Production of thrombopoietin (TPO) by rat hepatocytes and hepatoma cell lines

Y. Shimada*, T. Kato, K. Ogami, K. Horie, A. Kokubo, Y. Kudo, E. Maeda, Y. Sohma, H. Akahori, K. Kawamura, H. Miyazaki

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

89 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, we purified rat thrombopoietin (TPO) from plasma of irradiated rats (XRP) by measuring its activity that stimulated the production of megakaryocytes from megakaryocyte progenitor cells (CFU-MK) in vitro. We then cloned the cDNAs for rat and human TPO. In this study, we found the production of TPO by hepatocytes isolated with the collagenase perfusion method from both normal and thrombocytopenic rats, by a two-step fractionation of hepatocyte culture medium (CM). Subsequently, CM of rat hepatoma cell lines was screened for the presence of TPO; three cell lines, H4-II-E, McA-RH8994, and HTC, were found to produce TPO. According to the purification procedure for TPO from XRP, TPO was partially purified from 2 L CM of each of three cell lines with a six-step procedure. In the final reverse-phase column, TPO from each cell line was eluted with the same retention time as that from XRP, and the TPO fraction exhibited megakaryocyte colony-stimulating activity (Meg-CSA). TPO-active fraction eluted from the final reverse-phase column was separated by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), extracted from the gel, and assayed. TPO activity from each cell line was found in the respective molecular weight region, indicating the heterogeneity of the TPO molecule. Using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), we detected the expression of TPO mRNA in hepatocytes, three hepatoma cell lines, normal rat liver, and X-irradiated rat liver. Northern blot analysis showed that TPO mRNA was expressed mainly in liver among the various organs tested. These data demonstrate that TPO is produced by rat hepatocytes and hepatoma cell lines and suggest that liver may be the primary organ that produces TPO.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1388-1396
Number of pages9
JournalExperimental Hematology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 1995 Dec 1
Externally publishedYes


  • hepatocyte
  • hepatoma cell line
  • liver
  • megakaryocyte
  • thrombopoietin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Hematology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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