Application of TGF‑β1, TIMP‑1 and TIMP‑2 small interfering RNAs can alleviate CCl4‑induced hepatic fibrosis in rats by rebalancing Th1/Th2 cytokines
- Ying Xue
- Keli Qian
- Yinchun Sun
- Lang Xiao
- Xiaofeng Shi
Affiliations: Key Laboratory of Molecular Biology for Infectious Diseases, Ministry of Education, Institute for Virus Hepatitis and Department of Infectious Diseases, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400010, P.R. China
- Published online on: July 7, 2021 https://doi.org/10.3892/etm.2021.10395
Copyright: © Xue
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The present study aimed to investigate the effects of TGF‑β1, tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)‑1 small interfering (si)RNA and TIMP‑2 siRNA on hepatic fibrosis in rats and explore the T helper (Th)1/Th2 balance. Moreover, IFN‑γ, IL‑4 and IL‑13 are the main cytokines associated with Th1/Th2 responses and have significant influence on the progression of hepatic fibrosis. The expression levels of IFN‑γ, IL‑4 and IL‑13 in rats with hepatic fibrosis that were treated with siRNAs against the aforementioned molecules were measured using various techniques including immunohistochemical staining, western blotting and reverse transcription‑quantitative PCR. The principal outcomes revealed the downregulation of IFN‑γ and the upregulation of IL‑4 and IL‑13 in the model group compared with the normal group. Moreover, the expression of IFN‑γ was significantly increased, while IL‑4 and IL‑13 demonstrated no significant difference in the TGF‑β1 siRNA treatment group compared with the model group. The TIMP‑1 and TIMP‑2 siRNA treatment groups exhibited significantly increased expression levels of IFN‑γ, but lower expression levels of IL‑4 and IL‑13 compared with the model group. These results indicated that TIMP‑1 and TIMP‑2 were improved antifibrotic targets compared with TGF‑β1.