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Gut lumen formation defect can cause intestinal atresia: evidence from histological studies of human embryos and intestinal atresia septum

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 April 2021

Xuelai Liu
Affiliation:
Department of Surgery, Capital Institute of Pediatrics affiliated Children Hospital, Beijing 100020, China
Peiyu Hao
Affiliation:
Department of Anatomy, Wuxi School of Medicine, Jiangnan University, WuXi, Jiangsu 214122, China
Vincent Chi Hang Lui
Affiliation:
Department of Surgery, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, HKSAR, Hong Kong
Xianghui Xie
Affiliation:
Department of Surgery, Capital Institute of Pediatrics affiliated Children Hospital, Beijing 100020, China
Yingchao Li
Affiliation:
Department of Pediatric Surgery, HeBei Medical University affiliated 2nd Hospital, ShiJiaZhuang, Hebei 050000, China
Yanbiao Song
Affiliation:
Central Laboratory, HeBei Medical University affiliated 2nd Hospital, ShiJiaZhuang, Hebei 050000, China
Long Li*
Affiliation:
Department of Surgery, Capital Institute of Pediatrics affiliated Children Hospital, Beijing 100020, China
Zhe-Wu Jin*
Affiliation:
Department of Anatomy, Wuxi School of Medicine, Jiangnan University, WuXi, Jiangsu 214122, China
*
Address for correspondence: Long Li, Department of Surgery, Capital Institute of Pediatrics affiliated Children Hospital, No.2, Yabao Rd, Chaoyang district, Beijing, 100020 China. Email: lilong23@126.com; Zhe-Wu Jin, Department of Anatomy, Wuxi School of Medicine, Jiangnan University, WuXi, 214122 China. Email: zwjin@jiangnan.edu.cn
Address for correspondence: Long Li, Department of Surgery, Capital Institute of Pediatrics affiliated Children Hospital, No.2, Yabao Rd, Chaoyang district, Beijing, 100020 China. Email: lilong23@126.com; Zhe-Wu Jin, Department of Anatomy, Wuxi School of Medicine, Jiangnan University, WuXi, 214122 China. Email: zwjin@jiangnan.edu.cn

Abstract

Intestinal atresia (IA), a common cause of neonatal intestinal obstruction, is a developmental defect, which disrupts the luminal continuity of the intestine. Here, we investigated (i) the process of lumen formation in human embryos; and (ii) how a defective lumen formation led to IA. We performed histological and histochemical study on 6–10 gestation week human embryos and on IA septal regions. To investigate the topology of embryonic intestine development, we conducted 3D reconstruction. We showed that a 6–7th gestation week embryonic gut has no lumen, but filled with mesenchyme cells and vacuoles of a monolayer of epithelial cells. A narrow gut lumen was formed by gestation week-9, the gut was filled with numerous vacuoles of different sizes, some vacuoles were merging with the developing embryonic gut wall. At gestation week-10, a prominent lumen was developed, only few vacuoles were present and were merging with the intestine wall. At IA septal regions, vacuoles were located in the submucous layer, covered by a single layer of epithelium without glandular structure, and surrounded with fibrous tissue. The mucosal epithelium was developed with lamina propria and basement membrane, but the submucosa and the longitudinal smooth muscle layers were not properly developed. Hence, the vacuoles in IA septum could represent a remnant of vacuoles of embryonic gut. In conclusion, the fusion of vacuoles with the developing intestine wall associates with the disappearance of vacuoles and gut lumen formation in human embryos, and perturbation of these developmental events could lead to IA.

Type
Original Article
Copyright
© The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press in association with International Society for Developmental Origins of Health and Disease

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