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Polyurethane Foam/Spheroid Culture System Using Human Hepatoblastoma Cell Line (Hep G2) as a Possible New Hybrid Artificial Liver

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The risk of xenozoonosis infections poses the greatest obstacle against the clinical application of hybrid artificial liver support system (HALSS). Primary human hepatocytes are an ideal source for HALSS, but the shortage of human livers available for hepatocyte isolation limits this modality. To resolve this issue, we used human hepatocytes with replication capacity (fetal hepatocytes, Hep G2, and Huh 7) in a polyurethane foam (PUF)/spheroid culture system in vitro, and analyzed liver functions such as ammonia removal and albumin synthesis capacity; results were compared to those of porcine hepatocytes. Human fetal hepatocytes, Hep G2, and Huh 7 formed spheroids spontaneously within 24 h in a PUF/spheroid culture system; ammonia removal activity (μmol/106 nuclei/h) was upregulated, as was albumin synthesis activity (μg/106 nuclei/day). In particular, Hep G2 spheroids demonstrated high ammonia removal and albumin synthesis activities: 85% of the ammonia removal activity and 171.7% of the albumin synthesis activity of porcine hepatocytes in the monolayer culture. These results indicate the possibility of the development of a multicapillary PUF (MC-PUF) packed-bed culture system of hepatocyte spheroids as a HALSS using Hep G2.
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Keywords: Hep G2; Human hepatocytes; Key words: Hybrid artificial liver support system (HALSS); Polyurethane foam (PUF)/spheroid culture system

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: *Department of Surgery and Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Graduate School of Engineering, Kyushu University, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8582, Japan 2: †Department of Chemical Systems and Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering, Kyushu University, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8582, Japan 3: ‡Dainippon Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Enoki 33-94, Suita, Osaka 564-0053, Japan

Publication date: 2001-08-01

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