A possible role for rat intestinal surfactant-like particles in transepithelial triacylglycerol transport

A. Mahmood, F. Yamagishi, R. Eliakim, K. DeSchryver-Kecskemeti, T. L. Gramlich, D. H. Alpers*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To further examine whether surfactant-like particles (DeSchryver- Kecskemeti, K., R. Eliakim, S. Carroll, W. F. Stenson, M. A. Moxley, and D. H. Alpers. 1989. J. Clin. Invest. 84:1355-1361) were involved in the transepithelial transport of lipid, alkaline phosphatase activity and surfactant-like particle content were measured in apical mucosal scrapings, enterocytes, lamina propria, and serum after inhibition of chylomicron transport. Serum triacylglycerol levels were decreased 60-76% by Pluronic L- 81, fenfluramine, and choline deficiency compared with fat-fed controls. 5 h after triacylglycerol feed, alkaline phosphatase activity in all three experimental groups was decreased compared with controls by 52-69% in mucosal scrapings and by 33-72% in serum. A parallel decline (60%) in alkaline phosphatase activity occurred in the lamina propria of Pluronic-treated animals. Total particle content (measured by an ELISA using antiserum against purified particle) after Pluronic treatment was decreased in mucosal scrapings, lamina propria, and serum by 16, 22, and 29% at 3 h and by 33, 40, and 8%, respectively, at 5 h after fat feeding. In contrast, particle content was increased in enterocytes by 29% 3 h and by 8% 5 h after fat feeding. By electron microscopy, enterocytes from Pluronic- and fenfluramine-treated animals exhibited a two- to threefold increase in large intracellular cytoplasmic lipid globules and the appearance of lamellae in apposition, with a marked decrease in the number of surfactant-like particles overlying the brush border. These changes, produced by inhibition of chylomicron transport, in the distribution of surfactant-like particles and particle-bound alkaline phosphatase are consistent with a role for these particles in transepithelial triacylglycerol transport across and out of the enterocyte.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-80
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • intestinal alkaline phosphatase
  • surfactant-like particles
  • triacylglycerol transport


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