Clinical Focus

  • Pediatric Gastroenterology

Academic Appointments

Administrative Appointments

  • Chief, Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition, Stanford Univeristy (2019 - Present)

Professional Education

  • Board Certification: Pediatric Gastroenterology, American Board of Pediatrics (2005)
  • Fellowship:Yale University Pediatric Gastroenterology Fellowship (2004) CT
  • Residency:New York University Pediatric Residency (2001) NY
  • Medical Education:Tufts University School of Medicine Office of the Registrar (1998) MA
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition (2004)
  • Clinical Fellowship, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, & Nutrition (2002)
  • Residency, New York University Medical Center, New York, NY, Pediatrics (2001)
  • MD, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, Medicine (1998)
  • BS, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY, Biological Sciences (1994)

All Publications

  • Asparagine synthetase is highly expressed at baseline in the pancreas through heightened PERK signaling. Cellular and molecular gastroenterology and hepatology Mukherjee, A., Ahmed, N., Rose, F., Ahmad, A. N., Javed, T. A., Wen, L., Bottino, R., Xiao, X., Kilberg, M. S., Husain, S. Z. 2019


    Asparaginase (ASNase) causes pancreatitis in about 10% of leukemia patients, and the mechanisms underlying this painful complication are not known. ASNase primarily depletes circulating asparagine (Asn), and the endogenously expressed enzyme, asparagine synthetase (ASNS), replenishes Asn. ASNS was previously suggested to be highly expressed in the pancreas. In this study, we determined the expression pattern of ASNS in the pancreas and the mechanism for elevated pancreatic ASNS abundance. Compared to other organs, ASNS was highly expressed in both the human and mouse pancreas, and, within the pancreas, ASNS was primarily present in the acinar cells. The high baseline pancreatic ASNS was associated with higher baseline activation of protein kinase R-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK) signaling in the pancreas, and inhibition of PERK in acinar cells lessened ASNS expression. ASNase exposure, but not the common pancreatitis triggers, uniquely upregulated ASNS expression, indicating that the increase is mediated by nutrient stress. The upregulation of acinar ASNS with ASNase exposure was due to increased transcriptional rather than delayed degradation. Knockdown of ASNS in the 266-6 acinar cells provoked acinar cell injury and worsened ASNase-induced injury, while ASNS overexpression protected against ASNase-induced injury. In summary, ASNS is highly expressed in the pancreatic acinar cells through heightened basal activation of PERK, and ASNS appears to be crucial to maintaining acinar cell integrity. The implications are that ASNS is especially hardwired in the pancreas to protect against both baseline perturbations and with nutrient deprivation stressors, such as during ASNase exposure.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jcmgh.2019.08.003

    View details for PubMedID 31421261

  • Animal Models: Challenges and Opportunities to Determine Optimal Experimental Models of Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer. Pancreas Saloman, J. L., Albers, K. M., Cruz-Monserrate, Z., Davis, B. M., Edderkaoui, M., Eibl, G., Epouhe, A. Y., Gedeon, J. Y., Gorelick, F. S., Grippo, P. J., Groblewski, G. E., Husain, S. Z., Lai, K. K., Pandol, S. J., Uc, A., Wen, L., Whitcomb, D. C. 2019; 48 (6): 759–79


    At the 2018 PancreasFest meeting, experts participating in basic research met to discuss the plethora of available animal models for studying exocrine pancreatic disease. In particular, the discussion focused on the challenges currently facing the field and potential solutions. That meeting culminated in this review, which describes the advantages and limitations of both common and infrequently used models of exocrine pancreatic disease, namely, pancreatitis and exocrine pancreatic cancer. The objective is to provide a comprehensive description of the available models but also to provide investigators with guidance in the application of these models to investigate both environmental and genetic contributions to exocrine pancreatic disease. The content covers both nongenic and genetically engineered models across multiple species (large and small). Recommendations for choosing the appropriate model as well as how to conduct and present results are provided.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPA.0000000000001335

    View details for PubMedID 31206467

  • Risk Factors for Rapid Progression From Acute Recurrent to Chronic Pancreatitis in Children: Report From INSPPIRE. Journal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition Liu, Q. Y., Abu-El-Haija, M., Husain, S. Z., Barth, B., Bellin, M., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Lin, T. K., Maqbool, A., Mascarenhas, M., McFerron, B. A., Morinville, V. D., Nathan, J. D., Ooi, C. Y., Perito, E. R., Pohl, J. F., Rhee, S., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Shah, U., Troendle, D., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Zimmerman, M. B., Lowe, M. E., Uc, A. 2019


    OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to determine the rate of progression from acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) to chronic pancreatitis (CP) in children and assess risk factors.STUDY DESIGN: Data were collected from the INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE (INSPPIRE) cohort. Kaplan-Meier curves were constructed to calculate duration of progression from initial attack of acute pancreatitis (AP) to CP. Log-rank test was used to compare survival (nonprogression) probability distribution between groups. Cox proportional hazard regression models were fitted to obtain hazard ratio (with 95% confidence interval [CI]) of progression for each risk variable.RESULTS: Of 442 children, 251 had ARP and 191 had CP. The median time of progression from initial attack of AP to CP was 3.79 years. The progression was faster in those ages 6 years or older at the first episode of AP compared to those younger than 6 years (median time to CP: 2.91 vs 4.92 years; P = 0.01). Children with pathogenic PRSS1 variants progressed more rapidly to CP compared to children without PRSS1 variants (median time to CP: 2.52 vs 4.48 years; P = 0.003). Within 6 years after the initial AP attack, cumulative proportion with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency was 18.0% (95% CI: 12.4%, 25.6%); diabetes mellitus was 7.7% (95% CI: 4.2%, 14.1%).CONCLUSIONS: Children with ARP rapidly progress to CP, exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, and diabetes. The progression to CP is faster in children who were 6 years or older at the first episode of AP or with pathogenic PRSS1 variants. The factors that affect the aggressive disease course in childhood warrant further investigation.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002405

    View details for PubMedID 31136562

  • The Orai Ca2+ channel inhibitor CM4620 targets both parenchymal and immune cells to reduce inflammation in experimental acute pancreatitis. The Journal of physiology Waldron, R. T., Chen, Y., Pham, H., Go, A., Su, H., Hu, C., Wen, L., Husain, S. Z., Sugar, C. A., Roos, J., Ramos, S., Lugea, A., Dunn, M., Stauderman, K., Pandol, S. J. 2019


    KEY POINTS: This work confirms previous reports that CM4620, a small molecule inhibitor of Ca2+ entry via store operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) channels formed by stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1)/Orai complexes, attenuates acinar cell pathology and acute pancreatitis in mouse experimental models. Here we report that intravenous administration of CM4620 reduces the severity of acute pancreatitis in the rat, a hitherto untested species. Using CM4620, we probe further the mechanisms whereby SOCE via STIM1/Orai complexes contributes to the disease in pancreatic acinar cells, supporting a role for endoplasmic reticulum stress/cell death pathways in these cells. Using CM4620, we show that SOCE via STIM1/Orai complexes promotes neutrophil oxidative burst and inflammatory gene expression during acute pancreatitis, including in immune cells which may be either circulating or invading the pancreas. Using CM4620, we show that SOCE via STIM1/Orai complexes promotes activation and fibroinflammatory gene expression within pancreatic stellate cells.ABSTRACT: Key features of acute pancreatitis include excess cellular Ca2+ entry driven by Ca2+ depletion from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and subsequent activation of store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) channels in the plasma membrane. In several cell types, including pancreatic acinar, stellate cells (PaSCs) and immune cells, SOCE is mediated via channels composed primarily of Orai1 and stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1). CM4620, a selective Orai1 inhibitor, prevents Ca2+ entry in acinar cells. This study investigates the effects of CM4620 in preventing or reducing acute pancreatitis features and severity. We tested the effects of CM4620 on SOCE, trypsinogen activation, acinar cell death, activation of NFAT and NF-kappaB, and inflammatory responses in ex vivo and in vivo rodent models of acute pancreatitis and human pancreatic acini. We also examined whether CM4620 inhibited cytokine release in immune cells, fibro-inflammatory responses in PaSCs, and oxidative burst in neutrophils, all cell types participating in pancreatitis. CM4620 administration to rats by i.v. infusion starting 30min after induction of pancreatitis significantly diminished pancreatitis features including pancreatic oedema, acinar cell vacuolization, intrapancreatic trypsin activity, cell death signalling and acinar cell death. CM4620 also decreased myeloperoxidase activity and inflammatory cytokine expression in pancreas and lung tissues, fMLF peptide-induced oxidative burst in human neutrophils, and cytokine production in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and rodent PaSCs, indicating that Orai1/STIM1 channels participate in the inflammatory responses of these cell types during acute pancreatitis. These findings support pathological Ca2+ entry-mediated cell death and proinflammatory signalling as central mechanisms in acute pancreatitis pathobiology.

    View details for DOI 10.1113/JP277856

    View details for PubMedID 31050811

  • Pancreatitis in Children GASTROENTEROLOGY Uc, A., Husain, S. Z. 2019; 156 (7): 1969–78


    Acute, acute recurrent, and chronic forms of pancreatitis have been increasingly diagnosed in children in the past 2 decades. Risk factors in the pediatric group are broad and appear to be strikingly different compared with the adult cohort. However, the disease burden and impact on quality of life are surprisingly similar in children and adults. This review summarizes the definitions, epidemiology, risk factors, diagnosis, and management of pediatric pancreatitis, identifies features that are unique to the childhood-onset disease, identifies gaps, and proposes recommendations for future opportunities.

