BMC gastroenterology

Role of serotonin on the intestinal mucosal immune response to stress-induced diarrhea in weaning mice.

PMID 28633646


During weaning, babies and young animal often experience diarrhea from food intolerance and/or decreasing levels of maternal antibodies, and diarrhea tends to be particularly severe during the early-weaned period, which often exhibits an underdeveloped immune system, a disturbed gut environment and results in nutrient malabsorption and dehydration. It was deduced that neuroendocrine might have close relation with diarrhea, especially 5-HT. To explore the role of serotonin (5-HT) in weaning mice subjected to stress-induced diarrhea, 21-day-old weaned mice were divided into the following groups: control group, stress-induced diarrhea group (restrained by binding the hind limbs and intragastric administration of folium sennae with 0.4 g/mL, 15 mL/kg body weight) and para-chlorophenylalanine (PCPA) + stress-induced diarrhea group (30 mg/mL, 300 mg/kg body weight PCPA intraperitoneal injection before stress-induced diarrhea treatment). Based on results from enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, histological staining, lymphocyte proliferation assays and flow cytometry analysis, we found that the mice experienced increases in several stress markers, which coincided with severe diarrhea and an increase in 5-HT levels. However, pre-treatment with PCPA resulted in a decrease in the stress indicators and the severity of diarrhea, which correlated with decreased 5-HT levels. Interestingly, stress-induced diarrhea caused changes in various aspects of the immune system, including the amount of intraepithelium lymphocytes, CD4 We observed a distinct correlation between 5-HT levels and the occurrence of stress-induced diarrhea in weaning mice, which may result in the deregulation of the mucosal immune system.