RAMP1 suppresses mucosal injury from dextran sodium sulfate-induced colitis in mice

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Abstract

Background and Aims:

Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) is thought to be involved in the modulation of intestinal motility. CGRP receptor is composed of receptor activity-modifying protein (RAMP) 1 combined with calcitonin receptor-like receptor (CRLR) for CGRP. The study investigated the role of CGRP in mice with experimentally induced colitis.

Methods:

The study used dextran sodium sulfate (DSS) to induce colitis in mice. The study compared the severity of colitis in wild-type (WT) mice, mice treated with a CGRP receptor antagonist (CGRP8–37), and RAMP1 knockout (−/−) mice. Pathological changes in the mucosa were assessed, and inflammatory cells and cytokine levels were measured.

Results:

The severity of inflammation in DSS-induced colitis increased markedly in CGRP8–37-treated mice and RAMP1−/− mice compared with WT mice. RAMP1−/− mice showed more severe damage compared with CGRP8–37-treated mice. The number of periodic acid-Schiff-positive cells decreased in CGRP8–37-treated mice compared with WT mice and was even further decreased in RAMP1−/− mice. RAMP1 was expressed by macrophages, mast cells, and T-cells. RAMP1−/− mice exhibited excessive accumulation of macrophages and mast cells into the colonic tissue with increased levels of tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β as compared with WT mice. Infiltration of T-cells into the colonic mucosa, which was associated with the expression of T helper (Th) cytokines including Th1 (interferon gamma) and Th17 (IL-17), was augmented in RAMP1−/− mice.

Conclusions:

The findings of this study suggest that RAMP1 exerted mucosal protection in DSS-induced colitis via attenuation of recruitment of inflammatory cells and of pro-inflammatory cytokines.

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