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Hum Pathol. 1989 Oct;20(10):1015-20.

Distributional variation of P-450 immunoreactive hepatocytes in human liver disorders.

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Department of Pathology, Hokkaido University School of Medicine, Sapporo, Japan.


Implications of P-450 in human hepatic disorders were immunohistochemically examined. We first confirmed that an antibody against P-450-HM1, an isozyme of cytochrome P-450 which was purified from human livers at autopsy, detects only P-450 on immunoblots. In a study of 79 consecutive autopsied livers using the avidin-biotin-peroxidase complex method, the antibody reacted strongly with fetal hepatocytes, the reaction being more intense in the left lobe than in the right lobe. In normal livers, immunoreactivity was confined to centrilobular hepatocytes, decreasing in the periportal zone. Enhanced expression was occasionally found in scattered hepatocytes and in hepatocytes surrounding sublobular veins; this enhancement was related to longterm steroid therapy. No specific induction was observed in patients with toxic hepatitis. In patients with fibrosis, cirrhosis, or regenerative nodules, however, P-450-positive hepatocytes were observed in the periportal and middle zones as well as in the central zone. In contrast, hepatocellular carcinomas were devoid of P-450 immunoreactivity. These results suggest that P-450-HM1, which is abundant in the fetal liver, is reexpressed in regenerating hepatocytes but not in cancers.

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