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Am J Pathol. 1995 Oct;147(4):1123-32.

Differential expression of laminin chains and their integrin receptors in human gastric mucosa.

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Department of Anatomy, University of Helsinki, Finland.


The proliferating cells of the gastric mucosa are found among the pit and mucous neck cells. These cells migrate upward to renew the surface epithelium and downward to restitute the glandular cells. As the epithelial basement membranes (BMs) function as substrate for cell adhesion and migration as well as signals for their differentiation, we studied, by indirect immunofluorescence microscopy, the distribution of different laminin chains and their integrin receptors in adult human stomach. The immunoreactivity for laminin alpha 2 chain localized to the BMs of glands and the lower parts of the gastric pits whereas the laminin alpha 3 chain (laminin-5/kalinin) immunoreactivity was strictly confined to BMs underneath the surface epithelium and the upper parts of the pits. Proliferating mucosal epithelial cells, identified by Ki-67 antibodies, were confined to the areas containing both alpha 2 and alpha 3 laminin chains. The alpha 1, beta 1, and gamma 1 laminin chains were found in all BMs of the mucosa whereas the beta 2 chain was prominent in mucosal blood vessels and also detectable in some glands. Among the laminin integrin receptors, the alpha 3 and beta 4 subunits were seen to be expressed in cells along the BMs with the alpha 3 laminin chain. The alpha 6 integrin, on the other hand, was seen in all gastric epithelia. The present results demonstrate that in the adult human stomach laminin alpha 2 and alpha 3 chains show zonal distribution in BM underlying gastric mucosal epithelium whereas other laminin chains show a more general distribution.

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