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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Tissue response of the biliary and digestive system of rabbits after MTBE infusion into the gallbladder.

We evaluated the tissue response of the biliary and digestive system after Methyl-tert-Butyl-Ether (MTBE) gallbladder infusion in 32 rabbits. After laparotomy, MTBE (5-11 ml) was infused into the gallbladder for eight hours. Animals were sacrificed after eight hours or after two months. Control animals received saline solution infusion into the gallbladder. Afterwards the gallbladder, the common bile duct, the liver, the pancreas and the duodenum were examined histologically. All animals receiving MTBE had different degrees of gallbladder necrosis, common bile duct necrosis and necrosis of intrahepatic bile ducts. After two months, scar formation and a hyperplastic cholecystitis were observed. Control animals did not have comparable tissue reactions; only small areas of necrosis in the gallbladder and the common bile duct occurred after eight hours. The gallbladder, common bile duct and liver remained unchanged in those animals which survived two months. Although the results of this animal study cannot be directly transferred to humans, the data suggest that MTBE should be used in gallstone therapy with caution, and that if it is used, a well-controlled follow-up of these patients is necessary.[1]


  1. Tissue response of the biliary and digestive system of rabbits after MTBE infusion into the gallbladder. Adam, G., Knuechel, R., Vorwerk, D., Held, C., Guenther, R.W. Investigative radiology. (1990) [Pubmed]
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