YsCharacteristics of hepatocytes

o * Polarised epithelial cells bounded by three distinct membrane domains:

Sinusoidal, or basolateral, membrane, oriented along the sinusoids and lined with microvilli. This allows active and bidirectional transport of proteins, water, organic solutes. Apical, or bile canalicular, membrane, which are joined by tight junctions to form canaliculi, long and narrow channels less than 1 mm in diameter. This maintains canalicular shape and is involved in bile formation. Lateral hepatic membrane, between adjacent hepatocytes. This contains structural proteins that allow attachment and communication between cells. Tight junction complexes separate the sinusoidal space from the bile canaliculi.

* Arranged in cords on a basement membrane in the liver lobule.

* Possess highly developed endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, peroxisomes, lysosomes, Golgi complex and cytoskeleton.

* The liver microsomal fraction comprises the smooth and rough endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi complex.

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