Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Loss of Cyclin E1 attenuates hepatitis and hepatocarcinogenesis in a mouse model of chronic liver injury


Chronic liver injury triggers liver fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the third leading cause of cancer-related mortality. Cyclin E1 (CcnE1, formerly designated Cyclin E) is a regulatory subunit of the Cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (CDK2). It is overexpressed in approximately 70% of human HCCs correlating with poor prognosis, while the relevance of its orthologue Cyclin E2 (CcnE2) is unclear. Hepatocyte-specific deletion of NF-kappa-B essential modulator (NEMOΔhepa) leads to chronic hepatitis, liver fibrosis, and HCC as well as CcnE upregulation. To this end, we generated NEMOΔhepa/CcnE1−/− and NEMOΔhepa/CcnE2−/− double knockout mice and investigated age-dependent liver disease progression in these animals. Deletion of CcnE1 in NEMOΔhepa mice decreased basal liver damage and reduced spontaneous liver inflammation in young mice. In contrast, loss of CcnE2 did not affect liver injury in NEMOΔhepa livers pointing to a unique, non-redundant function of CcnE1 in chronic hepatitis. Accordingly, basal compensatory hepatocyte proliferation in NEMOΔhepa mice was reduced by concomitant ablation of CcnE1, but not after loss of CcnE2. In aged NEMOΔhepa mice, loss of CcnE1 resulted in significant reduction of liver tumorigenesis, while deletion of CcnE2 had no effect on HCC formation. CcnE1, but not its orthologue CcnE2, substantially contributes to hepatic inflammatory response, liver disease progression, and hepatocarcinogenesis in NEMOΔhepa mice.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6


  1. Aigelsreiter A, Haybaeck J, Schauer S, Kiesslich T, Bettermann K, Griessbacher A, et al. NEMO expression in human hepatocellular carcinoma and its association with clinical outcome. Hum Pathol. 2012;43:1012–9.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Bisteau X, Caldez MJ, Kaldis P. The complex relationship between liver cancer and the cell cycle: a story of multiple regulations. Cancers. 2014;6:79–111.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  3. Jung YJ, Lee KH, Choi DW, Han CJ, Jeong SH, Kim KC, et al. Reciprocal expressions of cyclin E and cyclin D1 in hepatocellular carcinoma. Cancer Lett. 2001;168:57–63.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  4. Li K, Lin SY, Brunicardi FC, Seu P. Use of RNA interference to target cyclin E-overexpressing hepatocellular carcinoma. Cancer Res. 2003;63:3593–7.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  5. Clurman BE, Sheaff RJ, Thress K, Groudine M, Roberts JM. Turnover of cyclin E by the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway is regulated by cdk2 binding and cyclin phosphorylation. Genes Dev. 1996;10:1979–90.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  6. Geng Y, Yu Q, Sicinska E, Das M, Schneider JE, Bhattacharya S, et al. Cyclin E ablation in the mouse. Cell . 2003;114:431–43.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. Parisi T, Beck AR, Rougier N, McNeil T, Lucian L, Werb Z, et al. Cyclins E1 and E2 are required for endoreplication in placental trophoblast giant cells. EMBO J. 2003;22:4794–803.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  8. Ortega S, Prieto I, Odajima J, Martin A, Dubus P, Sotillo R, et al. Cyclin-dependent kinase 2 is essential for meiosis but not for mitotic cell division in mice. Nat Genet. 2003;35:25–31.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  9. Geng Y, Lee YM, Welcker M, Swanger J, Zagozdzon A, Winer JD, et al. Kinase-independent function of cyclin E. Mol Cell. 2007;25:127–39.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Minella AC, Loeb KR, Knecht A, Welcker M, Varnum-Finney BJ, Bernstein ID, et al. Cyclin E phosphorylation regulates cell proliferation in hematopoietic and epithelial lineages in vivo. Genes Dev. 2008;22:1677–89.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  11. Nevzorova YA, Tschaharganeh D, Gassler N, Geng Y, Weiskirchen R, Sicinski P, et al. Aberrant cell cycle progression and endoreplication in regenerating livers of mice that lack a single E-type cyclin. Gastroenterology. 2009;137:691–703. e1-6

