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Colitis is inflammation of the colon, but can be used to refer to inflammation in other sections of the large intestine. The symptoms of colitis vary widely and include abdominal pain, diarrhoea and bloating.
Serotonin is a key intercellular signalling molecule with well-known functions in the gastrointestinal tract, particularly for motility. This Review explores the non-conventional roles of gut-derived serotonin in the gut and other peripheral tissues, including during gastrointestinal inflammation, haematopoiesis, metabolic homeostasis and bone remodelling.
This Primer describes the mechanisms underlying the serious effects of Clostridium difficile infection, which is the leading cause of health-care-associated infective diarrhoea. Strategies for diagnosis, prevention and management are also described, illustrating the burden that C. difficile infection places on patients and society.
FDNC4 is a poorly characterized homologue of FNDC5/irisin, a myokine induced by exercise. Here the authors show that FDNC4 increases macrophage survival in growth factor deprivation, inhibits phagocytosis and transcriptional responses to M1 and M2 polarizing stimuli, and protects mice from DSS-induced colitis.
Chronic inflammation is a well-known risk factor for developing colitis-associated colorectal cancer. A new study reports that aberrant activation of innate immune responses increases susceptibility to colitis and colorectal cancer. These findings identify an epithelial cell-intrinsic mechanism by which the innate immune system promotes tumorigenesis through the activation of PI3K–mTOR signalling.