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Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2014 Sep;239(9):1108-23. doi: 10.1177/1535370214529388. Epub 2014 Apr 29.

Modeling human gastrointestinal inflammatory diseases using microphysiological culture systems.

Author information

1
Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.
2
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.
3
Departments of Pathology and Radiation Oncology, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213, USA.
4
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Gastroenterology and Nutrition, Mattel Children's Hospital and the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California 90095, USA.
5
Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA lynchj@mail.med.upenn.edu.

Abstract

Gastrointestinal illnesses are a significant health burden for the US population, with 40 million office visits each year for gastrointestinal complaints and nearly 250,000 deaths. Acute and chronic inflammations are a common element of many gastrointestinal diseases. Inflammatory processes may be initiated by a chemical injury (acid reflux in the esophagus), an infectious agent (Helicobacter pylori infection in the stomach), autoimmune processes (graft versus host disease after bone marrow transplantation), or idiopathic (as in the case of inflammatory bowel diseases). Inflammation in these settings can contribute to acute complaints (pain, bleeding, obstruction, and diarrhea) as well as chronic sequelae including strictures and cancer. Research into the pathophysiology of these conditions has been limited by the availability of primary human tissues or appropriate animal models that attempt to physiologically model the human disease. With the many recent advances in tissue engineering and primary human cell culture systems, it is conceivable that these approaches can be adapted to develop novel human ex vivo systems that incorporate many human cell types to recapitulate in vivo growth and differentiation in inflammatory microphysiological environments. Such an advance in technology would improve our understanding of human disease progression and enhance our ability to test for disease prevention strategies and novel therapeutics. We will review current models for the inflammatory and immunological aspects of Barrett's esophagus, acute graft versus host disease, and inflammatory bowel disease and explore recent advances in culture methodologies that make these novel microphysiological research systems possible.

KEYWORDS:

Barrett's esophagus; Inflammation; autophagy; esophageal adenocarcinoma; gastroesophageal reflux disease; gastrointestinal disease; graft versus host disease; human 3D organotypic model systems; inflammatory bowel disease; oxidative stress

PMID:
24781339
PMCID:
PMC4156523
DOI:
10.1177/1535370214529388
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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