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Wilhelmi, Martin (2006): Die Bedeutung von Muzin-Glykoprotein in der Pathogenese der Cholezystolithiasis. Dissertation, LMU München: Faculty of Medicine
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Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Mucin is supposed to accelerate the crystallization of cholesterol in model bile while studies in native human gallbladder bile revealed conflicting results. METHODS: Therefore, we determined the relation of mucin concentration and cholesterol crystal observation time in gallbladder bile of 73 patients with cholesterol and mixed and 21 patients with pigment stones. In addition, bile samples of 20 patients with cholesterol gallstones were supplemented with either 0 (control) or 0.5-4.0 mg/ml purified bovine mucin or human mucin isolated from gallbladder bile, to study the effect of variable mucin concentrations on the crystallization of cholesterol. RESULTS: Rapid nucleating biles (</= 4 days, n = 59) showed higher mucin concentrations (0.73 +/- 0.1 mg/ml vs 0.43 +/- 0.07 mg/ml) than biles with longer (> 4 days, n = 35) cholesterol crystal observation times (P < 0.05), but no correlation between mucin concentration and cholesterol crystal observation time was observed. Supplementation experiments with bovine purified mucin (up to 4.0 mg/ml) showed no significant effect on the total amount of newly formed cholesterol crystals within 21 days. However, higher amounts of newly formed cholesterol crystals were seen in bile samples supplemented with human mucin in comparison to negative controls. CONCLUSIONS: Our results demonstrate a dose-dependent effect of human but not of bovine gallbladder mucin on the formation of cholesterol monohydrate crystals in gallbladder bile of patients with cholesterol stones. Therefore, studies of cholesterol crystallization in model bile systems may be valuable but should always be confirmed in native gallbladder bile as the more physiological effector system.