Chemical-Related Interference of Bile Acid Transport in Hepatocytes



Cheng-Long BAI

Key Centre for Applied and Nutritional Toxicology, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT)
Bile acid transport, Hepatocyte
C. L. Bai, Toxicology Unit, National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (Worksafe Australia), GPO Box 58, Sydney, NSW 2001, Australia
J Occup Healthyear1996Vol38No397-102

Recent studies show that an increase in serum bile acids (SBA) could be used as an useful and sensitive indicator in occupational biological monitoring for workers exposed to industrial chemicals and solvents, but it is still not clear how bile acid metabolism is interfered with in humans after chemical exposure. As freshly isolated hepatocytes possess most of the characteristics of liver, the in vitro system has been widely used in toxicology studies. To understand chemical- and drug-induced interference of bile acid transport in isolated hepatocytes, three major aspects were focused on in previous studies: (1) uptake of bile acids, (2) efflux of bile acids and (3) intracellular transport. In detail, after being exposed to some chemicals the cell membrane energy system, especially Na+-K+ and Mg++-ATPase, was disturbed significantly. The change in cell membrane fluidity and hepatocyte structure also contributed to the increase in serum bite acids. With regard to chemical-induced interference with efflux and intracellular transport of bile acids, however, some inconsistent results have been reported. Overall, further studies are still required to clarify the mechanism of chemical-induced interference in hepatocytes.


Keywords Correspondence