Rhesus macaque with cecal fistula: A model for studying gut mucosal immunity

D. L. Schmucker, T. Kato, R. L. Owen, J. Anderson, Chris J Miller, M. F. Heyworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Quantitative assessment of the gastrointestinal secretory immune response in humans is compromised by technical and ethical issues. This article describes initial studies on the secretory antibody response to direct immunization (cholera toxin) of the gut mucosa in rhesus macaques with cecal fistulae. This study provides the first characterization of this model of gut mucosal immunity. The structural integrity and appearance of the ileal mucosa remain unchanged in animals with fistulae for 4 months. The anti-cholera toxin immunoglobulin A (IgA) concentration in the gut lavage increased nearly 10-fold within approximately 3 months after the initial mucosal immunization, whereas the total lavage IgA level remained unchanged for more than 40 days. This is the first demonstration of an intestinal antibody response to direct surface immunization of the small intestinal or rectal mucosal lymphoid tissues of nonhuman primates. These data confirm the suitability of the rhesus macaque with a chronic cecal fistula as a model for studies on intestinal immunity with significant relevance to humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-242
Number of pages5
JournalRegional Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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