Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 is one of the major C-C chemokines that has been implicated in liver injury. The C-C chemokine receptor, CCR2, has been identified as the primary receptor that mediates monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) responses in the mouse. Accordingly, the present study addressed the role of CCR2 in mice acutely challenged with acetaminophen (APAP). Mice genetically deficient in CCR2 (CCR2(-/-)) and their wild-type counterparts (CCR2(+/+)) were fasted for 10 hours before receiving an intraperitoneal injection of APAP (300 mg/kg). Liver and serum samples were removed from both groups of mice before and at 24 and 48 hours post APAP. Significantly elevated levels of MCP-1 were detected in liver samples from CCR2(+/+) and CCR2(-/-) mice at 24 hours post-APAP. Although CCR2(+/+) mice exhibited no liver injury at any time after receiving APAP, CCR2(-/-) mice exhibited marked evidence of necrotic and TUNEL-positive cells in the liver, particularly at 24 hours post-APAP. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analysis of liver homogenates from both groups of mice at the 24 hours time point revealed that liver tissue from CCR2(-/-) mice contained significantly greater amounts of immunoreactive IFN-γ and TNF-α. The in vivo immunoneutralization of IFN-γ or TNF-α significantly attenuated APAP-induced liver injury in CCR2(-/-) mice and increased hepatic IL-13 levels. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that CCR2 expression in the liver provides a hepatoprotective effect through its regulation of cytokine generation during APAP challenge.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine