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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Smad7 is induced by norepinephrine and protects rat hepatocytes from activin A-induced growth inhibition.

Activin A induces growth arrest of rat hepatocytes in vitro and in vivo. The alpha(1)-adrenergic agonist, norepinephrine (NE), enhances epidermal growth factor-stimulated DNA synthesis and inhibits activin A-induced growth inhibition, but the mechanisms of these actions are unclear. Smad proteins have recently been identified as intracellular signaling mediators of transforming growth factor-beta family members. In the present study, we explored how NE modulates the Smad signaling pathway in rat cultured hepatocytes. We demonstrate that NE inhibits activin A-induced nuclear accumulation of Smad2/3 and that NE rapidly induces inhibitory Smad7 mRNA expression. Infection of Smad7 adenovirus into rat hepatocytes inhibited activin A- induced nuclear accumulation of Smad2/3, enhanced epidermal growth factor-stimulated DNA synthesis, and abolished the growth inhibitory effect of activin A. We also demonstrated that the induction of Smad7 by NE is dependent on nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-kappa B). The amount of active NF-kappa B complex rapidly increased after NE treatment. Preincubation of the cells with an NF-kappa B pathway inhibitor N-tosyl-l-phenylalanine chloromethyl ketone or infection of the cells with an adenovirus expressing an I kappa B super-repressor (Ad5I kappa B) abolished the NE-induced Smad7 expression. These results indicate a mechanism of transmodulation between the Smad and trimeric G protein signaling pathways in rat hepatocytes.[1]


  1. Smad7 is induced by norepinephrine and protects rat hepatocytes from activin A-induced growth inhibition. Kanamaru, C., Yasuda, H., Takeda, M., Ueda, N., Suzuki, J., Tsuchida, T., Mashima, H., Ohnishi, H., Fujita, T. J. Biol. Chem. (2001) [Pubmed]
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