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Chronic liver fibrosis induction in aging causes significant ultra-structural deterioration in liver and alteration on immune response gene expressions in liver-spleen axis.

The relationship between damage to the liver and spleen by aging and the immune response status in these two organs, which are anatomically and immunologically interconnected, is unknown. The authors investigated the histopathological, ultrastructural, and immunological effects of aging in young and aged fibrotic mice by using an experimental model. Four groups were planned, with 10 mice in each experimental group. The levels of fibrosis and ultrastructural destruction in the liver were determined by α-SMA staining and TEM analysis. Expression levels of immunity genes ( Il2, Il4, Il6, Il10, Il12, Il17, Tnf , Ifng , Tgfb1, Gata3, Rorc, Tbx21, Foxp3, Ccl2, Ccr2, Cxcr3, Pf4, Cxcl10 ) were carried out by qRT-PCR. While structural disorders were detected in the mitochondria of aged healthy group, cellular destruction in the fibrosis-induced elderly group was at a dramatic level. Fibrosis induction in aged mice caused an elevation in the expression of chemokines (CCl2, CXCL10, CCR2) and cytokine (IL-17a) genes that induce autoinflammatory response in the liver. Unlike the cellular pathology and genes activated in fibrosis in youth and the natural occurrence of fibrosis with aging, induction of fibrosis during aging causes deterioration in the liver and expression of genes responsible for autoimmunity in both the liver and spleen.

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