The authors previously reported that mesenteric ischemia and reperfusion (I/R) in a chronic newborn piglet model creates dysfunctional intestinal motility. Whether this leads to inadequate bacterial clearance and translocation (BT) through the gastrointestinal tract remains unclear. To test this hypothesis the authors used their chronic piglet model (weight, 3.5 +/- 0.3 kg; age, 18 +/- 4 days; on formula feeding); nonocclusive mesenteric ischemia was induced via reversible pericardial tamponade. Mesenteric flow (SMA Doppler measurement via the retroperitoneal approach) was decreased to 25% +/- 5% of baseline for 300 minutes in the ischemia group (n = 7) and followed by 14 hours of reperfusion in the I/R group (n = 6). Control subjects had a sham operation (n = 7). Mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN), liver (L), spleen (S), ileum, peritoneum, and blood were harvested for blind quantitative microbial analysis. Subjects in the control group had no cultures positive for growth. Eighty-five percent of animals in the ischemia group had positive MLN cultures only (P < .05 v control). All piglets in the I/R group had positive MLN cultures (P < .05 v control), and one third of them manifested bacteremia. Histological examination did not show mucosal disruption in any group. The validity of this model is confirmed by the negative cultures in the control group and by the presence of normal ileal flora in all animals. In the ischemia and I/R groups, MLN cultures were consistently positive with gram-negative bacilli (Escherichia coli and/or Klebsiella pneumoniae). When subjects of the I/R group had more than 1,000 colonies in the MLN, bacteremia with the translocating organisms was also identified.
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