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Distribution and origin of the basement membrane component perlecan in rat liver and primary hepatocyte culture

Abstract : Basement membranes contain three major components (ie collagen IV, laminin, and the heparan sulfate proteoglycan termed perlecan). Although the distribution and origin of both collagen IV and laminin have been well documented in the liver, perlecan has been poorly investigated, so far. We have studied the distribution and cellular origin of perlecan in rat livers in various conditions as well as in hepatocyte primary culture. By immunolocalization in both adult and 18-day-old fetal liver, perlecan was found in portal spaces, around central veins, and throughout the lobule. Immunoelectron microscopy revealed its presence at the level of basement membranes surrounding bile ducts and blood vessels, and in the space of Disse discontinuously interacting with hepatocyte microvilli. Precursors of perlecan were detected in the rough endoplasmic reticulum of bile duct cells and both vascular and sinusoidal endothelial cells. Both hepatocytes and Ito cells were negative. Northern-blot analysis confirmed the lack of appreciable expression of perlecan in hepatocytes isolated from either fetal or adult livers. In 18-month-diethylnitrosamine-treated rat liver, perlecan was abundant in neoplastic nodules. Electron microscopic investigation revealed an almost continuous layer of perlecan in the space of Disse and intracellular staining in sinusoidal endothelial cells, only. Perlecan mRNAs were detectable in malignant nodules, and absent in hepatocytes from nontumorous areas. Hepatocytes expressed high levels of perlecan mRNAs only when put in culture. This expression was reduced in conditions that allow improvement of hepatocyte survival and function (ie addition of corticoids, dimethylsulfoxide or nicotinamide to the medium, or in coculture with liver epithelial cells from biliary origin). Immunolocalization by light and electron microscopy showed that deposition of the proteoglycan occurred in coculture, in basement membranelike structures located around hepatocyte cords. In vitro attachment assay of hepatocytes on purified perlecan substrate indicated that these cells may interact with the proteoglycan through integrins which belong to the beta 1 family. These data suggest that deposition of perlecan in the space of Disse requires cellular cooperation. This article on perlecan, the third major component of hepatic basement membranes, shows a unique cellular origin in the liver and, as found for both collagen IV and laminin, an expression in adult hepatocytes when place in culture.
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Pierre-Yves Rescan, Olivier Loréal, John R. Hassell, Yoshihiko Yamada, André Guillouzo, et al.. Distribution and origin of the basement membrane component perlecan in rat liver and primary hepatocyte culture. American Journal of Pathology, American Society for Investigative Pathology, 1993, 142 (1), pp.199-208. ⟨hal-02713721⟩

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