Influence of alcohol treatment on lipid accumulation in the livers of conventional and germ-free mice. Germ-free mice that underwent alcohol treatment did not show any lipids in their livers at 9 hours after the high dose of alcohol was administered on day 7 compared with the conventional mice, which showed an increase in their liver lipid content (A). Gut permeability was also evaluated by FITC-dextran fluorescence in the serum (B). Liver damage score (C). Representative pictures of the livers of the control and alcohol-fed (+ethanol), conventional (CV), and germ-free (GF) mice. Control CV and GF mice: absence of lesions; CV mice + ethanol: diffusely distributed lipid microvacuoles; GF mice + ethanol: focal and discrete hepatic microvacuoles (D). Hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining (200X). The results are the mean ± SEM (n = 5-7/group). This experiment is representative of at least three experiments. ##p < 0.01, conventional vs. conventional treated with alcohol.