Specific receptors for epidermal growth factor in rat intestinal microvillus membranes

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93 Scopus citations


Epidermal growth factor (EGF) is present in high concentrations in milk, salivary, and pancreaticobiliary secretions. EGF, delivered to the intestinal lumen by these fluids, appears to influence intestinal proliferation. Because EGF exerts its mitogenic effect through binding to specific membrane-bound receptors, binding studies of 125I-labeled EGF to purified microvillus membrane (MVM) preparations from fetal, newborn, and adult rat small intestine were performed. Using the membrane filter technique, binding of 125I-EGF to adult MVM was specific, saturable, and reversible. Adult and fetal MVM binding was rapid and reached a plateau after 30 min at both 20 and 37°C. No binding was detected at 4°C. Specific binding increased linearly from 0 to 75 μg MVM protein. Scatchard analysis revealed a single class of receptors in fetal and adult MVM with an association constant of 1.0 ± 0.35 x 109 and 2.3 ± 1.6 x 109 M-1, respectively. Binding capacity was 435.0 ± 89 and 97.7 ± 41.3 fmol 125I-EGF bound/mg MVM protein for fetal and adult MVM, respectively. Newborn MVM binding was negligible. After binding, cross-linking utilizing disuccinimidyl suberate, and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, autoradiography revealed a 170-kDa receptor. These data demonstrate specific receptors for EGF on MVM of rat small intestine and, thus, suggest a mechanism for the intraluminal regulation of enterocyte proliferation by EGF.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17/3
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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