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Nat Commun. 2018 Oct 22;9(1):4383. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-06318-7.

Single cell RNA sequencing of human liver reveals distinct intrahepatic macrophage populations.

Author information

1
Multi-Organ Transplant Program, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, Toronto, ON, M5G 2C4, Canada. s.macparland@utoronto.ca.
2
Department of Immunology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5S 1A8, Canada. s.macparland@utoronto.ca.
3
Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5G 1L7, Canada. s.macparland@utoronto.ca.
4
The Donnelly Centre, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5S 3E1, Canada.
5
Multi-Organ Transplant Program, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, Toronto, ON, M5G 2C4, Canada.
6
Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5G 1A8, Canada.
7
McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University Health Network, Toronto, ON, M5G 1L7, Canada.
8
Princess Margaret Genomics Centre, University Health Network, Toronto, ON, M5G 1L7, Canada.
9
Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5G 1L7, Canada.
10
Department of Immunology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5S 1A8, Canada.
11
Genetics and Genome Biology, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, M5G 0A4, Canada.
12
Division of Advanced Diagnostics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, Toronto, ON, M5G 2C4, Canada.
13
Laboratory Medicine Program, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1L7, Canada.
14
Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1L7, Canada.
15
Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5G 1L7, Canada.
16
The Donnelly Centre, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5S 3E1, Canada. gary.bader@utoronto.ca.
17
Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Toronto, Toronto, M5G 1A8, Canada. gary.bader@utoronto.ca.
18
Multi-Organ Transplant Program, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, Toronto, ON, M5G 2C4, Canada. Ian.McGilvray@uhn.ca.

Abstract

The liver is the largest solid organ in the body and is critical for metabolic and immune functions. However, little is known about the cells that make up the human liver and its immune microenvironment. Here we report a map of the cellular landscape of the human liver using single-cell RNA sequencing. We provide the transcriptional profiles of 8444 parenchymal and non-parenchymal cells obtained from the fractionation of fresh hepatic tissue from five human livers. Using gene expression patterns, flow cytometry, and immunohistochemical examinations, we identify 20 discrete cell populations of hepatocytes, endothelial cells, cholangiocytes, hepatic stellate cells, B cells, conventional and non-conventional T cells, NK-like cells, and distinct intrahepatic monocyte/macrophage populations. Together, our study presents a comprehensive view of the human liver at single-cell resolution that outlines the characteristics of resident cells in the liver, and in particular provides a map of the human hepatic immune microenvironment.

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