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Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2009 Oct;15(10):1515-25. doi: 10.1002/ibd.20951.

Role of TNF receptors, TNFR1 and TNFR2, in dextran sodium sulfate-induced colitis.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Dalhousie University, IWK Health Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.



In this study we determined the consequence of the absence of each TNF receptor, TNFR1 or TNFR2, in the dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) model of colitis.


Wildtype (WT), TNFR1(-/-) and TNFR2(-/-) mice were fed 3% w/v DSS in drinking water for 5 days followed by 2 (day 7) or 7 (day 12) days of tap water.


The colons from untreated TNFR1(-/-) and TNFR2(-/-) mice were histologically normal. Following DSS, all strains became inflamed. TNFR1(-/-) mice had a more severe clinical score at days 8 and 9 compared to WT and TNFR2(-/-) mice despite similar histopathological damage in their colons. The more severe clinical score was associated with a reduced macrophage infiltration into the colonic mucosa. TNFR2(-/-) mice showed increased indicators of disease including increased colon weight, a shrunken cecum, and an increased number of ulcers compared to TNFR1(-/-) and WT strains at day 7. Mucosal levels of TNFR2 were elevated in colitic mice compared to uninflamed controls, with no difference between strains on day 7 but on day 12, unlike WT mice, levels were reduced in TNFR1(-/-) mice. There was no difference in the number of TUNEL-positive apoptotic colonic epithelial cells between strains, nor in total cleaved caspase 3 levels between strains, measured by Western blot of colon homogenates.


While deficiency of either receptor contributes to some measures of DSS colitis, the histopathological scores are similar, indicating that TNF receptors either do not play a major role or are redundant in the pathology associated with DSS colitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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