Intraluminal gel ultrasound and eco-color doppler: new tools for the study of colorectal cancer in mice.

Antonio, Barbieri, Maria Luisa, Barretta, Domenica, Rea, Carmine, Picone, Olimpia, Fabozzi, Giuseppe, Palma, Luciano, Antonio, Alessandro, Federico, Sabrina, Bimonte, Francesca, Setola, Elisabetta, De Lutio Di Castelguidone, Maria, Castellano, Adolfo Gallipoli, D'Errico, Michele, Caraglia, Claudio, Arra

In vivo (Athens, Greece) |

AIM: Azoxymethane (AOM) is a potent carcinogen that induces colorectal cancer in mice. Intraluminal gel ultrasound is a technique based on the injection of gel into the rectum. This technique allows the colon to be straightened and to visualize and identify tumours. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty female C57Bl/6J mice were injected intraperitoneally with 10 mg/kg of AOM one time per week for six weeks. The mice were monitored by ultrasound with a Vevo 2100 system. We evaluated the tumour area and tumour vasculature with Ecocolor-Doppler (ECD). Histological examination of sacrificed mice was employed as the standard protocol. RESULTS: After 40 weeks from the injection, ultrasound analysis revealed the presence of tumours in 50% of all mice. Ex vivo analysis revealed the presence of 57% true-positives and only one false-positive. In two mice, ultrasound did not reveale the presence of tumour due to its small dimension. This indicates that ultrasound is able to detect only tumours with sizes ≥3 mm². CONCLUSION: Ultrasound is a rapid examination compared to other diagnostic techniques. It has a good sensitivity when the tumours reach the dimensions of 3 mm² or more. Intraluminal gel allows for the tumour area to be evaluated when mice are still alive, while ECD allows for vasculature of intestinal walls and colorectal tumour to be evaluated.