Background and Purpose: An increased expression of immediate early genes, such as the c-fos and c-jun, is observed in some organs after ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury. These factors have been revealed to potentially induce apoptosis and proliferation of the postischemic cells. The purpose of this study is to analyze the relationship between the expression patterns of such immediate early genes and the cellular responses in the intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) after I/R stress. Methods: The rat small intestine was reperfused after 30 minutes ischemia. Semiquantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify c-fos and c-jun messenger RNAs. The proliferation and apoptosis of IECs were detected by immunohistochemistry and the in situ terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP biotin nick-end labeling method, respectively. Results: The messenger RNA levels of the c-fos and c-jun showed characteristic patterns in the IECs after the I/R stress. The proliferation of the cells was initially observed after the I/R stress, followed by apoptosis of the cells. Conclusions: The sequential expression patterns of these factors are possibly related to the proliferation and apoptosis of the IECs.
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