The distribution of complementary metabolic functions in hepatocytes along a portocentral axis is called liver zonation. Endothelial secreted Wnt ligands maintain metabolic zonation in the adult murine liver but whether those ligands are necessary to initiate zonation in the immature liver has been only partially explored. Also, numerous non-metabolic proteins display zonated expression in the adult liver but it is not entirely clear if their localization requires endothelial Wnts. Here we used a novel transgenic mouse model to compare the spatial distribution of zonated non-metabolic proteins with that of typical zonated metabolic enzymes during liver maturation and after acute injury induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4). We also investigated how preventing Wnt ligand secretion from endothelial cells affects zonation patterns under homeostasis and after acute injury. Our study demonstrates that metabolic and non-metabolic zonation are established non-synchronously during maturation and regeneration and require multiple endothelial Wnt sources.
- Beatriz Sosa-Pineda
- Angelica Sofia Martínez-Ramírez
Feinberg School of Medicine funded all the experiments associated with the study.CONACYT awarded a fellowship to Dr. Martinez-RamirezThe funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: This study was performed in strict accordance with the recommendations in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the National Institutes of Health. All of the animals were handled according to approved institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) protocols (IS00003824, welfare assurance number A3283-01) of Northwestern University.
- Holger Willenbring
© 2020, Ma et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
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Pioneer factors such as Zelda (Zld) help initiate zygotic transcription in Drosophila early embryos, but whether other factors support this dynamic process is unclear. Odd-paired (Opa), a zinc-finger transcription factor expressed at cellularization, controls the transition of genes from pair-rule to segmental patterns along the anterior-posterior axis. Finding that Opa also regulates expression through enhancer sog_Distal along the dorso-ventral axis, we hypothesized Opa’s role is more general. Chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP-seq) confirmed its in vivo binding to sog_Distal but also identified widespread binding throughout the genome, comparable to Zld. Furthermore, chromatin assays (ATAC-seq) demonstrate that Opa, like Zld, influences chromatin accessibility genome-wide at cellularization, suggesting both are pioneer factors with common as well as distinct targets. Lastly, embryos lacking opa exhibit widespread, late patterning defects spanning both axes. Collectively, these data suggest Opa is a general timing factor and likely late-acting pioneer factor that drives a secondary wave of zygotic gene expression.
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