male miHeps showed higher mHnf4a, albumin secretion, and polyploidization than female miHeps. Transcriptomes from miHeps were similar to those from the liver, especially for Hnf4a of male miHeps. Male Cyps were normalized to those from females, which revealed Cyp expression differences between liver and miHeps. In both liver and miHeps, Cyp 4a12a and Cyp 4b13a/2b9 predominated in males and females, respectively. After grafting of miHeps, AST/ALT decreased, regardless of mouse sex. Conclusion: In conclusion, activation of endogenic Hnf4a is important for generation of successful sex-specific miHeps; furthermore, the male-derived miHep exhibits comparatively enhanced hepatic features than those of female miHep.
Mouse embryonic fibroblastsInduced hepatocytesSex specificHormoneLiver
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Division of Biomedical Research > Biotherapeutics Translational Research Center > 1. Journal Articles
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