1. The developmental pattern and effect of cortisone on acid β-galactosidase and neutral β-galactosidase were studied in postnatal rats by a recently proposed method for their independent determination. 2. After birth the acid β-galactosidase activity increases in the ileum, whereas it decreases slightly in the jejunum. On day 16 after birth the activity in the ileum decreases and in 20-day-old rats activity in both parts of the intestine decreases to adult values. In suckling animals the activity in the ileum exceeds the jejunal activity severalfold and in adult animals the activity in the jejunum is slightly higher than that in the ileum. 3. Neutral β-galactosidase activity is high after birth and decreases in both jejunum and ileum after day 20 after birth. In 12–20-day-old rats activity in both parts is essentially the same, but in adult animals jejunal activity exceeds ileal activity four-to five-fold. 4. Cortisone (0.5, 2.0 or 5.0mg/100g body wt. daily for 4 days) does not influence the activity of either enzyme in 60-day-old rats. Acid β-galactosidase activity is decreased after cortisone treatment in 8-, 12-, 16-and 18-day-old rats, with sensitivity to cortisone increasing with the approach of weaning. No effect of cortisone on acid β-galactosidase is seen in 8-day-old rats. Neutral β-galactosidase activity is increased in the ileum of 8-, 12-, 16- and 18-day old rats, but only in the jejunum of 8-and 12-day-old rats.

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