Anatomical Variation in Mesenteric Macrophage Phenotypes in Crohn's Disease

Jonathan H. M. van der Meer, Karin A. T. G. M. Wasmann, Jarmila D. W. van der Bilt, Marte A. J. Becker, Marja A. Boermeester, Willem A. Bemelman, Manon E. Wildenberg, Christianne J. Buskens

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INTRODUCTION: Clinical trials are currently investigating whether an extended mesenteric resection for ileocecal resections could reduce postoperative recurrence in Crohn's disease. Resection of the mesorectum, which contains proinflammatory macrophages, during proct(ocol)ectomy, is associated with reduced recurrent inflammation and improved wound healing. We aimed to characterize the macrophages in the ileocecal mesentery, which were compared with those in the mesorectum, to provide a biological rationale for the ongoing trials. METHODS: In 13 patients with Crohn's disease and 4 control patients undergoing a proctectomy, tissue specimens were sampled at 3 locations from the mesorectum: distal (rectum), middle, and proximal (sigmoid). In 38 patients with Crohn's disease and 7 control patients undergoing ileocecal resections, tissue specimens also obtained from 3 locations: adjacent to the inflamed terminal ileum, adjacent to the noninflamed ileal resection margin, and centrally along the ileocolic artery. Immune cells from these tissue specimens were analyzed by flow cytometry for expression of CD206 to determine their inflammatory status. RESULTS: In the mesorectum, a gradient from proinflammatory to regulatory macrophages from distal to proximal was observed, corresponding to the adjacent inflammation of the intestine. By contrast, the ileocecal mesentery did not contain high amounts of proinflammatory macrophages adjacent to the inflamed tissue, and a gradient toward a more proinflammatory phenotype was seen in the central mesenteric area. DISCUSSION: Although the mesentery is a continuous structure, the mesorectum and the ileocecal mesentery show different immunological characteristics. Therefore, currently, there is no basis to perform an extended ileocecal resection in patients with Crohn's disease.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e00198
JournalClinical and translational gastroenterology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2020

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