Brief Article
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World J Gastroenterol. Jun 28, 2012; 18(24): 3099-3104
Published online Jun 28, 2012. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i24.3099
Changes of smooth muscle contractile filaments in small bowel atresia
Stefan Gfroerer, Henning Fiegel, Priya Ramachandran, Udo Rolle, Roman Metzger
Stefan Gfroerer, Henning Fiegel, Udo Rolle, Department of Paediatric Surgery, Goethe-University Frankfurt, 60590 Frankfurt, Germany
Priya Ramachandran, Kanchi Kamakoti Childs Trust Hospital, Chennai 600034, India
Roman Metzger, Department of Paediatric Surgery, University of Leipzig, 04317 Leipzig, Germany
Author contributions: Gfroerer S and Metzger R performed the majority of the investigations; Rachmandran P provided the collection of the investigated specimen; Fiegel H was involved in the evaluation of the staining results and editing of the manuscript; Rolle U designed the study and wrote the manuscript.
Correspondence to: Udo Rolle, MD, Professor, Department of Paediatric Surgery, Goethe-University Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt, Germany.
Telephone: +49-69-63016659 Fax: +49-69-63017936
Received: August 10, 2011
Revised: March 26, 2012
Accepted: May 6, 2012
Published online: June 28, 2012

AIM: To investigate morphological changes of intestinal smooth muscle contractile fibres in small bowel atresia patients.

METHODS: Resected small bowel specimens from small bowel atresia patients (n = 12) were divided into three sections (proximal, atretic and distal). Standard histology hematoxylin-eosin staining and enzyme immunohistochemistry was performed to visualize smooth muscle contractile markers α-smooth muscle actin (SMA) and desmin using conventional paraffin sections of the proximal and distal bowel. Small bowel from age-matched patients (n = 2) undergoing Meckel’s diverticulum resection served as controls.

RESULTS: The smooth muscle coat in the proximal bowel of small bowel atresia patients was thickened compared with control tissue, but the distal bowel was unchanged. Expression of smooth muscle contractile fibres SMA and desmin within the proximal bowel was slightly reduced compared with the distal bowel and control tissue. There were no major differences in the architecture of the smooth muscle within the proximal bowel and the distal bowel. The proximal and distal bowel in small bowel atresia patients revealed only minimal differences regarding smooth muscle morphology and the presence of smooth muscle contractile filament markers.

CONCLUSION: Changes in smooth muscle contractile filaments do not appear to play a major role in postoperative motility disorders in small bowel atresia.

Keywords: Small bowel atresia, Enteric nervous system, Smooth muscle, Motility disorder