Effect of immunologic reactions on rat intestinal epithelium
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In these studies we compared jejunal permeability to two probes--chromium 51-labeled ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (51Cr-EDTA) (mol wt, 360) and ovalbumin (mol wt, 45,000)--under control conditions, during acute intestinal inflammation, and in response to systemic anaphylaxis. Acute inflammation was produced after infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis and rats were studied at day 0 (control), day 4 (early), day 10 (acute), and day 35 (postinfection). At the latter stage, immune rats were also studied during anaphylaxis induced by i.v. N. brasiliensis antigen. In each study, blood and urine were sampled over 5 h after the probes were simultaneously injected into ligated loops in anesthetized rats. In controls, small quantities (less than 0.04% and 0.002% of the administered dose for 51Cr-EDTA and ovalbumin, respectively) appeared in the circulation and plateaued at 1 h. During acute inflammation, the appearance of both probes continued to increase with time. Compared with controls, 5-h values for 51Cr-EDTA and ovalbumin were (a) significantly elevated at day 4 (p less than 0.005), (b) increased approximately 20-fold at day 10 (p less than 0.005 and less than 0.01, respectively), and (c) normal at day 35. Urinary recovery of 51Cr-EDTA followed the same pattern. During anaphylaxis, appearance of the probes in the circulation increased at 1 h to values approximately 10-fold those in controls (p less than 0.001 and less than 0.01, for 51Cr-EDTA and ovalbumin, respectively), and then declined. Urinary recovery of 51Cr-EDTA over 5 h was also significantly increased. We conclude that epithelial barrier function becomes impaired during both acute inflammation and anaphylaxis. In this rat model, gut permeability changes to 51Cr-EDTA reflect gut permeability changes to macromolecular antigens. If similar conditions exist in humans, urinary recovery of 51Cr-EDTA may be useful in monitoring intestinal abnormalities associated with inflammation.
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