Following surgical liver resection, a technique known as partial hepatectomy, which is often employed in the removal of benign or malignant tumors, a large reservoir of stem cell factor (SCF) in the liver drives increased hepatocyte proliferation in order to restore liver mass to normal. Lisa Colletti and colleagues from the University of Michigan report their findings in the November 3 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
Following most cases of partial hepatectomy the remnant liver regenerates until normal hepatic mass is reestablished. However the specific factors involved in this complex regulatory phenomenon remain to be completely defined.
Colletti and colleagues demonstrate that hepatic SCF levels change dramatically following partial hepatectomy in mice, and that SCF blockade, either by administration of anti-SCF antibodies or by using genetically altered, SCF-deficient mice, inhibits hepatocyte proliferation. Furthermore, SCF administration in SCF-deficient mice was shown to restore hepatocyte proliferation to normal and this effect occurs via an IL-6–mediated pathway.
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Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
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Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
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