Studies of experimental pancreatitis have generally focussed on early time points rather than the stages of healing and resolution or scarring. We recently characterized a new pancreatitis model of moderate severity by combining intraductal infusion of very low concentrations of glycodeoxycholic acid with intravenous caerulein. This study evaluates late histopathologic changes and gross complications in this pancreatitis model. compared to the traditionally used high-dose bile salt model in rats. After 14 days, histopathologic features of caerulein pancreatitis were not different from saline controls. High-dose intraductal bile salt infusion resulted in widespread chronic inflammation, acinar dilation and atrophy, marked reactive stromal proliferation, and ductular budding with periductal fibrosis. In contrast, animals receiving low-dose intraductal bile salt infusion combined with intravenous caerulein demonstrated a moderate degree of chronic inflammation and acinar atrophy along with an intermediate degree of periductal fibrosis and stromal reaction. We conclude that due to its moderate degree of injury, this model may be useful for the study of tissue injury and repair following acute pancreatitis.
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