Effect of nanoformulated copper/zinc superoxide dismutase on chronic ethanol-induced alterations in liver and adipose tissue

Gopalakrishnan Natarajan, Curtis Perriotte-Olson, Carol A. Casey, Terrence M. Donohue, Geoffrey A. Talmon, Edward N. Harris, Alexander V. Kabanov, Viswanathan Saraswathi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Background: We previously reported that nanoformulated copper/zinc superoxide dismutase (Nano) attenuates non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and adipose tissue (AT) inflammation in obese animals. Here, we sought to determine whether Nano treatment attenuates alcohol-associated liver disease (AALD) and AT inflammation in alcohol-fed mice. Methods: We pre-treated E-47 cells (HepG2 cells that over-express CYP2E1) with native- or nano-superoxide dismutase (SOD) for 6 h, followed by treatment with ethanol and/or linoleic acid (LA), a free fatty acid. For in vivo studies, male C57BL/6 mice were fed the Lieber-DeCarli control or ethanol liquid diet for 4 weeks. The mice received Nano once every 2 days during the last 2 weeks of ethanol feeding. Results: Our in vitro studies revealed that Nano pretreatment reduced LA + ethanol-induced oxidative stress in E-47 cells. Our in vivo experiments showed that ethanol-fed Nano-treated mice had 22% lower hepatic triglyceride levels than mice fed ethanol alone. Nano-treated ethanol-fed mice also had 2-fold lower levels of Cd68 and similarly reduced levels of Ccl2 and Mmp12 mRNAs, than in untreated ethanol-fed mice. We also noted that ethanol feeding caused a remarkable increase in hepatic and/or plasma MCP-1 and CCR2 protein, which was blunted in ethanol + Nano-treated animals. The hepatic content of SREBP-1c, a transcription factor that promotes lipogenesis, was higher in ethanol-fed mice than controls but was attenuated in ethanol + Nano-treated animals. Further, livers of ethanol + Nano-treated mice had significantly higher levels of phosphorylated adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) than both control and ethanol-fed mice. In AT, the levels of Il6 mRNA, a hepatoprotective cytokine, and that of Arg1, a marker of anti-inflammatory macrophages, were significantly increased in ethanol + Nano-treated mice compared with control mice. Conclusion: Our data indicate that Nano treatment attenuates ethanol-induced steatohepatitis and that this effect is associated with an apparent activation of AMPK signaling. Our data also suggest that Nano induces Arg1 and Il6 expression in AT, suggesting anti-inflammatory effects in this tissue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-79
Number of pages9
StatePublished - Sep 2019


  • AMPK
  • Ethanol
  • MCP1
  • SOD1
  • Steatohepatitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Neurology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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