Hepatic ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury has a significant influence on the outcome of liver transplants. Inhibiting certain enzymatic reactions that occur during I/R injury may have a protective effect on the liver during transplantation. After reviewing the biochemical pathways involved in hepatic I/R injury, we describe a pharmacologic line of defense against this injury by means of the enzyme tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase 3 (TIMP-3). Current results suggest that TIMP-3 will play a clinically relevant role in improving outcomes of liver transplants by reducing I/R injury to the donor liver.
Keywords: Hepatic ischemia/reperfusion; TIMP-3; liver.