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Establishment and characterization of immortal hepatocytes derived from various transgenic mouse lines



Biochemical and biophysical research communications 294 (2002), No.4, pp.864-871
ISSN: 0006-291X
Journal Article
Fraunhofer ITA ( ITEM) ()
immortalization; p53 knockout; SV40 T-antigen; liver cell; mouse; cell differentiation; epidermal growth factor

The potential of three genetic changes introduced into mice by the transgenic or knockout technology aimed at immortalizing hepatocytes in vitro and concomitantly preserving their differentiated hepatic functions was analyzed. Six hepatocyte lines were isolated from neonatal and adult transgenic mice expressing either IgEGF (a secretable variant of hEGF) or SV40 T antigen in the liver and from neonatal and adult p53 knockout (KO) mice and have been subcultured >150 times in serum-free, arginine-deficient medium. Only in SV40 T antigen transgenic lines profiles of mRNAs encoding serum proteins, transcription factors, and liver-specific enzymes were similar to those found in livers and primary hepatocytes. Accordingly, these cells displayed basal and inducible expression of CYP proteins as well as testosterone metabolizing activities. Thus, either knockout of the p53 gene or expression of SV40 T antigen or of IgEGF imparts immortality to hepatocytes in vitro, but only SV40 T antigen expression is compatible with the concomitant long-term preservation of differentiated liver functions.