Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 51, Issue 4, pp 718–723 | Cite as

Postnatal Epithelial Growth of the Small Intestine in the Rat Occurs by Both Crypt Fission and Crypt Hyperplasia

  • Adrian G. Cummins
  • Ben J. Jones
  • Fiona M. Thompson


Studies of growth of the small intestine have largely concentrated on crypt hyperplasia rather than crypt fission. The aim of this study was to investigate quantitatively both crypt fission and crypt hyperplasia. DAxPVG/c rats were killed at 7, 11, 14, 17, 19, 21, 25, 55, and 72–73 days of life. Samples of jejunum at one third of the intestinal length were taken for morphometry (villous area, crypt area, percentage of bifid crypts, and crypt mitotic count) by microdissection. Growth factors and their receptors were assessed by oligonucleotide microarray. Crypt fission was 10.5%, 5.2%, and 1.5% at days 11, 25, and 72–73 of life, respectively. Crypt hyperplasia increased from day 21. No conventional growth factor was identified during crypt fission. We conclude that crypt fission contributes to growth of the small intestine prior to weaning and crypt hyperplasia to growth after weaning.

Key Words

crypt fission crypt hyperplasia growth of the small intestine intestinal stem cells 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adrian G. Cummins
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ben J. Jones
    • 1
  • Fiona M. Thompson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Gastroenterology and HepatologyThe Queen Elizabeth HospitalWoodville SouthAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Gastrornterology and HepatologyThe Queen Elizabeth HospitalWoodville SouthAustralia

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