    View details for DOI 10.1053/j.gastro.2018.12.043

    View details for Web of Science ID 000465258000004

    View details for PubMedID 30716320

  • Chronic Pancreatitis: Pediatric and Adult Cohorts Show Similarities in Disease Progress Despite Different Risk Factors. Journal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition Schwarzenberg, S. J., Uc, A., Zimmerman, B., Wilschanski, M., Wilcox, C. M., Whitcomb, D. C., Werlin, S. L., Troendle, D., Tang, G., Slivka, A., Singh, V. K., Sherman, S., Shah, U., Sandhu, B. S., Romagnuolo, J., Rhee, S., Pohl, J. F., Perito, E. R., Ooi, C. Y., Nathan, J. D., Muniraj, T., Morinville, V. D., McFerron, B., Mascarenhas, M., Maqbool, A., Liu, Q., Lin, T. K., Lewis, M., Husain, S. Z., Himes, R., Heyman, M. B., Guda, N., Gonska, T., Giefer, M. J., Gelrud, A., Gariepy, C. E., Gardner, T. B., Freedman, S. D., Forsmark, C. E., Fishman, D. S., Cote, G. A., Conwell, D., Brand, R. E., Bellin, M., Barth, B., Banks, P. A., Anderson, M. A., Amann, S. T., Alkaade, S., Abu-El-Haija, M., Abberbock, J. N., Lowe, M. E., Yadav, D. 2019; 68 (4): 566–73


    OBJECTIVES: The aim of the present study was to investigate the natural history of chronic pancreatitis (CP); patients in the North American Pancreatitis Study2 (NAPS2, adults) and INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE (INSPPIRE, pediatric) were compared.METHODS: Demographics, risk factors, disease duration, management and outcomes of 224 children and 1063 adults were compared using appropriate statistical tests for categorical and continuous variables.RESULTS: Alcohol was a risk in 53% of adults and 1% of children (P < 0.0001); tobacco in 50% of adults and 7% of children (P < 0.0001). Obstructive factors were more common in children (29% vs 19% in adults, P = 0.001). Genetic risk factors were found more often in children. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency was similar (children 26% vs adult 33%, P = 0.107). Diabetes was more common in adults than children (36% vs 4% respectively, P < 0.0001). Median emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and missed days of work/school were similar across the cohorts. As a secondary analysis, NAPS2 subjects with childhood onset (NAPS2-CO) were compared with INSPPIRE subjects. These 2 cohorts were more similar than the total INSPPIRE and NAPS2 cohorts, including for genetic risk factors. The only risk factor significantly more common in the NAPS2-CO cohort compared with the INSPPIRE cohort was alcohol (9% NAPS2-CO vs 1% INSPPIRE cohorts, P = 0.011).CONCLUSIONS: Despite disparity in age of onset, children and adults with CP exhibit similarity in demographics, CP treatment, and pain. Differences between groups in radiographic findings and diabetes prevalence may be related to differences in risk factors associated with disease and length of time of CP.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002279

    View details for PubMedID 30897605

  • Updates in Pediatric Pancreatology: Proceedings of the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition Frontiers in Pediatric Pancreatology Symposium JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Grover, A. S., Freeman, A. J., Abu-El-Haija, M., Eisses, J. F., Gardner, T. B., Liu, Q. Y., Lowe, M. E., Nathan, J. D., Palermo, T. M., Singh, V. K., Trout, A. T., Uc, A., Husain, S. Z., Morinville, V. D. 2019; 68 (2): E27–E33


    The Pancreas Committee of the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition aims to promote awareness of pediatric pancreatic diseases, support clinical and basic science research in the field, educate pediatric gastroenterologists, and advocate on behalf of pediatric patients with pancreatic disorders. At the 2017 Annual North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition meeting, the Pancreas Committee held a full day symposium on pediatric pancreatic diseases, entitled, "Frontiers in Pediatric Pancreatology." The symposium served as a timely and novel academic meeting that brought together individuals with a vested interest in the care of children with pancreatic disorders. The objective of this day-long course was to update practicing gastroenterologists on the latest advances in research, management algorithms, endoscopic therapies, radiographic resources, surgical approaches, and novel drug therapies targeted to pediatric pancreatitis. Presentations were divided into 4 modules: diagnosis, risk factors, and natural history of pancreatitis; pancreatic imaging and exocrine function; management of pancreatitis; and new frontiers in pediatric pancreatitis research. The course fostered a unique ecosystem for interdisciplinary collaboration, in addition to promoting discussion and stimulating new research hypotheses regarding pediatric pancreatic disorders. Oral presentations by experts in various fields of pancreatology led to thought-provoking discussion; in addition, a meet-the-professor luncheon stimulated critical evaluation of current research in pediatric pancreatic diseases, highlighting knowledge gaps and future research endeavors. The current report summarizes the major learning points from this novel symposium focusing on the growing demographic of pediatric pancreatic diseases.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002186

    View details for Web of Science ID 000460934700002

    View details for PubMedID 30888340

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6444930

  • Diabetes Mellitus in Children with Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis: Data from the INSPPIRE Cohort. Journal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition Bellin, M. D., Lowe, M., Zimmerman, M. B., Wilschanski, M., Werlin, S., Troendle, D. M., Shah, U., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Pohl, J. F., Perito, E., Ooi, C. Y., Nathan, J. D., Morinville, V. D., McFerron, B. A., Mascarenhas, M. R., Maqbool, A., Liu, Q., Lin, T. K., Husain, S. Z., Himes, R., Heyman, M. B., Gonska, T., Giefer, M. J., Gariepy, C. E., Freedman, S. D., Fishman, D. S., Barth, B., Abu-El-Haija, M., Uc, A. 2019


    Adults with chronic pancreatitis (CP) have a high risk for developing pancreatogenic diabetes mellitus (DM), but little is known regarding potential risk factors for DM in children with acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) or CP. We compared demographic and clinical features of children with ARP or CP, with and without DM, in the INternational Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search of a CuRE (INSPPIRE) registry.We reviewed the INSPPIRE database for the presence or absence of physician-diagnosed DM in 397 children, excluding those with total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation, enrolled from August 2012 to August 2017. Patient demographics, body mass index percentile, age at disease onset, disease risk factors, disease burden, and treatments were compared between children with DM (n = 24) and without DM (n = 373).24 children (6.0% of the cohort) had a diagnosis of DM. Five of 13 tested were positive for beta cell autoantibodies. The DM group was 4.2 years (95% CI 3.0, 5.4) older at first episode of acute pancreatitis, and tended to more often have hypertriglyceridemia (odds ratio (OR) 5.21 (1.33, 17.05)), coexisting autoimmune disease (OR 3.94 (0.88, 13.65)) or pancreatic atrophy (OR 3.64 (1.13, 11.59)).Pancreatic atrophy may be more common among children with DM, suggesting more advanced exocrine disease. However, data in this exploratory cohort also suggest increased autoimmunity and hypertriglyceridemia in children with DM, suggesting that risk factors for Type 1 and Type 2 DM respectively may play a role in mediating DM development in children with pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002482

    View details for PubMedID 31460885

  • Rapid Progression of Acute Pancreatitis to Acute Recurrent Pancreatitis in Children JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Sweeny, K. F., Lin, T. K., Nathan, J. D., Denson, L. A., Husain, S. Z., Hornung, L., Thompson, T., Abu-El-Haija, M. 2019; 68 (1): 104–9


    Research is lacking on the natural history of acute pancreatitis (AP) progression to acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP). The aim of this project was to study the progression from AP to ARP among pediatric patients with pancreatitis to better understand the presentation and natural history of pancreatitis.Patients presenting with AP were included in a prospective database in Research Electronic Data Capture. We enrolled 115 patients with AP from March 2013 to November 2016. Physicians completed surveys regarding clinical data for patients with first attack of AP. Patients were followed prospectively, with data on progression entered when patients presented with ARP.The most common etiologies for the first attack of AP were idiopathic (31%), toxic/drug-related (23%), and biliary/gallstone (18%). Twenty of the 115 patients (17%) developed ARP during the follow-up period. Seventy percent (14/20) of patients with ARP progressed from AP to ARP within 5 months from first diagnosis. A comparison of patients who rapidly progressed to ARP within 3 months (n = 12) to those followed for >3 months without progression in 3 months (n = 97) revealed associations with a higher weight percentile for age (P = 0.045), male sex (P = 0.03), and presence of pancreatic necrosis during first AP attack (P = 0.004). Progression to ARP significantly differed by etiology group with genetics having the highest risk for ARP progression over time and patients with gallstone/biliary, viral/systemic, and obstructive (nongallstone) having the lowest risk for ARP progression over time (P = 0.02).Most patients who progressed from AP to ARP progressed within 5 months. The presence of a higher weight percentile for age, male sex, and pancreatic necrosis during the first AP attack are associated with rapid progression to ARP.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002145

