Rat liver regeneration after partial hepatectomy and sympathetic denervation

Enrico Clerici, Paolo Mocarelli, Luciano Provini

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A working hypothesis suggesting that the morphologic and metabolic changes seen in the liver after partial hepatectomy may share a common pathogenic pathway with those observed after CCl4 poisoning (i.e., a massive discharge of the peripheral autonomic nervous system following the stimulation of central sympathetic areas) and that they may be prevented both by surgical and pharmacologic blocking of the sympathetic nervous system, has been tested by studying the behavior of the liver regeneration in rats either subjected or not to the alcoholization of the coeliac and superior mesenteric ganglia followed by partial hepatectomy. In particular, the fat and glycogen content of the regenerating liver, its weight increase, its capacity to incorporate dl-leucine-1-C14, and its morphology have been investigated by means of appropriate experimental techniques. According to the statistical evaluation of the results, such parameters of the liver regeneration are not modified in the rats subjected to the sympathetic denervation as compared to controls. The above data, together with other results from the statistical analysis, have been discussed and compared with those reported in the literature. It has been concluded that, while it is clear that the liver regeneration is independent from sympathetic influences, it is not yet possible to rule out that the partial hepatectomy entails a massive discharge of the peripheral autonomic nervous system similar to that observed following CCl4 poisoning, mainly because such an increased discharge may play only a minor role on the morphologic and metabolic behavior of a partially resected liver, whose circulatory pattern is definitely different from that observed in the liver of animals treated with the steatogenic poison.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)569-582
Number of pages14
JournalExperimental and Molecular Pathology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1964

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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