Enterohepatic circulation, is the excretion of a drug (or a metabolite of it) through the bile to be re-absorbed in the gut and sent again to the liver along the portal vein, so the excretion-reabsortion cycle can start again. Due to this process, some molecules not too toxic as such may become extremely hepatotoxic as they can reach unexpectedly high hepatic concentrations, or prolonged permanence in the entero-hepatic system. --212. ... A drug is any substance that can be used to modify a chemical process or processes in the body, for example to treat an illness, relieve a symptom, enhance a performance or ability, or to alter states of mind. ... A metabolite is the product of metabolism. ... Bile (or gall) is a bitter, greenish-yellow alkaline fluid secreted by the liver of most vertebrates. ... The liver is an organ in vertebrates, including humans. ... The portal vein is a major vein in the human body draining blood from the digestive system and its associated glands. ... Hepatotoxicity (from hepatic toxicity) is chemical-driven liver damage. ...
Intestinal bacteria are a crucial component of the enterohepaticcirculation in which metabolites that are conjugated in the liver and excreted in the bile are deconjugated in the intestine by bacterial enzymes, then absorbed across the mucosa and returned to the liver in the portal circulation.
Substances that undergo enterohepaticcirculation are metabolized in the liver, excreted in the bile, and passed into the intestinal lumen, where they are reabsorbed across the intestinal mucosa and returned to the liver via the portal circulation.
The enterohepaticcirculation generally involves compounds that are conjugated in the liver to a polar group such as glucuronic acid, sulfate, taurine, glycine, or glutathione.
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