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Immunocytochemical localisation of parietal cells and G cells in the developing human stomach.
  1. E J Kelly,
  2. M Lagopoulos,
  3. J N Primrose
  1. Department of Anatomy, University of Leeds.


    Previous studies on the distribution of parietal cells and G cells in normal adult stomachs have shown that in about 20% of specimens parietal cells extended to the pylorus. This study aimed to examine the distribution of parietal cells and G cells in the body and antrum of the developing human stomach in relation to anatomical landmarks, using histological and immunocytochemical methods. In all 15 fetal stomachs examined, parietal cells extended to the pylorus and expressed intrinsic factor and hydrogen-potassium-ATPase activity from week 13 of gestation. By contrast, in only one of the five infant stomachs did parietal cells extend to the pylorus: this is identical to the distribution in the adult. G cells developed in the antrum from 18 weeks' gestation and their distribution did not differ between the fetal and infant stomachs. These findings indicate that parietal cells disappear from the antrum of the stomach in the third trimester of pregnancy, but this process fails to occur in approximately 20% of the population.

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