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Shaped like a cone, the liver is a dark reddish-brown organ that weighs about 3 pounds. The liver is located in the upper right-hand portion of the abdominal cavity, beneath the diaphragm, and on top of the stomach, right kidney, and intestines. The liver is a vital organ present in vertebrates and some other animals. It has a wide range of functions, including detoxification, protein synthesis, and production of biochemicals necessary for digestion. The liver is necessary for survival; there is currently no way to compensate for the absence of liver function in the long term, although new liver dialysis can be used in the short term. This organ plays a major role in metabolism and has a number of functions in the body, including glycogen storage, decomposition of red blood cells, plasma protein synthesis, hormone production, and detoxification. It lies below the diaphragm in the abdominal-pelvic region of the abdomen. It produces bile, an alkaline compound which aids in digestion via the emulsification of lipids. The liver's highly specialized tissues regulate a wide variety of high-volume biochemical reactions, including the synthesis and breakdown of small and complex molecules, many of which are necessary for normal vital functions Some things that the digestive system absorbs can build up in the blood and poison the tissues of the digestive tract or other organs. The liver is one of the main areas in which toxins and other things are broken down (a process called metabolism). This is another way in which the liver interacts with the digestive system---by metabolizing some of the nutrients and chemicals that it absorbs. For example, the liver plays a major role in the way the digestive system handles alcohol, by helping process and eliminate the chemical.