Tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β production by human fetal Kupffer cells

William H. Kutteh, William E. Rainey, Bruce Beutler, Bruce R. Carr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


This study describes the isolation and characterization of human fetal Kupffer cells. We demonstrated that these cells have the potential to respond to cytokines and lipopolysaccharide with an increased production of tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β. Kupffer cells were characterized by: (1) morphologic characteristics after adherence to plastic, (2) staining for α-naphthyl acetate esterase, (3) immunofluorescence with monoclonal antibodies, and (4) phagocytosis of latex beads. More than 90% of the adherent cells were identified as macrophages. Kupffer cells cultured with lipopolysaccharide were able to produce interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α in a time- and dose-dependent fashion and maximal secretion was observed with the use of 10 μg of lipopolysaccharide per milliliter within 8 hours of treatment. We have demonstrated mature functional activity of human fetal Kupffer cells at an early gestational age (13 to 19 weeks) and discussed the roles that these cells may play in development and protection of the fetus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-120
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1991


  • Kupffer cells
  • human fetus
  • interleukin-1β
  • tumor necrosis factor-α

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β production by human fetal Kupffer cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this