Many potentially toxic substances enter the body via the gastrointestinal tract. As the blood supply from the gastrointestinal tract (through the portal vein) drains into the liver, the liver comes into contact with them, and this exposure often is at a higher concentration than that received by other tissues. The liver is essential for the metabolic disposal of virtually all xenobiotics. This process is achieved mostly without injury to the liver itself or to other organs.
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