The study concerns the kinetics of cellular proliferation in the different cell populations of the normal and regenerating rat liver. A detailed analysis is presented, which includes techniques of in vivo labeling of DNA with tritiated thymidine and high-resolution radioautography, of the temporal and spatial patterns of DNA synthesis and cell division in the parenchymal cells, littoral cells, bile duct epithelium, and other cellular components in the liver during the first 64 hr of regeneration after partial hepatectomy. The analysis of cell population kinetics indicates that (a) the rate of entry of parenchymal cells into synthesis, after an initial burst of proliferative activity, was an orderly progression at 3–4%/hr; (b) most cells divided once and a few twice, a large proportion of the cell deficit being replaced by 72 hr after the onset of proliferation; (c) Ts was ∼8.0 hr; Tgg2+m/2, 3.0 hr; and M, ∼1.0 hr. Littoral cell proliferation began about 24 hr after the onset of parenchymal cell proliferation; the rate of entry of littoral cells into synthesis was greater than 4%/hr. Interlobular bile duct cell proliferation lagged well behind the parenchymal and littoral cell populations both in time and extent of proliferation.

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