Extracellular Matrix and the Liver: Chapter 8 - Role of Sinusoidal Endothelial Cells in Liver Inflammation and Repair

Elsevier, Extracellular Matrix and the Liver, Approach to Gene Therapy, 2003, Pages 135-151
Giuliano Ramadori and Katrin Neubauer

Inflammatory processes are thought to be the consequence of tissue damage induced by different toxins and agents. Inflammatory processes of the liver are supposed to be different from those of other organs because of the special structure of liver sinusoids, which do not possess a basement membrane, and because of the specialized liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (SECs), which are in contact with hepatic stellate cells and are separated from the hepatocytes by the space of Disse. These processes are characterized by the migration of inflammatory cells into areas affected by various noxious agents. Liver SECs are different from capillary or large vessel endothelium in many aspects. The induction of liver cell damage with the migration of inflammatory cells into the pericentral area of the liver lobule after a single administration of carbon tetrachloride to the rat represents a good model for studying early steps during liver inflammation. This model offers the unique possibility to isolate different cellular participants of the inflammatory process at different time points before, during, and after inflammation and liver damage. These cells can be isolated from the liver of untreated animals and used to analyze the effects of mediators thought to be involved in the inflammatory process.