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Rafea and Miftahof: Periodic oscillatory myoelectrical activity in the gut

Introduction: Myoelectrical (ME) activity, including slow waves and spikes, modulate a variety of patterns of intestinal motility. Any abnormality in the generation and propagation of migrating ME complexes leads to uncoordinated contractions of smooth muscle syncytia, responsible for a clinical condition classified as intestinal dysrhythmia.

Objectives: To investigate the dynamics of myoelectrical patterns in the wall of the small bowel under normal and pathological conditions.

Materials and methods: The study applied a computer model to analyse electromechanical wave phenomena in a functional unit of the gut. The computer model was based on anatomical and physiological data obtained from in vivo and in vitro experiments. During the numerical experiments the spatial distribution and the dynamics of ME patterns, frequencies, velocities and active forces were recorded.

Results: Results of numerical experiments revealed periodic oscillatory activity in the longitudinal smooth muscle layer of the organ. This depended on pacemaker settings and intrinsic electrical properties of muscle syncytia. The observed self-sustained ME activity might underlie the pathogenesis of intestinal dysrhythmia.

Conclusions: A detailed explanation for the observed event cannot be provided at present. We suggest that the abnormal oscillatory activity of interstitial cells of Cajal and histomorphological arrangements among muscle cells contribute to the outcome.

Acknowledgements: Arabian Gulf University for sponsoring the research.




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