Research press release


Nature Medicine

Human small intestine modeled in mice



Michael Helmrathたちは、実験室で増殖させたこのような組織をマウスの腎組織へと移植すると、組織が実験室での段階を超えて成熟し、ヒトの小腸によく似た複雑な構造が発生することを発見した。解剖学的に見て、この組織には、陰窩や絨毛を含めた小腸の特徴的構造が発生し、数種類の異なった腸細胞が含まれていた。また、この組織は、粒子の血液中への吸収や消化酵素活性といった消化機能も有していた。さらに、マウスの腸の一部を外科的に切除すると、移植したヒト組織が成長して適応することもわかり、このヒト腸組織が、マウスの血中に出されたシグナルに反応することも示された。

Functional human intestinal tissue can be generated by growing human stem cells in the lab and then transplanting them into mice, according to a study in Nature Medicine. This human-mouse model of the intestine may be used to study developmental processes, gastrointestinal disease and to test new therapies for certain disorders.

It has previously been shown that embryonic as well as induced pluripotent stem cells could be grown in the lab to form intestinal tissue. However, as these models grow, they do not fully copy the physiological and anatomical changes and function of intestinal tissue in the body.

Michael Helmrath and colleagues found that if this lab grown tissue was implanted within the kidney tissue of mice, it matured further than it did in the lab and developed into a complex structure resembling the human small intestine.

Anatomically, the tissue developed characteristic features of the small intestine, including crypts and villi, and contained several different intestinal cell types. This tissue also exhibited digestive functions, such as absorption of particles into the bloodstream of the mouse and digestive enzyme activity. The authors also found that surgical removal of a portion of the mouse intestine resulted in growth and adaptation of the implanted human tissue, suggesting the human intestinal tissue can respond to signals released into the circulation of the mouse.

doi: 10.1038/nm.3737


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