Wednesday, November 7, 2012

No Evidence for Recipient-Derived Hepatocytes in Serial Biopsies of Sex-Mismatched Liver Transplants

Background: Bone marrow–derived hematopoietic stem cells (BM-HSCs) have been shown to act as source for hepatic regeneration in rodent models; however, their ability to participate in human liver regeneration remains controversial. The aim of this study was to investigate the origin of hepatocytes in sex-mismatched cases of orthotopic liver transplantation in longitudinally performed liver biopsies.
Methods: Paraffin-embedded liver biopsy samples of 14 patients after sex-mismatched (female-to-male) liver transplantation were investigated. Biopsies were taken at multiple time points and subjected to histologic examination. Immunohistochemical staining with a hepatocyte-specific antibody and fluorescent in situ hybridization for visualization of Y chromosomes were performed to analyze the presence of recipient-derived hepatocytes.
Results: We analyzed 30 liver biopsy samples ranging from 1 week to more than 3 years after transplantation. There was no evidence for recipient-derived hepatocytes in liver transplants at any time point. We were able to detect recipient-specific chromosomal status in inflammatory cells within the liver but not within hepatocytes. Results were independent of liver injury at the time of biopsy, caused by hepatitis C recurrence or rejection episodes.
Conclusions: Our results show no evidence for involvement of BM-HSCs in liver regeneration after orthotopic liver transplantation. We think that recipient BM-HSC–derived hepatocyte repopulation is a very rare event at best and is not of clinical relevance (read more) Print this post

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