The Function of Hepatocytes in Metabolism

Hepatocytes are highly differentiated cells found in the liver. They produce APPs and take up enterocyte-derived chylomicrons and retinyl esters. These molecules promote the synthesis of bile acids, which are critical for the metabolism of carbohydrates.

Hepatocytes Are Highly Differentiated Cells Of The Liver

The liver contains highly differentiated cells called hepatocytes that are essential for metabolism, detoxification, and protein synthesis. These cells also regulate cellular signaling, including lipopolysaccharide and coagulation factors. They also secrete various proteins involved in innate immunity, including bactericidal, opsonins, and iron-sequestering proteins.

Hepatocytes have a polyhedral structure with many faces and are connected to each other via sinusoids. Their diameter is about 20-30 mm, and contains a round nucleus in the cytoplasm. In addition, approximately 25% of adult hepatocytes have two nuclei and twice as many chromosomes, making them tetraploid or heterochromatic. In addition, hepatocytes contain two or more peroxisomes.

Hepatocytes play a variety of functions in the body, including detoxifying blood, packaging lipids and protein, secreting bile, and taking up nutrients from the bloodstream. When these functions are compromised, the liver is at increased risk for fibrosis, cirrhosis, and even liver carcinoma.

They Produce APPs

Hepatocytes are the central parenchymal cells in the liver and play essential roles in metabolism, detoxification, and protein synthesis. They also produce a variety of innate immune proteins, including bactericidal and opsonin proteins, iron-sequestering proteins, and soluble factors that regulate lipopolysaccharide signaling.

Hepatocytes contribute to the metabolism of several significant nutrients, including glucose. They also participate in the conversion of other sugars into glucose and store excess glucose as glycogen. This is known as a “glucose buffering” function, and it helps to regulate blood glucose levels. If this function is impaired, hepatic glucose levels can rise excessively after carbohydrate intake, resulting in hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia.

In addition to these functions, hepatocytes participate in lipid metabolism. They synthesize many fatty acids and carbohydrates, as well as phospholipids and bile acids. Moreover, they are responsible for maintaining homeostasis in the body and repairing liver damage. In a laboratory setting, cultured hepatocytes can be used for drug metabolism, cell transplantation, and hepatitis C research.

They Take Up Enterocyte-Derived Chylomicrons

Enterocyte-derived chylomicrons are spherical or discoidal particles rich in dietary cholesterol, apo, and apoB48. Once absorbed into the bloodstream, these particles are transported to the liver, where they are metabolized and incorporated into HDL and apoB48. The apoB48 comprises apoE and apo A1, which are synthesized in the intestines and transferred to HDL in the blood.

Chylomicrons are the largest lipoproteins found in circulation. They are sized differently depending on whether the individual is fed or fasted and the type of fat absorbed.

They Take Up Retinyl Esters

In humans, vitamin A secretion from the liver is only slightly influenced by retinyl esters. Chylomicrons carry them, and the liver secretes them as VLDL particles. It is unknown whether hepatocytes can store sizable amounts of retinoids. This could account for the retinoid accumulation observed in Cd36-/ mice.

Retinyl esters are transported into the liver through chylomicrons, lipoproteins found in the small intestine. They are also transported through water-soluble retinyl b-glucuronides.

In addition to transporting retinyl esters, hepatocytes also take up enterocyte-derived chylomicrons. These LDs contain retinyl esters, which are transported to the hepatic stellate cells.

They Kill Bacteria Indirectly

Hepatocytes are the central parenchymal cells of the liver and contribute significantly to the body’s innate immunity against bacterial infection. These cells secrete large amounts of bacterial-killing proteins and contribute to detoxification and protein synthesis. Additionally, they have an essential role in innate immunity against bacterial infection by recruiting neutrophils and complementing local inflammation.

Unlike other organs, the liver also plays a crucial role in host defense against bacterial infections. Numerous soluble regulatory proteins and complement components are produced by the liver. These proteins take part in both the conventional and unconventional complement pathways. The latter two are made up of MBL, C3 factor B, and MASP1-3. Invading bacteria have a pore on their surface that the hepatocytes can bind to.