1. The distribution of 1,25-dihydroxychole-calciferol [1,25-(OH)2D3] receptors in isolated rat jejunal cells was investigated in normal and oophorectomized female rats and also in vitamin D-deficient animals.

2. Oophorectomy caused a selective reduction in 1,25-(OH)2D3 receptor numbers in villous cells, the reduction being similar (37%) in both normal and vitamin D-deficient animals.

3. The data suggest that this effect of oophorectomy reflects a direct effect of oestrogens in the intestinal synthesis of 1,25-(OH)2D3 receptors, independent of the renal synthesis of 1,25-(OH)2D3.

4. It is proposed that this phenomenon may, in part, explain the reduction in calcium absorption which occurs after oophorectomy or the menopause.

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