Research Summary: The Anti-Inflammatory and Antibacterial Basis of Human Omental Defense: Selective Expression of Cytokines and Antimicrobial Peptides



The wound healing properties of the human omentum are well known and have extensively been exploited clinically. However, the underlying mechanisms of these effects are not well understood. We hypothesize that the omentum tissue promotes wound healing via modulation of anti-inflammatory pathways, and because the omentum is rich in adipocytes, the adipocytes may modulate the anti-inflammatory response. Factors released by human omentum may affect healing, inflammation and immune defense.


Six human omentum tissues (non obese, free from malignancy, and any other systemic disorder) were obtained during diagnostic laparoscopies having a negative outcome. Healthy oral mucosa (obtained from routine oral biopsies) was used as control. Cultured adipocytes derived from human omentum were exposed to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) (1–50 ng/mL) for 12–72 hours to identify the non-cytotoxic doses. Levels of expression (mRNA and protein) were carried out for genes associated with pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine responses and antibacterial/antimicrobial activity using qRT-PCR, western blotting, and cell-based ELISA assays.


The study shows significant higher levels of expression (mRNA and protein) of several specific cytokines, and antibacterial peptides in the omentum tissues when compared to oral sub-mucosal tissues. In the validation studies, primary cultures of adipocytes, derived from human omentum were exposed to LPS (5 and 10 ng/mL) for 24 and 48 h. The altered expressions were more pronounced in cultured adipocytes cells when exposed to LPS as compared to the omentum tissue.


Perhaps, this is the first report that provides evidence of expressional changes in pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines and antibacterial peptides in the normal human omentum tissue as well as adipocytes cultured from this tissue. The study provides new insights on the molecular and cellular mechanisms of healing and defense by the omentum, and suggests the potential applicability of cultured adipocytes derived from the omentum for future therapeutic applications.


Publisher: Public Library of Science

Date Published: 24-May-2011

Author(s): Chandra A., Srivastava R., Kashyap M., Kumar R., Srivastava R., Pant A.


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