What Can We Learn from a Pig Model of FAP?

A pig model of intestinal adenoma development, described in the November issue of Gastroenterology, will improve our understanding of colorectal cancer development and could be used to evaluate new therapeutics. Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) is an inherited disease; patients develop dysplasias in the colon and rectum that develop to adenomatous

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How Do Lipids Affect Liver Disease?

Changes in lipid intake or metabolism can affect development of liver injury and fibrosis, according to two studies in mice published in the January issue of Gastroenterology. The liver is an important site of energy production and lipid metabolism. However, accumulation of excess fat in the liver promotes development of fibrosis, cirrhosis

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What Causes Pancreatitis?

Trypsinogen might not be the sole culprit in acute pancreatitis, contradicting a century-old model of this disease; a new model is published in the December issue of Gastroenterology. Trypsinogen is a pancreatic protein that is converted in acinar cells to the enzyme trypsin—a protease that is important for digestion and

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Stem Cells Account for Different Fates of Adenomatous and Hyperplastic Polyps

Adenomatous polyps expand the pool of colon stem cells to become malignant, whereas hyperplastic polyps (HPPs) do not, and therefore remain benign, according to a study published in the September issue of Gastroenterology. Many colorectal cancers arise from adenomatous polyps, which contain mutations that inactivate the tumor suppressor APC. These

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Bariatric Surgery – More Than Expected

Bariatric surgery doesn’t only cause dramatic weight loss—the procedure itself has profound metabolic effects, according to studies published in the September issue of Gastroenterology. Two types of bariatric surgery are most effective therapies for sustained weight loss in obese patients. In Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), a gastric pouch drains into

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An Immune Culprit in IBD?

Patients with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis have reduced levels of an important regulator of the immune response—the receptor for granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF)—according to a study by Jonathan Goldstein et al. in the July issue of Gastroenterology. The inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease arise from

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Which Roads Lead to NASH?

Which Roads Lead to NASH? The progressive liver disease nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is mediated by an innate immune response in the liver that causes tissue damage and fibrosis. The innate immune system protects against invading pathogens, but it’s not clear how it becomes activated in livers of patients with NASH.

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