The liver is a fairly unique organ in that it has the ability to regenerate itself even if parts of it are removed/damaged. It is a well known fact that continual alcohol abuse damages the liver and can lead to many liver problems.

Why is this the case? If alcohol does damage the liver, why can it not simply regenerate it's damaged cells from healthy cells?

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    $\begingroup$ I'd suggest starting your research by reading about cirrhosis, and following the links as you are interested. $\endgroup$
    – MattDMo
    Jul 17, 2016 at 20:54
  • $\begingroup$ I know what cirrhosis is. I should have been more specific. I meant what exactly is the mechanism which causes cirrhosis in the first place? What is the reason the liver cannot recover from cirrhosis when it does happen? $\endgroup$
    – noobcoder
    Jul 18, 2016 at 0:03
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    $\begingroup$ A healthy hepatic tissue can regenerate: this is an epithelial tissue. That is, the epithelial tissue in the liver can regenerate. Cytotoxic drugs as alcohol lead to steatosis and cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is the substitution of epithelial tissue by connective tissue. This connective tissue not only can't regenerate as, the most important, doesn't perform hepatic functions. $\endgroup$
    – user24284
    Jul 18, 2016 at 6:04
  • $\begingroup$ ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4112892 $\endgroup$ Jul 19, 2016 at 19:22


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