In an in vivo 5-week initiation assay model, chemical hepatectomy by hepatotoxicant administration was utilized as a cell proliferation stimulus as an alternative to the two-thirds partial hepatectomy. The study investigated the effect of an intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of D-galactosamine (D-gal) for this purpose in a medium-term liver bioassay, with a further focus on cell proliferation kinetics and cytochrome P450 (CYP) expression. In experiment I, cell proliferation in rat liver after a single administration of D-gal (700 mg kg-1, i.p.) was analysed by the bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) labeling method, and CYP isozymes were quantified by immunoblotting. In experiment II, the induction of glutathione S-transferase placental form (GST-P) positive foci by 1,2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH) was evaluated in a modified in vivo 5-week initiation assay model. At 84 hours after single administration of D-gal (i.p.) the BrdU index was markedly elevated (27.5% ± 9.5%). Although CYP 2E1 and 1A2 apoprotein contents decreased transiently to less than 20% of the control level, subsequently they recovered to 60% and 40% of the control level, respectively, at 84 hours. Induction of GST-P positive foci in the group given DMH at 84 hours after a single administration of D-gal was significantly greater than in the control group, correlating with the kinetics of cell proliferation. In conclusion, the sensitivity of the present initiation assay using D-gal i.p. is high, so that D-gal i.p. can be considered an effective cell proliferation stimulus.
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