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International Journal of Cell Biology
Volume 2015, Article ID 481301, 5 pages
Review Article

The Role of Hyaluronan in Innate Defense Responses of the Intestine

Department of Pathobiology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA

Received 24 October 2014; Accepted 31 January 2015

Academic Editor: Arnoud Sonnenberg

Copyright © 2015 Carol A. de la Motte and Sean P. Kessler. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Hyaluronan is an abundant extracellular matrix component prevalent in the vertebrate intestinal tract. Here we discuss what is known about hyaluronan distribution during homeostasis and inflammatory diseases of the gut and discuss ways in which this glycosaminoglycan can participate in regulating innate host defense mechanisms. These natural responses include mechanisms promoting rapid leukocyte recruitment after bacterial challenge/colon tissue damage as well as promoting epithelial defense mechanisms in the intestine.