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Yale J Biol Med. 1992 Jan-Feb;65(1):1-15.

Plasma and tissue alterations of peptide YY and enteroglucagon in rats after colectomy.

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Department of Surgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut.


Peptide YY (PYY) and enteroglucagon are produced by endocrine cells of the colonic mucosa. PYY inhibits upper gastrointestinal motility, and enteroglucagon is trophic for small bowel mucosa. Adaptive increase in the production and release of these peptides may improve functional results after colorectal resections. We hypothesized that if segments of the colon were resected, then production and release of PYY and enteroglucagon would increase in the remaining segments of bowel. Animals which underwent colonic transections and partial resections had transient elevations of PYY up to 250 +/- 80 pmol/L, which dropped to control group levels in the second week following surgery. Rats with an abdominal colectomy had significantly greater PYY levels than all other groups from the third (208 +/- 30 pmol/L) to the thirty-eighth (100 +/- 16 pmol/L) week of the study. Circulating levels of enteroglucagon were elevated to 156 +/- 35 pmol/L in rats with a right hemicolectomy during the first week following surgery. Enteroglucagon levels did not significantly vary in the other groups studied. Both tissue PYY (413 +/- 33 pmol/gram) and tissue enteroglucagon (171 +/- 17 pmol/gram) were significantly elevated in the rectums of the rats with an abdominal colectomy, as compared to all other groups. The elevated tissue levels may thus account for the ability to maintain elevated plasma PYY. Double immunogold labeling of endocrine cells in the colorectal tissue for PYY and enteroglucagon revealed both peptides within the same endocrine cells and secretory granules. These studies support the hypothesis that circulating levels of PYY are elevated after major colonic resections and suggest that L-type endocrine cells may participate in adaptive responses which improve intestinal function following colonic surgery.

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