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In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Anim. 1998 Feb;34(2):131-7.

A simplified model of hypoxic injury in primary cultured rat hepatocytes.

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First Department of Surgery, Kansai Medical University, Osaka, Japan.


The Anaeropack system for cell culture, which was originally designed for the growth of anaerobic bacteria, was used to produce a hypoxic atmosphere for cultured hepatocytes. We measured changes in the oxygen and carbon dioxide concentrations and the atmospheric temperature in an airtight jar. We also measured changes in the pH of the medium during hypoxia to assess the accuracy of this system. Moreover, we used three durations (2, 3, and 4 h) of hypoxia and 8 h of reoxygenation in cultured rat hepatocytes, and then measured the lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), ketone body concentration (acetoacetate + beta-hydroxybutyrate), and the ketone body ratio (KBR: acetoacetate/beta-hydroxybutyrate) in the medium in order to assess the suitability of this system as a model for reperfusion following liver ischemia. The oxygen concentration dropped to 1% or less within 1 h. The concentration of carbon dioxide rose to about 5% at 30 min after the induction of the hypoxic conditions, and was maintained at this level for 5 h. No effect of the reaction heat produced by the oxygen absorbent in the jar was recognized. The extent of cell injury produced by changing the hypoxic parameters was satisfactorily reflected by the KBR, the ketone body concentration, and the LDH activity released into the medium. Because this model can duplicate the conditions of the hepatocytes during revascularization following ischemic liver, and the Anaeropack system for cell culture is easy to manipulate, it seems suitable for the experimental study of hypoxic injury and revascularization in vitro.

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