Fatty liver steatosis

This is the accumulation of triglycerides in hepatocytes and there are a number of mechanisms underlying this response as is discussed below (see 'Mechanisms of toxicity'). The liver has an important role in lipid metabolism, and triglyceride synthesis occurs particularly in zone 3. Consequently, fatty liver is a common response to toxicity, often the result of interference with protein synthesis, and may be the only response as after exposure to hydrazine, ethionine and tetracycline, or it may occur in combination with necrosis as with carbon tetrachloride. It is normally

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a reversible response which does not usually lead to cell death, although it can be very serious as is the case with tetracycline-induced fatty liver in humans. Repeated exposure to compounds which cause fatty liver, such as alcohol, may lead to cirrhosis.

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