A study recently published in Hepatology describes a new inhibitor of the JAK2 protein, Pacritinib, as a potential treatment for alcoholic and non-alcoholic liver fibrosis. The study led by Professor Jonel Trebicka of the University of Münster, and Dr. Sandra Torres from the group of “Mitochondrial regulation of cell death” of the IIBB as a co-first author, with the participation of Drs José Carlos Fernández-Checa and Carmen García-Ruiz, demonstrates the antifibrotic role of JAK2 inhibition in stellate cells (HSC) in vitro and in two animal models of liver fibrosis in vivo. Previous studies have shown that the AT1R/JAK2/ROCK pathway is induced in patients with portal hypertension and decompensated cirrhosis. Interestingly, among Pacritinib targets, only JAK2 shows a correlation with collaboration and other genes related to HSC activation in cirrhotic patients. In conclusion, we provide new evidence that Pacritinib might have potential for therapy in patients with liver fibrosis by targeting JAK2.


Torres, S., Ortiz, C., Bachtler, N., Gu, W., Grünewald, L.D., Kraus, N., Schierwagen, R., Hieber, C., Meier, C., Tyc, O., Uschner, F.E., Nijmeijer, B., Welsch, C., Berres, M.-L., Garcia-Ruiz, C., Fernandez-Checa, J.C., Trautwein, C., Vogl, T.J., Zeuzem, S., Trebicka, J. and Klein, S. (2022), Janus Kinase 2 inhibition by pacritinib as potential therapeutic target for liver fibrosis. Hepatology. Accepted Author Manuscript. https://doi.org/10.1002/hep.32746