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Open Access Engineering of an Hepatic Organoid to Develop Liver Assist Devices

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Cell-based technologies to support/restore liver function represent one of the most promising opportunities in the treatment of acute liver failure. However, the understanding of the constituent cell types that interact to achieve liver-specific structure and function has not been achieved in the development of liver assist devices (LADs). Here we show that hepatocytes migrated toward and adhered and formed sinusoids-like structures in conjunction with liver nonparenchymal cells, and that this liver organoid formed sophisticated tissue after 7 days in an implanted LAD in rodents. Hepatocytes only or in combination with human nonparenchymal liver cell lines (endothelial, cholangiocytes, and stellate cells) were cultured in Matrigel. Ultrastructural analysis showed that the hepatocyte-decorated endothelial vascular structures resemble in vivo sinusoids containing plate-like structures, bile canaliculi, and lumen. The sinusoid-like structures retained albumin secretion and drug metabolism capabilities. In addition, LADs containing cocultures of human liver nonparenchymal cells were transplanted in animals for a week; the liver tissue formed sophisticated structures resembling the liver. These results demonstrate the importance of nonparenchymal cells in the cellular composition of LADs. The novelty of the culture's sinusoid-like organization and function strongly support the integration of liver nonparenchymal units into hepatocyte coculture-based LADs as a potential destination therapy for liver failure.

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Keywords: Liver cell therapy; Liver failure; Liver support; Organoid

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 June 2010

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

    Cell Transplantation is now being published by SAGE. Please visit their website for the most recent issues.

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