    View details for Web of Science ID 000460950300027

    View details for PubMedID 30234758

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6310081

  • Accelerating the Drug Delivery Pipeline for Acute and Chronic Pancreatitis: Summary of the Working Group on Drug Development and Trials in Chronic Pancreatitis at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Workshop PANCREAS Forsmark, C. E., Andersen, D. K., Farrar, J. T., Golden, M., Habtezion, A., Husain, S. Z., Li, L., Mayerle, J., Pandol, S. J., Uc, A., Zhu, Z., Yadav, D. 2018; 47 (10): 1200–1207
  • INternational Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a CuRE Cohort Study: Design and Rationale for INSPPIRE 2 From the Consortium for the Study of Chronic Pancreatitis, Diabetes, and Pancreatic Cancer PANCREAS Uc, A., Perito, E. R., Pohl, J. F., Shah, U., Abu-El-Haija, M., Barth, B., Bellin, M. D., Ellery, K. M., Fishman, D. S., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R. W., Husain, S. Z., Maqbool, A., Mascarenhas, M. R., McFerron, B. A., Morinville, V. D., Lin, T. K., Liu, Q. Y., Nathan, J. D., Rhee, S. J., Ooi, C. Y., Sellers, Z. M., Schwarzenberg, S., Serrano, J., Troendle, D. M., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Zheng, Y., Yuan, Y., Lowe, M. E., Consortium Study Chronic 2018; 47 (10): 1222–28
  • Transient High Pressure in Pancreatic Ducts Promotes Inflammation and Alters Tight Junctions via Calcineurin Signaling in Mice GASTROENTEROLOGY Wen, L., Javed, T. A., Yimlamai, D., Mukherjee, A., Xiao, X., Husain, S. Z. 2018; 155 (4): 1250-+


    Pancreatitis after endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (PEP) is thought to be provoked by pancreatic ductal hypertension, via unknown mechanisms. We investigated the effects of hydrostatic pressures on the development of pancreatitis in mice.We performed studies with Swiss Webster mice, B6129 mice (controls), and B6129 mice with disruption of the protein phosphatase 3, catalytic subunit, βisoform gene (Cnab-/- mice). Acute pancreatitis was induced in mice by retrograde biliopancreatic ductal or intraductal infusion of saline with a constant hydrostatic pressure while the proximal common bile duct was clamped -these mice were used as a model of PEP. Some mice were given pancreatic infusions of adeno-associated virus 6-nuclear factor of activated T-cells-luciferase to monitor calcineurin activity or the calcineurin inhibitor FK506. Blood samples and pancreas were collected at 6 and 24 hours and analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, histology, immunohistochemistry, or fluorescence microscopy. Ca2+ signaling and mitochondrial permeability were measured in pancreatic acinar cells isolated 15 minutes after PEP induction. Ca2+-activated phosphatase calcineurin within the pancreas was tracked in vivo over 24 hours.Intraductal pressures of up to 130 mm Hg were observed in the previously reported model of PEP; we found that application of hydrostatic pressures of 100 and 150 mm Hg for 10 minutes consistently induced pancreatitis. Pancreatic tissues had markers of inflammation (increased levels of interleukin [IL] 6, IL1B, and tumor necrosis factor), activation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3, increased serum amylase and IL6, and loss of tight junction integrity. Transiently high pressures dysregulated Ca2+ processing (reduced Ca2+ oscillations and an increased peak plateau Ca2+ signal) and reduced the mitochondrial membrane potential. We observed activation of pancreatic calcineurin in the pancreas in mice. Cnab-/- mice, which lack the catalytic subunit of calcineurin, and mice given FK506 did not develop pressure-induced pancreatic inflammation, edema, or loss of tight junction integrity.Transient high ductal pressure produces pancreatic inflammation and loss of tight junction integrity in a mouse model of PEP. These processes require calcineurin signaling. Calcineurin inhibitors might be used to prevent acute pancreatitis that results from obstruction.

    View details for DOI 10.1053/j.gastro.2018.06.036

    View details for Web of Science ID 000446327500048

    View details for PubMedID 29928898

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6174093

  • Impact of Obesity on Pediatric Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis PANCREAS Uc, A., Zimmerman, M., Wilschanski, M., Werlin, S. L., Troendle, D., Shah, U., Schwarzenberg, S., Rhee, S., Pohl, J. F., Perito, E. R., Palermo, J. J., Ooi, C. Y., Liu, Q., Lin, T. K., Morinville, V. D., McFerron, B. A., Husain, S. Z., Himes, R., Heyman, M. B., Gonska, T., Giefer, M. J., Gariepy, C. E., Freedman, S. D., Fishman, D. S., Bellin, M. D., Barth, B., Abu-El-Haija, M., Lowe, M. E. 2018; 47 (8): 967–73


    The aim of this study was to assess the impact of obesity on pediatric acute recurrent pancreatitis or chronic pancreatitis (CP).We determined body mass index (BMI) status at enrollment in INSPPIRE (INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE) cohort using CDC criteria for pediatric-specific BMI percentiles. We used the Cochran-Armitage test to assess trends and the Jonckheere-Terpstra test to determine associations.Of 446 subjects (acute recurrent pancreatitis, n = 241; CP, n = 205), 22 were underweight, 258 normal weight, 75 overweight, and 91 were obese. The BMI groups were similar in sex, race, and age at presentation. Hypertriglyceridemia was more common in overweight or obese. Obese children were less likely to have CP and more likely to have acute inflammation on imaging. Compared with children with normal weight, obese or overweight children were older at first acute pancreatitis episode and diagnosed with CP at an older age. Obese or overweight children were less likely to undergo medical or endoscopic treatment, develop exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, and require total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation. Diabetes was similar among all groups.Obesity or overweight seems to delay the initial acute pancreatitis episode and diagnosis of CP compared with normal weight or underweight. The impact of obesity on pediatric CP progression and severity deserves further study.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPA.0000000000001120

    View details for Web of Science ID 000442381700013

    View details for PubMedID 30059474

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6095802

  • Recommendations for Diagnosis and Management of Autoimmune Pancreatitis in Childhood: Consensus From INSPPIRE JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Scheers, I., Palermo, J. J., Freedman, S., Wilschanski, M., Shah, U., Abu-El-Haija, M., Barth, B., Fishman, D. S., Gariepy, C., Giefer, M. J., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R. W., Husain, S. Z., Lin, T. K., Liu, Q., Lowe, M., Mascarenhas, M., Morinville, V., Ooi, C. Y., Perito, E. R., Piccoli, D. A., Pohl, J. F., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Troendle, D., Werlin, S., Zimmerman, B., Uc, A., Gonska, T. 2018; 67 (2): 232–36


    Autoimmune pancreatitis (AIP) represents a complex immune-mediated pancreas disorder. Pediatric AIP (P-AIP) is rare. We have recently summarized the characteristic features of P-AIP. We now aim to develop recommendation statements to standardize the diagnostic and therapeutic approach to P-AIP and facilitate future research in the field.A panel of pediatric gastroenterologists participating in the International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE was formed to discuss and then vote on 15 recommendation statements. A consensus of at least 80% was obtained following 3 voting rounds and revision of the statements.We have now generated 15 statements to help standardize the approach to diagnosis and management of P-AIP.The first P-AIP recommendation statements developed by the International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE group are intended to bring standardization to the diagnosis and treatment of this rare childhood disorder. These statements may help guide a uniform approach to patient care and facilitate future research studies.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002028

    View details for Web of Science ID 000442250800025

    View details for PubMedID 29746340

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6059991

  • New Management Guidelines for Both Children and Adults With Acute Pancreatitis GASTROENTEROLOGY Sellers, Z. M., Abu-El-Haija, M., Husain, S. Z., Morinville, V. 2018; 155 (1): 234–35
  • Pancreas Divisum in Pediatric Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis: Report From INSPPIRE. Journal of clinical gastroenterology Lin, T. K., Abu-El-Haija, M., Nathan, J. D., Palermo, J. P., Barth, B., Bellin, M., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Husain, S. Z., Liu, Q., Maqbool, A., Mascarenhas, M., McFerron, B., Morinville, V. D., Ooi, C. Y., Perito, E., Pohl, J. F., Rhee, S., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Shah, U., Troendle, D., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Zimmerman, M. B., Lowe, M. E., Uc, A. 2018


    INTRODUCTION: The significance of pancreas divisum (PD) as a risk factor for pancreatitis is controversial. We analyzed the characteristics of children with PD associated with acute recurrent or chronic pancreatitis to better understand its impact.PATIENTS AND METHODS: We compared children with or without PD in the well-phenotyped INSPPIRE (INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE) cohort. Differences were analyzed using 2-sample t test or Wilcoxon rank sum test for continuous variables, Pearson chi or Fisher exact test for categorical variables.RESULTS: PD was found in 52 of 359 (14.5%) subjects, a higher prevalence than the general population (7%). Females more commonly had PD (71% vs. 55%; P=0.02). Children with PD did not have a higher incidence of mutations in SPINK1, CFTR, CTRC compared with children with no PD. Children with PD were less likely to have PRSS1 mutations (10% vs. 34%; P<0.01) or a family history of pancreatitis (P<0.05), and more likely to have hypertriglyceridemia (11% vs. 3%; P=0.03). Children with PD underwent significantly more endoscopic procedures and pancreatic sphincterotomy. Patients with PD had fewer attacks of acute pancreatitis (P=0.03) and were less likely to develop exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (P=0.01). Therapeutic endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography was considered most helpful if pancreatic duct was impacted with stones (83% helpful).CONCLUSIONS: PD is likely a risk factor for acute recurrent pancreatitis and chronic pancreatitis in children that appears to act independently of genetic risk factors. Patients with PD and stones obstructing the pancreatic duct benefit most from therapeutic endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MCG.0000000000001063

