Injection of carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) intraperitoneally into model animals induces acute liver injury mediated by reactive oxygen species (ROS) as normal metabolites in hepatocytes. In this study, the molecular process in this type of liver injury was analyzed from the aspect of liver function and regulatory factors. Down-regulation of liver-specific genes was accomplished through suppression of liver-enriched transcription factors and box A factors found in the catalase gene, and induction of NF-κB, AP-1 and a novel factor denoted as 'cx' in the catalase gene. Expression profiles of these genes were restored to normal levels in the late stage of injury (48h). On the other hand, hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) were induced in the early stage (6h) and 36h, respectively. Interestingly, ERK2 was transiently activated at 3h CCl4-treatment. These observations suggested that hepatotoxin by CCl4-injection concomitantly induces both processes in acute injury and liver regeneration.
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