Exogenous activation of toll-like receptor 5 signaling mitigates acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity in mice.

Affiliation

Zhou Z(1), Qi J(1), Yang D(2), Yang MS(2), Jeong H(2), Lim CW(2), Kim JW(3), Kim B(4).
Author information:
(1)Department of Pathology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Fujian Medical University, No. 1, Xuefu North Road, University Town, Fuzhou, 350122, Fujian, China.
(2)Biosafety Research Institute and Laboratory of Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Jeonbuk National University, Iksan, Jeollabuk-do, 54596, Republic of Korea.
(3)Biosafety Research Institute and Laboratory of Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Jeonbuk National University, Iksan, Jeollabuk-do, 54596, Republic of Korea; Center for Pharmacogenetics and Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA. Electronic address: [Email]
(4)Biosafety Research Institute and Laboratory of Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Jeonbuk National University, Iksan, Jeollabuk-do, 54596, Republic of Korea. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

Acetaminophen (APAP) poisoning is the most common cause of drug-induced acute liver injury (ALI). Our results showed that toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) was abundantly expressed in hepatocytes and dramatically downregulated in the toxic mouse livers. Hence, we herein investigated the role of TLR5 signaling after APAP overdose. Mice were intraperitoneally (i.p.) injected with APAP to induce ALI, and then injected with flagellin at one hour after APAP administration. Flagellin attenuated APAP-induced ALI based on decreased histopathologic lesions, serum biochemical, oxidative stress, and inflammation. Furthermore, the protective effects of flagellin were abolished by TH1020 (a TLR5 antagonist) treatment. These results suggest that flagellin exerted protective effects on ALI via TLR5 activation. Mechanistically, flagellin injection promoted the translocation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) to the nucleus in hepatocytes. Consistent with the in vivo results, flagellin increased the activation of Nrf2 in hepatocytes, resulting in decreased APAP toxicity. ML385, a selective inhibitor of Nrf2, abolished the flagellin-mediated hepatoprotective effects in damaged livers and hepatocytes. Additionally, the flagellin-induced Nrf2 translocation was dependent upon the activation of TLR5-JNK/p38 pathways. These findings suggest that TLR5 signaling-induced Nrf2 activation, at least partially, contributed to the protection against APAP-induced ALI by flagellin treatment.