Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 375, Issue 2, pp 359–369 | Cite as

Cellular and sub-cellular localisation of oxyntomodulin-like immunoreactivity in enteroendocrine cells of human, mouse, pig and rat

  • Linda J. FothergillEmail author
  • Mitchell T. Ringuet
  • Efstathia Sioras
  • Billie Hunne
  • Therese E. Fazio Coles
  • Patricia R. Martins
  • John B. Furness
Regular Article


We use a monoclonal antibody against the C-terminal of oxyntomodulin (OXM) to investigate enteroendocrine cells (EEC) in mouse, rat, human and pig. This antibody has cross-reactivity with the OXM precursor, glicentin (Gli) but does not recognise glucagon. The antibody stained EEC in the jejunum and colon of each species. We compared OXM/Gli immunoreactivity with that revealed by antibodies against structurally related peptides, GLP-1 and glucagon and against GIP and PYY that are predicted to be in some EEC that express OXM/Gli. We used super-resolution to locate immunoreactive vesicles. In the pancreas, OXM/Gli was in glucagon cells but was located in separate storage vesicles to glucagon. In jejunal EEC, OXM/Gli and GIP were in many of the same cells but often in separate vesicles, whereas PYY and OXM/Gli were commonly colocalised in the same storage vesicles of colonic EEC. When binding of anti-GLP-1 to the structurally related GIP was removed by absorption with GIP peptide, GLP-1 and OXM/Gli immunoreactivities were contained in the same population of EEC in the intestine. We conclude that anti-OXM/Gli is a more reliable marker than anti-GLP-1 for EEC expressing preproglucagon products. Storage vesicles that were immunoreactive for OXM/Gli were almost always immunoreactive for GLP-1. OXM concentrations, measured by ELISA, were highest in the distal ileum and colon. Lesser concentrations were found in more proximal parts of small intestine and pancreas. Very little was in the stomach. In EEC containing GIP and OXM/Gli, these hormones are packaged in different secretory vesicles. Separate packaging also occurred for OXM and glucagon, whereas OXM/Gli and PYY and OXM/Gli and GLP-1 were commonly contained together in secretory vesicles.


Gut hormones Vesicular stores Human Oxyntomodulin intestine Pancreas 



Insulin and glucagon antibodies were kindly provided by Prof Len Harrison. Confocal imaging was performed at the Biological Optical Microscopy Platform (BOMP), The University of Melbourne ( Ellie Cho (applications specialist, BOMP) provided valuable advice on experimental design and image analysis.

Funding information

This work was supported by an Australian Government Research Training Program Scholarship to LJF.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda J. Fothergill
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mitchell T. Ringuet
    • 1
    • 2
  • Efstathia Sioras
    • 1
    • 2
  • Billie Hunne
    • 1
  • Therese E. Fazio Coles
    • 1
  • Patricia R. Martins
    • 3
  • John B. Furness
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Anatomy & NeuroscienceUniversity of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia
  2. 2.Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental HealthParkvilleAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Education and Research at Institute Mário PennaBelo HorizonteBrazil

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