A rabbit model for liver fibrosis
This experiment was carried out to investigate the role of cells participating in fibrosis induced by bile-duct ligation in rabbits. Histologically, bile stasis, degeneration and focal necrosis of hepatocytes, bile ductular proliferation, and an increase of the connective tissue were seen in periportal regions. Immunohistochemically, it was found that the majority of cells observed in the fibrosis regions were positive cells (spindle cells) for alpha-smooth muscle actin (ASMA). It is suggested that the spindle cells, probably transforming from Ito cells or myofibroblasts, play an important role in the pathogenesis ofhepatic fibrosis.