Platelet-derived growth factor and its receptors are expressed in areas of both active inflammation and active fibrosis in inflammatory bowel disease

Tohoku J Exp Med. 2001 Sep;195(1):21-33. doi: 10.1620/tjem.195.21.


The aim of the present study is to clarify in situ expression of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and its receptors in different phases of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Tissues samples were obtained from 20 patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) and 29 with Crohn's disease (CD) at surgery. In situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry on frozen sections were performed for PDGF-A and -B and its alpha and beta receptors (alphaR and betaR). The area of active inflammation was infiltrated by abundant polymorphonuclear and mononuclear leukocytes, of which the latter expressed mRNA and proteins of PDGF-A, -B, and -alphaR and mRNA for PDGF-betaR. The area of active fibrosis, characterized by activated fibroblasts/ myofibroblasts, was juxtaposed to ulceration, which is induced as a repair process to tissue destruction. In these areas, activated fibroblasts/myofibroblasts were positive for mRNA and protein of PDGF-A, -B, -alphaR, and -betaR. The expression of PDGF-A, -B, and -alphaR declined significantly in the scar area. Our results suggest that PDGF is not only important as an inducer of fibrosis in the repair phase but also it is involved in the active inflammatory phase possibly as a chemoattractant for mononuclear inflammatory cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cicatrix / metabolism
  • Cicatrix / pathology
  • Female
  • Fibrosis
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / metabolism*
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / pathology*
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Immunoelectron
  • Middle Aged
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / metabolism*
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha / metabolism
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor beta / metabolism
  • Receptors, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / metabolism*


  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor beta
  • Receptors, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor