Liver disease is linked to a decreased capacity of hepatocytes to divide. In addition, cellular metabolism is important for tissue homeostasis and regeneration. Since metabolic changes are a hallmark of liver disease, we investigated the connections between metabolism and cell division. We determined global metabolic changes at different stages of liver regeneration using a combination of integrated transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses with advanced functional redox in vivo imaging. Our data indicate that blocking hepatocyte division during regeneration leads to mitochondrial dysfunction and downregulation of oxidative pathways. This resulted in an increased redox ratio and hyperactivity of alanine transaminase allowing the production of alanine and α-ketoglutarate from pyruvate when mitochondrial functions are impaired. Our data suggests that during liver regeneration, cell division leads to hepatic metabolic remodeling. Moreover, we demonstrate that hepatocytes are equipped with a flexible metabolic machinery able to adapt dynamically to changes during tissue regeneration.
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