Autoradiographs were prepared from frozen sections of everted sacs of hamster jejunum which had been incubated in vitro with C14- or H3-labeled sugars and amino acids. When such tissue was incubated in 1 mM solutions of L-valine or L-methionine, columnar absorptive cells at tips of villi accumulated these amino acids to concentrations ranging from 5 to 50 millimoles per liter of cells. Quantitative data were obtained by microdensitometry of C14 autoradiographs. Similar, though less striking, results were obtained with the sugars: galactose, 3-0-methylglucose, α-methylglucoside, and 6-deoxyglucose. In all cases the marked "step-up" in concentration occurred near the brush border of the cell, and a "step-down" in concentration occurred at the basal pole of the cell. Known inhibitors of intestinal absorption, e.g., phlorizin in the case of sugars, blocked the concentrative step at the luminal border of the absorptive cell. It is inferred from these data that active transport systems for sugars and amino acids reside in the brush border region of the cell. Additional evidence suggests that the basal membrane of the cell may be the site of both a diffusion barrier and a weak transport system directed into the cell.

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