Numerous reports now implicate a loss of specialized cells termed interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) in a variety of pediatric and adult gastrointestinal motor disorders. These disorders range from chronic intestinal pseudo- obstruction and meconium obstruction in infants, to gastroparesis both idiopathic and diabetic, megaduodenum, slow transit constipation and megacolon in adults. Current treatments of Gl complications have considerable side-effects and a greater understanding of the disease would provide novel targets for treatment and possible cure. Little or nothing is known about the fate of ICC following injury and whether ICC maintain the capacity to repopulate Gl tissues. The reported loss in Kit and disruption in ICC networks in humans and animal models exposes an imbalance in the normal homeodynamics of ICC in Gl tissues, which is likely a consequence of the failure to replace injured or dying ICC in Gl muscles. Loss of ICC has been attributed to cell death though the apoptotic signaling pathway or transdifferentiation. Using a multifaceted approach i.e. genetic, morphological and molecular approaches, including high throughput genetic screening and single cell genetic analysis, we addressed several fundamental questions that need answered. These questions included (i) What genes are preferentially expressed in ICC during their emergence from progenitors into adulthood that define their specialized phenotypes? (ii) What is the fate of ICC following their disruption and loss in the Gl tract? (iii) What are the factors that allow ICC to repopulate Gl muscles following their loss? Having developed powerful animal models, strains with cell-specific fluorescent reporters, expertise in enteric neurophysiology, interstitial cells, mechanisms of pacemaker function and neuroeffector transmission to better understand the diverse functional role of these cells in the Gl tract. Coupled with a full range of technologies to extensively evaluate ICC function including, electrophysiological techniques, morphological analysis, and dynamic Ca imaging. We believe it will take this degree of technological power to unravel the plasticity of ICC within the Gl tract. In summary, the completion of these specific aims will provide substantial insights into the underlying mechanisms of ICC development through to their mature phenotype. It will also provide important information on the cellular processes involved during ICC loss from Gl muscles and the exciting potential for recovery and re-emergence of ICC populations in Gl muscles.
Relevance to gastrointestinal motility disorders associated with a loss of interstitial cells of Cajal.
|Durnin, Leonie; Kwok, Benjamin; Kukadia, Priya et al. (2018) An ex vivo bladder model with detrusor smooth muscle removed to analyse biologically active mediators released from the suburothelium. J Physiol :|
|Shi, Junchao; Ko, Eun-A; Sanders, Kenton M et al. (2018) SPORTS1.0: A Tool for Annotating and Profiling Non-coding RNAs Optimized for rRNA- and tRNA-derived Small RNAs. Genomics Proteomics Bioinformatics 16:144-151|
|Drumm, Bernard T; Sung, Tae S; Zheng, Haifeng et al. (2018) The effects of mitochondrial inhibitors on Ca2+ signalling and electrical conductances required for pacemaking in interstitial cells of Cajal in the mouse small intestine. Cell Calcium 72:1-17|
|Baker, Salah A; Drumm, Bernard T; Skowronek, Karolina E et al. (2018) Excitatory Neuronal Responses of Ca2+ Transients in Interstitial Cells of Cajal in the Small Intestine. eNeuro 5:|
|Drumm, Bernard T; Hennig, Grant W; Battersby, Matthew J et al. (2017) Clustering of Ca2+ transients in interstitial cells of Cajal defines slow wave duration. J Gen Physiol 149:703-725|
|Smith, Terence Keith; Koh, Sang Don (2017) A model of the enteric neural circuitry underlying the generation of rhythmic motor patterns in the colon: the role of serotonin. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 312:G1-G14|
|Beckett, Elizabeth A H; Sanders, Kenton M; Ward, Sean M (2017) Inhibitory responses mediated by vagal nerve stimulation are diminished in stomachs of mice with reduced intramuscular interstitial cells of Cajal. Sci Rep 7:44759|
|Durnin, Leonie; Lees, Andrea; Manzoor, Sheerien et al. (2017) Loss of nitric oxide-mediated inhibition of purine neurotransmitter release in the colon in the absence of interstitial cells of Cajal. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 313:G419-G433|
|Cobine, C A; Hannah, E E; Zhu, M H et al. (2017) ANO1 in intramuscular interstitial cells of Cajal plays a key role in the generation of slow waves and tone in the internal anal sphincter. J Physiol 595:2021-2041|
|Lee, Moon Young; Park, Chanjae; Ha, Se Eun et al. (2017) Serum response factor regulates smooth muscle contractility via myotonic dystrophy protein kinases and L-type calcium channels. PLoS One 12:e0171262|
Showing the most recent 10 out of 365 publications