To examine the difference in hepatic ketogenesis during the regeneration process between cirrhotic and normal liver, arterial ketone bodies (acetoacetate and 3-hydroxybutyrate), free fatty acids and glucose concentrations and liver regeneration rate were determined at 0, 1, 2, 3 and 7 days after partial (70%) hepatectomy in thioacetamide-treated cirrhotic and normal rats. Hepatic ketone body production per unit liver was calculated by total ketone body concentration x blood volume/the remaining liver weight. The regeneration of cirrhotic liver was delayed compared with that of normal liver. In normal rats, total ketone body concentration increased on the 1st day both after hepatectomy and sham operation, and returned to the basal level thereafter. In cirrhotic rats after hepatectomy or sham operation, however, total ketone body concentration did not increase throughout the experimental period although free fatty acids level increased more greatly than in normal rats. Arterial ketone body ratio (acetoacetate/3-hydroxybutyrate) and glucose level decreased on the 1st day after hepatectomy, and recovered after the 2nd day in both cirrhotic and normal rats. Hepatic ketone body production after hepatectomy was significantly greater in normal rats than cirrhotic rats, and hepatectomy itself increased hepatic ketone body production in both rats on the 1st and 2nd postoperative days. In conclusion, hepatic ketone body production is impaired after hepatectomy in cirrhotic rats, which is possibly related to the delayed regeneration of cirrhotic liver.
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