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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Mast cell degranulation during abdominal surgery initiates postoperative ileus in mice.

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Inflammation of the intestinal muscularis following manipulation during surgery plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of postoperative ileus. Here, we evaluate the role of mast cell activation in the recruitment of infiltrates in a murine model. METHODS: Twenty-four hours after control laparotomy or intestinal manipulation, gastric emptying was determined. Mast cell degranulation was determined by measurement of mast cell protease-I in peritoneal fluid. Intestinal inflammation was assessed by determination of tissue myeloperoxidase activity and histochemical staining. RESULTS: Intestinal manipulation elicited a significant increase in mast cell protease-I levels in peritoneal fluid and resulted in recruitment of inflammatory infiltrates to the intestinal muscularis. This infiltrate was associated with a delay in gastric emptying 24 hours after surgery. Pretreatment with mast cell stabilizers ketotifen (1 mg/kg, p.o.) or doxantrazole (5 mg/kg, i.p.) prevented both manipulation-induced inflammation and gastroparesis. Reciprocally, in vivo exposure of an ileal loop to the mast cell secretagogue compound 48/80 (0.2 mg/mL for 1 minute) induced muscular inflammation and delayed gastric emptying. The manipulation-induced inflammation was dependent on the presence of mast cells because intestinal manipulation in mast cell-deficient Kit/Kitv mice did not elicit significant leukocyte recruitment. Reconstitution of Kit/Kitv mice with cultured bone marrow-derived mast cells from congenic wild types restored the manipulation-induced inflammation. CONCLUSIONS: Our results show that degranulation of connective tissue mast cells is a key event for the establishment of the intestinal infiltrate that mediates postoperative ileus following abdominal surgery.[1]


  1. Mast cell degranulation during abdominal surgery initiates postoperative ileus in mice. de Jonge, W.J., The, F.O., van der Coelen, D., Bennink, R.J., Reitsma, P.H., van Deventer, S.J., van den Wijngaard, R.M., Boeckxstaens, G.E. Gastroenterology (2004) [Pubmed]
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