Intestinal glucoamylase and other disaccharidases in children with protracted diarrhoea

V. Khoshoo, M. K. Bhan, R. Jain, S. Jayashree, N. Bhandari, S. Sazawal, M. Mathur

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4 Scopus citations


Brush border lactase, sucrase and glucoamylase activities were assessed in jejunal mucosal biopsy specimens from 34 children (median age 11 months; range 1.5 - 38) having protracted diarrhoea with failure to thrive and 8 well nourished children with normal jejunal mucosal histology (median age 10.2 months; range 2-37). All enzymes showed progressive decrease in activity which was directly in relation to increasing degree of mucosal injury (P<0.002). Lactase was significantly reduced even in patients with protracted diarrhoea and normal mucosa (P<0.05). Glucoamylase and sucrase were significantly reduced only in the presence of mucosal injury (P<0.01). Our data suggest that most children with protracted diarrhoea may not tolerate lactose containing feeds and may need lactose-free diets preferably based on starch. A small number of children with protracted diarrhoea, who have severe mucosal injury may not be able to handle even starch and may require diets based on short chain glucose polymers. The findings of this study, need to be corroborated with well-controlled metabolic balance studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-4
Number of pages4
JournalIndian Journal of Medical Research - Section B Biomedical Research Other Than Infectious Diseases
Issue numberJAN.
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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