Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stressed intestine can give rise to food allergy

19.04.2002


The intestines of mice which have been subjected to stress, overreact to certain nutritional substances. PhD biologist Annette van Kalkeren from the University of Amsterdam has investigated the relationship between stress and the occurrence of food allergies and various intestinal disorders.



The biologist investigated the reaction of pieces of mouse intestine to egg albumin, a substance found in eggs. Just like humans, mice can become allergic to the substance. However, mice only become allergic if they are injected with the substance and not as a result of eating it. The aim of the study was to investigate whether mice could become allergic to egg albumin if they ate it whilst stressed. The intestinal wall becomes more permeable under stressful conditions. Harmful substances penetrate the permeable intestinal wall where they then cause a panic response by the immune system. That could be the start of an allergy. The intestines of allergic mice demonstrate, just as in humans, a diarrhoea response if they come into contact with egg albumin. The cells in the intestinal wall then excrete salt and water. Research revealed that the intestines of non-allergic mice also sometimes exhibited a localised diarrhoea reaction if they came into contact with egg albumin. However, the localised diarrhoea occurred much more frequently in the intestines of mice which had been deliberately stressed prior to the experiment. Furthermore, the intestines of mice subjected to prolonged stress were much more sensitive for neurotransmitters from nerve cells which cause diarrhoea and the contraction of the intestinal muscles. Annette van Kalkeren used a systematic treatment to stress the mice. The mice had to spend several hours in a narrow tube. Sometimes they were also placed in a cold environment. A number of mice were subjected to a maximum of three days of social isolation. Some also had to swim for three minutes. The excretion of salt and water is a response of the intestines to wash out unwanted substances. However, the intestinal wall is then much more permeable to allergens. Whether or not this has a function is not known. The Amsterdam researcher suspects that a higher permeability promotes the immune response. Antigens from the body can then get closer to the intestinal content. The defence of the body is then pushed forward so to speak. However, during chronic stress the defence of the body is weakened and allergens can penetrate to deep into the body. Food allergies and various intestinal diseases, such as Crohn`s disease, ulcerative colitus and irritable bowel syndrome can in part be caused or enhanced by chronic stress. The mechanism behind this has yet to be elucidated.

Michel Philippens | alphagalileo

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht How brains surrender to sleep
23.06.2017 | IMP - Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pathologie GmbH

nachricht A new technique isolates neuronal activity during memory consolidation
22.06.2017 | Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>