Gut apical Na(+)-glucose cotransporter 1 (SGLT1) activity is high at the birth and during suckling, thus contributing substantially to neonatal glucose homeostasis. We hypothesize that neonates possess high SGLT1 maximal activity by expressing apical SGLT1 protein along the intestinal crypt-villus axis via unique control mechanisms. Kinetics of SGLT1 activity in apical membrane vesicles, prepared from epithelial cells sequentially isolated along the jejunal crypt-villus axis from neonatal piglets by the distended intestinal sac method, were measured. High levels of maximal SGLT1 uptake activity were shown to exist along the jejunal crypt-villus axis in the piglets. Real-time RT-PCR analyses showed that SGLT1 mRNA abundance was lower (P < 0.05) by 30-35% in crypt cells than in villus cells. There were no significant differences in SGLT1 protein abundances on the jejunal apical membrane among upper villus, middle villus, and crypt cells, consistent with the immunohistochemical staining pattern. Higher abundances (P < 0.05) of total eukaryotic initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) protein and eIE4E-binding protein 1 γ-isoform in contrast to a lower (P < 0.05) abundance of phosphorylated (Pi) eukaryotic elongation factor 2 (eEF2) protein and the eEF2-Pi to total eEF2 abundance ratio suggest higher global protein translational efficiency in the crypt cells than in the upper villus cells. In conclusion, neonates have high intestinal apical SGLT1 uptake activity by abundantly expressing SGLT1 protein in the epithelia and on the apical membrane along the entire crypt-villus axis in association with enhanced protein translational control mechanisms in the crypt cells.