Mice Humanized with Hepatocytes and iPS Cells from Patients with Metabolic Diseas

Summary

Principal Investigator: Stephen C Strom
Abstract: DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Specific Challenge Topic 14-DK-101, "Induced Pluripotent stem cells-cellular and humanized mouse" Somatic cells such as fibroblasts from patients with diseases can be used to create cell lines, tissues, and perhaps, organ systems, through induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology. Such models could be used to elucidate underlying pathology of disease or screen for agents that could be used therapeutically. Combining this approach with mouse strains able to accept multiple human tissues without rejection could provide the microenvironment milieu to support the tissue's physiological function within the context of the whole organism, enabling greater understanding of disease pathogenesis and providing a platform for preclinical testing of drug candidates." The liver performs over 3,000 functions critical to maintaining the organism, ranging from production and secretion of proteins such as albumin, clotting factors and antiproteases, to metabolism and excretion of exogenous compounds such as drugs or toxins as well as endogenous compounds like hormones, bilirubin and bile acids and cholesterol. Liver-based metabolic disease can result from mutations in genes in these critical pathways. Transgenic or knock-out mouse models have been created for many of these diseases, but they do not always faithfully reproduce the human disease. For example mutations in the bile salt export pump (BSEP) results in severe cholestasis and fibrosis in human patients requiring whole organ transplants, yet the knockout mouse is nearly without a phenotype. While many patients with alpha-1-antitrypsin (A1AT) deficiency develop liver fibrosis/cirrhosis many times resulting in liver transplantation, the transgenic mouse model carrying mutant human genes shows an extremely mild phenotype. The mouse model for a deficiency of ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC) activity, the rate limiting step in ammonia metabolism, is a fair model, however the animals tolerate a diet containing normal amounts of protein, while severely affected human patients require severe protein restriction to prevent lethal hyperammonemia. Mice (and rats) are particularly poor models for studying liver fibrosis and cirrhosis, common features of many human liver diseases. Humanized mice may offer a platform to both the study and treatment of hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis. These are only a few examples of mouse models that do not faithfully recreate the human disease. We propose, the hypothesis, that the best models for human metabolic liver disease are those created from the affected human hepatocytes. Thus, we propose to" humanize" the liver of FRG mice by transplantation of affected human hepatocytes to create authentic models of human metabolic disease. These mice are immunodeficient and also deficient in the tyrosine catabolic enzyme, fumarylacetoacetate hydrolase (Fah -/-) and develop irreversible liver failure if left untreated. However, if Fah-proficient cells are transplanted, they readily and rapidly repopulate the native liver with donor cells, even if the donor cells are of human origin (a). To create these models, the liver of FRG mice will be "humanized" with hepatocytes derived from patients with metabolic disease. In addition, iPSC technology will be utilized to reprogram the liver cells from metabolic disease patients and following hepatic differentiation, additional mice will be humanized with iPS-derived hepatocytes. These humanized mouse models can then be compared to the authentic diseased liver with respect to changes in clinical chemistry (of the patient or animal), the histopathology of the liver and gene and protein expression profiling of liver tissue. In this manner, we will be able to determine if the humanized models developed with these procedures faithfully reproduce the phenotype observed in the patient. In addition to the direct effects on metabolic liver disease, success with these models will facilitate the use of humanized mouse models to investigate other liver based diseases such as Wilson's and Alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency and may even lead to better-humanized models for primary, acute liver failure and viral, alcoholic and autoimmune hepatitis and even the hepatic stage of malaria, especially if a human immune system were reconstituted in addition to the liver. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Genetic defects in liver functions affect approximately 1/50,000 live births. For most, there are no small animal models that faithfully reproduce the human phenotype. We propose the hypothesis that the most appropriate model for these liver based diseases is one that is produced with authentic disease-affected hepatocytes. We have recently succeeded in humanizing the liver of specialized mice by repopulating the liver with human hepatocytes. We propose to develop models of human liver disease by transplantation of liver cells from patients with metabolic liver diseases and characterize the model for relevance to the human disease. In addition we will reprogram the liver cells to produce induced pluripotent cells (iPSC) that can also be used to repopulate and humanize the mouse liver. We propose these humanized mice will be a technology platform to better understand the human disease and it will aid in the development of gene or cellular therapy to correct these devastating diseases.
Funding Period: ----------------2009 - ---------------2011-
more information: NIH RePORT

