Michaël Maes

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Inflammation may be caused by a variety of factors and is a hallmark of a plethora of acute and chronic diseases. The purpose of inflammation is to eliminate the initial cell injury trigger, to clear out dead cells from damaged tissue and to initiate tissue regeneration. Despite the wealth of knowledge regarding the involvement of cellular communication in(More)
Acute liver failure can be the consequence of various etiologies, with most cases arising from drug-induced hepatotoxicity in Western countries. Despite advances in this field, the management of acute liver failure continues to be one of the most challenging problems in clinical medicine. The availability of adequate experimental models is of crucial(More)
BACKGROUND AND AIMS Being goalkeepers of liver homeostasis, gap junctions are also involved in hepatotoxicity. However, their role in this process is ambiguous, as gap junctions can act as both targets and effectors of liver toxicity. This particularly holds true for drug-induced liver insults. In the present study, the involvement of connexin26, connexin32(More)
Connexins and pannexins are key players in the control of cellular communication and thus in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis. Inherent to this function these proteins are frequently involved in pathological processes. The present paper reviews the role of connexins and pannexins in liver toxicity and disease. As they act both as sensors and effectors(More)
Apoptosis not only plays a key role in physiological demise of defunct hepatocytes, but is also associated with a plethora of acute and chronic liver diseases as well as with hepatotoxicity. The present paper focuses on the modelling of this mode of programmed cell death in primary hepatocyte cultures. Particular attention is paid to the activation of(More)
Hepatic fibrosis is a wound healing response to insults and as such affects the entire world population. In industrialized countries, the main causes of liver fibrosis include alcohol abuse, chronic hepatitis virus infection and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. A central event in liver fibrosis is the activation of hepatic stellate cells, which is triggered(More)
The liver was among the first organs in which connexin proteins have been identified. Hepatocytes harbor connexin32 and connexin26, while non-parenchymal liver cells typically express connexin43. Connexins give rise to hemichannels, which dock with counterparts on adjacent cells to form gap junctions. Both hemichannels and gap junctions provide pathways for(More)
Pannexins form channels at the plasma membrane surface that establish a pathway for communication between the cytosol of individual cells and their extracellular environment. By doing so, pannexin signaling dictates several physiological functions, but equally underlies a number of pathological processes. Indeed, pannexin channels drive inflammation by(More)
Gap junctions are a specialized group of cell-to-cell junctions that mediate direct intercellular communication between cells. They arise from the interaction of two hemichannels of adjacent cells, which in turn are composed of six connexin proteins. In liver, gap junctions are predominantly found in hepatocytes and play critical roles in virtually all(More)
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) remain ubiquitously present in human lipids despite the ban on their production and use. Their presence can be chemically monitored in peripheral blood samples of the general population. We tested whether in vitro exposure to different PCB congeners induced different gene expression profiles in peripheral blood cells. We(More)