Intestinal NF-E2-related factor-2 expression and antioxidant activity changes in rats undergoing orthotopic liver autotransplantation

Mian Ge, Xinjin Chi, Ailan Zhang, Gangjian Luo, Guoliang Sun, Hanbin Xie, Ziqing Hei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Liver transplantation is known to trigger intestinal injuries. Oxidative damage that is induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) plays a crucial role in ischemia-reperfusion injuries. NF-E2-related factor-2 (Nrf2) and its modulated antioxidant enzymes form the critical endogenous antioxidant system to scavenge ROS. The present study investigated the dynamic changes of intestinal ROS levels, Nrf2 expression and antioxidant enzyme activity following orthotopic liver autotransplantation (OLAT). Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into five groups consisting of one sham group and four groups with rats that underwent OLAT and were evaluated following 4, 8, 16 and 24 h, respectively. The intestinal specimens were collected for histopathological examination and the detection of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), hydroxyl radical (•OH), malondialdehyde (MDA), reduced glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) levels and the expression of Nrf2. The present study demonstrated that OLAT resulted in severe intestinal injury, which manifested as a significant change in the intestine pathological scores as early as 4 h and peaking at 8 h post-treatment. Oxidative stress was also revealed by the increase of the H2O2, •OH and MDA levels. Significant decreases were observed in the activity of SOD and CAT and a dramatic decrease occurred in the levels of GSH at 4 and 8 h post-treatment. All the parameters were restored gradually at 16 and 24 h post-treatment. The expression of Nrf2 in the intestinal tissues increased significantly at 4, 16 and 24 h following OLAT. The present study shows that an imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants contributes to intestinal oxidative injury, and that the upregulation of Nrf2 is not sufficient to withstand intestinal oxidative injury following OLAT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1307-1312
Number of pages6
JournalOncology Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Antioxidative enzyme
  • Intestinal injury
  • NF-E2-related factor-2
  • Orthotopic liver transplantation
  • Oxidative damage
  • Reactive oxygen species

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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