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Number of intestinal mast cells in healthy and IBD dogs
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) remains still one of the diseases with poorly understood pathogenesis. A team from Switzerland tried evaluated the total number of mast cells as well as the expression of IgE and Interleukin-4 in healthy and affected dogs. One of the interesting findings: hypersensitivity to bacterial or dietary-derived antigens in the intestinal lumen seems to play a key role in pathogenesis.

In this study, the mucosal IgE network in dogs affected with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) was evaluated and compared with that for healthy dogs. 9 healthy dogs and 20 dogs with IBD were included.

In situ hybridization of mRNA specific for IgE and interleukin 4 (IL-4) and immunohistochemical analysis for IgE protein and 2 markers of mast cells (ie, tryptase and chymase) were performed on tissue sections obtained from the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and lymph nodes of dogs.

RESULTS: Dogs with IBD had significantly more cells positive for IgE protein and more mast cells in the GI mucosa than healthy dogs.

Despite this significant increase in number of cells positive for IgE, cells positive for IgE mRNA were rarely detected in the GI mucosa; most cells positive for IgE mRNA were found in mesenteric lymph nodes. Signal pattern of IL-4 mRNA was similar to that of IgE mRNA.

Thus, the increased numbers of cells positive for IgE and mast cells in dogs with IBD suggest hypersensitivity such as hypersensitivity to bacterial or dietary-derived antigens in the intestinal lumen.

Future studies need to elucidate whether this represents a cause of inflammation or is a result of the inflammatory process of IBD.


Source: Locher C, Tipold A, Welle M, Busato A, Zurbriggen A, Griot-Wenk ME (2001): Quantitative assessment of mast cells and expression of IgE protein and mRNA for IgE and interleukin 4 in the gastrointestinal tract of healthy dogs and dogs with inflammatory bowel disease. In: Am J Vet Res. 2001 Feb;62(2):211-6



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SMALL ANIMAL PRACTICE

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