Expression of tumor necrosis factor-α and transforming growth factor-β1 in acute liver injury

Mark J. Czaja, Kathleen C. Flanders, Luis Biempica, Charna Klein, Mark A. Zern, Francis R. Weiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α and transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) have a number of in vitro functions that could be important in vivo in acute liver injury and repair. Therefore, we investigated these two cytokines in acute liver damage. Northern blots of RNA isolated from rats sacrificed at various time intervals after a single oral dose of CCl4 revealed that TNF-α mRNA levels were elevated within 6 hr of CCl4 administration and returned to control values by 24-32 hr. In contrast, TGF-β1 mRNA levels started to rise significantly at 24 hr, peaked at 48 hr, and approached baseline levels by 72 hr. Identical changes in TNF-α and TGF-β1 mRNA levels were also seen with D-galactosamine-induced hepatotoxicity. Immunohistochemical analysis using a TGF-β1 antibody demonstrated increased hepatic staining in CCl4-treated rats, at times corresponding to the increases in TGF-β1 gene expression. Therefore, there is a differential expression of these cytokines in acute CCl4 and galactosamine hepatotoxicity with an early rise in TNF-α suggesting that this cytokine may affect inflammation and cell toxicity, while TGF-β1 peaks later, when it may regulate hepatocyte proliferation and extracellular matrix repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)219-226
Number of pages8
JournalGrowth Factors
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1989


  • Liver injury
  • TGF-β1
  • TNF-α

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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