Study of the molecular mechanism of decreased liver synthesis of albumin in inflammation

H J Moshage, J A Janssen, J H Franssen, J C Hafkenscheid, S.H. Yap

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Hypoalbuminemia in inflammatory disorders is not an infrequent finding. However, little is known about albumin synthesis in these patients. In the present study we have measured the albumin synthesis in four patients with inflammatory diseases using the [14C]carbonate technique. Because inflammation causes a decreased albumin synthesis and this decreased synthesis could not be related to a reduced amino acid supply, we have also examined the possible molecular mechanisms of reduced albumin synthesis during inflammation using in vivo and in vitro experiments in rats. In rats with turpentine-induced inflammation, serum albumin concentration and liver albumin mRNa level were markedly decreased. These changes could not be reproduced by administration of fibrinogen-, or fibrin-degradation products, or several hormones, such as corticosteroids, growth hormone, and adrenaline. However, monocytic products, especially interleukin 1, postulated to be important mediators of the inflammatory response, reduced albumin synthesis and liver albumin messenger RNA content but not total protein synthesis in rats in vivo and in primary cultures of rat hepatocytes. These findings suggest that monocytic products play an important role in reduced albumin synthesis during inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1635-41
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1987


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