Recently, senescence marker protein-30 (SMP30) knockout (KO) mice have been reported to be susceptible to apoptosis, however, the role of SMP30 has not been characterized in the small intestine. The aim of the present study is to investigate the role of SMP30 in the process of spontaneous and γ-radiation-induced apoptosis in mouse small intestine. Eight-week-old male wild-type (WT) mice and SMP30 KO mice were examined after exposure to 0, 1, 3, 5, and 9 Gy of γ-radiation. Apoptosis in the crypts of the small intestine increased in the 0 to 5 Gy radiated SMP30 KO and WT mice. Radiation-induced apoptosis and the BAX/Bcl-2 ratio in the SMP30 KO mice were significantly increased in comparison to each identically treated group of WT mice ( p < 0.05). The levels of spontaneous apoptosis in both WT and KO mice were similar ( p > 0.05), indicating that increased apoptosis of crypt cells of SMP30 KO by irradiation can be associated with SMP30 depletion. These results suggested that SMP30 might be involved in overriding the apoptotic homeostatic mechanism in response to DNA damage.
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