The human HSC line, LX‐2, was purchased from Merck. The cells were washed, suspended in Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium (DMEM) (Nacalai tesque) supplemented with 10% foetal bovine serum (FBS) (Gibco) and antibiotics (1% penicillin and streptomycin), plated on 24‐well plastic culture dishes and incubated at 37°C in a 5% CO2 air environment. 26 LX‐2 cells have been authenticated using Short Tandem Repeat profiling within the last 3 years. Mycoplasma testing was performed with MycoProbe® Mycoplasma Detection Kit (R&D Systems, Inc) according to the manufacturer's protocol. For some assays, cells were incubated with recombinant transforming growth factor‐β1 (TGF‐β1) (Sigma‐Aldrich), or PDGF‐BB (Sigma‐Aldrich) or basic FGF (bFGF) (R&D Systems) with or without different concentrations of lenvatinib (ChemScene).

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