320
UNIT 3
Organ Systems
T. Yang
Bile
canaliculus
Hepatocyte
Ito cell
Space of Disse
Tight
junction
Endothelial
cell
Endothelial
cell
Hepatic sinusoid
Hepatic sinusoid
Lumen of sinusoid
Lumen of sinusoid
Space of Disse
A
Figure 16-14A.
A representation of bile canaliculi and
hepatocytes.
The
bile canaliculi
are enlarged intercellular spaces, located
between two adjacent
hepatocytes
. They receive bile after
it is produced by hepatocytes and transport bile into the bile
ductules (see Fig. 16-11). The
hepatic sinusoid
wall is lined
by a thin, discontinuous endothelium. The hepatic sinusoids
carry glucose-rich and oxygen-rich blood to supply the hepato-
cytes through the
space of Disse
. This is the space between the
endothelial cells of the hepatic sinusoid and the hepatocytes.
Short microvilli of the hepatocytes extend into the space of
Disse; fat-storing cells called
Ito cells
or
hepatic stellate cells
are also located in the space. These cells contain many lipid
droplets or vacuoles in their cytoplasm, which store vitamin A.
Jaundice
is a condition in which the skin and sclera become
markedly yellow. It results from a high level of bilirubin in
the bloodstream. Bilirubin is normally removed from blood
by hepatocytes and then modi± ed and excreted into the
bile. When excess bilirubin is released into the bloodstream
(because of destruction of a large number of erythrocytes),
or the elimination of bilirubin is interrupted (as in liver dis-
ease or gallstones), jaundice can develop.
Hepatocyte #1
Hepatocyte #1
Hepatocyte #1
Tight
Tight
junction
junction
Tight
junction
SER
SER
SER
Tight
junction
Lumen of bile
canaliculus
Microvili
Mitochondria
Bile
canaliculus
Hepatocyte #2
Hepatocyte #2
Hepatocyte #2
Nucleus
Nucleus
Nucleus
SER
SER
SER
B
Figure 16-14B.
Bile canaliculus, hepatocytes.
EM,
3
6,380; inset (
color
), H&E,
3
618
This image shows the lumen of a
bile canaliculus
between two neighboring
hepatocytes
. A small lumen of the canaliculus is ±
lled
with the
microvilli
of the two hepatocytes. A small portion of the nucleus, belonging to one of the hepatocytes, is visible in the upper
right corner. The
SER
and mitochondria are shown in the cytoplasm of both hepatocytes.
Tight junctions (zonulae occludens)
seal
each side of the bile canaliculus, preventing initial bile from leaking out of the canaliculus. The
inset color photomicrograph
shows
the pink borders between neighboring hepatocytes. The positions of the
bile canaliculi
are indicated by
small circles
on the pink
borders. The bile canaliculi are the smallest channels that collect bile in the hepatocyte plates.
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