Mucosal expression of S100A12 (calgranulin C) and S100A8/A9 (calprotectin) and correlation with serum and fecal concentrations in dogs with chronic inflammatory enteropathy. Academic Article uri icon


  • S100A12 and S100A8/A9 (calprotectin) are released from activated mononuclear cells and belong to the group of damage associated molecular patterns. Fecal S100A12 and S100A8/A9 concentrations have been suggested as biomarkers of intestinal inflammation in dogs with chronic inflammatory enteropathies (CIE). However, the mucosal cellular infiltrate in dogs with CIE is primarily lymphocytic-plasmacytic. Whether fecal S100A12 and S100A8/A9 levels reflect the number and/or activity of intestinal mucosal mononuclear cells, or whether these proteins are also produced by other cells has not been investigated. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate intestinal mucosal S100A12 and S100A8/A9 positivity and a potential relationship with the respective protein concentrations in serum and fecal samples in dogs with CIE. Serum (single sample), fecal samples (from 3 consecutive days), and gastrointestinal tissue biopsies (i.e., stomach, duodenum, ileum, and colon) were evaluated from 21 dogs with CIE. Serum and fecal S100A12 and S100A8/A9 concentrations were measured by analytically validated in-house ELISAs. Tissue biopsies underwent routine histopathology and immunohistochemical evaluation for S100A12 and S100A8/A9 positivity (S100A12+ and S100A8/A9+, each recorded as positive cells/mm2). S100A12+ and S100A8/A9+ cells were identified in all segments of the gastrointestinal tract, but were predominantly localized in the lamina propria (LP). Duodenal LP S100A12 positivity correlated statistically significantly with that in the stomach and ileum (=0.66 and 0.69, both p<0.01), but was inversely correlated with the severity of macrophage infiltration in the duodenum (=-0.47, p=0.042). Ileal LP S100A8/A9 positivity correlated positively with the extent of ileal neutrophil and macrophage infiltration (=0.61, p=0.047). Fecal S100A12 concentrations strongly correlated with the number of S100A12+ cells along the entire gastrointestinal tract (=0.76, p=0.028), whereas serum S100A12 concentrations were inversely correlated to colonic S100A12+ cell counts (=-0.50, p=0.043). Mucosal S100A8/A9+ cell counts were not associated with the corresponding fecal or serum S100A8/A9 concentrations. These results suggest that the intestinal mucosa in dogs with CIE contains an increased number of activated (pro-inflammatory) phagocytes expressing and secreting the S100A12 protein, but the macrophage population seen on routine histopathology is predominantly mature (anti-inflammatory) with a reduced or absent expression of S100A12 and a normal or increased expression of S100A8/A9. However, the distribution of intestinal S100A8/A9 expression requires further study.

published proceedings

  • Vet Immunol Immunopathol

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Heilmann, R. M., Nestler, J., Schwarz, J., Grtzner, N., Ambrus, A., Seeger, J., ... Gurtner, C.

citation count

  • 15

complete list of authors

  • Heilmann, Romy M||Nestler, Jasmin||Schwarz, Jutta||Grützner, Niels||Ambrus, Andy||Seeger, Johannes||Suchodolski, Jan S||Steiner, Jörg M||Gurtner, Corinne

publication date

  • May 2019