Bile salts and cholesterol in the pathogenesis of target cells in obstructive jaundice


Free cholesterol is in rapid equilibrium between serum lipoproteins and red cells. The level of red cell cholesterol is influenced by bile salts, which shift the serum/cell partition of free cholesterol to the cell phase and which inhibit the cholesterol-esterifying mechanism. During incubation in normal serum possessing an active cholesterol-esterifying mechanism, red cells lose cholesterol and surface area and thereby become more spheroidal and less resistant to osmotic lysis. When exposed to serum from patients with obstructive jaundice or to normal serum with added bile salts, red cells accumulate cholesterol and increase their surface area, thereby acquiring a flattened shape and an increased resistance to osmotic lysis. The described gains and losses of red cell cholesterol and surface area do not involve metabolic injury and occur with no significant change in phospholipid content.

Documentos Relacionados