Sinusoids and Hepatocytes – Hepatic Lobule (Nursing)

by Rhonda Lawes, PhD, RN

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    00:00 Whoa, we're back to that drawing because I want to remind you, look, there is the sinusoid.

    00:06 Right? We've got those plates of hepatocytes, those little tiny cells. Those are the flesh-shaped boxes that you see in the drawing, and the sinusoids are right amongst them. So, that's what we're discussing when we talk about sinusoids. Let's break them down a little bit. We've introduced you to them. Now, let's really dig down deep in the sinusoids. So, we've taken now a super close-up shot. See, there're those same shaped cells, the hepatocytes. Then, we've got the space of Disse, you don't really worry about that right now, but there's just a little space there. Then, you have the endothelial cells. You see those lined up? There is the actual sinusoid space. So, it's in between the hepatocytes. You've got a little bit of space of Disse there, you've got endothelial cells, and then you have the sinusoidal space. Now, they're lined with endothelial cells, and they've got some large gaps in between. Remember what that picture looked like, and they're flanked on both sides by the hepatocytes. So, when we're talking about this special type of capillary in the liver and we're calling it the sinusoids, think back to that giant picture. Remember those cells? Yeah, the sinusoidal spaces are in between those cells called the hepatocytes. Now, let's take a look at those hepatocytes and how they form cords. Now you see in the background there, we have 1 lobule and you see the 6 portal triads around each side. Now, we've taken a pie-shaped wedge out of that and blown it up.

    01:38 So you can see we've got just one of the 6 portal triads there. So you see the hepatic artery, the hepatic vein, and the bile duct. Now in the center, you've got the central vein, but let's talk about those hepatocytes and how they interact with the sinusoids. See, the hepatocytes are the microscopic working units of the liver and there are tons of them in each of the lobules.

    02:03 Now, in each lobule, we've got all these hepatocytes, but they're arranged into hepatic cords.

    02:09 There's a reason for that. They're arranged in these cords and they're separated by the adjacent sinusoids. I'm smiling because I know you know what those sinusoids are. They're a special type of capillary that's located in the liver. Now, each one of those cords has 2 rows of hepatocytes that are bathed in that venous and arterial blood. Remember right from that portal triad. So, each one of the cords has 2 rows of hepatocytes that are bathed by venous and arterial blood. Think about those leaky capillaries where they have the big spaces in between them known as the sinusoids.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Sinusoids and Hepatocytes – Hepatic Lobule (Nursing) by Rhonda Lawes, PhD, RN is from the course Liver Functions and Dysfunctions (Nursing).

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Hepatocytes are arranged in cords with adjacent sinusoid capillaries.
    2. Hepatocytes contain cords of lobules and sinusoids.
    3. Hepatocytes are lined with endothelial cells.
    4. Hepatocytes have a disorganized arrangement separated by veins.
    5. Hepatocytes are microscopic units within the liver.

    Author of lecture Sinusoids and Hepatocytes – Hepatic Lobule (Nursing)

     Rhonda Lawes, PhD, RN

    Rhonda Lawes, PhD, RN

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