Top Publications

  1. pmc Hepatic differentiation of amniotic epithelial cells
    Fabio Marongiu
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Hepatology 53:1719-29. 2011
  2. ncbi Development and application of purified tissue dissociation enzyme mixtures for human hepatocyte isolation
    Roberto Gramignoli
    Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Cell Transplant 21:1245-60. 2012
  3. pmc Hepatobiliary disposition of 17-OHPC and taurocholate in fetal human hepatocytes: a comparison with adult human hepatocytes
    Shringi Sharma
    Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Drug Metab Dispos 41:296-304. 2013
  4. pmc Placental stem cell correction of murine intermediate maple syrup urine disease
    Kristen J Skvorak
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Hepatology 57:1017-23. 2013
  5. pmc Increased reprogramming of human fetal hepatocytes compared with adult hepatocytes in feeder-free conditions
    Marc C Hansel
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Cell Transplant 23:27-38. 2014
  6. ncbi Improved amino acid, bioenergetic metabolite and neurotransmitter profiles following human amnion epithelial cell transplant in intermediate maple syrup urine disease mice
    Kristen J Skvorak
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Mol Genet Metab 109:132-8. 2013
  7. pmc New potential cell source for hepatocyte transplantation: discarded livers from metabolic disease liver transplants
    Roberto Gramignoli
    Department of Laboratory Medicine, Division of Pathology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    Stem Cell Res 11:563-73. 2013
  8. pmc Three-dimensional culture and cAMP signaling promote the maturation of human pluripotent stem cell-derived hepatocytes
    Shinichiro Ogawa
    McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University Health Network, Toronto, ON M5G 1L7, Canada
    Development 140:3285-96. 2013

Detail Information

Publications9

  1. pmc Hepatic differentiation of amniotic epithelial cells
    Fabio Marongiu
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Hepatology 53:1719-29. 2011
    ..When transplanted in a syngenic animal pretreated with RS, rAECs were able to engraft and generate a progeny of cells with morphology and protein expression typical of mature hepatocytes...
  2. ncbi Development and application of purified tissue dissociation enzyme mixtures for human hepatocyte isolation
    Roberto Gramignoli
    Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Cell Transplant 21:1245-60. 2012
    ..These results show that purified enzymes such as CIzyme(TM) will be a safe and effective for the isolation of human hepatocytes for clinical transplants...
  3. pmc Hepatobiliary disposition of 17-OHPC and taurocholate in fetal human hepatocytes: a comparison with adult human hepatocytes
    Shringi Sharma
    Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Drug Metab Dispos 41:296-304. 2013
    ..With the exception of ABCB4, all transporters examined were expressed, albeit at lower mRNA levels in fetal hepatocytes compared with adults...
  4. pmc Placental stem cell correction of murine intermediate maple syrup urine disease
    Kristen J Skvorak
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Hepatology 57:1017-23. 2013
    ..The branched chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine, valine, and alloisoleucine were significantly improved in serum and brain, as were other large neutral amino acids...
  5. pmc Increased reprogramming of human fetal hepatocytes compared with adult hepatocytes in feeder-free conditions
    Marc C Hansel
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Cell Transplant 23:27-38. 2014
    ..Fetal hepatocytes reprogram much more efficiently than adult hepatocytes, although both could serve as useful sources of hiPSC-derived hepatocytes for basic research or transplantation. ..
  6. ncbi Improved amino acid, bioenergetic metabolite and neurotransmitter profiles following human amnion epithelial cell transplant in intermediate maple syrup urine disease mice
    Kristen J Skvorak
    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Mol Genet Metab 109:132-8. 2013
    ....
  7. pmc New potential cell source for hepatocyte transplantation: discarded livers from metabolic disease liver transplants
    Roberto Gramignoli
    Department of Laboratory Medicine, Division of Pathology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    Stem Cell Res 11:563-73. 2013
    ..Cells from metabolic diseased livers rapidly and efficiently repopulated a mouse liver upon transplantation...
  8. pmc Three-dimensional culture and cAMP signaling promote the maturation of human pluripotent stem cell-derived hepatocytes
    Shinichiro Ogawa
    McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University Health Network, Toronto, ON M5G 1L7, Canada
    Development 140:3285-96. 2013
    ..Together, these findings provide new insights into the pathways that regulate maturation of hPSC-derived hepatocytes and in doing so provide a simple and reproducible approach for generating metabolically functional cell populations. ..