Intestinal permeability to polyethylene glycols in monozygotic twins with Crohn's disease

Scand J Gastroenterol. 1995 Aug;30(8):780-3. doi: 10.3109/00365529509096327.


Background: A deranged mucosal permeability, demonstrated in several studies, has been proposed to play a role in the pathogenesis of Crohn's disease. The possibility of a genetically determined alteration of paracellular transport has been indicated in some investigations. The identification of a group of monozygotic twin pairs concordant and discordant for Crohn's disease, prompted this investigation.

Methods: Intestinal absorption after an oral load of different-sized polyethylene glycols (mol.wt, 458-810) was studied as 6-h urinary recovery. The study groups comprised twins with Crohn's disease (n = 19) and their healthy twin siblings (n = 9), non-twin patients with Crohn's disease (n = 14), and healthy controls (n = 30).

Results: No differences were found in the absorption of polyethylene glycols between the study groups.

Conclusion: The results give no support to the hypothesis of a genetically determined intestinal leakiness in Crohn's disease.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Crohn Disease / genetics
  • Crohn Disease / metabolism*
  • Diseases in Twins*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Absorption / physiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Permeability
  • Polyethylene Glycols / pharmacokinetics*
  • Twins, Monozygotic


  • Polyethylene Glycols