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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Mechanism of thiamine uptake by human colonocytes: studies with cultured colonic epithelial cell line NCM460.

Thiamine (vitamin B(1)) is essential for normal cellular functions and growth. Mammals cannot synthesize thiamine and thus must obtain the vitamin via intestinal absorption. The intestine is exposed to a dietary thiamine source and a bacterial source in which the vitamin is synthesized by the normal microflora of the large intestine. Very little is known about thiamine uptake in the large intestine. The aim of this study was, therefore, to address this issue. Our results with human-derived colonic epithelial NCM460 cells as a model system showed thiamine uptake to be 1) temperature- and energy dependent, 2) Na(+) independent, 3) increased with increasing buffer pH from 5 to 8 and after cell acidification but inhibited by amiloride, 4) saturable as a function of concentration, 5) inhibited by thiamine structural analogs but not by unrelated organic cations, and 6) inhibited by modulators of a Ca(2+)/calmodulin-mediated pathway. NCM460 cells and native human colonic mucosa expressed the recently cloned human thiamine transporter THTR-1 (product of the SLC19A2 gene) at both mRNA and protein levels. These results demonstrate for the first time that human NCM460 colonocytes possess a specific carrier-mediated system for thiamine uptake that appears to be under the regulation of an intracellular Ca(2+)/calmodulin-mediated pathway. It is suggested that bacterially synthesized thiamine in the large intestine may contribute to thiamine nutrition of the host, especially toward cellular nutrition of the local colonocytes.[1]


  1. Mechanism of thiamine uptake by human colonocytes: studies with cultured colonic epithelial cell line NCM460. Said, H.M., Ortiz, A., Subramanian, V.S., Neufeld, E.J., Moyer, M.P., Dudeja, P.K. Am. J. Physiol. Gastrointest. Liver Physiol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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