    View details for PubMedID 29864067

  • Plasma Exchange in Hypertriglyceridemic Pancreatitis in Children JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Abu-El-Haija, M., Kumar, S., Quiros, J., Husain, S., Morinville, V. 2018; 66 (6): E163

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000001994

    View details for Web of Science ID 000441420000008

    View details for PubMedID 29620601

  • EPC/HPSG evidence-based guidelines for the management of pediatric pancreatitis PANCREATOLOGY Parniczky, A., Abu-El-Haija, M., Husain, S., Lowe, M., Oracz, G., Sahin-Toth, M., Szabo, F. K., Uc, A., Wilschanski, M., Witt, H., Czako, L., Grammatikopoulos, T., Rasmussen, I., Sutton, R., Hegyi, P. 2018; 18 (2): 146–60


    Pediatric pancreatitis is an underdiagnosed disease with variable etiology. In the past 10-15 years the incidence of pediatric pancreatitis has increased, it is now 3.6-13.3 cases per 100,000 children. Up-to-date evidence based management guidelines are lacking for the pediatric pancreatitis. The European Pancreatic Club, in collaboration with the Hungarian Pancreatic Study Group organized a consensus guideline meeting on the diagnosis and management of pancreatitis in the pediatric population.Pediatric Pancreatitis was divided into three main clinical categories: acute pancreatitis, acute recurrent pancreatitis and chronic pancreatitis. Fifteen relevant topics (acute pancreatitis: diagnosis; etiology; prognosis; imaging; complications; therapy; biliary tract management; acute recurrent pancreatitis: diagnosis; chronic pancreatitis: diagnosis, etiology, treatment, imaging, intervention, pain, complications; enzyme replacement) were defined. Ten experts from the USA and Europe reviewed and summarized the available literature. Evidence was classified according to the GRADE classification system.Within fifteen topics, forty-seven relevant clinical questions were defined. The draft of the updated guideline was presented and discussed at the consensus meeting held during the 49th Meeting of European Pancreatic Club, in Budapest, on July 1, 2017.These evidence-based guidelines provides the current state of the art of the diagnosis and management of pediatric pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.pan.2018.01.001

    View details for Web of Science ID 000425534000002

    View details for PubMedID 29398347

  • Mitochondrial Dysfunction, Through Impaired Autophagy, Leads to Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress, Deregulated Lipid Metabolism, and Pancreatitis in Animal Models GASTROENTEROLOGY Biczo, G., Vegh, E. T., Shalbueva, N., Mareninova, O. A., Elperin, J., Lotshaw, E., Gretler, S., Lugea, A., Malla, S. R., Dawson, D., Ruchala, P., Whitelegge, J., French, S. W., Wen, L., Husain, S. Z., Gorelick, F. S., Hegyi, P., Rakonczay, Z., Gukovsky, I., Gukovskaya, A. S. 2018; 154 (3): 689–703


    Little is known about the signaling pathways that initiate and promote acute pancreatitis (AP). The pathogenesis of AP has been associated with abnormal increases in cytosolic Ca2+, mitochondrial dysfunction, impaired autophagy, and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. We analyzed the mechanisms of these dysfunctions and their relationships, and how these contribute to development of AP in mice and rats.Pancreatitis was induced in C57BL/6J mice (control) and mice deficient in peptidylprolyl isomerase D (cyclophilin D, encoded by Ppid) by administration of L-arginine (also in rats), caerulein, bile acid, or an AP-inducing diet. Parameters of pancreatitis, mitochondrial function, autophagy, ER stress, and lipid metabolism were measured in pancreatic tissue, acinar cells, and isolated mitochondria. Some mice with AP were given trehalose to enhance autophagic efficiency. Human pancreatitis tissues were analyzed by immunofluorescence.Mitochondrial dysfunction in pancreas of mice with AP was induced by either mitochondrial Ca2+ overload or through a Ca2+ overload-independent pathway that involved reduced activity of ATP synthase (80% inhibition in pancreatic mitochondria isolated from rats or mice given L-arginine). Both pathways were mediated by cyclophilin D and led to mitochondrial depolarization and fragmentation. Mitochondrial dysfunction caused pancreatic ER stress, impaired autophagy, and deregulation of lipid metabolism. These pathologic responses were abrogated in cyclophilin D-knockout mice. Administration of trehalose largely prevented trypsinogen activation, necrosis, and other parameters of pancreatic injury in mice with L-arginine AP. Tissues from patients with pancreatitis had markers of mitochondrial damage and impaired autophagy, compared with normal pancreas.In different animal models, we find a central role for mitochondrial dysfunction, and for impaired autophagy as its principal downstream effector, in development of AP. In particular, the pathway involving enhanced interaction of cyclophilin D with ATP synthase mediates L-arginine-induced pancreatitis, a model of severe AP the pathogenesis of which has remained unknown. Strategies to restore mitochondrial and/or autophagic function might be developed for treatment of AP.

    View details for DOI 10.1053/j.gastro.2017.10.012

    View details for Web of Science ID 000424741500039

    View details for PubMedID 29074451

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6369139

  • Pancreatic gene expression during recovery after pancreatitis reveals unique transcriptome profiles SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Boggs, K., Wang, T., Orabi, A. I., Mukherjee, A., Eisses, J. F., Sun, T., Wen, L., Javed, T. A., Esni, F., Chen, W., Husain, S. Z. 2018; 8: 1406


    It is well known that pancreatic recovery after a single episode of injury such as an isolated bout of pancreatitis occurs rapidly. It is unclear, however, what changes are inflicted in such conditions to the molecular landscape of the pancreas. In the caerulein hyperstimulation model of pancreatitis, the murine pancreas has the ability to recover within one week based on histological appearance. In this study, we sought to characterize by RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) the transcriptional profile of the recovering pancreas up to two weeks post-injury. We found that one week after injury there were 319 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) compared with baseline and that after two weeks there were 53 DEGs. Forty (12.5%) of the DEGs persisted from week one to week two, and another 13 DEGs newly emerged in the second week. Amongst the top up-regulated DEGs were several trypsinogen genes (trypsinogen 4, 5, 12, 15, and 16). To our knowledge, this is the first characterization of the transcriptome during pancreatic recovery by deep sequencing, and it reveals on a molecular basis that there is an ongoing recovery of the pancreas even after apparent histological resolution. The findings also raise the possibility of an emerging novel transcriptome upon pancreatic recovery.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41598-018-19392-0

    View details for Web of Science ID 000423044400022

    View details for PubMedID 29362419

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5780441

  • Management of Acute Pancreatitis in the Pediatric Population: A Clinical Report From the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition Pancreas Committee JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Abu-El-Haija, M., Kumar, S., Quiros, J., Balakrishnan, K., Barth, B., Bitton, S., Eisses, J. F., Foglio, E., Fox, V., Francis, D., Freeman, A., Gonska, T., Grover, A. S., Husain, S. Z., Kumar, R., Lapsia, S., Lin, T., Liu, Q. Y., Maqbool, A., Sellers, Z. M., Szabo, F., Uc, A., Werlin, S. L., Morinville, V. D. 2018; 66 (1): 159–76
  • Identification of Newly Committed Pancreatic Cells in the Adult Mouse Pancreas SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Socorro, M., Criscimanna, A., Riva, P., Tandon, M., Prasadan, K., Guo, P., Humar, A., Husain, S. Z., Leach, S. D., Gittes, G. K., Esni, F. 2017; 7: 17539


    Multipotent epithelial cells with high Aldehyde dehydrogenase activity have been previously reported to exist in the adult pancreas. However, whether they represent true progenitor cells remains controversial. In this study, we isolated and characterized cells with ALDH activity in the adult mouse or human pancreas during physiological conditions or injury. We found that cells with ALDH activity are abundant in the mouse pancreas during early postnatal growth, pregnancy, and in mouse models of pancreatitis and type 1 diabetes (T1D). Importantly, a similar population of cells is found abundantly in healthy children, or in patients with pancreatitis or T1D. We further demonstrate that cells with ALDH activity can commit to either endocrine or acinar lineages, and can be divided into four sub-populations based on CD90 and Ecadherin expression. Finally, our in vitro and in vivo studies show that the progeny of ALDH1+/CD90-/Ecad- cells residing in the adult mouse pancreas have the ability to initiate Pancreatic and duodenal homeobox (Pdx1) expression for the first time. In summary, we provide evidence for the existence of a sortable population of multipotent non-epithelial cells in the adult pancreas that can commit to the pancreatic lineage following proliferation and mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET).

