Small bowel transplantation in pigs: Functional and morphologic monitors of rejection

B. Andreoni, R. Biffi, S. Fontana, A. Marini, E. Bensi, M. T. Bardella, N. Molteni, S. Giarretto, G. Buccianti, P. De Rai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pairs of female pigs, weighing 30 ± 2 kg, were randomized as follows: group 1 (n. 4, controls); group 2 (n. 4, complete small bowel denervation and interruption of lymphatics, as in intestinal autotransplantation); group 3 (n. 2, allotransplantation without immunosuppression); group 4 (n. 4, allotransplantation with Cyclosporine A treatment, 5 mg/kg daily subcutaneously). Group 3 and 4 animals received subtotal small bowel transplantation, with end-to-end mesenteric vessel anastomoses. An end-to-end distal intestinal anastomosis was performed, while a Roux-en-Y proximal anastomosis was made. The proximal end of the graft was brought through and sutured to the skin in all the groups, thus allowing endoscopic biopsies and/or absorption tests. Functional monitors of rejection were studied as follows: 1. basal and stimulated (lithium-heparin 300 IU/kg i.v.) activity of Diamino-Oxydase Enzyme (DAO): 2. plasmatic assays of Xylose 30'-60'-90' after stomal administration (0.5 g/kg; 3. Cyclosporin A (Cy A) plasma levels 30'-60'-90'-120'-180' and 24 hours after stomal administration (25 mg/kg). Groups 2, 3 and 4 underwent endoscopic examination and biopsies. Some specimens were fixed with isopentane, sliced in 5 μm sections and treated with sheep anti-Cy A serum. A fluorescin-isothiocyanate conjugate anti-sheep IgG was used as second antibody. The results of this morphologic and functional study suggest that only histological examination can be a useful indicator of rejection, while DAO activity or Xylose and Cy A absorption tests are not sensitive monitors of rejection. Preliminary immunofluorescence analysis data reveal a higher concentration in the Lieberkuhn glands of the graft than in native intestine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-148
Number of pages6
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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