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  12. Nevzorova YA, Bangen JM, Hu W, Haas U, Weiskirchen R, Gassler N, et al. Cyclin E1 controls proliferation of hepatic stellate cells and is essential for liver fibrogenesis in mice. Hepatology. 2012;56:1140–9.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  13. Pok S, Wen V, Shackel N, Alsop A, Pyakurel P, Fahrer A, et al. Cyclin E facilitates dysplastic hepatocytes to bypass G1/S checkpoint in hepatocarcinogenesis. J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2013;28:1545–54.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  14. Luedde T, Beraza N, Kotsikoris V, van Loo G, Nenci A, De Vos R, et al. Deletion of NEMO/IKKgamma in liver parenchymal cells causes steatohepatitis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Cancer Cell. 2007;11:119–32.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  15. Beraza N, Malato Y, Sander LE, Al-Masaoudi M, Freimuth J, Riethmacher D, et al. Hepatocyte-specific NEMO deletion promotes NK/NKT cell- and TRAIL-dependent liver damage. J Exp Med. 2009;206:1727–37.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  16. Ehedego H, Boekschoten MV, Hu W, Doler C, Haybaeck J, Gabetaler N, et al. p21 ablation in liver enhances DNA damage, cholestasis, and carcinogenesis. Cancer Res. 2015;75:1144–55.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  17. Chuma M, Sakamoto M, Yamazaki K, Ohta T, Ohki M, Asaka M, et al. Expression profiling in multistage hepatocarcinogenesis: identification of HSP70 as a molecular marker of early hepatocellular carcinoma. Hepatology. 2003;37:198–207.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  18. Geng Y, Yu Q, Whoriskey W, Dick F, Tsai KY, Ford HL, et al. Expression of cyclins E1 and E2 during mouse development and in neoplasia. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2001;98:13138–43.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  19. Grivennikov SI, Greten FR, Karin M. Immunity, inflammation, and cancer. Cell. 2010;140:883–99.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  20. Pikarsky E, Porat RM, Stein I, Abramovitch R, Amit S, Kasem S, et al. NF-kappaB functions as a tumour promoter in inflammation-associated cancer. Nature. 2004;431:461–6.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  21. Bangen JM, Hammerich L, Sonntag R, Baues M, Haas U, Lambertz D, et al. Targeting CCl4 -induced liver fibrosis by RNA interference-mediated inhibition of cyclin E1 in mice. Hepatology. 2017;66:1242–57.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  22. Hu W, Nevzorova YA, Haas U, Moro N, Sicinski P, Geng Y, et al. Concurrent deletion of cyclin E1 and cyclin-dependent kinase 2 in hepatocytes inhibits DNA replication and liver regeneration in mice. Hepatology. 2014;59:651–60.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  23. Malato Y, Ehedego H, Al-Masaoudi M, Cubero FJ, Bornemann J, Gassler N, et al. NF-kappaB essential modifier is required for hepatocyte proliferation and the oval cell reaction after partial hepatectomy in mice. Gastroenterology. 2012;143:1597–608 e11.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references


This work was supported by a grant of the German Cancer Foundation (Deutsche Krebshilfe) Grant Nr. 107682, the SFB TRR/57 and the Interdisciplinary Centre for Clinical Research (IZKF Aachen) within the Faculty of Medicine; RWTH Aachen.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Christian Trautwein.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Electronic supplementary material

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Ehedego, H., Mohs, A., Jansen, B. et al. Loss of Cyclin E1 attenuates hepatitis and hepatocarcinogenesis in a mouse model of chronic liver injury. Oncogene 37, 3329–3339 (2018).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links