Epigenetic alterations of IL-6/STAT3 signaling by placental stem cells promote hepatic regeneration in a rat model with CCl4-induced liver injury

Jieun Jung, Ji Wook Moon, Jong Ho Choi, Yong Woo Lee, Sun Hwa Park, Gi Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Human chorionic plate-derived mesenchymal stem cells (CP-MSCs) isolated from the placenta have been reported to demonstrate therapeutic effects in animal models of liver injury; however, the underlying epigenetic mechanism of this effect has not been elucidated. Thus, we investigated whether CP-MSCs influence epigenetic processes during regeneration of the injured liver. Methods: CP-MSCs were engrafted into a carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)-injured rat model through direct transplantation into the liver (DTX), intrasplenic transplantation (STX), and intravenous transplantation via the tail vein (TTX). Non-transplanted (NTX) rats were maintained as sham controls. Liver tissues were analyzed after transplantation using immunohistochemistry, western blot analysis, and quantitative methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction. Proliferation and human interleukin-6 (hIL-6) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays were performed using CCl4-treated hepatic cells that were co-cultured with CP-MSCs. Results: The Ki67 labeling index, cell cyclins, albumin, IL-6, and gp130 levels were elevated in the CP-MSC transplantation groups. The concentration of hIL-6 in supernatants and the proliferation of CCl4-treated rat hepatic cells were enhanced by co-culturing with CP-MSCs (p<0.05), while the methylation of IL-6/IL-6R and STAT3 by CP-MSC transplantation decreased. Conclusion: These results suggest that administration of CP-MSCs promotes IL-6/STAT3 signaling by decreasing the methylation of the IL-6/SATA3 promoters and thus inducing the proliferation of hepatic cells in a CCl4-injured liver rat model. These data advance our understanding of the therapeutic mechanisms in injured livers, and can facilitate the development of cell-based therapies using placenta-derived stem cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-89
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Stem Cells
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • DNA methylation
  • IL-6 signaling
  • Liver regeneration
  • Placenta stem cells
  • Transplantation routes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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