Experimental ulceration leads to sequential expression of spasmolytic polypeptide, intestinal trefoil factor, epidermal growth factor and transforming growth factor alpha mRNAs in rat stomach

J Pathol. 1995 Apr;175(4):405-14. doi: 10.1002/path.1711750408.


A model of gastric ulceration in the rat has been used to determine the expression of four messenger RNAs (mRNAs) encoding peptides considered to play active parts in the healing response. The trefoil peptides, rat spasmolytic polypeptide (rSP) and rat intestinal trefoil factor (rITF), along with epidermal growth factor (EGF) and transforming growth factor alpha (TGF alpha) were the molecules studied. Ulceration was caused under anaesthesia by brief application of a liquid nitrogen-filled cryoprobe to the gastric serosal surface and RNA expression was monitored over the next 10 days. Each mRNA was quantified by ribonuclease protection assay, and mRNAs encoding rSP and rITF were localized within tissue sections by hybridization in situ with 35S antisense riboprobes. Ulceration induced the very rapid expression of first rSP and then rITF mRNA, whereas the mRNAs encoding EGF and TGF alpha increased at later times, with maxima recorded at 3 and 6 days, respectively. Hybridization in situ detected extensive rSP mRNA expression in the regenerative epithelia. The pronounced, but temporally different patterns of mRNA induction after ulceration suggest that the trefoil peptides may fulfil different and more immediate roles than the more 'traditional' healing proteins EGF and TGF alpha.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cold Temperature
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / biosynthesis
  • Gastric Mucosa / metabolism*
  • Gastric Mucosa / pathology
  • Gene Expression
  • Growth Substances / biosynthesis*
  • Growth Substances / genetics
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Male
  • Mucins*
  • Muscle Proteins*
  • Neuropeptides*
  • Peptide Biosynthesis
  • Peptides*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Stomach Ulcer / genetics
  • Stomach Ulcer / metabolism*
  • Stomach Ulcer / pathology
  • Transforming Growth Factor alpha / biosynthesis
  • Trefoil Factor-2
  • Trefoil Factor-3
  • Wound Healing / physiology*


  • Growth Substances
  • Mucins
  • Muscle Proteins
  • Neuropeptides
  • Peptides
  • RNA, Messenger
  • TFF3 protein, rat
  • Tff2 protein, rat
  • Transforming Growth Factor alpha
  • Trefoil Factor-2
  • Trefoil Factor-3
  • Epidermal Growth Factor