DOI: 10.1093/stmcls/sxad069 ISSN:

Mesenchymal stem cells promote polarization of M2 macrophages in mice with acute-on-chronic liver failure via Mertk/JAK1/STAT6 signaling

Zhi-hui Li, Jun-feng Chen, Jing Zhang, Zi-ying Lei, Li-li Wu, Shi-bo Meng, Jia-lei Wang, Jing Xiong, Deng-na Lin, Jun-yi Wang, Zhi-liang Gao, Bing-liang Lin
  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Medicine


Acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) is a severe disease with a high mortality. Macrophage-related inflammation plays a crucial role in ACLF development. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) treatment was demonstrated to be beneficial in ACLF in our previous study; however, the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Therefore, mouse bone marrow-derived MSCs were used to treat an ACLF mouse model or cocultured with RAW264.7/J774A.1 macrophages that were stimulated with LPS. Histological and serological parameters and survival were analyzed to evaluate efficacy. We detected changes of Mer tyrosine kinase (Mertk), JAK1/STAT6, inflammatory cytokines, and markers of macrophage polarization in vitro and in vivo. In ACLF mice, MSCs improved liver function and 48-h survival of ACLF mice and alleviated inflammatory injury by promoting M2 macrophage polarization and elevated Mertk expression levels in macrophages. This is significant, as Mertk regulates M2 macrophage polarization via the JAK1/STAT6 signaling pathway.

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