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Animal Models of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Lessons from Enteric Infections


Address for correspondence: Lars Eckmann, University of California, San Diego, Department of Medicine 0665, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, California 92093-0665. Voice: 858-534-0683; fax: 858-822-6454.


Abstract: Mouse models of intestinal inflammation have played a key role in understanding the mechanisms that govern the inflammatory response in the intestine, and in designing new therapeutic strategies in the treatment of patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Most of these models use chemical challenges, whereas relatively few robust models of intestinal inflammation caused by microbial infection are known. Two common models of infectious murine colitis and typhlitis are infection with the murine epithelial-adherent pathogen, Citrobacter rodentium, and infection of streptomycin-pretreated mice with Salmonella typhimurium. Studies in these models have helped to define the interactions between bacterial pathogens and host immune defenses, thus broadening the understanding of host–microbial interactions in the intestinal tract. Furthermore, such models help to determine the physiologic consequences of neutralizing specific mediators and signaling pathways implicated in inflammation on antimicrobial host defense.