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Editorial:Abnormal Immune Regulation and Low-Grade Inflammation in IBS: Does One Size Fit All?

Schmulson, Max MD1; Chey, William D MD, FACG2

American Journal of Gastroenterology: February 2012 - Volume 107 - Issue 2 - p 273–275
doi: 10.1038/ajg.2011.427
Functional GI Disorders

Abstract: Evidences suggest that there is low-grade inflammation in the colonic mucosa and/or a state of immune activation in patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Results from available studies are inconsistent mainly because of differences in measures, methodologies and study populations. In this issue, Changet al.evaluated a comprehensive set of cytokines, immune markers and immune-related cells in patients with non post infectious IBS (non PI-IBS) and controls. The main finding was a lower expression of the mRNA of the anti-inflammatory IL-10 cytokine in the colonic mucosa of women with non PI-IBS without any differences in the cell counts. These results suggest that in non PI-IBS, there is altered immune regulation/activation without evidence of low-grade mucosal inflammation. Further, PI and non PI-IBS may be associated with different alterations in immune function/activation.

1 Laboratorio de Hígado, Páncreas y Motilidad (HIPAM), Department of Experimental, Medicine-Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Hospital General de México, Mexico, Mexico

2 Division of Gastroenterology, University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

Correspondence: Max Schmulson, Laboratorio de Hígado, Páncreas y Motilidad (HIPAM), Departamento de Medicina, Experimental, Facultad de Medicina-Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Hospital General de México, Dr Balmis #148. Colonia Doctores C.P.06726, México DF, México. E-mail:

Received 10 September 2011; accepted 2 November 2011

© The American College of Gastroenterology 2012. All Rights Reserved.
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