Journal Article Controversies over the Epithelial-to-Mesenchymal Transition in Liver Fibrosis

Taura, Kojiro  ,  Iwaisako, Keiko  ,  Hatano, Etsuro  ,  Uemoto, Shinji

5 ( 1 ) 2016-01-14 , MDPI AG
Liver fibrosis is a universal consequence of chronic liver diseases. It is accompanied by activation of collagen-producing myofibroblasts, resulting in excessive deposition of extracellular matrix. The origin of myofibroblasts in the fibrotic liver has not been completely resolved and remains a matter of debate. Recently, the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) was proposed as one of the mechanisms that give rise to collagen-producing myofibroblasts in liver fibrosis. However, subsequent studies contradicted this hypothesis, and the EMT theory has become one of the most controversial and debatable issues in the field of liver fibrosis research. This review will summarize the existing literature on EMT in liver fibrosis and will analyze the causes for the contradictory results to draw a reasonable conclusion based on current knowledge in the field.

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