Intestinal mesenchymal cells

I. V. Pinchuk, R. C. Mifflin, J. I. Saada, D. W. Powell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


The non-white blood cell mesenchymal elements of the intestinal lamina propria are the myofibroblasts, fibroblasts, pericytes, stromal stem cells, muscularis mucosae, and the smooth muscle of the villus core associated with the lymphatic lacteal. We review the functional anatomy of these mesenchymal cells, what is known about their origin in the embryo and their replacement in adults, their putative role in intestinal mucosal morphogenesis, and the intestinal stem cell niche, and we consider new information about myofibroblasts as nonprofessional immune cells. Although our knowledge of the function of mesenchymal cells in intestinal disease is rudimentary, we briefly consider here their roles in cancer and intestinal inflammation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)310-318
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent gastroenterology reports
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adaptive immunity
  • Alpha smooth muscle actin
  • Antigen presentation
  • Cancer microenvironment
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Fibrocyte
  • Inflammation
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Innate immunity
  • Intestinal immunity
  • Intestinal inflammation
  • Intestinal morphogenesis
  • Lymphatic lacteal
  • Mesenchymal stem cell
  • Mucosal immunology
  • Mucosal tolerance
  • Muscularis mucosae
  • Myofibroblast
  • Pericyte
  • Programmed cell death ligands
  • Regulatory T cell
  • Stem cell niche
  • Stromal cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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