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J Clin Immunol. 1995 Nov;15(6 Suppl):101S-105S.

Gi2 alpha protein deficiency: a model of inflammatory bowel disease.

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  • 1Department of Cell Biology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas 77030, USA.


Mice deficient for the G protein subunit Gi2 alpha were obtained by gene targeting. They displayed a growth retardation that was apparent at 6 weeks of age. They subsequently developed diffuse colitis with clinical and histopathological features closely resembling those of ulcerative colitis in humans. Seven of 20 Gi2 alpha-deficient mice with colitis also developed adenocarcinomas of the colon. Gi2 alpha-deficient thymocytes displayed two- to fourfold increases in mature CD4+8- and CD4-8+ phenotypes, an approximately threefold increase in high-intensity CD3 staining and enhanced proliferative responses to T-cell receptor stimuli. Stimulation of Gi 2 alpha-deficient peripheral T cells induced a hyperresponsive profile of interleukin-2, tumour necrosis factor, and interferon-gamma production, which may reflect a heightened response of primed cells or a defective negative regulation. We suggest that Gi 2 alpha-deficient mice may represent a useful animal model for dissecting the pathomechanisms of inflammatory bowel disease and also for the development of novel therapeutic strategies.

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