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41598-017-17884-z

    View details for Web of Science ID 000417796000059

    View details for PubMedID 29235528

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5727523

  • Risk Factors for Asparaginase-associated Pancreatitis A Systematic Review JOURNAL OF CLINICAL GASTROENTEROLOGY Oparaji, J., Rose, F., Okafor, D., Howard, A., Turner, R. L., Orabi, A. I., Byersdorfer, C., Mi, Q., Ritchey, K., Lowe, M. E., Husain, S. Z. 2017; 51 (10): 907–13


    To evaluate potential risk factors for the development of asparaginase-associated pancreatitis (AAP), we performed a systematic review of the current literature from January 1946 through May 2015.Asparaginase, a primary treatment for the most common childhood cancer, acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), is a well-described cause of pancreatitis. Further, pancreatitis is among the most burdensome and common complications of asparaginase treatment and represents a major reason for early-drug termination and inferior outcomes. The literature lacks clarity about the risk factors for AAP, and this knowledge gap has hampered the ability to reliably predict which patients are likely to develop AAP.In an expansive screen, 1842 citations were funneled into a review of 59 full articles, of which 10 were deemed eligible based on predetermined inclusion criteria.Of the 10 identified studies, only 2 studies showed that children above 10 years of age had a >2-fold risk of AAP compared with younger children. Patients placed in high-risk ALL categories had a greater incidence of pancreatitis in 2 studies. In addition, use of pegylated asparaginase resulted in a higher incidence of AAP in 1 study.In this systematic review, older age, asparaginase formulation, higher ALL risk stratification, and higher asparaginase dosing appear to play a limited role in the development of AAP. Further studies are needed to probe the underlying mechanisms contributing to the development of pancreatitis in patients receiving asparaginase.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MCG.0000000000000827

    View details for Web of Science ID 000419790100010

    View details for PubMedID 28375864

  • Autoimmune Pancreatitis in Children: Characteristic Features, Diagnosis, and Management AMERICAN JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY Scheers, I., Palermo, J. J., Freedman, S., Wilschanski, M., Shah, U., Abu-El-Haija, M., Barth, B., Fishman, D. S., Gariepy, C., Giefer, M. J., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R. W., Husain, S. Z., Lin, T. K., Liu, Q., Lowe, M., Mascarenhas, M., Morinville, V., Ooi, C. Y., Perito, E. R., Piccoli, D. A., Pohl, J. F., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Troendle, D., Werlin, S., Zimmerman, B., Uc, A., Gonska, T. 2017; 112 (10): 1604–11


    Autoimmune pancreatitis (AIP) is an increasingly recognized disease entity, but data in children are limited. AIP presentation and outcome in children might differ from the adult experience. We aim to determine the characteristic features of AIP in children.Data about clinical symptoms, imaging, histology, and treatment were collected using two sources: (i) a systematic literature search and (ii) the INSPPIRE database, the largest international multicenter study of pancreatitis in children and the Cliniques Universitaires St-Luc (CUSL) registry.We identified 48 AIP cases: 30 from literature review, 14 from INSPPIRE, and 4 from CUSL. The median age at diagnosis was 13 years (range 2-17 years). Abdominal pain (43/47, 91%) and/or obstructive jaundice (20/47, 42%) were the most common symptoms at diagnosis. Elevated serum IgG4 levels were only observed in 9/40 (22%) children. Cross-sectional imaging studies were abnormal in all children including hypointense global or focal gland enlargement (39/47, 83%), main pancreatic duct irregularity (30/47, 64%), and common bile duct stricture (26/47, 55%). A combination of lymphoplasmacytic inflammation, pancreatic fibrosis, and ductal granulocyte infiltration were the main histological findings (18/25, 72%). Children with AIP had a prompt clinical response to steroids. Complications of AIP included failure of exocrine (4/25, 16%) and endocrine (3/27, 11%) pancreas function.Pediatric AIP has a distinct presentation with features similar to type 2 AIP in adults. This comprehensive report on the largest group of children with AIP to date is expected to help with the diagnosis and management of this disease and pave the way for future research studies.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/ajg.2017.85

    View details for Web of Science ID 000412299200020

    View details for PubMedID 28374818

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5908471

  • SMAD3/Stat3 Signaling Mediates -Cell Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Chronic Pancreatitis-Related Diabetes DIABETES Xiao, X., Fischbach, S., Zhang, T., Chen, C., Sheng, Q., Zimmerman, R., Patnaik, S., Fusco, J., Ming, Y., Guo, P., Shiota, C., Prasadan, K., Gangopadhyay, N., Husain, S. Z., Dong, H., Gittes, G. K. 2017; 66 (10): 2646–58


    Many patients with chronic pancreatitis develop diabetes (chronic pancreatitis-related diabetes [CPRD]) through an undetermined mechanism. Here we used long-term partial pancreatic duct ligation (PDL) as a model to study CPRD. We found that long-term PDL induced significant β-cell dedifferentiation, followed by a time-dependent decrease in functional β-cell mass-all specifically in the ligated tail portion of the pancreas (PDL-tail). High levels of transforming growth factor β1 (TGFβ1) were detected in the PDL-tail and were mainly produced by M2 macrophages at the early stage and by activated myofibroblasts at the later stage. Loss of β-cell mass was then found to result from TGFβ1-triggered epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) by β-cells, rather than resulting directly from β-cell apoptosis. Mechanistically, TGFβ1-treated β-cells activated expression of the EMT regulator gene Snail in a SMAD3/Stat3-dependent manner. Moreover, forced expression of forkhead box protein O1 (FoxO1), an antagonist for activated Stat3, specifically in β-cells ameliorated β-cell EMT and β-cell loss and prevented the onset of diabetes in mice undergoing PDL. Together, our data suggest that chronic pancreatitis may trigger TGFβ1-mediated β-cell EMT to lead to CPRD, which could substantially be prevented by sustained expression of FoxO1 in β-cells.

    View details for DOI 10.2337/db17-0537

    View details for Web of Science ID 000411195800012

    View details for PubMedID 28775125

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5606322

  • Early-Onset Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis Is Associated with PRSS1 or CTRC Gene Mutations JOURNAL OF PEDIATRICS Giefer, M. J., Lowe, M. E., Werlin, S. L., Zimmerman, B., Wilschanski, M., Troendle, D., Schwarzenberg, S., Pohl, J. F., Palermo, J., Ooi, C. Y., Morinville, V. D., Lin, T. K., Husain, S. Z., Himes, R., Heyman, M. B., Gonska, T., Gariepy, C. E., Freedman, S. D., Fishman, D. S., Bellin, M. D., Barth, B., Abu-El-Haija, M., Uc, A. 2017; 186: 95–100


    To assess whether the age of onset was associated with unique features or disease course in pediatric acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) or chronic pancreatitis (CP).Demographic and clinical information on children with ARP or CP was collected at INSPPIRE (INternational Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a CuRE) centers. The Cochran-Armitage trend test and Jonckheere-Terpstra test were used to examine for differences between pediatric age groups (<6, 6-11, and ≥12 years).Between September 2012 and March 2016, 342 children with ARP or CP were enrolled; 129 (38%) were <6 years of age at the time of first diagnosis of acute pancreatitis, 111 (32%) were 6-11 years of age, and 102 (30%) were ≥12 years of age. Early-onset disease was associated with mutations in cationic trypsinogen (PRSS1) (P < .01), chymotrypsin C (CTRC) (P = .01), family history of acute pancreatitis (P = .02), family history of CP (P < .01), biliary cysts (P = .04), or chronic renal failure (P = .02). Later-onset disease was more commonly present with hypertriglyceridemia (P = .04), ulcerative colitis (P = .02), autoimmune diseases (P < .0001), or medication use (P < .01). Children with later-onset disease also were more likely to visit the emergency department (P < .05) or have diabetes (P < .01).Early-onset pancreatitis is associated strongly with PRSS1 or CTRC mutations and family history of pancreatitis. Children with later-onset disease are more likely to have nongenetic risk factors. Future studies are needed to investigate whether the disease course, response to therapy, or clinical outcomes differ relative to the timing of disease onset.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpeds.2017.03.063

    View details for Web of Science ID 000405901300021

    View details for PubMedID 28502372

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5506853

  • Therapeutic Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography in Pediatric Patients With Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis Data From the INSPPIRE (INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE) Study PANCREAS Troendle, D. M., Fishman, D. S., Barth, B. A., Giefer, M. J., Lin, T. K., Liu, Q. Y., Abu-El-Haija, M., Bellin, M. D., Durie, P. R., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Husain, S. Z., Kumar, S., Lowe, M. E., Morinville, V. D., Ooi, C. Y., Palermo, J., Pohl, J. F., Schwarzenberg, S., Werlin, S., Wilschanski, M., Zimmerman, M., Uc, A. 2017; 46 (6): 764–69


    The aim of this study was to characterize utilization and benefit of therapeutic endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) in children with acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) or chronic pancreatitis (CP).From August 2012 to February 2015, 301 children with ARP or CP were enrolled in the INSPPIRE (INternational Study group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In search for a cuRE) study. Physicians reported utilization and benefit of therapeutic ERCP at enrollment. Differences were analyzed using appropriate statistical methods.One hundred seventeen children (38.9%) underwent at least 1 therapeutic ERCP. The procedure was more commonly performed in children with CP compared with those with ARP (65.8% vs 13.5%, P < 0.0001). Utility of therapeutic ERCP was reported to be similar between ARP and CP (53% vs 56%, P = 0.81) and was found to be helpful for at least 1 indication in both groups (53/99 patients [53.5%]). Predictors for undergoing therapeutic ERCP were presence of obstructive factors in ARP and CP, Hispanic ethnicity, or white race in CP.Therapeutic ERCP is frequently utilized in children with ARP or CP and may offer benefit in selected cases, specifically if ductal obstruction is present. Longitudinal studies are needed to clarify the efficacy of therapeutic ERCP and to explore subgroups that might have increased benefit from such intervention.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPA.0000000000000848

    View details for Web of Science ID 000403506700013

    View details for PubMedID 28609364

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5502745

  • What's unique about acute pancreatitis in children: risk factors, diagnosis and management NATURE REVIEWS GASTROENTEROLOGY & HEPATOLOGY Husain, S. Z., Srinath, A. I. 2017; 14 (6): 366–U97


