The role of SPARC in the in vivo lung response to crocidolite asbestos was addressed by instillation of crocidolite asbestos in a series of wild-type or SPARC-null mice. Animals were sacrificed at one week, one month, and three months post-instillation to assess the impact of SPARC on multiple stages in the development of fibrosis. RNA was harvested from 10 animals/time point, pooled, and used to probe a mouse array containing ∼ 10,000 probes. Gene expression data were analyzed for fold change, and for broader functional group alterations. As expected, the one-week time point displayed alterations in genes involved in immune recognition, energy utilization, and growth factor production. Later time points showed expression alterations for genes involved in protein degradation, Wnt receptor signaling, membrane protein activity, and transport. Molecules in the Wnt pathway have been implicated in bone growth, mediation of fibroblast activity, and have been directly linked to SPARC regulation.
- Knockout mice
- Microarray analysis