Effects of Mast Cells Induced by NSAIDs Impair Intestinal Epithelial Barrier Function In Vivo and In Vitro


To explore the correlation between altered expression of mast cells and PAR-2 and impaired mucosal barrier in NSAIDs enteropathy through animal and cell experiments, and to elucidate the role of mast cells and PAR-2 in the pathogenesis of NSAIDs enteropathy and the regulatory mechanism of the tight junction of intestinal epithelium. Animal experiments: the NSAIDs-related small intestine injury model was established by intragastric administration of diclofenac sodium, and mast cells were detected by toluidine blue staining. Cell experiments: Intestinal epithelial cell line (IEC-6) was applied with diclofenac sodium and its activity was detected by CCK-8.IEC-6 and RBL-2H3 were co-cultured to evaluate the permeability of intestinal epithelial cells by detecting the concentration of potassium ion and LDH. The expressions of tight junction proteins (zo-1, claudin-1, occludin), cytoskeletal components (actin, tubulin, keratin) and par-2 were analyzed by Western Blot. In animal experiments, the number of mast cells was significantly increased after 24 h of action of diclofenac sodium. In cell experiments, the survival rate of IEC-6 cells decreased significantly when the concentration of diclofenac sodium is more than 50 μg/mL; after 24 h of co-culture, the potassium and LDH concentration in the co-culture group were significantly higher, and the expression of ZO-1, claudin-1, occludin, tubulin, and keratin was decreased. Mast cells activate PAR-2 in intestinal epithelial cells, downregulate the related proteins of cell tight junctions and cytoskeletal proteins, and increase the permeability of intestinal epithelial cells.

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Data Availability

The datasets used and/or analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.


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This research was supported by funding from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (82074214, 81973598,81573760); Zhejiang Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant No.LY18H030001; the Medicine and Health Science and Technology Plan Projects in Zhejiang province(2017KY413), Traditional Chinese Medicine Science and Technology Plan of Zhejiang Province(2017ZA089, 2016ZB071, 2015ZZ012, 2014ZA030); Medical Health Platform Plan Projects of Zhejiang Province (2015RCA020); Zhejiang Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China (LY16H030010).

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Guanqun Chao wrote the article. Xiaojie Hong did the experiment. Shuo Zhang guided.

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Correspondence to Shuo Zhang.

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Chao, G., Hong, X. & Zhang, S. Effects of Mast Cells Induced by NSAIDs Impair Intestinal Epithelial Barrier Function In Vivo and In Vitro. Inflammation (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10753-021-01424-z

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  • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • mast cell
  • diclofenac
  • small intestinal injury
  • PAR-2