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Br J Pharmacol. 2002 May;136(2):271-9.

Protective effects of neurokinin-1 receptor during colitis in mice: role of the epidermal growth factor receptor.

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Division of Gastroenterology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, MA 02215, USA.


1. The role of substance P and its high affinity neurokinin-1 receptor in colitis has not been fully elucidated. We assessed the participation of neurokinin-1 receptor in colitis using the 2,4,6,-trinitrobenzensulphonic acid and dextran sulphate-induced animal models of colitis and genetically-engineered, neurokinin-1 receptor-deficient mice. 2. Clinical signs, macroscopic and histologic damage associated with 2,4,6,-trinitrobenzensulphonic acid (12 days) and dextran sulphate (5 days) colitis were more severe in neurokinin-1 deficient than in wild-type mice, while immunoreactivities for epidermal growth factor and its receptor were similar in the colon of both mice strains before and after colitis. 3. Substance P, dose-dependently induced intestinal fibroblast proliferation and enhanced epidermal growth factor-induced proliferation in intestinal fibroblasts isolated from wild-type, but not from neurokinin-1 receptor deficient mice. 4. Substance P-induced intestinal fibroblast proliferation required the presence of epidermal growth factor receptor with kinase activity. Furthermore, substance P induced epidermal growth factor tyrosine phosphorylation and activation in normal intestinal fibroblasts. 5. Our results indicate that in mice lacking the neurokinin - 1 receptor, substance P plays a protective role in prolonged experimental colitis.

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