Lysates of the protozoan parasite Entamoeba histolytica altered active electrolyte transport when present on the serosal surface of rabbit ileum and rat colon. The lysate-induced effects on electrolyte transport were similar to those caused by serotonin, and were blocked by bufotenine, an analog known to inhibit the action of serotonin. The transport effects were partially inhibited by antibody to serotonin. The amebic lysates were shown to contain serotonin by radioimmunoassay, high-performance liquid chromatography, and thin-layer chromatography. These results suggest that the serotonin present in Entamoeba histolytica may be important in the diarrhea seen in amebiasis.
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