La dérégulation de l’axe GH/EGFR inhibe la régénération du foie dans le cadre de la stéatose hépatique

Abstract : This doctoral work focused on liver regeneration in physiological conditions and during steatosis. These last decades, several studies used gene invalidation models to identify important actors during the liver regeneration. In this context, it had been observed that animals displaying a defect of growth hormone pathway had a drastic defect of liver regeneration after partial hepatectomy. Initially, we started this work by focusing on understanding how growth hormone controls liver regeneration at the molecular level. To do so, we performed partial hepatectomies on animals deleted for the growth hormone receptor gene (GHrKO). These results showed that growth hormone plays a central role in the control of liver regeneration through the expression of EGFR and the activation of Erk1/2. Secondly, we focused our attention on a pathological situation showing a defect of growth hormone signaling : hepatic steatosis. Interestingly, many mice models of hepatic steatosis also present a drastic inhibition of hepatocytes proliferation after partial hepatectomy. In Humans, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) represents an important risk factor regarding liver transplantations and resections. Through quantified analysis of several parameters from obese patient biopsies, we showed the existence of a strong correlation between hepatic steatosis and decrease in EGFR expression on humans. We also performed partial hepatectomies on two models of hepatic steatosis, one being genetic (ob/ob) and the other one being induced by a methionine choline deficient diet (MCD). Kinetics of regeneration post hepatectomy led us to confirm the defect of liver regeneration in on ob/ob and MCD mice. Moreover, the study of these steatotic models allowed us to corroborate the downregulation of the growth hormone signaling and the transcriptional decrease of EGFR expression. We also underlight the importance of TGF-β, a signaling pathway inhibiting proliferation, in the liver regeneration defect observed in ob/ob mice. Indeed, many members of this pathway have been found to be upregulated after partial hepatectomy, possibly being involved in the drastic regeneration defect observed in ob/ob mice. To finish, we also showed that growth hormone injections on a small period of time in ob/ob mice were capable of rescuing hepatocyte proliferation post hepatectomy. This phenotypic rescue was associated with a reexpression of EGFR at the transcription and protein level. This work led us to propose that the defect of the growth hormone/EGFR pathway represents a general mechanism associated with hepatic steatosis and is responsible for the liver regeneration defect linked to this disease.
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Alexandra Collin de l'Hortet. La dérégulation de l’axe GH/EGFR inhibe la régénération du foie dans le cadre de la stéatose hépatique. Médecine humaine et pathologie. Université René Descartes - Paris V, 2014. Français. ⟨NNT : 2014PA05T003⟩. ⟨tel-00986411⟩

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