This study compares the effect of epidermal growth factor and prostaglandins (PGE2 or PGI2), applied topically to gastric mucosa, on gastric secretion and formation of ASA-induced gastric ulcerations in rats. Epidermal growth factor given topically in non-antisecretory doses prevented dose-dependently the formation of ASA-induced ulcers without affecting prostaglandin generation but with a significant rise in DNA synthesis in the oxyntic mucosa. The anti-ulcer effect of topical prostaglandins was also accompanied by an increase in DNA synthesis. This study indicates that topical epidermal growth factor, like PGE2 or PGI2, is cytoprotective and that this cytoprotection is not mediated by the inhibition of gastric secretion or prostaglandin formation but related to the increase in DNA synthesis in oxyntic mucosa.
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