Immunomodulation of hepatic ischemic injury via increased Bcl-XL and decreased Bcl-XS

Kenneth J. Woodside, Juquan Song, Wei Song, Mingdao Hu, Tao Meng, Glenn C. Hunter, Steven E. Wolf, John A. Daller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background. Although classic ischemia-reperfusion injury is mediated by reactive oxygen intermediaries, increasing evidence implicates a role for immune-mediated apoptosis during ischemic injury in transplantation. Herein, we report the effects of polyclonal rabbit anti-thymocyte globulin (rATG) on mediators of hepatic apoptosis during cold storage. Methods. Three-month-old male Lewis rats were placed under halothane anesthesia and the portal vein cannulated. University of Wisconsin (UW) solution (35 ml) with (n = 5) and without (n = 5) 20 mg/kg anti-rat rATG was infused before hepatectomy. The liver was stored in UW solution ± rATG (143 ng/ml) at 4°C for various times up to 24 h. Specimens were terminal deoxyuridine nick end labeling-stained for apoptosis. Tissue lysates were analyzed by Western blotting and densitometry. Results. Compared to UW alone, significantly fewer apoptotic cells were present in UW + rATG perfused and stored livers. There were early and sustained significant increases in Bcl-XL and decreases in Bcl-XS with rATG. There was an initial, but not sustained, significant decrease in Bax with rATG. Moreover, there was a significant one-third decrease in caspase-9 production with rATG at 0, 6, 12, and 18 h. Conclusion. Decreased proapoptotic Bcl-XS and increased antiapoptotic Bcl-XL, as well as decreased downstream proapoptotic caspase-9 expression, during liver ischemia after treatment with rATG, all favor cell survival. Because apoptotic ischemic injury results in allograft dysfunction, preservation strategies that ameliorate such immunological effects may improve organ function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-64
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 1 2003


  • Apoptosis
  • Bcl-2
  • Bcl-X
  • Caspase-9
  • Cold storage
  • Immunosuppression
  • Ischemia
  • Liver transplantation
  • Rabbit anti-thymocyte globulin (rATG)
  • University of Wisconsin solution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


Dive into the research topics of 'Immunomodulation of hepatic ischemic injury via increased Bcl-XL and decreased Bcl-XS'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this