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Localization of trefoil factor family peptide 3 (TFF3) in epithelial tissues originating from the three germ layers of developing mouse embryo

Nikola Bijelić, Tatjana Belovari, Maja Tolušić Levak, Mirela Baus Lončar


Trefoil factor family (TFF) peptides are involved in the maintenance of epithelial integrity and epithelial restitution. Mature epithelial tissues originate from different embryonic germ layers. The objective of this research was to explore the presence and localization of TFF3 peptide in mouse embryonic epithelia and to examine if the occurrence of TFF3 peptide is germ layer-dependent. Mouse embryos (14-18 days old) were fixed in 4% paraformaldehyde and embedded in paraffin. Immunohistochemistry was performed with affinity purified rabbit anti-TFF3 antibody, goat anti-rabbit biotinylated secondary antibody and streptavidin-horseradish peroxidase, followed by 3,3'-diaminobenzidine. TFF3 peptide was present in the gastric and intestinal mucosa, respiratory mucosa in the upper and lower airways, pancreas, kidney tubules, epidermis, and oral cavity. The presence and localization of TFF3 peptide was associated with the embryonic stage and tissue differentiation. TFF3 peptide distribution specific to the germ layers was not observed. The role of TFF3 peptide in cell migration and differentiation, immune response, and apoptosis might be associated with specific embryonic epithelial cells. TFF3 peptide may also be considered as a marker for mucosal maturation.


TFF3; digestive system; embryonic development; epidermis; epithelium; germ layers; immunohistochemistry; mice; respiratory system; trefoil factor; urogenital system

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