Expression of Brain Derivated Neurotrophic Factor and of its receptors: TrKB and p75NT in normal and bile duct ligated rat liver
- experimental cholestasis,
- neuroendocrine cells
How to Cite
Cholangiocytes are the cells lining the biliary tree from canals of Hering to larger bile ducts. By morphology, they are divided in small and large cholangiocytes, which result heterogeneous at functional and proliferative levels. Proliferating cholangiocytes acquire a neuroendocrine phenotype, modulated by several factors including neurotrophins. Brain Derivated Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) is a neurotrophin expressed in the nervous system and also in different types of epithelial and progenitor cells. The aim of the present study is to detect the expression of BDNF and of its two receptors (TrKB and p75NT, or p75NTR) in normal and bile duct ligated (BDL) rat livers. In normal and BDL livers, BDNF and its receptors are expressed by small and large cholangiocytes and by hepatic progenitors cells. In cholangiocytes, the expression of BDNF and of its receptors changes after different BDL timing. After one or two weeks of BDL, both BDNF and TrKB and p75NT receptors are highly expressed, while after BDL for three weeks BDNF expression is drastically reduced and p75NT receptor prevails on TrKB. The expression of BDNF and of its receptors correlates with the proliferation rate of biliary tree during BDL. Indeed, after one or two weeks of BDL, proliferation prevails on apoptosis, whereas after BDL for three weeks, apoptosis prevails on proliferation. Our morphological results strongly suggest that BDNF plays a role in the remodeling of biliary tree during cholestasis and that it may be involved in the pathophysiology of cholestasic liver diseases.