    Pancreatitis in children is an appreciable problem that has become increasingly prevalent. This Review covers the principles related to the definitions, epidemiology, risk factors, diagnosis and management of acute pancreatitis in children and identifies features that are unique among children. Additionally, knowledge gaps related to management principles are identified.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/nrgastro.2017.13

    View details for Web of Science ID 000402116200009

    View details for PubMedID 28293024

  • Targeted Inhibition of Pancreatic Acinar Cell Calcineurin Is a Novel Strategy to Prevent Post-ERCP Pancreatitis CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY Orabi, A. I., Wen, L., Javed, T. A., Le, T., Guo, P., Sanker, S., Ricks, D., Boggs, K., Eisses, J. F., Castro, C., Xiao, X., Prasadan, K., Esni, F., Gittes, G. K., Husain, S. Z. 2017; 3 (1): 119–28


    There is a pressing need to develop effective preventative therapies for post-ERCP pancreatitis (PEP). We demonstrated that early PEP events are induced through the calcium-activated phosphatase calcineurin and that global calcineurin deletion abolishes PEP in mice. A crucial question is whether acinar cell calcineurin controls the initiation of PEP in vivo.We used a mouse model of PEP and examined the effects of in vivo acinar cell-specific calcineurin deletion by either generating a conditional knockout line or infusing a novel AAV-Ela-iCre into the pancreatic duct of a calcineurin floxed line.We found that PEP is dependent on acinar cell calcineurin in vivo, and this led us to determine that calcineurin inhibitors, infused within the radiocontrast, can largely prevent PEP.These results provide impetus for launching clinical trials to test the efficacy of intraductal calcineurin inhibitors to prevent PEP.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000424537900013

    View details for PubMedID 28090570

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5235344

  • Causal Evaluation of Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis in Children: Consensus From the INSPPIRE Group JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Gariepy, C. E., Heyman, M. B., Lowe, M. E., Pohl, J. F., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Barth, B., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Giefer, L. J., Gonska, T., Himes, R., Husain, S. Z., Morinville, V. D., Ooi, C. Y., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Troendle, D. M., Yen, E., Uc, A. 2017; 64 (1): 95–103


    Acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) and chronic pancreatitis (CP) have been diagnosed in children at increasing rates during the past decade. As pediatric ARP and CP are still relatively rare conditions, little quality evidence is available on which to base the diagnosis and determination of etiology. The aim of the study was to review the current state of the literature regarding the etiology of these disorders and to developed a consensus among a panel of clinically active specialists caring for children with these disorders to help guide the diagnostic evaluation and identify areas most in need of future research.A systematic review of the literature was performed and scored for quality, followed by consensus statements developed and scored by each individual in the group for level of agreement and strength of the supporting data using a modified Delphi method. Scores were analyzed for the level of consensus achieved by the group.The panel reached consensus on 27 statements covering the definitions of pediatric ARP and CP, evaluation for potential etiologies of these disorders, and long-term monitoring. Statements for which the group reached consensus to make no recommendation or could not reach consensus are discussed.This consensus helps define the minimal diagnostic evaluation and monitoring of children with ARP and CP. Even in areas in which we reached consensus, the quality of the evidence is weak, highlighting the need for further research. Improved understanding of the underlying cause will facilitate treatment development and targeting.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000001446

    View details for Web of Science ID 000391346100017

    View details for PubMedID 27782962

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5191966

  • A supervised learning framework for pancreatic islet segmentation with multi-scale color-texture features and rolling guidance filters CYTOMETRY PART A Huang, Y., Liu, C., Eisses, J. F., Husain, S. Z., Rohde, G. K. 2016; 89A (10): 893–902


    Islet cell quantification and function is important for developing novel therapeutic interventions for diabetes. Existing methods of pancreatic islet segmentation in histopathological images depend strongly on cell/nuclei detection, and thus are limited due to a wide variance in the appearance of pancreatic islets. In this paper, we propose a supervised learning pipeline to segment pancreatic islets in histopathological images, which does not require cell detection. The proposed framework firstly partitions images into superpixels, and then extracts multi-scale color-texture features from each superpixel and processes these features using rolling guidance filters, in order to simultaneously reduce inter-class ambiguity and intra-class variation. Finally, a linear support vector machine (SVM) is trained and applied to segment the testing images. A total of 23 hematoxylin-and-eosin-stained histopathological images with pancreatic islets are used for verifying the framework. With an average accuracy of 95%, training time of 20 min and testing time of 1 min per image, the proposed framework outperforms existing approaches with better segmentation performance and lower computational cost. © 2016 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/cyto.a.22929

    View details for Web of Science ID 000387217600005

    View details for PubMedID 27560544

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5515086

  • Risk Factors Associated With Pediatric Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis Lessons From INSPPIRE JAMA PEDIATRICS Kumar, S., Ooi, C. Y., Werlin, S., Abu-El-Haija, M., Barth, B., Bellin, M. D., Durie, P. R., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Husain, S. Z., Lin, T. K., Lowe, M. E., Morinville, V., Palermo, J. J., Pohl, J. F., Schwarzenberg, S., Troendle, D., Wilschanski, M., Zimmerman, M., Uc, A. 2016; 170 (6): 562–69


    Pediatric acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) and chronic pancreatitis (CP) are poorly understood.To characterize and identify risk factors associated with ARP and CP in childhood.A multinational cross-sectional study of children with ARP or CP at the time of enrollment to the INSPPIRE (International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a Cure) study at participant institutions of the INSPPIRE Consortium. From August 22, 2012, to February 8, 2015, 155 children with ARP and 146 with CP (aged ≤19 years) were enrolled. Their demographic and clinical information was entered into the REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture) database at the 15 centers. Differences were analyzed using 2-sample t test or Wilcoxon rank sum test for continuous variables and Pearson χ2 test or Fisher exact test for categorical variables. Disease burden variables (pain variables, hospital/emergency department visits, missed school days) were compared using Wilcoxon rank sum test.Demographic characteristics, risk factors, abdominal pain, and disease burden.A total of 301 children were enrolled (mean [SD] age, 11.9 [4.5] years; 172 [57%] female); 155 had ARP and 146 had CP. The majority of children with CP (123 of 146 [84%]) reported prior recurrent episodes of acute pancreatitis. Sex distribution was similar between the groups (57% female in both). Hispanic children were less likely to have CP than ARP (17% vs 28%, respectively; odds ratio [OR] = 0.51; 95% CI, 0.29-0.92; P = .02). At least 1 gene mutation in pancreatitis-related genes was found in 48% of patients with ARP vs 73% of patients with CP (P < .001). Children with PRSS1 or SPINK1 mutations were more likely to present with CP compared with ARP (PRSS1: OR = 4.20; 95% CI, 2.14-8.22; P < .001; and SPINK1: OR = 2.30; 95% CI, 1.03-5.13; P = .04). Obstructive risk factors did not differ between children with ARP or CP (33% in both the ARP and CP groups), but toxic/metabolic risk factors were more common in children with ARP (21% overall; 26% in the ARP group and 15% in the CP group; OR = 0.55; 95% CI, 0.31-0.99; P = .046). Pancreatitis-related abdominal pain was a major symptom in 81% of children with ARP or CP within the last year. The disease burden was greater in the CP group compared with the ARP group (more emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and medical, endoscopic, and surgical interventions).Genetic mutations are common in both ARP and CP. Ethnicity and mutations in PRSS1 or SPINK1 may influence the development of CP. The high disease burden in pediatric CP underscores the importance of identifying predisposing factors for progression of ARP to CP in children.

    View details for DOI 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.4955

    View details for Web of Science ID 000377185000015

    View details for PubMedID 27064572

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5317277

  • Toxic-Metabolic Risk Factors Are Uncommon in Pediatric Chronic Pancreatitis JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Pohl, J., Morinville, V., Husain, S. Z., Uc, A. 2016; 62 (6): E66–E67

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000001156

    View details for Web of Science ID 000376560600007

    View details for PubMedID 27213250

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4880405

  • A prognostic tool to predict severe acute pancreatitis in pediatrics PANCREATOLOGY Szabo, F. K., Hornung, L., Oparaji, J., Alhosh, R., Husain, S. Z., Liu, Q. Y., Palermo, J., Lin, T. K., Nathan, J. D., Podberesky, D. J., Lowe, M., Fei, L., Abu-El-Haija, M. 2016; 16 (3): 358–64


    Approximately 15-20% of pediatric patients with acute pancreatitis (AP) develop severe disease. Severity scoring tools were developed for adult patients, but have limitations when applied in children. We aimed to identify early predictors of severe acute pancreatitis (SAP) on hospital admission for early risk stratification of patients.Retrospective review of AP admissions was conducted. The derivation cohort included cases at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) between 2009 and 2013. Clinical data collected during the first 24 h of admission were analyzed and a predictive model was derived through statistical analysis. The performance of the model was evaluated in a validation cohort from 2 more institutions other than CCHMC.In the derivation cohort 19% of the 284 admissions were SAP. A generalized linear mixed effect model analysis revealed that lipase, albumin and white blood count (WBC) play a role in the development of SAP (area under the receiver operating curve (AUROC 0.76)). In the validation cohort of 165 AP cases, SAP ranged from 8 to 20% at the three institutions. Performance of the model in this cohort was comparable to the derivation model (AUROC 0.77). There were 369 encounters in the combined derivation and validation pool (AUROC 0.76).The prognostic severity tool with 3 variables (lipase, albumin, and WBC) obtained within 24 h of admission can be applied to predict SAP in pediatric patients.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.pan.2016.03.002

