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Transplantation. 1995 Mar 15;59(5):755-61.

Insulin-like growth factor-I improves mucosal structure and function in transplanted rat small intestine.

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Department of Surgery, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.


The transplanted small intestine develops significant mucosal atrophy, impaired nutrient and water absorption, and increased bacterial translocation to mesenteric lymph nodes in rats maintained on elemental diets or total parenteral nutrition. This study determined the effects of administration of an peptide growth factor (insulin-like growth factor-I[IGF-I]) on the mucosal structure and barrier function of rat small bowel isografts. Thirty-six adult Lewis rats underwent either resection of the distal 60% of the small bowel and proximal colon followed by a 40-cm orthotopic jejunal isograft or proximal small bowel transection and distal small bowel resection to leave an analogous length of small intestine in control animals. All rats received an isocaloric, isonitrogenous, polymeric diet (200 kcal/kg/day, 2 gN/kg/day) by gastrostomy and were infused with either IGF-I (2.4 mg/kg/day) or vehicle by osmotic pumps subcutaneously. After 10 days of treatment, jejunal crypt cell production, mucosal morphometric indices, glucose and water absorption, body weight, and bacterial translocation to mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN) were measured. Jejunal mRNA content for IGF-I, IGF-I receptor, and IGF-binding proteins 3 and 4 (IGFBP-3,4) were determined by Northern blotting. Crypt cell production, villus height, crypt depth, and villus surface area were significantly increased in control and transplanted jejunum of rats infused with IGF-I when compared to animals given vehicle alone. Additionally, jejunal glucose absorption and water absorption were significantly improved in both IGF-I groups when compared with their respective vehicle controls. IGF-I infusion increased body weight in transplanted and control animals and markedly reduced bacterial translocation to MLN after small bowel transplantation. Jejunal levels of IGF-I mRNA were significantly increased in transplanted animals when compared to transected controls. IGF-I treatment significantly increased IGFBP-3 tissue mRNA levels in both transected and transplanted animals. These results demonstrate that IGF-I administration, after small bowel transplantation, improves mucosal structure and absorptive function and reduces bacterial translocation to MLN. IGF-I may have important effects in transplanted small bowel both as an endogenous and administered growth factor.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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