Immunofluorescence (anti-secretin), cytochemical, and ultrastructural studies were carried out on jejunal biopsies from 16 children with coeliac disease and from 17 controls with suspected malabsorption but normal jejunal morphology.
In 11 of the 16 coeliacs there was generalized hyperplasia of endocrine cells and, specifically, of the secretin (S) cells.
Further studies, on adult coeliacs as well as on children, combined with serum secretin assays, may establish whether the S cells are abnormally storing hormone because of inability to release it or because of excess production.
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