Send to

Choose Destination
Gastroenterology. 1990 Apr;98(4):873-80.

Role of prostaglandins and calcium in the effects of Entamoeba histolytica on colonic electrolyte transport.

Author information

Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.


We have previously shown that Entamoeba histolytica lysates contain the neurohormones serotonin, neurotensin, immunoreactive substance P, and probably acetylcholine, and that amebic lysates inhibit sodium and chloride absorption and stimulate chloride secretion in the rat descending colon as measured by the Ussing chamber-voltage clamp technique. We now demonstrate that these transport effects have both calcium-dependent and calcium-independent components. In addition, arachidonic acid metabolites of the cyclooxygenase pathway are probably involved in the Entamoeba histolytica-induced changes in colonic transport that are not dependent on Ca++ entry. Prostaglandin E2 (10(-5) M), indomethacin (10(-6) M), piroxicam (5 x 10(-5) M), and mepacrine (10(-4) M) partially inhibited the amebic lysate effect on active transport in the rat descending colon. In addition, verapamil (10(-4) M) partially inhibited the effect of amebic lysates. The effect of verapamil was additive with that of indomethacin, totally blocking the effect of amebic lysate on short-circuit current. However, amebic lysates do not contain prostaglandin E2 as measured by sensitive radioimmunoassay. Amebic lysates stimulated prostaglandin E2 release from rat colonic mucosal strips. Amebic lysate significantly increased colonic cyclic adenosine monophosphate content. Piroxicam inhibited the lysate-induced increase in colonic cyclic adenosine monophosphate content. These results indicate that although amebic lysate does not contain prostaglandin E2, it caused arachidonic acid metabolites to be produced by the cyclooxygenase pathway, and these are probably involved in the Entamoeba histolytica-induced changes in colonic transport. Neurohormones in Entamoeba histolytica may act directly on colonic tissue to stimulate intestinal secretion, probably via a Ca+(+)-dependent mechanism that is blockable by verapamil, or indirectly via stimulation of prostaglandin E2 generation and release from the rat colon via a cyclic adenosine monophosphate-dependent mechanism. These effects appear separate. The cyclic adenosine monophosphate-dependent secretion is the predominant mechanism in this model of colonic amebic diarrhea.

Comment in

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center