Cellular expression of the gut chitinase in the stomach of frogs Xenopus laevis and Rana catesbeiana

Wakako Fujimoto, Masako Suzuki, Kazuhiro Kimura, Toshihiko Iwanaga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Gut chitinase, originally identified as acidic mammalian chitinase, is secreted from the salivary gland and stomach in humans and mice, but exclusively from the liver in cattle. Since the organs producing gut chitinase differ depending on the species, here we determined the expression site of this enzyme in the gastrointestinal tract of frogs, Xenopus laevis and Rana catesbeiana, which eat a large amount of chitin-coated animals, using in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. The chitinase was detected only in the oxynticopeptic cells of gastric glands and was accumulated in secretory granules in the cytoplasm, suggesting that the enzyme may be released into the gastric lumen directly. In addition, the enzyme was not found in the stomach of larvae, but was detected at stage 62 of metamorphosis and later, when the frogs changed from a herbivorous to a carnivorous diet.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)91-99
Number of pages9
JournalBiomedical Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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