Original article| Volume 102, ISSUE 5, P813-827, November 1983

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Effect of abdominal irradiation on the kinetic parameters of intestinal uptake of glucose, galactose, leucine, and gly-leucine in the rat

  • A.B.R. Thomson
    Reprint requests: A. B. R. Thomson, Division of Gastroenterology, 8-104 Clinical Sciences Building, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2G3.
    From the Departments of Physiology, Medicine, and Laboratory Medicine, University of Alberta and University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, Alta., Canada
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  • C.I. Cheeseman
    From the Departments of Physiology, Medicine, and Laboratory Medicine, University of Alberta and University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, Alta., Canada
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  • K. Walker
    From the Departments of Physiology, Medicine, and Laboratory Medicine, University of Alberta and University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, Alta., Canada
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      A previously validated in vitro technique was used to determine the effect of abdominal irradiation on the intestinal uptake (Jd) of glucose, galactose, leucine, and gly-leucine in the rat. Three days after 600 rads from a cesium-137 source, there was a rise in the jejunal maximal transport rate (Jdm) and the apparent Michaelis constant (Math Eq) but a decline in the apparent passive permeability coefficient (Math Eq) for glucose. Thereafter, there was a progressive decline in Math Eq and dm but a rise in Math Eq for glucose uptake. In the ileum, irradiation was associated with an increased Math Eq and Jdm and a decreased Math Eq. Fourteen days after 600 rads, Jd of leucine into the jejunum was unchanged but Jd of leucine into the ileum was increased because of a higher Math Eq. The Jd of leucine from gly-leucine was greater than from leucine alone. The Jd of 0.5 to 10 mM gly-leucine into the jejunum was increased after 600 rads, whereas the greater Jd of gly-leucine into the ileum after irradiation was most marked at 40 mM. Fourteen days after 300 rads, the Jd of glucose and galactose was increased into the ileum, whereas the Jd of leucine was decreased and the Jd of these probes into the jejunum and colon was unchanged; 14 days after 900 rads, the Jd of glucose and galactose was unchanged in each site and the Jd of leucine was reduced in the ileum but not the jejunum or colon. The effective resistance of the intestinal unstirred water layer (UWL) was estimated from the Jd of lauryl alcohol. Resistance of UWL was lowest in the ileum, highest in the colon, and of intermediate value in the jejunum; 14 days after 600 rads, UWL was reduced in the colon when the bulk phase was stirred, and UWL was reduced in the jejunum, ileum, and colon when the bulk phase was unstirred. In summary, (1) irradiation modifies the kinetic parameters of the intestinal uptake of glucose, galactose, leucine, and gly-leucine and this effect depends on the probe, the intestinal site, the dose of irradiation, and the time after exposure; (2) irradiation lowers the effective resistance of the UWL; and (3) 14 days after abdominal irradiation, functional changes persist in the absence of associated abnormalities in the villus structure. It is proposed that the intestinal adaptive response to abdominal irradiation involves a mechanism that permits qualitatively and quantitatively dissimilar responses for the various hexose and amino acid carriers. The abnormalities in ileal uptake of these probes 14 days after 300 rads suggest that this site is particularly susceptible to the effects of low-dose irradiation.
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