Pancreatic secretory trypsin inhibitor is a major motogenic and protective factor in human breast milk

Tania Marchbank, Gillian Weaver, Marit Nilsen-Hamilton and Raymond J. Playford

Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 296: G697-G703, 2009.

Colostrum is the first milk produced after birth and is rich in immunoglobulins and bioactive molecules. We examined whether human colostrum and milk contained pancreatic secretory trypsin inhibitor (PSTI), a peptide of potential relevance for mucosal defense and, using in vitro and in vivo models, determined whether its presence influenced gut integrity and repair.

Human milk stimulated migration and proliferation about threefold and reduced indomethacin-induced apoptosis by about 70–80%. Sixty-five percent of the migratory effect of human milk could be removed by immunoneutralization of PSTI. PSTI worked synergistically with EGF in mediating these effects. Gastric damage in rats was reduced by about 75% in the presence of human milk and was more efficacious than the formula feed (P < 0.001). Protective effects of the milk were reduced by about 60% by PSTI immunoneutralization. We concluded that PSTI is secreted into human milk at concentrations that have probable pathophysiological relevance.

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The American Journal of Physiology – Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology főoldal