Enhanced oxygen availability improves liver-specific functions of the AMC bioartificial liver

Artif Organs. 2008 Feb;32(2):116-26. doi: 10.1111/j.1525-1594.2007.00500.x. Epub 2007 Nov 14.


Long-term culturing of primary porcine hepatocytes (PPH) inside the Academic Medical Center (AMC)-bioartificial liver is characterized by increased anaerobic glycolysis. Recommendations to increase oxygen availability were proposed in a previous numerical study and were experimentally evaluated in this study. Original bioreactors as well as new configuration bioreactors with 2.2-fold thinner nonwoven matrix and 2-fold more capillaries were loaded with PPHs and oxygenated with different gas oxygen pressures resulting in medium pO(2) (pO(2-med)) of either 135-150 mm Hg or 235-250 mm Hg. After 6 days culturing, new configuration bioreactors with pO(2-med )of 250 mm Hg showed significantly reduced anaerobic glycolysis, 60% higher liver-specific functions, and increased transcript levels of five liver-specific genes compared to the standard bioreactor cultures. Changed bioreactor configuration and increasing pO(2-med) contributed equally to these improvements. Histological examination demonstrated small differences in cell organization. In conclusion, higher metabolic stability and liver-specific functionality was achieved by enhanced oxygen availability based on a prior modeling concept.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bioreactors
  • Cells, Immobilized / metabolism
  • Female
  • Hepatocytes / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Liver / physiology*
  • Liver Function Tests
  • Liver, Artificial*
  • Oxygen / metabolism*
  • Oxygenators, Membrane*
  • Sus scrofa / physiology


  • Oxygen