Immunohistochemical detection of MUC2 mucin core protein in ulcerative colitis

J Clin Lab Anal. 1998;12(3):150-3. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1098-2825(1998)12:3<150::AID-JCLA4>3.0.CO;2-D.


MUC2 mucin is predominantly expressed in the colon and is considered to play an important role in the protection of that organ. Recent findings suggested that MUC2 protein levels are significantly decreased in active ulcerative colitis (UC). We therefore performed an immunohistochemical study to reveal if the expression of MUC2 protein is altered in UC. Seventy-nine biopsy tissue specimens from 31 UC patients, along with normal colon tissues, were immunostained with anti-MUC2 mucin core protein monoclonal antibody (MoAb) CCP58 (IgG1). UC tissue specimens were divided into two groups based on the histological severity of inflammation, i.e., 64 with active inflammation (grades 2-5) and 15 without (grade 1). In the former group, 52 out of 64 (81.3%) tissue specimens contained sections of glands with a few cells positive for MoAb CCP58. These glands were small and consisted of MUC2 negative-short cells and a few positive cells without apparent mucus formation, considered to be immature regenerative glands. In contrast, the staining pattern was almost the same as that of the normal colon and no immature glands were seen in the group without active inflammation. The sections of immature regenerative glands with a few MUC2-positive cells were exclusively found in the UC tissues with active inflammation, but not in those without it, suggesting that the expression of MUC2 protein may be decreased in active UC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Colitis, Ulcerative / physiopathology*
  • Colon / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Middle Aged
  • Mucin-2
  • Mucins / analysis*
  • Mucins / immunology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • MUC2 protein, human
  • Mucin-2
  • Mucins