Hyaluronan in intestinal homeostasis and inflammation: implications for fibrosis, 2011

Topics: fascia, mesenchymal cells, colitis, extracellular matrix, fibrosis, HA

Authors: Carol A. de la Motte


The causes of fibrosis, or the inappropriate wound healing, that follows chronic intestinal inflammation are not well defined and likely involve the contributions of multiple cellular mechanisms. As other articles in this series confirm, inflammatory cytokines clearly play a role in driving cell differentiation to the myofibroblast phenotype, promoting proliferation and extracellular matrix deposition that are characteristic of fibrotic tissue. However, controlling the balance of cytokines produced and process of myofibroblast differentiation appears to be more complex. This review considers ways in which hyaluronan, an extracellular matrix component that is remodeled during the progression of colitis, may provide indirect as well as direct cues that influence the balancing act of intestinal wound healing.

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