Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 364–371

Expansion Conditions for Early Hepatic Progenitor Cells from Embryonal and Neonatal Rat Livers

  • Authors
  • Shlomo Brill
  • Isabel Zvibel
  • Lola M. Reid

DOI: 10.1023/A:1026666820422

Cite this article as:
Brill, S., Zvibel, I. & Reid, L.M. Dig Dis Sci (1999) 44: 364. doi:10.1023/A:1026666820422


Long-term primary cultures were established fromfetal or neonatal livers by using cell suspensionsdepleted of red blood cells and by culturing the cellsin hormonally defined medium containing dimethyl sulfoxide. Two distinct populations of hepaticprogenitor cells were evident in the cultures, based onmorphology, proliferative ability, and liver-specificgene expression. Most colonies consisted of immature hepatic progenitors: small, blastlike cells,weakly expressing alpha-fetoprotein, albumin, andγ-glutamyltranspeptidase, and showing evidence ofproliferation as measured by bromodeoxyuridineincorporation. At the perimeter of these colonies of immaturecells and forming some colonies by themselves were moremature hepatic progenitor cells: larger cells, withincreased cytoplasmic to nuclear ratios, little proliferation, and strongly expressing albumin,alpha-fetoprotein, and γ-glutamyltranspeptidase.The latter two proteins were localized to the bilecanalicular membranes of these cells. Glycogen deposits were present in the mature cells from day 14embryos after eight days of culture. Thus, DMSOtreatment of hepatic parenchymal progenitors provides anovel system for studies of liver development.


Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999