The current status of primary hepatocyte culture

Int J Exp Pathol. 1998 Dec;79(6):393-409. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2613.1998.00083.x.

Abstract

Recently, there have been significant advances toward the development of culture conditions that promote proliferation of primary rodent hepatocytes. There are two major methods for the multiplication of hepatocytes in vitro: one is the use of nicotinamide, the other is the use of a nutrient-rich medium. In the medium containing a high concentration of nicotinamide and a growth factor, primary hepatocytes can proliferate well. In this culture condition small mononucleate cells, which are named small hepatocytes, appear and form colonies. Small hepatocytes have a high potential to proliferate while maintaining hepatic characteristics, and can differentiate into mature ones. On the other hand, combining the nutrient-rich medium with 2% DMSO, the proliferated hepatocytes can recover the hepatic differentiated functions and maintain them for a long time. In this review I describe the culture conditions for the proliferation and differentiation of primary hepatocytes and discuss the small hepatocytes, especially their roles in liver growth.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Division
  • Culture Media
  • Liver / cytology*
  • Liver / growth & development
  • Rats

Substances

  • Culture Media