Epithelial cell proliferation and uptake of radiolabeled urogastrone in the intestinal tissues following abdominal irradiation in the mouse

S. K. Saxena, Jon S Thompson, D. A. Crouse, John G Sharp

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7 Scopus citations


We have evaluated the rate of crypt cell production and uptake of radiolabeled recombinant human urogastrone (125I rhUG) in the intestinal tissues of the mouse at 3, 5, 7, 9, and 12 days following irradiation of the abdomen with 9 Gy. At autopsy, the animals were injected intraperitoneally with 1 μg/g body weight of the metaphase arrest agent, vincristine sulfate, and 25 μCi of 125I-rhUG (specific activity 1.7 μCi/μg) to quantify the rate of crypt cell production and uptake of radiolabeled urogastrone, respectively. The results indicated that the rate of crypt cell production was increased significantly in the irradiated animals compared to the unirradiated animals and showed a peak on the 3rd and 5th postirradiation days in small intestine and colon, respectively. The uptake of 125I-rhUG was increased significantly on the 3rd postirradiation day in the intestinal tissues but showed a bimodal pattern with peaks on the 3rd and 9th postirradiation days. These results suggest that there may be a close association between epithelial cell proliferation and uptake of 125I-rhUG, particularly in the early part of recovery of intestinal mucosa following irradiation. However, these data do not discriminate whether the increased uptake of 125I-rhUG is the cause or the effect of proliferation induced by an irradiation stimulus. Further analysis also revealed that there was no relationship between crypt depth and 125I-rhUG uptake. However, crypt depth was inversely correlated with villus height in the proximal small intestine but not in the ileum. Villus height was correlated inversely with 125I-rhUG uptake in the ileum and jejunum but not the duodenum. The rate of crypt cell production was strongly correlated with crypt depth throughout the intestine and inversely correlated with villus height. This suggests that villus-to-crypt inhibitory feedback may be a primary regulator of cellular proliferation in the crypts and the association of 125I-rhUG uptake with proliferation indirectly reflects this interaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-42
Number of pages6
JournalRadiation Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1991


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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