In order to investigate the effect of continuous treatment with immunosuppressive doses of azathioprine and prednisone on rat liver regeneration, an experiment was carried out, in which the regeneration of the liver remnant following 35% partial hepatectomy was measured over a month. Prothrombin activity and bromsulphalein retention were used as parameters to establish regeneration on the basis of the function of the liver. A liver weight restoration index was calculated from the weight of the wet and dry liver. Cell counts were made on histological preparations to detect any possible changes in cell proliferation in the regenerating liver. Most of the parameters indicated that after azathioprine treatment liver regeneration is only slightly inferior to that in the untreated group; the effect of prednisone was much more prominent. The same effect but slightly less was seen in the group where azathioprine and prednisone were given together in lower doses. Both azathioprine and prednisone did not appear to influence the pattern of cell proliferation after partial hepatectomy, but the onset of regeneration was retarded. It was concluded that prednisone might be especially harmful in a system where regeneration of organs is involved.

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