The enterochromaffin-like [ECL] cell-central in gastric physiology and pathology
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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OriginalversjonInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2019, 20:2444 (10), 1-11. 10.3390/ijms20102444
Background: Studies on the regulation of gastric and pancreatic secretion began more than 100 years ago. Secretin was the first hormone postulated to exist, initiating the field of endocrinology. Gastrin produced in the antral mucosa was the second postulated hormone, and together with histamine and acetylcholine, represent the three major gastric acid secretagogues known since 1920. For a long time, the mast cell was the only recognized histamine-producing cell in the oxyntic mucosa and, in the mid-1980s, the ECL cell was recognized as the cell producing histamine, taking part in the regulation of gastric acid secretion. Methods: This review is based upon literature research and personal knowledge. Results: The ECL cell carries the gastrin receptor, and gastrin regulates its function (histamine release) as well as proliferation. Long-term hypergastrinemia results in gastric neoplasia of variable malignancies, implying that gastric hypoacidity resulting in increased gastrin release will induce gastric neoplasia, including gastric cancer. Conclusions: The trophic effect of gastrin on the ECL cell has implications to the treatment with inhibitors of acid secretion.