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Dig Dis Sci. 1994 Jun;39(6):1265-72.

Modulation of ischemia-reperfusion-induced hepatic injury by Kupffer cells.

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Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Koshigaya Hospital, Dokkyo University School of Medicine, Saitama, Japan.


To elucidate the role of Kupffer cells in ischemia-reperfusion-induced hepatic injury, hepatic injury induced by ischemia-reperfusion was analyzed after modulation of Kupffer cell function. Ischemia of the liver was performed by occlusion of both the portal vein and hepatic artery, which enter into the left lateral and median lobes of the liver. Blood flow in the ischemic lobe was reduced, in contrast to an increased blood flow in the nonischemic lobe during occlusion of the veins. Although hepatocyte damage was not demonstrated by ischemia for < 60 min, hepatic injury was found after reperfusion of the liver, and activation of Kupffer cells was morphologically demonstrated by electron microscopies. Suppression of Kupffer cells, induced by previous administration of gadolinium chloride or latex particles, reduced the grade of hepatic injury induced by ischemia-reperfusion. On the other hand, stimulation of Kupffer cell phagocytosis, induced by administration of latex particles at the time of reperfusion, aggravated the ischemia-reperfusion-induced hepatotoxicity, which was then reduced by simultaneous administration of superoxide dismutase. Kupffer cells, isolated from the rats treated with the ischemia-reperfusion procedure, have been found to release increased amounts of oxygen radical intermediates. These results suggest that hepatic injury induced by ischemia-reperfusion is modulated by the function of Kupffer cells and that superoxide anion released from Kupffer cells could play an important role in ischemia-reperfusion hepatic injury.

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