Growth of the parathyroid glands in omeprazole-treated chickens

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Omeprazole, a long-acting inhibitor of gastric acid secretion, is able to increase the circulating concentrations of gastrin. Daily treatment with high doses of omeprazole cause sustained hypergastrinemia. Long-standing hypergastrinemia can be expected to exert numerous effects in the body. For instance, gastrin has been proposed to promote growth in the digestive tract and pancreas. The present study is concerned with the effect of omeprazole on parathyroid glands in the chicken.
Chickens were treated with omeprazole (400 mumol/kg/day) in methylcellulose (2.5 ml/kg) for 5 or 10 weeks. Controls received vehicle. Blood calcium and serum gastrin concentrations were studied. The weight gain of the animals and of various organs (proventriculus, antrum, thyroids, parathyroids, ultimobranchial glands, and femur) were determined. The DNA content and the size of the parathyroid chief cells were also determined.
Omeprazole reduced the body weight gain while greatly increasing the weight of the proventriculus and the parathyroid glands. The weight and density of the femur were reduced. The circulating concentrations of calcium were unaffected. The DNA content of the parathyroid glands was increased, and morphometric analysis of the parathyroid chief cells showed an increased cell size. Thus, the increased parathyroid gland weight seems to reflect both hypertrophy and hyperplasia. There was a slight increase in the weight of the ultimobranchial glands (expressed per kilogram body weight). The weight of the thyroids was unaffected (expressed in relation to body weight).
The results indicate that omeprazole treatment in chickens leads not only to trophic effects in the acid-producing gastric mucosa (probably because of the ensuing hypergastrinemia), as reported earlier, but also to growth of the parathyroid glands (both hypertrophy and hyperplasia) and to bone loss without affecting blood calcium values. The mechanism behind these effects remains unknown.


Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Medicin och hälsovetenskap
  • Cell- och molekylärbiologi
Sidor (från-till)493-497
Antal sidor5
TidskriftScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
StatusPublished - 1994 jun
Peer review utfördJa