2 research outputs found

    Direct Conversion of Mouse Fibroblasts into Cholangiocyte Progenitor Cells

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    Disorders of the biliary epithelium, known as cholangiopathies, cause severe and irreversible liver diseases. The limited accessibility of bile duct precludes modeling of several cholangiocyte-mediated diseases. Therefore, novel approaches for obtaining functional cholangiocytes with high purity are needed. Previous work has shown that the combination of Hnf1β and Foxa3 could directly convert mouse fibroblasts into bipotential hepatic stem cell-like cells, termed iHepSCs. However, the efficiency of converting fibroblasts into iHepSCs is low, and these iHepSCs exhibit extremely low differentiation potential into cholangiocytes, thus hindering the translation of iHepSCs to the clinic. Here, we describe that the expression of Hnf1α and Foxa3 dramatically facilitates the robust generation of iHepSCs. Notably, prolonged in vitro culture of Hnf1α- and Foxa3-derived iHepSCs induces a Notch signaling-mediated secondary conversion into cholangiocyte progenitor-like cells that display dramatically enhanced differentiation capacity into mature cholangiocytes. Our study provides a robust two-step approach for obtaining cholangiocyte progenitor-like cells using defined factors

    Prostaglandin E2receptor PTGER4-expressing macrophages promote intestinal epithelial barrier regeneration upon inflammation

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    Objective: Dysfunctional resolution of intestinal inflammation and altered mucosal healing are essential features in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Intestinal macrophages are vital in the process of inflammation resolution, but the mechanisms underlying their mucosal healing capacity remain elusive. Design: We investigated the role of the prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) receptor PTGER4 on the differentiation of intestinal macrophages in patients with IBD and mouse models of intestinal inflammation. We studied mucosal healing and intestinal epithelial barrier regeneration in Csf1r-iCre Ptger4fl/fl mice during dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis. The effect of PTGER4+ macrophage secreted molecules was investigated on epithelial organoid differentiation. Results: Here, we describe a subset of PTGER4-expressing intestinal macrophages with mucosal healing properties both in humans and mice. Csf1r-iCre Ptger4fl/fl mice showed defective mucosal healing and epithelial barrier regeneration in a model of DSS colitis. Mechanistically, an increased mucosal level of PGE2 triggers chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 1 (CXCL1) secretion in monocyte-derived PTGER4+ macrophages via mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs). CXCL1 drives epithelial cell differentiation and proliferation from regenerating crypts during colitis. Specific therapeutic targeting of macrophages with liposomes loaded with an MAPK agonist augmented the production of CXCL1 in vivo in conditional macrophage PTGER4-deficient mice, restoring their defective epithelial regeneration and favouring mucosal healing. Conclusion: PTGER4+ intestinal macrophages are essential for supporting the intestinal stem cell niche and regeneration of the injured epithelium. Our results pave the way for the development of a new class of therapeutic targets to promote macrophage healing functions and favour remission in patients with IBD.N
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