Changes in alpha-1 and beta-2 adrenoceptor density in human hepatocellular carcinoma

M. Bevilacqua, G. Norbiato, E. Chebat, G. Baldi, P. Bertora, E. Regalia, G. Colella, L. Gennari, T. Vago

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Catecholamines are involved critically in the mechanisms of liver cell proliferation by acting on hepatic alpha-1 and beta-2 adrenoceptors. To identify the role of these receptors in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the density was examined of alpha-1 and beta-2 adrenoceptors with their affinity and coupling of beta-2 adrenoceptors to adenylate cyclase in HCC tissue and in nonadjacent/nontumor tissue from the same livers. Studies were also done on healthy livers from age-matched and sex-matched patients undergoing abdominal surgery for nonhepatic diseases. Twenty-two HCC had a decrease of about 72% in alpha-1 adrenoceptor density compared with their nonadjacent/nontumor tissue and a decrease of about 40% compared with healthy controls. Nonadjacent/nontumor tissue from HCC patients had a 125% increase in alpha-1 adrenoceptor density compared with healthy livers. Twenty-three of 24 HCC had an increase of about 180% in beta adrenoceptor density compared with their nonadjacent/nontumor tissue and healthy controls. Beta adrenoceptors were coupled to adenylate cyclase, as evidenced by a guanosine triphosphate-mediated right shift in (-)-isoproterenol competition isotherms and by cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) production after stimulation with (-)-isoproterenol. The HCC tissue yielded a larger increase in cAMP than nonadjacent/nontumor tissue and healthy controls. The authors conclude that a higher density of alpha-1 adrenoceptors in nonadjacent/nontumor tissue from HCC characterizes the 'healthy' part of the liver in HCC patients and that an increase in beta-2 and a decrease in alpha-1 adrenoceptor densities characterize the tumor part of the liver in human HCC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2543-2551
Number of pages9
JournalCancer
Volume67
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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