Objective: Previously we reported on the abundant existence of hepatocyte growth factor in amniotic fluid. This study was conducted to clarify the effects of hepatocyte growth factor in amniotic fluid on fetal intestinal epithelial cells.
Study design: Amniotic fluid samples were obtained from 22 cases at various gestational ages. The effects of amniotic fluid and recombinant human hepatocyte growth factor on proliferation, migration, and morphogenesis of intestine 407 cells (a cell line derived from fetal intestinal epithelial cells) were investigated.
Results: The mobility of intestine 407 cells was stimulated by amniotic fluid in proportion to the concentration of hepatocyte growth factor in amniotic fluid with the same effect observed with recombinant human hepatocyte growth factor. This activity was neutralized by addition of antihuman hepatocyte growth factor antibody. Neither increased deoxyribonucleic acid synthesis nor morphogenesis in response to amniotic fluid was identified under the conditions used.
Conclusion: Amniotic fluid stimulates intestinal epithelial cell migration by way of hepatocyte growth factor in amniotic fluid during development of the fetal intestine.