Gamma glutamyl transferase activity in rat colon during experimental colonic carcinogenesis

O. J. Traynor, Y. C. Lee, K. B. Whittaker, A. R. Zinsmeister, D. W. Moss, C. B. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Colonic gamma glutamyl transferase activity is raised in colonic malignancy. This study was undertaken to determine how early and how extensively this raised activity occurs during carcinogenesis. Sixty rats were given weekly injections of dimethylhydrazine for 16 weeks, and 20 rats acted as controls. Groups of treated and control rats were sacrificed at regular intervals during the pre‐cancerous phase of carcinogenesis, and gamma glutamyl transferase activity was measured at several sites in the colon. Gamma glutamyl transferase activity was raised as early as 4 weeks after the first injection of dimethylhydrazine (p < 0.05), and the elevation persisted until the development of overt tumours. The raised gamma glutamyl transferase activity was observed throughout both the proximal and distal colon long before the appearance of macroscopic tumours. We conclude that an early and widespread elevation of colonic gamma glutamyl transferase activity occurs during carcinogenesis. This may have useful applications in the early detection of colonic malignancy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)52-55
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1988


  • DMH model
  • colorectal tumours
  • localized stage
  • malignant transformation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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