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Readthrough Acetylcholinesterase Is Increased in Human Liver Cirrhosis

AuthorsGarcía Ayllón, María Salud; Millán, Cristina; Serra Basante, Carol; Bataller, Ramón; Sáez-Valero, Javier
Issue Date2012
PublisherPublic Library of Science
CitationPLoS ONE 7(9): e44598 (2012)
AbstractBackground & Aims: There have been many studies on plasma butyrylcholinesterase in liver dysfunction. However, no data is available about acetylcholinesterase in human cirrhosis, although profound changes have been described in cirrhotic rat models. Methods: Human serum and liver acetylcholinesterase and its molecular forms were determined enzymatically, after butyrylcholinesterase immunodepletion. The distinct species of acetylcholinesterase, with a distinct C-terminus, were determined by western blotting, and the level of liver transcripts by real-time PCR. Liver acetylcholinesterase was also evaluated by immunocytochemistry. Results: In patients with liver cirrhosis, the activity of plasma acetylcholinesterase (rich in light species), appeared to be apparently unaffected. However, the levels of the soluble readthrough (R) acetylcholinesterase form, an acetylcholinesterase species usually associated with stress and pathology, was increased compared to controls. Human liver acetylcholinesterase activity levels were also unchanged, but protein levels of the acetylcholinesterase-R and other acetylcholinesterase subunit species were increased in the cirrhotic liver. This increase in acetylcholinesterase protein expression in the cirrhotic liver was confirmed by PCR analysis. Immunohistological examination confirmed that acetylcholinesterase immunoreactivity is increased in parenchymal cells of the cirrhotic liver. Conclusions: We demonstrate significant changes in acetylcholinesterase at the protein and mRNA levels in liver cirrhosis, with no difference in enzymatic activity. The altered expression of acetylcholinesterase protein may reflect changes in its pathophysiological role. © 2012 García-Ayllón et al.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0044598
issn: 1932-6203
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