Cellular and molecular basis of liver regeneration

Sushant Bangru, Auinash Kalsotra

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Recent advances in genetics and genomics have reinvigorated the field of liver regeneration. It is now possible to combine lineage-tracing with genome-wide studies to genetically mark individual liver cells and their progenies and detect precise changes in their genome, transcriptome, and proteome under normal versus regenerative settings. The recent use of single-cell RNA sequencing methodologies in model organisms has, in some ways, transformed our understanding of the cellular and molecular biology of liver regeneration. Here, we review the latest strides in our knowledge of general principles that coordinate regeneration of the liver and reflect on some conflicting evidence and controversies surrounding this topic. We consider the prominent mechanisms that stimulate homeostasis-related vis-à-vis injury-driven regenerative responses, highlight the likely cellular sources/depots that reconstitute the liver following various injuries and discuss the extrinsic and intrinsic signals that direct liver cells to proliferate, de-differentiate, or trans-differentiate while the tissue recovers from acute or chronic damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)74-87
Number of pages14
JournalSeminars in Cell and Developmental Biology
StatePublished - Apr 2020


  • Hepatocellular plasticity
  • Lineage-tracing
  • Liver injury and repair
  • Single-cell RNA sequencing
  • Transcriptional and post-transcriptional gene regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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