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Flashcards in Liver Deck (27):

major functions of the liver.

1. Absorption and processing: carbs, proteins, lipds

2. synthesis and endocrine secretion: plasma p, coagulation factors, metals, lipid transport proteins, cholesterol

3. detox and degredation 

4. conversion, modification of hormones

5. phagocytosis of antigens, old RBC by Kupffer cells

6. exocrine secretion of bilirubin, bile salts


What encloses the liver?

dense irregular connective tissue and a layer of mesothelium


What is at each corner of a lobule?

portal canal ...

portal "triad" = hepatic portal vein, hepatic artery, bile duct, lymphatic, nerves 


describe blood flow

portal vein branches over lateral surfaces --> distributing veins --> inlet venules

hepatic artery branches over lateral surface --> distributing arteries --> inlet arterioles

blood mixes and enters central vein then sublobular vein then hepatic vein


what supports each lobule?

connective tissue...

within lobule is reticular fiber (coll III)

(also connective tissue in portal canal that supports liver)


describe the 3D structure of a lobule

six lateral faces

two basal faces

single apex


Name the cells in the sinusoids and their function

1. kuppfer cells - phagocytose antigens and old RBC

2. pit cell - NK innate immune system lymphocyte

3. endothelial cells - fenestrations/discontinuous allows plasma to move into space between hepatocytes and sinusoids.

4. lipcytes - lipid droplets that store vitA (essential but can be toxic)


Structure function of space of Disse

filled with only blood plasma (no RBC or platelets)

reticular fibers support walls of sinusoids

nutrients absorbed by microvilli at hepatocyte base

endocrine p secretions


Surfaces of hepatocyte?

two basal surfaces - microvilli for absorption, secrete endocrine products,

6 lateral surfaces - secrete endocrine products, uptake of nutrients

apical surface - 1/2 of bile canaliculus, excocrine secretion of bile


Bile flow?

bile canaliculi into bile ductules into canals of Hering...

merge and form bile ducts in the portal canals into gall bladder then into small intestine...

all this called the biliary tree


linings of canals of Hering?

simple cuboidal epithelium.

maybe stem cells for liver regeneration.

liver cells divide infrequently, but when damaged rapid mitosis occurs.


cells that line biliary tree post-canal of Hering?



cell surface of hepatocytes?

sides of bile canaliculus lines with junctional complex (tight junction, adhesion belt, spot desmosomes)...

hold apical and lateral surface together...

microvilli on apical surface


8 organells of hepatocyte?

1. RER - membrane and secreted p synthesis (albumin, protein component of lipoprotein)

2. SER - lipid syn of lipoproteins; detox of ammonia, alcohol, anesthetics; syn/deg of glycogen (assoc. with SER)

3. mitos - energy

4. Golgi - mostly near bile canaliculus for bile secretion, others by sinusoids for proessing/packaging of secreted p

5. peroxisomes - H2O2 breakdown, ethanol oxidation, alcohol dehydrogenase

6. lysosomes - breakdown of endocytosed substanced and organells, Fe storage

7. Terminal web - apical. actin, myosin, other p. actin and mysoin interaction allows for contractions along canaliculi to move bile toward portal canal.

8. lipid droplets - cholesterol and lipop storage


liver anicus layout

2 central canals and 2 portal canals (like two triangles)


3 zones of liver acinus

Zone 1 - blood rich in O2, nutrients; syn. glycogen and plasma p; last to die

Zone 2 - blood has less O2, nutrients

Zone 3 - blood very low in O2, nutrients; alcohol, drug detox; central necrosis (cell death near central canal); first to show steatosis (fat accumulation from reduced blood flow)


secretions in bile

bile salts, bile pigments, cholesterol, phospholipids, electrolytes


enterohepatic circulation?

bile substance produced by hepatocytes --> released to duodenum --> recovered in ileum (some secreted in feces) --> enters intestinal capilaries --> follows portal vein to liver


function of bile?

emulsify lipids in small intestine

keep cholesterol and phospholipids of bile in solution


RBC breakdown and bilirubin?

RBC breaksdown giving bile pigments (mainly bilirubin)

heme broken down by macrophages in spleen and Kupffer cells in liver

hepatocytes transport bilirubin into the bile and is released in feces


clinical relevance of bilirubin?


accumulation of bilirubin in blood and tissues

skin and sclerae appear yellow

from...overactive destruction of erythrocytes, impaired bilirubin processing, inadequate bile draining from obstruction


three layers of gall bladder and structure

1. mucosa - epithelium, lamina propria

2. muscularis externa - random arrangement of smooth muscle

3. fibrosa or serosa contain large blood vessels, lympathics, adipose tissue



GB mucosa epithelium and lamina propria

epithelium - simple columnar epi with microvilli; apical junctional complexes, mitos; lateral interdigitations

lamina propria - loose connective tissue, fenestrated capillaries, small venules, lymphocytes, plasma cells


fibrose vs. serosa

fibrosa - where gallbladder attached to liver, no intervening peritoneum

serosa - parts where GB covered peritoneum (mesothelium)


function of gall bladder

stores and concentrates bile

~ 50 ml

bile secreted by liver, enters GB via cystic duct


how is bile concentrated?

selective absoption of water and sodium by epithelium

most water enters fenestrated capillaries in mucosa, some enter lymphatics of fibrosa/serosa


bile delivery to duodenum

GB contraction...

1. fat triggers cholecystokinin secretion by enteroendocrine cells in duodenum

2. hormone enters blood

3. causes GB to contract, sphincters to relax