    View details for Web of Science ID 000377555600012

    View details for PubMedID 27051062

  • Toxic-metabolic Risk Factors in Pediatric Pancreatitis: Recommendations for Diagnosis, Management, and Future Research JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Husain, S. Z., Morinville, V., Pohl, J., Abu-El-Haija, M., Bellin, M. D., Freedman, S., Hegyi, P., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Ooi, C. Y., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Usatin, D., Uc, A. 2016; 62 (4): 609–17


    Pancreatitis in children can result from metabolic and toxic risk factors, but the evidence linking these factors is sparse. We review the evidence for association or causality of these risk factors in pancreatitis, discuss management strategies, and their rationale. We conducted a review of the pediatric pancreatitis literature with respect to the following risk factors: hyperlipidemia, hypercalcemia, chronic renal failure, smoking exposure, alcohol, and medications. Areas of additional research were identified. Hypertriglyceridemia of 1000 mg/dL or greater poses an absolute risk for pancreatitis; persistent elevations of calcium are predisposing. Further research is necessary to determine whether end-stage renal disease leads to increased pancreatitis in children similar to adults. It is unknown whether cigarette smoking exposure, which clearly increases risk in adults, also increases risk in children. The role of alcohol in pediatric pancreatitis, whether direct or modifying, needs to be elucidated. The evidence supporting most cases of medication-induced pancreatitis is poor. Drug structure, improper handling of drug by host, and bystander status may be implicated. Other pancreatitis risk factors must be sought in all cases. The quality of evidence supporting causative role of various toxic and metabolic factors in pediatric pancreatitis is variable. Careful phenotyping is essential, including search for other etiologic risk factors. Directed therapy includes correction/removal of any agent identified, and general supportive measures. Further research is necessary to improve our understanding of these pancreatitis risk factors in children.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000001035

    View details for Web of Science ID 000373209900020

    View details for PubMedID 26594832

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4805437

  • Direct Costs of Acute Recurrent and Chronic Pancreatitis in Children in the INSPPIRE Registry JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Ting, J., Wilson, L., Schwarzenberg, S., Himes, R., Barth, B., Bellin, M. D., Durie, P. R., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Husain, S. Z., Kumar, S., Morinville, V. D., Lowe, M. E., Ooi, C. Y., Pohl, J. F., Troendle, D., Usatin, D., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Heyman, M. B., Uc, A. 2016; 62 (3): 443–49


    To estimate selected direct medical care costs of children with chronic pancreatitis (CP) and acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP).We performed a cross-sectional study of data from International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a Cure (INSPPIRE), a multinational registry of children with ARP or CP. We determined health care utilization and estimated costs of hospitalizations, surgical and endoscopic procedures, and medications in our study population. Health care utilization data were obtained from all subjects enrolled in the study, and costs were calculated using national United States costs.We included 224 subjects (median age 12.7 years), 42% of whom had CP. Mean number of hospitalizations, including for surgery and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, was 2.3 per person per year, costing an estimated average $38,755 per person per year. Including outpatient medications, estimated total mean cost was $40,589 per person per year. Subjects using surgical procedures or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography incurred mean annual costs of $42,951 per person and $12,035 per person, respectively. Estimated annual costs of pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy, diabetic medications, and pain medications were $4114, $1761, and $614 per person, respectively. In an exploratory analysis, patients with the following characteristics appear to accrue higher costs than those without them: more frequent ARP attacks per year, reported constant or episodic pain, family history of pancreatic cancer, and use of pain medication.ARP and CP are uncommon childhood conditions. The severe burden of disease associated with these conditions and their chronicity results in high health care utilization and costs. Interventions that reduce the need for hospitalization could lower costs for these children and their families.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000001057

    View details for Web of Science ID 000371304000020

    View details for PubMedID 26704866

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4767646

  • PNA lectin for purifying mouse acinar cells from the inflamed pancreas SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Xiao, X., Fischbach, S., Fusco, J., Zimmerman, R., Song, Z., Nebres, P., Ricks, D., Prasadan, K., Shiota, C., Husain, S. Z., Gittes, G. K. 2016; 6: 21127


    Better methods for purifying human or mouse acinar cells without the need for genetic modification are needed. Such techniques would be advantageous for the specific study of certain mechanisms, such as acinar-to-beta-cell reprogramming and pancreatitis. Ulex Europaeus Agglutinin I (UEA-I) lectin has been used to label and isolate acinar cells from the pancreas. However, the purity of the UEA-I-positive cell fraction has not been fully evaluated. Here, we screened 20 widely used lectins for their binding specificity for major pancreatic cell types, and found that UEA-I and Peanut agglutinin (PNA) have a specific affinity for acinar cells in the mouse pancreas, with minimal affinity for other major pancreatic cell types including endocrine cells, duct cells and endothelial cells. Moreover, PNA-purified acinar cells were less contaminated with mesenchymal and inflammatory cells, compared to UEA-I purified acinar cells. Thus, UEA-I and PNA appear to be excellent lectins for pancreatic acinar cell purification. PNA may be a better choice in situations where mesenchymal cells or inflammatory cells are significantly increased in the pancreas, such as type 1 diabetes, pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/srep21127

    View details for Web of Science ID 000370381300001

    View details for PubMedID 26884345

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4756371

  • Probing the Association of Pancreatitis in Inflammatory Bowel Disease INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASES Srinath, A. I., Gupta, N., Husain, S. Z. 2016; 22 (2): 465–75


    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) has been increasingly diagnosed in children and adults. Similarly, acute and chronic pancreatitis are increasingly prevalent conditions with potentially devastating consequences. There is a growing body of literature linking these 2 conditions. The purpose of this review is to provide a comprehensive outline of the association between IBD and pancreatitis and to explore their putative pathophysiology. Based on the collective reports, 2 outstanding reasons for pancreatitis in patients with IBD are medications and IBD complications.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MIB.0000000000000611

    View details for Web of Science ID 000369291400024

    View details for PubMedID 26535870

  • Valproic Acid Limits Pancreatic Recovery after Pancreatitis by Inhibiting Histone Deacetylases and Preventing Acinar Redifferentiation Programs AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PATHOLOGY Eisses, J. F., Criscimanna, A., Dionise, Z. R., Orabi, A. I., Javed, T. A., Sarwar, S., Jin, S., Zhou, L., Singh, S., Poddar, M., Davis, A. W., Tosun, A., Ozolek, J. A., Lowe, M. E., Monga, S. P., Rohde, G. K., Esni, F., Husain, S. Z. 2015; 185 (12): 3304–15


    The mechanisms by which drugs induce pancreatitis are unknown. A definite cause of pancreatitis is due to the antiepileptic drug valproic acid (VPA). On the basis of three crucial observations-that VPA inhibits histone deacetylases (HDACs), HDACs mediate pancreas development, and aspects of pancreas development are recapitulated during recovery of the pancreas after injury-we hypothesized that VPA does not cause injury on its own, but it predisposes patients to pancreatitis by inhibiting HDACs and provoking an imbalance in pancreatic recovery. In an experimental model of pancreatic injury, we found that VPA delayed recovery of the pancreas and reduced acinar cell proliferation. In addition, pancreatic expression of class I HDACs (which are the primary VPA targets) increased in the midphase of pancreatic recovery. VPA administration inhibited pancreatic HDAC activity and led to the persistence of acinar-to-ductal metaplastic complexes, with prolonged Sox9 expression and sustained β-catenin nuclear activation, findings that characterize a delay in regenerative reprogramming. These effects were not observed with valpromide, an analog of VPA that lacks HDAC inhibition. This is the first report, to our knowledge, that VPA shifts the balance toward pancreatic injury and pancreatitis through HDAC inhibition. The work also identifies a new paradigm for therapies that could exploit epigenetic reprogramming to enhance pancreatic recovery and disorders of pancreatic injury.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ajpath.2015.08.006

    View details for Web of Science ID 000365929000015

    View details for PubMedID 26476347

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4729237

  • Exposure to Radiocontrast Agents Induces Pancreatic Inflammation by Activation of Nuclear Factor-kappa B, Calcium Signaling, and Calcineurin GASTROENTEROLOGY Jin, S., Orabi, A. I., Le, T., Javed, T. A., Sah, S., Eisses, J. F., Bottino, R., Molkentin, J. D., Husain, S. Z. 2015; 149 (3): 753-+


    Radiocontrast agents are required for radiographic procedures, but these agents can injure tissues by unknown mechanisms. We investigated whether exposure of pancreatic tissues to radiocontrast agents during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) causes pancreatic inflammation, and studied the effects of these agents on human cell lines and in mice.We exposed mouse and human acinar cells to the radiocontrast agent iohexol (Omnipaque; GE Healthcare, Princeton, NJ) and measured intracellular release of Ca(2+), calcineurin activation (using a luciferase reporter), activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB, using a luciferase reporter), and cell necrosis (via propidium iodide uptake). We infused the radiocontrast agent into the pancreatic ducts of wild-type mice (C57BL/6) to create a mouse model of post-ERCP pancreatitis; some mice were given intraperitoneal injections of the calcineurin inhibitor FK506 before and after infusion of the radiocontrast agent. CnAβ(-/-) mice also were used. This experiment also was performed in mice given infusions of adeno-associated virus 6-NF-κB-luciferase, to assess activation of this transcription factor in vivo.Incubation of mouse and human acinar cells, but not HEK293 or COS7 cells, with iohexol led to a peak and then plateau in Ca(2+) signaling, along with activation of the transcription factors NF-κB and nuclear factor of activated T cells. Suppressing Ca(2+) signaling or calcineurin with BAPTA, cyclosporine A, or FK506 prevented activation of NF-κB and acinar cell injury. Calcineurin Aβ-deficient mice were protected against induction of pancreatic inflammation by iohexol. The calcineurin inhibitor FK506 prevented contrast-induced activation of NF-κB in pancreata of mice, this was observed by live imaging of mice given infusions of adeno-associated virus 6-NF-κB-luciferase.Radiocontrast agents cause pancreatic inflammation in mice, via activation of NF-κB, Ca(2+) signaling, and calcineurin. Calcineurin inhibitors might be developed to prevent post-ERCP pancreatitis in patients.

