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Role of ROCK expression in gallbladder smooth muscle contraction

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Cholelithiasis is a common medical condition whose incidence rate is increasing yearly, while its pathogenesis has yet to be elucidated. The present study assessed the expression of Rhokinase (ROCK) in gallbladder smooth muscles and its effect on the contractile function of gallbladder smooth muscles during gallstone formation. Thirty male guinea pigs were randomly divided into three groups: The control group, the gallstone model group and the fasudil interference group. The fasting volume (FV) and bile capacity of the gallbladder (FB) as well as the total cholesterol (TC) and triglyceride (TG) contents of the gallbladder bile were determined. In addition, the gallbladder was dissected to identify whether any gallstones had formed. Part of the gallbladder tissue specimens were used for immunohistochemical analysis of ROCK expression in gallbladder smooth muscles. The results showed that four guinea pigs in the model group and eight in the fasudil group displayed gallstone formation, while there was no gallstone formation in the control group. The FV and FB were significantly increased in the model and fasudil groups. Similarly, the TC and TG contents of gallbladder bile were increased in these groups. The positive expression rate of ROCK in gallbladder smooth muscles in the model and fasudil groups was significantly reduced compared with that in the control group (P<0.05). The results of the present study indicated that the reduction of ROCK expression in guinea pig gallbladder smooth muscles weakened gallbladder contraction and thereby promoted gallstone formation.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Hepatobiliary and Laparoscopic Surgery, Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, Hubei 430060, P.R. China

Publication date: August 1, 2015

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  • Molecular Medicine Reports is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal available in print and online, that includes studies devoted to molecular medicine, underscoring aspects including pharmacology, pathology, genetics, neurosciences, infectious diseases, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. In vitro and in vivo studies of experimental model systems pertaining to the mechanisms of a variety of diseases offer researchers the necessary tools and knowledge with which to aid the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.
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