In this study, we examined the possibility that impaired proliferation of non-parenchymal cells affects in an impairment of liver regeneration in db/db mice, which are congenitally deficient in receptors for leptin. Liver regeneration after a two thirds partial hepatectomy (2/3 PH) was impaired in 10-week-old female db/db mice. The proliferation of both hepatocytes and non-parenchymal cells estimated from a bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) labeling index was suppressed, and the protein expression of vascular endothelial growth factor was blocked in db/db mice. Although the extent of fatty change and the level of epidermal growth factor receptor protein expression in the liver were improved in 5-week-old db/db mice, the regeneration of liver was impaired after 2/3 PH in both 5- and 10-week-old db/db mice. These results suggested that suppressed proliferation of non-parenchymal cells contributes to the impairment of liver regeneration in db/db mice. As leptin has also the angiogenic effect, the angiogenic inhibitor FR-118487 was administered to ICR mice to examine liver regeneration after 2/3 PH, and the rate of regeneration was affected. In conclusion, it is suggested that the suppressed proliferation of non-parenchymal cells contributes to the impairment of liver regeneration probably through a disrupted angiogenesis in db/db mice.
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