Basic Study
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2015. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Gastroenterol. Jan 14, 2015; 21(2): 484-490
Published online Jan 14, 2015. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v21.i2.484
Glucagon-like peptide-2 protects impaired intestinal mucosal barriers in obstructive jaundice rats
Jun Chen, Jia-Tian Dong, Xiao-Jing Li, Ye Gu, Zhi-Jian Cheng, Yuan-Kun Cai
Jun Chen, Jia-Tian Dong, Zhi-Jian Cheng, Yuan-Kun Cai, Department of General Surgery, Shanghai Fifth People’s Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai 200240, China
Xiao-Jing Li, Department of Pathology, Shanghai Fifth People’s Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai 200240, China
Ye Gu, Clinical Base of Emergency, Shanghai Fifth People’s Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai 200240, China
Author contributions: Chen J and Dong JT contributed equally to this work; Dong JT and Cai YK conceived and designed the experiments; Chen J, Dong JT and Gu Y performed the experiments; Li XJ provided pathologic details; Chen J and Cai YK analyzed the data and wrote the paper; Dong JT provided the final approval of the version to be published; all authors had full access to the primary data and the final analysis and approved the latest version of the manuscript.
Supported by Natural Science Foundation of Minhang District of Shanghai, No. 2009MHZ093 and No. 2008MH057.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Correspondence to: Jia-Tian Dong, MD, Department of General Surgery, Shanghai Fifth People’s Hospital, Fudan University, No. 128 Ruili Road, Mingxing District, Shanghai 200240, China.
Telephone: +86-21-24289545 Fax: +86-21-62215795
Received: April 20, 2014
Peer-review started: April 21, 2014
First decision: June 18, 2014
Revised: July 3, 2014
Accepted: July 30, 2014
Article in press: July 30, 2014
Published online: January 14, 2015

AIM: To observe the protective effect of glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) on the intestinal barrier of rats with obstructive jaundice and determine the possible mechanisms of action involved in the protective effect.

METHODS: Thirty-six Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into a sham operation group, an obstructive jaundice group, and a GLP-2 group; each group consisted of 12 rats. The GLP-2 group was treated with GLP-2 after the day of surgery, whereas the other two groups were treated with the same concentration of normal saline. Alanine aminotransferase (ALT), total bilirubin, and endotoxin levels were recorded at 1, 3, 7, 10 and 14 d. Furthermore, on the 14th day, body weight, the wet weight of the small intestine, pathological changes of the small intestine and the immunoglobulin A (IgA) expressed by plasma cells located in the small intestinal lamina propria were recorded for each group.

RESULTS: In the rat model, jaundice was obvious, and the rats’ activity decreased 4-6 d post bile duct ligation. Compared with the sham operation group, the obstructive jaundice group displayed increased yellow staining of abdominal visceral serosa, decreased small intestine wet weight, thinning of the intestinal muscle layer and villi, villous atrophy, uneven height, fusion, partial villous epithelial cell shedding, substantial inflammatory cell infiltration and significantly reduced IgA expression. However, no significant gross changes were noted between the GLP-2 and sham groups. With time, the levels of ALT, endotoxin and bilirubin in the GLP-2 group were significantly increased compared with the sham group (P < 0.01). The increasing levels of the aforementioned markers were more significant in the obstructive jaundice group than in the GLP-2 group (P < 0.01).

CONCLUSION: GLP-2 reduces intestinal mucosal injuries in obstructive jaundice rats, which might be attributed to increased intestinal IgA and reduced bilirubin and endotoxin.

Keywords: Intestinal mucosal barrier, Glucagon-like peptide-2, Obstructive jaundice

Core tip: It has recently been demonstrated that glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) has a highly tissue-specific trophic effect on the small intestine. However, whether GLP-2 also functions as an adapter for rats with obstructive jaundice is unknown. Studies on this topic are rare, and our research clearly illustrates that exogenous GLP-2 reduces intestinal mucosal injuries in an obstructive jaundice rat model. The next step of our study is to continue focusing on the details of this research as further studies are needed.