Cell proliferation in the small intestine and colon of intravenously fed rats: effects of urogastrone-epidermal growth factor

Cell Prolif. 1992 Sep;25(5):393-404. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2184.1992.tb01449.x.


There is marked intestinal hypoplasia in the intestine of intravenously fed (TPN) rats. Recombinant urogastrone-epidermal growth factor (URO-EGF) reversed these changes by significantly increasing the length of the intestinal crypts. Crypt diameter, however, was not affected to the same extent. Few differences in labelling indices were seen between the orally fed and TPN groups, however, this was the consequence of the concomitant changes in crypt population. The number of mitoses and labelled cells per crypt, and thus the crypt cell production rates, were significantly decreased in the TPN group when compared to the orally fed. URO-EGF significantly increased both proliferative indices and the number of dividing cells per crypt. Crypt cell production in the small intestine was restored to those levels seen in the orally fed rats, moreover, labelling per crypt in the colon was increased to more than twice that of orally fed rats. The location of the mean labelling position and the half maximum labelling position followed the changes in crypt length in the small intestine, but to a lesser extent; thus the growth fraction was significantly increased in the TPN rats in comparison with the orally fed and the URO-EGF treated groups. Similar changes in these positions were seen in the colon, but the growth fraction was much reduced in the URO-EGF treated rats, as a consequence of the large increase in crypt length without a concomitant alteration in label distribution.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Cell Count / drug effects
  • Cell Division / drug effects
  • Colon / cytology*
  • Colon / drug effects
  • Colon / physiology
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / administration & dosage
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / pharmacology*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / cytology
  • Intestinal Mucosa / drug effects
  • Intestine, Small / cytology*
  • Intestine, Small / drug effects
  • Intestine, Small / physiology
  • Male
  • Mitotic Index / drug effects
  • Parenteral Nutrition, Total*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Epidermal Growth Factor