Objective: The authors determined whether ileojejunal transposition (IJT) stimulates the growth of the pancreas or the nontransposed segment of small intestine, and ascertained whether this trophic effect is altered by the location of transposed gut segment. Summary Background Data: Transposition of the ileum to the proximal small intestine stimulates a marked mucosal growth of the transposed ileal segment; the cellular mechanisms responsible for this adaptive hyperplasia are not known. Methods: The distal quarter of the small intestine (distal ileum) was transposed into the proximal (Type I), middle (Type II), or distal (Type III) portions of the remaining small intestine. On postoperative day 28, the pancreas and scraped mucosa from the segments of transposed ileum, proximal ileum, and duodenum were obtained, weighed, and examined for DNA and protein content. Results: All types of IJT increased mucosal weight and DNA content of the transposed ileum. Types I and II IJT produced a significant proliferation of the pancreas and mucosa of the duodenum and proximal ileum. The magnitude of proliferative increases was greatest in Type I IJT. Conclusions: Ileojejunal transposition appears to be an excellent model to examine the mechanisms by which intestinal epithelial cells proliferate in response to luminal nutrients or humoral factors.
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