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1. We have assessed the role of platelet-activating factor in caerulein-induced acute pancreatitis (four subcutaneous injections of caerulein at a dose of 20 micrograms/kg) by measuring platelet-activating factor levels in portal blood, pancreatic tissue and peritoneal exudate in rats with and without pancreatitis. 2. We have also observed the effect of the platelet-activating factor antagonist, BN-52021, on the hyperamylasaemia and exocrine pancreatic secretion impairment associated with pancreatitis. 3. In rats with pancreatitis the basal pancreatic flow rate was increased (1.63 +/- 0.41 versus 0.25 +/- 0.03 microliters/min). Total protein output was similar in both untreated (5.98 +/- 1.93 micrograms/min) and caerulein-injected (6.5 +/- 2.0 micrograms/min) animals. Amylase output was lower in rats with pancreatitis (19.6 +/- 4.8 mu-units/min) than in controls (39.4 +/- 16.6 mu-units/min). 4. Caerulein-treated animals had significantly higher serum amylase levels than untreated animals. BN-52021 significantly reduced the caerulein-induced hyperamylasaemia. 5. Portal blood platelet-activating factor levels increased in rats with pancreatitis and in rats infused with cholecystokinin. Rats injected with caerulein and BN-52021 had portal blood levels of platelet-activating factor that were lower than those with pancreatitis. 6. Morphological derangements associated with pancreatitis (inflammatory infiltration and cell vacuolization) were also markedly reduced in BN-52021-treated animals. 7. The results of this study suggest that platelet-activating factor is involved in the development of caerulein-induced acute pancreatitis in rats.


Journal article


Clin sci (lond)

Publication Date





85 - 90