Improving the next generation of bioartificial liver devices.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Semin Cell Dev Biol, Volume 13, Issue 6, p.447-54 (2002)


Animals, Cell Culture Techniques, Hepatocytes, Humans, Liver, Artificial, Tissue Engineering


<p>Several extracorporeal bioartificial liver (BAL) devices are currently being evaluated as an alternative or adjunct therapy for liver disease. While these hybrid systems show promise, in order to become a clinical reality, BAL devices must clearly demonstrate efficacy in improving patient outcomes. Here, we present aspects of BAL devices that could benefit from fundamental advances in cell and developmental biology. In particular, we examine the development of human hepatocyte cell lines, strategies to stabilize the hepatocyte phenotype in vitro, and emphasize the importance of the cellular microenvironment in bioreactor design. Consideration of these key components of BAL systems will greatly improve next generation devices.</p>