Ontogeny and induction of adhesion molecule expression in human fetal intestine

A. Dogan, T. T. MacDonald, J. Spencer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


In this study we examined the distribution of the adhesion molecules ICAM-1, VCAM-I and E-selectin in human fetal intestine, to determine whether they may have a role in the development of gut-associated lymphoid tissue. Secondly, we studied the tempo of induction of these molecules after T cell activation in explants of human fetal intestine cultured in vitro. In the fetus from 11 to 20 weeks gestation, endothelial expression of ICAM-1 and diffuse staining of VCAM-I was observed in the lamina propria. In contrast, there was intense expression of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 in the developing Peyer's patches, suggesting that these molecules may be involved in the accumulation or organization of lymphoid tissue in the gut. After T cell activation in fetal intestinal explants, the expression of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 was increased on most endothelial cells, leucocytes, and stromal cells in the lamina propria. Expression was maintained for at least 4 days. In contrast, the induction of E-selectin was rapid, and the expression was transient, despite the continuing presence of activated T cells and macrophages. This suggests that other factors are required to prevent the down-regulation of E-selectin to maintain the sustained expression sometimes observed in vivo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)532-537
Number of pages6
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1993


  • E-selectin
  • ICAM-1
  • Peyer's patches
  • VCAM-1
  • adhesion molecules
  • intestine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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