Effect of old age on the subpopulations of enteric glial cells in human descending colon

  • Nicholas Baidoo (Speaker)

Activity: Talk or presentation for an academic audienceOral presentation for an academic audience


Old age is associated with a higher incidence of lower bowel conditions such as constipation. Recent evidence suggest that colonic motility may be influenced by enteric glial cells(EGCs). Little is known about the effect of ageing on the subpopulation of EGCs in the human colon. We assessed and compared the pattern of distribution of EGCs in adult and elderly human colon. Human descending colon were obtained from 23 cancer patients comprising of adults(23-63 years; 6 male, 7 female) and elderly(66 – 81 year; 6 male, 4 female). Specimens were serially-sectioned and immunolabeled with anti-Sox-10, anti-S100 and anti-GFAP for morphometric analysis. Standardised procedures were utilised to ensure unbiased counting and densitometric evaluation of EGCs. The number of Sox-10 immunoreactive (IR) EGCs were unaltered with age in both the myenteric plexus (MP) (respectively, in adult and elderly patients, 1,939±82 and 1,760 ± 44 /mm length; P > 0.05) and submucosal plexus; there were no apparent differences between adult males and females. The density of S100-IR EGCs declined among the elderly in the circular muscle and within the MP per ganglionic area. In the adult colon, there were more S100-IR EGCs distributed in the circular muscle per unit area than the taenia coli. There were little or no GFAP-IR EGCs in both adult and elderly colon. We concluded that ageing of the human descending colon does not result in a loss of Sox-10-IR EGCs in the MP and SMP but reduces S100-IR EGCs density within the musculature. This alteration in myenteric EGCs density with age may contribute to colonic dysfunction.

Period9 Oct 202211 Oct 2022
Event titleUnited European Gastroenterology Week, Oct 2022: UEG 2022
Event typeConference
Conference numberUEG 2022
LocationVienna, AustriaShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational