Published online Apr 15, 2001. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v7.i2.238
Revised: October 21, 2000
Accepted: October 29, 2000
Published online: April 15, 2001
AIM: To detect immunohistochemically the presence of oval cells in chronic viral hepatitis with antibody against c-kit.
METHODS: We detected oval cells in paraffin embedded liver sections of 3 normal controls and 26 liver samples from patients with chronic viral hepatitis, using immunohistochemistry with antibodies against c-kit, π class glutathione S-transferase (π-GST) and cytokeratins 19 (CK19).
RESULTS: Oval cells were not observed in normal livers. In chronic viral hepatitis, hepatic oval cells were located predominantly in the periportal region and fibrosis septa, characterized by an ovoid nucleus, small size, and scant cytoplasm. Antibody against stem cell factor receptor, c-kit, had higher sensitivity and specificity than π-GST and CK19. About 50%-70% of c-kit positive oval cells were stained positively for either π-GST or CK19.
CONCLUSION: Oval cells are frequently detected in human livers with chronic viral hepatitis, suggesting that oval cell proliferation is asso ciated with the liver regeneration in this condition.