There is general consensus that enteroendocrine cells, EEC, containing the enteric hormone cholecystokinin (CCK) are confined to the small intestine and predominate in the duodenum and jejunum. Contrary to this, EEC that express the gene for CCK have been isolated from the large intestine of the mouse and there is evidence for EEC that contain CCK-like immunoreactivity in the mouse colon. However, the human and rat colons do not contain CCK cells. In the current study, we use immunohistochemistry to investigate CCK peptide presence in endocrine cells, PCR to identify cck transcripts and chromatography to identify CCK peptide forms in the mouse small and large intestine. The colocalisation of CCK and 5-HT, hormones that have been hypothesised to derive from cells of different lineages, was also investigated. CCK immunoreactivity was found in EEC throughout the mouse small and large intestine but positive cells were rare in the rectum. Immunoreactive EEC were as common in the caecum and proximal colon as they were in the duodenum and jejunum. CCK gene transcripts were found in the mucosa throughout the intestine but mRNA for gastrin, a hormone that can bind some anti-CCK antibodies, was only found in the stomach and duodenum. Characterisation of CCK peptides of the colon by extraction, chromatographic separation and radioimmunoassay revealed bioactive amidated and sulphated forms, including CCK-8 and CCK-33. Moreover, CCK-containing EEC in the large intestine bound antibodies that target the biologically active sulfated form. Colocalisation of CCK and 5-HT occurred in a proportion of EEC throughout the small intestine and in the caecum but these hormones were not colocalised in the colon, where there was CCK and PYY colocalisation. It is concluded that authentic, biologically active, CCK occurs in EEC of the mouse large intestine.
Cell and Tissue Research – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 17, 2017
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