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The treatment of liver fibrosis induced by hepatocyte growth factor-directed, ultrasound-targeted microbubble destruction in rats

      Abstract

      Objective

      The purpose of this study was to explore the feasibility of using ultrasound-targeted microbubble destruction to treat liver fibrosis induced by hepatocyte growth factor (HGF).

      Methods

      Forty Wistar rats were divided into five groups after the models of liver fibrosis were prepared: (1) HGF, ultrasound, and microbubbles (HGF+US/MB); (2) HGF and ultrasound (HGF+US); (3) HGF and microbubbles (HGF+MB); (4) HGF (HGF); and (5) model alone (MA). All rats were killed after being transfected for 14 days. Recovery of the liver was detect by diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and pathological methods. Collagen I expression was detected by immunohistochemistry. Hepatocyte growth factor expression in the liver was detect by western blotting.

      Results

      The results of DWI and pathological examination showed the recovery of liver in HGF+US/MB group were better than those of other groups. In HGF+US/MB group, collagen I expression was less, and HGF protein was the highest among all the groups.

      Conclusions

      Ultrasound-targeted microbubble destruction could deliver HGF into the fibrotic liver and produce an antifibrosis effect, which could provide a novel strategy for gene therapy of liver fibrosis.

      Keywords

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