Alcohol insult to the liver sets off a complex sequence of inflammatory and fibrogenic responses. There is increasing evidence that hepatocytes play a key role in triggering these responses by producing inflammatory signals such as cytokines and reactive oxygen species (ROS). In the present study, we employed a cell culture/biosensor platform consisting of electrode arrays integrated with microfluidics to monitor extracellular H2O2, one of the major ROS types, produced by primary rat hepatocytes during alcohol injury. The biosensor consisted of hydrogel microstructures with entrapped horseradish peroxidase (HRP) immobilized on an array of miniature gold electrodes. These arrays of sensing electrodes were integrated into microfluidic devices and modified with collagen (I) to promote hepatocyte adhesion. Once seeded into the microfluidic devices, hepatocytes were exposed to 100 mM ethanol and the signal at the working electrode was monitored by cyclic voltammetry (CV) over the course of 4 h. The CV experiments revealed that hepatocytes secreted up to 1.16 μM H2O2 after 3 h of stimulation. Importantly, when hepatocytes were incubated with antioxidants or alcohol dehydrogenase inhibitor prior to alcohol exposure, the H2O2 signal was decreased by ∼5-fold. These experiments further confirmed that the biosensor was indeed monitoring oxidative stress generated by the hepatocytes and also pointed to one future use of this technology for screening hepatoprotective effects of antioxidants.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry