Twenty pigs were randomly divided into four groups based on the amount of time spent in transport (zero, one, two or four hours). Pathological examination of all transported pigs showed that exfoliation of chief cells from the gastric surface occurred in pigs during transportation. These results imply that integrity of the gastric mucosa was compromised by damage occurring during the four-hour transportation, despite the fact that gastric ulcers were not present. Levels of Hsp90 expression in stomach tissues were significantly decreased (P<0.01) after two-hour transportation, but Hsp70 levels increased significantly (P<0.05) after one, two and four hours of transportation. Hsp27 levels remained relatively stable independent of the length of transport. Levels of αB-crystallin expression in the stomach were significantly increased (P<0.05) after four hours of transportation. Variations in Hsp90, Hsp70, Hsp27 and αB-crystallin levels suggest that distinct protective functions are modulated by different Hsps in stomach tissues during transportation. Alterations in Hsp70 and αB-crystallin expression appear to be associated with protective functions, as no apparent gastric ulcers were present in pigs that underwent four hours of transportation. Levels of heat shock transcription factor-1, which regulate the expression of Hsps, remained relatively stable independent of the transportation period.
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Mr. Zhang is also at the College of Animal Science and Technology, Jinling Institute of Technology, Nanjing 210038, China
Provenance not commissioned; externally peer reviewed