BioScience Trends. 2017;11(2):163-168. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2017.01007)

Key role of liver sinusoidal endothelial cells in liver fibrosis.

Xu MX, Wang XH, Zou Y, Zhong YS


Because of the prevalence of viral hepatitis and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), liver fibrosis has become a very common disease in Asia and elsewhere in the world, constantly increasing the burden of care borne by society. Hepatic sinusoidal capillarization, characterized by gradually shrinking fenestrae on the surface of liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (LSECs) and the formation of an organized basement membrane, is an initial pathologic change associated with liver fibrosis. Basic and clinical studies have indicated that LSECs play a key role in hepatic sinusoidal capillarization by affecting various aspects of the development and progression of liver fibrosis. Reviewing studies on the effect of LSECs on liver fibrosis is essential to better understanding the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis and its mechanism of progression. Moreover, such a review will provide a theoretical basis for identifying new methods to promote the regression or even inhibition of fibrosis. This review will focus on structural and functional changes in LSECs during hepatic sinusoidal capillarization and the interaction between the micro-environment of the liver and the body's immune system.

KEYWORDS: Liver sinusoidal endothelial cells, capillarization, liver fibrosis, fenestrae, immune system

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