Friday, January 01, 2010

How the Liver Detoxifies Harmful Substances?

Basically there are TWO major detoxification pathways inside the liver cells, which are called the Phase 1 and Phase 2 detoxification pathways.

Phase One - Detoxification Pathway
An example of the phase one pathway is the Cytochrome P-450 mixed function oxidase enzyme pathway. These enzymes reside on the membrane system of the liver cells (called Hepatocytes).

Human liver cells possess the genetic code for many isoenzymes of P-450 whose synthesis can be induced upon exposure to specific chemicals. This provides a mechanism of protection from a wide variety of toxic chemicals.

To put it simply, this pathway converts a toxic chemical into a less harmful chemical. This is achieved by various chemical reactions (such as oxidation, reduction and hydrolysis), and during this process free radicals are produced which, if excessive, can damage the liver cells. Antioxidants (such as vitamin C and E and natural carotenoids) reduce the damage caused by these free radicals. If antioxidants are lacking and toxin exposure is high, toxic chemicals become far more dangerous. Some may be converted from relatively harmless substances into potentially carcinogenic substances. Read more...

Ayurtox for Body Detoxification


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