The presence of apolipoprotein (apo) B in liver and intestine from a patient with abetalipoproteinemia was evaluated by immunohistochemistry with a polyclonal and six monoclonal antibodies to different apo B-48 and B-100 epitopes. In normal liver, apo B was present inside and outside hepatocytes. The patients liver exhibited staining in the cytoplasm with the polyclonal and three monoclonal antibodies. By immunoelectron-microscopy, apo B was found to be present in the smooth endoplasmatic reticulum and the Golgi complex. Normal intestinal epithelium was labeled with polyclonal and all monoclonal antibodies, including those specific for apo B-100. The patients epithelium stained with polyclonal and six monoclonals, and apo B was present in the Golgi complex. Thus, normal intestinal mucosa expressed apo B-48 and B-100 epitopes, which indicates apo B-100 synthesis in the gut. The synthesis of the apo B molecule in the patient seems to be retained in both liver and gut, which suggests a posttranslational defect.
R P Dullaart, B Speelberg, H J Schuurman, R W Milne, L M Havekes, Y L Marcel, H J Geuze, M M Hulshof, D W Erkelens