Intravenously-injected hyaluronan (HA) is distributed into liver in which endothelium is a site of uptake and degradation of HA. The role and fate of HA have been widely investigated; however, effects of size and dose of HA on its metabolism have not been well documented yet. To investigate these effects, we prepared fluorescein-labeled HAs, according to the modified methods described by de Belder and Wik, which were enzymatically digested. The 90 kDa fluorescein-labeled HA gradually accumulated in a liver that was distributed into the endothelium; however, 10 kDa or less HA did not. Cell fractionation and flow cytometry further demonstrated the cell of uptake in the liver is an endothelial cell, both in vivo and in vitro. Interestingly, the largest uptake by liver endothelial cells in vitro was observed in 10 kDa HA, even though which did not accumulate in liver in vivo. These results suggest that the result observed with 10 kDa HA in vivo is due to the rapid excretion in urine. Thus, inhibiting of the digestion or suppressing of the urinary excretion would enhance uptake of HA in vivo. These ideas may help to deliver drugs or genes targeting to liver endothelium.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering