Colonic inflammation, a hallmark of inflammatory bowel disease, can be influenced by host intrinsic and extrinsic factors. There continues to be a need for models of colonic inflammation that can both provide insights into disease pathogenesis and be used to investigate potential therapies. Herein, we tested the utility of colonoscopic-guided pinch biopsies in mice for studying colonic inflammation and its treatment. Gene expression profiling of colonic wound beds after injury showed marked changes, including increased expression of genes important for the inflammatory response. Interestingly, many of these gene expression changes mimicked those alterations found in inflammatory bowel disease patients. Biopsy-induced inflammation was associated with increases in neutrophils, macrophages, and natural killer cells. Injury also led to elevated levels of sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P), a bioactive lipid that is an important mediator of inflammation mainly through its receptor, S1P1. Genetic deletion of S1P1 in the endothelium did not alter the inflammatory response but led to increased colonic bleeding. Bacteria invaded into the wound beds, raising the possibility that microbes contributed to the observed changes in mucosal gene expression. In support of this, reducing bacterial abundance markedly attenuated the inflammatory response to wounding. Taken together, this study demonstrates the utility of the pinch biopsy model of colonic injury to elucidate the molecular underpinnings of colonic inflammation and its treatment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine