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Dramatic diurnal variation in the concentration of the human trefoil peptide TFF2 in gastric juice

Lookup NU author(s): Emerita Professor Julia Newton, Professor Bruce Westley, Dr Felicity May


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Background - TFF2, a member of the trefoil factor family of proteins, is a glycosylated protein of 106 amino acids. It is secreted by gastric antral and pyloric glands and by Brunner's glands of the duodenum. TFF2 is found in high concentrations around sites of ulceration. It stimulates cell motility and is probably the principal cytoprotective trefoil peptide in the stomach. Aims - To determine if production of TFF2 follows a circadian rhythm and to measure changes in secretion of TFF2 in response to food intake and during sleep. Subjects - Young healthy adults were recruited. They were asymptomatic and were not receiving medication. The 24 hour regimen was designed to allow normal stimulation of gastric secretion in response to food intake and sleep. Gastric juice was collected two hourly via a nasogastric tube. Methods - Glycosylated and nonglycosylated TFF2 proteins were measured by quantitative western transfer analysis. The results were analysed statistically using SPSS software. Results - There was a dramatic diurnal variation in the concentration of TFF2. The mean concentration was lowest in the early evening (0.29 μg/ml), increased gradually during the evening, and then sharply during the night to reach 7.9 μg/ml. The ratio of glycosylated to nonglycosylated TFF2 varied and was higher during the night than in the afternoon. pH, total protein, and pepsin concentrations in gastric juice did not vary significantly over 24 hours. Conclusion - The data suggest that diurnal variations in TFF2 secretion occur independently of pepsin and gastric acid secretion. The concentration of glycosylated TFF2 in the gastric lumen falls in response to food intake. TFF2 secretion increases during inactivity and sleep. These results suggest that secretion of TFF2 in the stomach is highest during the night and that the cytoprotective effects of TFF2 on the gastric mucosa occur mainly during sleep.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Semple J, Newton JL, Westley BR, May FEB

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Gut

Year: 2001

Volume: 48

Issue: 5

Pages: 648-655

Print publication date: 01/01/2001

ISSN (print): 0017-5749

ISSN (electronic): 1468-3288


DOI: 10.1136/gut.48.5.648

PubMed id: 11302963


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