The separation of fibroblast cells (L929 cells) and hepatocytes was investigated by using unmodified and surface-modified polyurethane (PU) foaming membranes (pore size of 12 μm) by the incorporation of various functional groups. L929 cells permeated more readily than hepatocytes, and very few populations of hepatocytes (<5%) permeated through the membranes. This result was thought to be due to the smaller cell size of the L929 cells (5-10 μm) relative to the hepatocytes (15-30 μm). The larger hepatocytes were thought to plug the pores of the membranes. A good cell separation between L929 cells and hepatocytes was achieved when the cell mixture permeated through the negatively charged PU membranes. The negatively charged membranes were thought to enhance the permeation of L929 cells because of the electrostatic repulsion between the membranes and negatively charged cells. On the other hand, the hepatocytes were unable to permeate through the membranes because of the sieve effect caused by their large cell size. The separation of hepatocytes isolated from mice at different ages was also accomplished by permeating the cell mixture through unmodified and surface-modified PU membranes.