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J Am Coll Surg. 1996 Nov;183(5):441-9.

Intestinal adaptation following massive small bowel resection in the mouse.

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Division of Pediatric Surgery, Children's Hospital Medical Center, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, OH 45229-3039, USA.



Transgenic mice represent powerful tools for studying the role of genes and their expression under multiple conditions, and they may provide a unique model for studies of intestinal adaptation after massive small bowel resection (SBR). This study characterized a successful model for SBR and intestinal adaptation in the mouse.


Sham operation (bowel transection with reanastomosis) or SBR was performed on male C57BL/6 mice. A solid or liquid diet, various sizes of monofilament suture for the anastomosis, and resection of 50 or 75 percent of the proximal small intestine were studied. In other studies, intestinal adaptation was characterized as changes in intestinal wet weight, DNA, protein, villus height, crypt depth, and crypt cell proliferation rates at 12 hours, 24 hours, three days, and one, two, and four weeks after 50 percent SBR.


Survival was significantly improved with a liquid diet (8 percent compared with 88 percent; p < .001) and modestly improved by using the smallest suture for anastomosis (60 percent for 7-0 compared with 88 percent for 9-0; p = not significant). Mice did not tolerate more than 50 percent SBR (16 percent survival rate for 75 percent SBR compared with 85 percent survival rate for 50 percent SBR; p < .01). Small bowel resection augmented ileal wet weight, DNA and protein content, villus height, crypt depth, and crypt-cell proliferation rates.


Provision of a liquid diet, using a small suture for anastomosis, and resection of no more than 50 percent of the proximal small intestine are important for survival. This model will permit researchers using transgenic mice to better understand critical genes during intestinal adaptation after SBR.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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