Hepatoprotectant is critical for the treatment of liver disease. This study first reported the application of a liver chip in the hepatoprotective effect assessment. We first established a biomimetic sinusoid-on-a-chip by laminating four types of hepatic cell lines (HepG2, HUVEC, LX-2, and U937 cells) in a single microchannel with the help of laminar flow in the microchannel and some micro-fences. This chip was straightforward to fabricate and operate and was able to be long-term cultured. It also demonstrated better hepatic activity (cell viability, albumin synthesis, urea secretion, and cytochrome P450 enzyme activities) over the traditional planar cell culture model. Then, we loaded three hepatoprotectants (tiopronin, bifendatatum, and glycyrrhizinate) into the chip followed by the addition of acetaminophen as a toxin. We successfully observed the hepatoprotective effect of these hepatoprotectants in the chip, and we also found that bifendatatum predominantly reduced alanine transaminase secretion, tiopronin predominantly reduced lactate dehydrogenase secretion, and glycyrrhizinate predominantly reduced aspartate transaminase secretion, which revealed the different mechanisms of these hepatoprotectants and provided a clue for following molecular biological study of the protecting mechanism.
A liver-on-a-chip for hepatoprotective activity assessment
Jiu Deng, Ye Cong, Xiahe Han, Wenbo Wei, Yao Lu, Tingjiao Liu, Weijie Zhao, Bingcheng Lin, Yong Luo, Xiuli Zhang; A liver-on-a-chip for hepatoprotective activity assessment. Biomicrofluidics 1 November 2020; 14 (6): 064107. https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0024767
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