Changes in the acinar distribution of some enzymes involved in carbohydrate metabolism in rat liver parenchyma after experimentally induced cholestasis
Extrahepatic cholestasis induced by ligation and transsection of the common bile duct caused a change in the parenchyma/stroma relationship in rat liver. Two weeks after ligation, the periportal zones of the parenchyma were progressively invaded by expanding bile ductules with surrounding connective tissue diverging from the portal areas. Parenchymal disarray developed and small clumps of hepatocytes or isolated hepatocytes were scattered within the expanded portal areas. These cells showed normal activity of lactate, succinate and glutamate dehydrogenase and may, therefore, be considered to be functionally active. After cholestasis the remainder of the liver parenchyma showed adaptational changes with respect to glucose homeostasis, as demonstrated by histochemical means. Glycogen stores disappeared completely whereas glycogen phosphorylase activity increased about ten fold. The increased glycogen phosphorylase activity and glycogen depletion indicate a greater glycogenolytic capacity in liver parenchyma after bile duct ligation to maintain as far as possible a normal plasma glucose concentration. The parenchymal distribution pattern of glucose-6-phosphatase activity did not change significantly after bile duct ligation. The isolated hepatocytes within the expanded portal tracts showed a high activity of this enzyme whereas the pericentral parenchyma was only moderately active. The distribution patterns of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase and lactate dehydrogenase activity in the liver parenchyma were also largely unchanged after bile duct ligation, but the histochemical reaction for glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase activity demonstrated infiltration of the remainder of the parenchyma by non-parenchymal cells, possibly Küpffer cells and leucocytes as part of an inflammatory reaction. Under normal conditions the mitochondrial enzymes succinate and glutamate dehydrogenase show an opposite heterogenous distribution pattern in liver parenchyma. Following cholestasis both enzymes became uniformly distributed. The underlying regulatory mechanism for these different changes in distribution patterns of enzyme activities is not yet understood.
Key wordsCholestasis Liver cirrhosis, experimental Liver glycogen Carbohydrate metabolism Glucose metabolism
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