J Korean Assoc Pediatr Surg.  2002 Dec;8(2):113-118.

The Role of Interstitial Cells of Cajal in Congenital Megacolons and Idiopathic Megacolons

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Surgery & Pathology, Yonsei University, Wonju College of Medicine, Wonju, Korea. syyoo@wonju.yonsei.ac.kr

Abstract

The etiology of several motility disorders, including persistent megacolon after definitive surgery for Hirschsprung's disease, meconium ileus which is not associated with cystic fibrosis and idiopathic megacolon, is still unclear. Interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) are thought to modulate gut motility as gastrointestinal pace maker cells. The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of ICC in the bowel walls of the patients (n=15) who had variable motility disorders. The ICC were identified by immunohistochemical staining using an anti-C-Kit antibody and the results were compared with control specimens (n=2). The control group (G1) showed evenly distributed ICC in their bowel walls. The second group (G2, n=5) who had normal bowel movements after Duhamel procedures and the third group (G3, n=4) who had persistent megacolon after Duhamel procedures showed absent or scarcely distributed ICC in their aganglionic bowels. The ICC were identified by immunohistochemical staining using an anti-C-Kit antibody and the results were compared with control specimens (n=2). The control group (G1) showed evenly distributed ICC in their bowel walls. The second group (G2, n=5) who had normal bowel movements after Duhamel procedures and the third group (G3, n=4) who had persistent megacolon after Duhamel procedures showed absent or scarcely distributed ICC in their aganglionic bowels. Whereas ICC were evenly distributed in the ganglionic bowels of G2, they were not seen or scarecely distributed in the ganglionic bowels of G3. Two patients (G4) who suffered from idiopathic megacolon showed absence or decrease of ICC in spite of presence of ganglion cells in their colons. Four neonates (G5) who underwent ileostomy because of meconium obstruction showed absent or markedly decreased ICC in the colon at the time of ileostomy and the distribution of ICC was changed to a normal pattern at the time of ileostomy closure between 39-104 days of age and their bowelmotility were restored after that. The results suggest that lack of ICC caused reduce motility in the ganglionic colons and it may be responsible for the development of various motility disorders. Delayed maturity of ICC may also play a role in the meconium obstruction of neinates.

Keyword

Hirschsprung's disease; Idiopathic megacolon; Meconium ileus; Motility disorder; Interstitial cells of Cajal

MeSH Terms

Colon
Cystic Fibrosis
Ganglion Cysts
Hirschsprung Disease*
Humans
Ileostomy
Ileus
Infant, Newborn
Interstitial Cells of Cajal*
Meconium
Megacolon*
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