The TGF-β/NADPH Oxidases Axis in the Regulation of Liver Cell Biology in Health and Disease

Cells. 2021 Sep 3;10(9):2312. doi: 10.3390/cells10092312.


The Transforming Growth Factor-beta (TGF-β) pathway plays essential roles in liver development and homeostasis and become a relevant factor involved in different liver pathologies, particularly fibrosis and cancer. The family of NADPH oxidases (NOXs) has emerged in recent years as targets of the TGF-β pathway mediating many of its effects on hepatocytes, stellate cells and macrophages. This review focuses on how the axis TGF-β/NOXs may regulate the biology of different liver cells and how this influences physiological situations, such as liver regeneration, and pathological circumstances, such as liver fibrosis and cancer. Finally, we discuss whether NOX inhibitors may be considered as potential therapeutic tools in liver diseases.

Keywords: NOX; NOX inhibitors; ROS; TGF-beta; hepatocellular carcinoma; liver fibrosis; liver regeneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / metabolism
  • Liver Regeneration / physiology
  • NADPH Oxidases / metabolism*
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / metabolism*


  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • NADPH Oxidases