Acid and Alkaline Phosphatase activities in the small intestine of the Rat (Rattus norvegicus), Bat (Eidolon helvum) and Pangolin (Manis tricuspis)
G Adefolaju, A Caxton-Martins, B Enaibe, O Alabi, M Ajao
acp, alp, bat, pangolin, rat, small intestine
G Adefolaju, A Caxton-Martins, B Enaibe, O Alabi, M Ajao. Acid and Alkaline Phosphatase activities in the small intestine of the Rat (Rattus norvegicus), Bat (Eidolon helvum) and Pangolin (Manis tricuspis). The Internet Journal of Pharmacology. 2008 Volume 6 Number 2.
Alkaline and Acid Phosphatase (ALP and ACP) activities were compared in the small intestine of the rat (Rattus
General sections of the mammalian gut are usually adapted to suit the dietary requirements of the particular species. The mammalian gastrointestinal tract usually presents parts known to vary in enzyme systems due to their peculiar functions (Bannister et al, 1995, Sherwood, 2002).The bat is frugivorous, the pangolin is insectivorous while the rat is omnivorous. Fruits are a unique food source that combine a large proportion of well-protected seeds with a nutritious, easily digestible covering, (Levey and Duke,1992). Presumably, fruit-eating bats possess gut adaptations that allow them to efficiently process this mix of high and low digestibility component. Amongst mammals, bats are unique in their capacity for flapping flight. This mode of flight is extremely energy-expensive and it might be expected that strategies and adaptations might have evolved for meeting the high calorific demands. Some of these strategies and adaptations are known to occur in bats (Makanya et al, 1997).The intestine of bats display extremely short transit times and appears to be well adapted for accelerated digestive and absorptive activities. Although certain active transport systems may be lacking (Makanya et al, 1997), digestive enzyme distributions are extensive (Ogunbiyi and Okon, 1976).
Various other works have been undertaken in attempts to elucidate the form and functional characteristics of the GIT of the rat (Rattus
Materials and methods
Ten (10) second generation bred Wistar rats (Rattus
Animals were transported live to research laboratories and after weighing, gastrointestinal tracts were obtained after cervical dislocation
Alkaline phosphatase activity was measured spectrophotometrically at 405nm. The reaction principle is
Sample absorbance was read against air.
Acid phosphatase activity was measured spectrophotometrically at 405nm. The reaction principle is
Sample absorbance was read against reagent blank.
Values were reported as mean ± S.E.M and data were analyzed using students t-test with the statistical software SPSS version13 at 95% confidence interval. A p<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results and Discussion
Alkaline phosphatase activity was found to be significantly higher (p<0.05) in the bat’s small intestine compared to the rat and the pangolin, but there was no significant difference in the ALP activity between the rat and the pangolin. Acid phosphatase activity was found to be significantly higher (p<0.05) in the bat’s small intestine compared to the rat and pangolin but the differences in ACP activity was not found to be significant in the rat and pangolin
Biochemical enzyme estimations reveal functional modifications of these mammals to diet. Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) facilitates transport across intestinal mucosa. Intestinal biopsies from children classified as ‘failure to thrive’ revealed alkaline phosphatase activity patchily absent from the tips of the villi – a finding which was not so in control series. This was adduced to either defects in maturation of enterocytes or an accelerated degeneration rate. This was associated with some degree of malabsorption (Dawson, 1981). ALP also facilitates the breakdown of ATP to ADP and inorganic phosphate thereby making free energy available for metabolic processes (Murray et al., 2003). Its activity was found to be higher in bats than in rats and pangolin (p<0.05) which probably explains why transit time in the bat gut is short according to the work of Makanya et al, 1997. ALP activity is significantly (p<0.05) higher in the rat than pangolin which suggests long transit time in the pangolin gut. Acid Phosphatases (ACP) are lysosomal enzymes present within phagolysosomes of absorptive cells and in macrophages within the lamina propria (Dawson, 1981). ACP activity was found to be higher significantly (p<0.05) in bats than pangolin and rats. This is because ACP helps to “mop up” high energy bonds released in the bat gut.
The results of this study provides information on the biochemical peculiarities of the small intestine in the rat, bat and pangolin, revealing that the different mammals have evolved different mechanisms to cope with their different diets and suggesting that the rat and bat are more developed.