IJCEM Copyright © 2008-All rights reserved. Published by e-Century Publishing Corporation, Madison, WI 53711
Int J Clin Exp Med 2010; 3(1):48-54

Original Article
Effects of simulated weightlessness on liver Hsp70 and Hsp70mRNA expression in

Yan Cui, Jinlian Zhou, Chenglin Li, Ping Wang, Ming Zhang, Zipei Liu, Yong Yi, Jianzhong Zhang

Department of General Surgery, 306 Hospital, Beijing, China; Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, 306 Hospital, Beijing,
China; Department of Clinical Laboratory, 306 Hospital, Beijing, China.

Received January 2, 2010; accepted January 6, 2010, available online January 10, 2010

Abstract: Space flight is known to induce a number of hepatic physiological alterations. In this study, we investigated Hsp70
expressing features of rat liver under simulated weightlessness. Tail-suspension was used to simulate the weightlessness animal
model. Forty-eight male Wistar rats were randomly assigned to 6 experimental groups and Hsp70 protein and mRNA expressions in
the liver were detected by Western blot and RT-PCR respectively. The tailsuspension significantly increased Hsp70mRNA expression
levels in rat liver (P<0.05). The semi-quantitative PCR showed that Hsp70mRNA was upregulated as early as 6 hours of suspension.
Western blot analysis indicated that Hsp70 protein was significantly upregulated in the early stage of suspension as compared with
controls (P<0.05). The results suggest that simulated weightlessness acts as a kind of stress to elevate liver Hsp70 expression both at
protein and mRNA levels. This may be meaningful in astronaut’s trainings by preadaptation to non-damaging stress exposures or
other environmental factors to foster the astronaut’s ability of weightless tolerance. (IJCEM1001001).

Key words: Hsp70, simulated weightlessness, rats, liver, RT-PCR, Western blotting

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Address all correspondence to:
Yan Cui, MD
Department of General Surgery
306 Hospital, Beijing
100101, China.
Tel: 86-10-66356106