Neuroendocrine control of intestinal mucosal mast cells under physiological conditions

P. Vergara, Y. Saavedra, C. Juanola

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Mast cells are involved in the pathogenesis of both allergies to food and inflammatory bowel disorders. In addition, there are several lines of evidence suggesting that mucosal mast cells also respond to intraluminal stimuli. Our aim was to identify neuroendocrine stimuli that could modify mucosal mast cell activity in the rat. Anaesthetized rats were prepared for duodenal perfusion and mast cell activation was measured by analysis of RMCP II concentration in the duodenal perfusate. Either buffered saline solution or a 5% ovalbumin hydrolysate (OVH) solution was infused into the duodenum. Subdiaphragmatic vagotomy or afferent ablation by intraluminal treatment with capsaicin diminished RMCP II concentration in basal conditions and significantly reduced the response to OVH, which in control animals induced a three-fold increase of the protease. The noradrenergic blockers phentholamine and propranolol significantly diminished RMCP II concentration in basal conditions and completely blocked the response to OVH. Intravenous infusion of cholecystokinin-related peptides also induced a response of mast cells. However, the response was different depending on the peptide. CCK-8 induced a slight increase of RMCP II, whereas both CCK-33 and gas-trin induced a significant decrease in mast cell activity. These results show that intraluminal content modulates mucosal mast cell activity by complex mechanisms involving both nervous and endocrine pathway.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-42
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2002


  • CCK release
  • Cholecystokinin
  • Food allergy
  • Vagal afferents


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