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

Altered gene expression in liver from a murine model of hyperhomocysteinemia.

Cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) deficiency causes severe hyperhomocysteinemia and other signs of homocystinuria syndrome, in particular a premature atherosclerosis with multiple thrombosis. However, the molecular mechanisms by which homocysteine could interfere with normal cell function are poorly understood in a whole organ like the liver, which is central to the catabolism of homocysteine. We used a combination of differential display and cDNA arrays to analyze differential gene expression in association with elevated hepatic homocysteine levels in CBS-deficient mice, a murine model of hyperhomocysteinemia. Expression of several genes was found to be reproducibly abnormal in the livers of heterozygous and homozygous CBS-deficient mice. We report altered expression of genes encoding ribosomal protein S3a and methylthioadenosine phosphorylase, suggesting such cellular growth and proliferation perturbations may occur in homozygous CBS-deficient mice liver. Many up- or down-regulated genes encoded cytochromes P450, evidence of perturbations of the redox potential in heterozygous and homozygous CBS-deficient mice liver. The expression of various genes involved in severe oxidative processes was also abnormal in homozygous CBS-deficient mice liver. Among them, the expression of heme oxygenase 1 gene was increased, concomitant with overexpression of heme oxygenase 1 at the protein level. Commensurate with the difference in hepatic mRNA paraoxonase 1 abundance, the mean hepatic activity of paraoxonase 1, an enzyme that protects low density lipoprotein from oxidation, was 3-fold lower in homozygous CBS-deficient mice. Heterozygous CBS-deficient mice, when fed a hyperhomocysteinemic diet, have also reduced PON1 activity, which demonstrates the effect of hyperhomocysteinemia in the paraoxonase 1 activity.[1]


  1. Altered gene expression in liver from a murine model of hyperhomocysteinemia. Robert, K., Chassé, J.F., Santiard-Baron, D., Vayssettes, C., Chabli, A., Aupetit, J., Maeda, N., Kamoun, P., London, J., Janel, N. J. Biol. Chem. (2003) [Pubmed]
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