    View details for DOI 10.1053/j.gastro.2015.05.004

    View details for Web of Science ID 000360269800043

    View details for PubMedID 25980752

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4550538

  • ESPGHAN and NASPGHAN Report on the Assessment of Exocrine Pancreatic Function and Pancreatitis in Children JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Taylor, C. J., Chen, K., Horvath, K., Hughes, D., Lowe, M. E., Mehta, D., Orabi, A. I., Screws, J., Thomson, M., Van Biervliet, S., Verkade, H. J., Husain, S. Z., Wilschanski, M. 2015; 61 (1): 144–53


    The purpose of this clinical report is to discuss several recent advances in assessing exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) and pancreatitis in children, to review the array of pancreatic function tests, to provide an update on the inherited causes of EPI, with special emphasis on newly available genetic testing, and to review newer methods for evaluating pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000000830

    View details for Web of Science ID 000358168300024

    View details for PubMedID 25915425

  • Dynamic Imaging of Pancreatic Nuclear Factor kappa B (NF-kappa B) Activation in Live Mice Using Adeno-associated Virus (AAV) Infusion and Bioluminescence JOURNAL OF BIOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY Orabi, A. I., Sah, S., Javed, T. A., Lemon, K. L., Good, M. L., Guo, P., Xiao, X., Prasadan, K., Gittes, G. K., Jin, S., Husain, S. Z. 2015; 290 (18): 11309–20


    Nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) is an important signaling molecule that plays a critical role in the development of acute pancreatitis. Current methods for examining NF-κB activation involve infection of an adenoviral NF-κB-luciferase reporter into cell lines or electrophoretic mobility shift assay of lysate. The use of adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) has proven to be an effective method of transfecting whole organs in live animals. We examined whether intrapancreatic duct infusion of AAV containing an NF-κB-luciferase reporter (AAV-NF-κB-luciferase) can reliably measure pancreatic NF-κB activation. We confirmed the infectivity of the AAV-NF-κB-luciferase reporter in HEK293 cells using a traditional luciferase readout. Mice were infused with AAV-NF-κB-luciferase 5 weeks before induction of pancreatitis (caerulein, 50 μg/kg). Unlike transgenic mice that globally express NF-κB-luciferase, AAV-infused mice showed a 15-fold increase in pancreas-specific NF-κB bioluminescence following 12 h of caerulein compared with baseline luminescence (p < 0.05). The specificity of the NF-κB-luciferase signal to the pancreas was confirmed by isolating the pancreas and adjacent organs and observing a predominant bioluminescent signal in the pancreas compared with liver, spleen, and stomach. A complementary mouse model of post-ERCP-pancreatitis also induced pancreatic NF-κB signals. Taken together these data provide the first demonstration that NF-κB activation can be examined in a live, dynamic fashion during pancreatic inflammation. We believe this technique offers a valuable tool to study real-time activation of NF-κB in vivo.

    View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M115.647933

    View details for Web of Science ID 000353719400009

    View details for PubMedID 25802340

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4416837

  • Pediatric Chronic Pancreatitis Is Associated with Genetic Risk Factors and Substantial Disease Burden JOURNAL OF PEDIATRICS Schwarzenberg, S., Bellin, M., Husain, S. Z., Ahuja, M., Barth, B., Davis, H., Durie, P. R., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Kumar, S., Morinville, V. D., Lowe, M. E., Nuehring, N. E., Ooi, C. Y., Pohl, J. F., Troendle, D., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Yen, E., Uc, A. 2015; 166 (4): 890–U181


    To determine the clinical presentation, diagnostic variables, risk factors, and disease burden in children with chronic pancreatitis.We performed a cross-sectional study of data from the International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a Cure, a registry of children with acute recurrent pancreatitis and chronic pancreatitis. Between-group differences were compared using Wilcoxon rank-sum test.Among 170 subjects in the registry, 76 (45%) had chronic pancreatitis; 57% were female, 80% were white; median age at diagnosis was 9.9 years. Pancreatitis-predisposing genetic mutations were identified in 51 (67%) and obstructive risk factors in 25 (33%). Toxic/metabolic and autoimmune factors were uncommon. Imaging demonstrated ductal abnormalities and pancreatic atrophy more commonly than calcifications. Fifty-nine (77%) reported abdominal pain within the past year; pain was reported as constant and receiving narcotics in 28%. Children with chronic pancreatitis reported a median of 3 emergency department visits and 2 hospitalizations in the last year. Forty-seven subjects (70%) missed 1 day of school in the past month as the result of chronic pancreatitis; 26 (34%) missed 3 or more days. Children reporting constant pain were more likely to miss school (P = .002), visit the emergency department (P = .01), and experience hospitalizations (P = .03) compared with children with episodic pain. Thirty-three children (43%) underwent therapeutic endoscopic retrograde pancreatography; one or more pancreatic surgeries were performed in 30 (39%).Chronic pancreatitis occurs at a young age with distinct clinical features. Genetic and obstructive risk factors are common, and disease burden is substantial.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpeds.2014.11.019

    View details for Web of Science ID 000353385700023

    View details for PubMedID 25556020

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4380827

  • Intraductal Infusion of Taurocholate Followed by Distal Common Bile Duct Ligation Leads to a Severe Necrotic Model of Pancreatitis in Mice PANCREAS Le, T., Eisses, J. F., Lemon, K. L., Ozolek, J. A., Pociask, D. A., Orabi, A. I., Husain, S. Z. 2015; 44 (3): 493–99


    The most common etiology of acute pancreatitis results from the impaction of gallstones or sludge in the distal common bile duct (CBD). The result is pancreatic duct obstruction, diversion of bile into the pancreas, or cholestasis. In the current study, we examined whether combining both aspects, that is, infusion of the bile acid taurocholate (TC) followed by bile duct ligation (BDL), could yield a more severe form of pancreatitis that mimics biliary pancreatitis.In mice, after laparotomy, the CBD was infused with either normal saline (NS) or TC. Subsequently, the CBD was ligated at the ampulla.Mice receiving TC infusion followed by BDL (TC + BDL) had higher mortality compared with animals receiving intraductal NS with BDL (NS + BDL). The TC + BDL arm developed more severe and diffuse pancreatic necrosis. In addition, serum amylase, IL-6, and bilirubin were significantly higher. However, pancreatic edema as well as lung and liver injury were unchanged between TC + BDL and NS + BDL.In summary, the combination of bile infusion into the pancreas followed by BDL causes a more severe, necrotizing pancreatitis. We believe that this novel model of pancreatitis is useful because it can be used in transgenic mice and recapitulates several aspects of biliary pancreatitis.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000350999700021

    View details for PubMedID 25469547

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4357535

  • Pancreatic cell tracing, lineage tagging and targeted genetic manipulations in multiple cell types using pancreatic ductal infusion of adeno-associated viral vectors and/or cell-tagging dyes NATURE PROTOCOLS Xiao, X., Guo, P., Prasadan, K., Shiota, C., Peirish, L., Fischbach, S., Song, Z., Gaffar, I., Wiersch, J., El-Gohary, Y., Husain, S. Z., Gittes, G. K. 2014; 9 (12): 2719–24


    Genetic manipulations, with or without lineage tracing for specific pancreatic cell types, are very powerful tools for studying diabetes, pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. Nevertheless, the use of Cre/loxP systems to conditionally activate or inactivate the expression of genes in a cell type- and/or temporal-specific manner is not applicable to cell tracing and/or gene manipulations in more than one lineage at a time. Here we report a technique that allows efficient delivery of dyes for cell tagging into the mouse pancreas through the duct system, and that also delivers viruses carrying transgenes or siRNA under a specific promoter. When this technique is applied in genetically modified mice, it enables the investigator to perform either double lineage tracing or cell lineage tracing combined with gene manipulation in a second lineage. The technique requires <40 min.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/nprot.2014.183

    View details for Web of Science ID 000344249300001

    View details for PubMedID 25356582

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4734891

  • A Computer-Based Automated Algorithm for Assessing Acinar Cell Loss after Experimental Pancreatitis PLOS ONE Eisses, J. F., Davis, A. W., Tosun, A., Dionise, Z. R., Chen, C., Ozolek, J. A., Rohde, G. K., Husain, S. Z. 2014; 9 (10): e110220


    The change in exocrine mass is an important parameter to follow in experimental models of pancreatic injury and regeneration. However, at present, the quantitative assessment of exocrine content by histology is tedious and operator-dependent, requiring manual assessment of acinar area on serial pancreatic sections. In this study, we utilized a novel computer-generated learning algorithm to construct an accurate and rapid method of quantifying acinar content. The algorithm works by learning differences in pixel characteristics from input examples provided by human experts. HE-stained pancreatic sections were obtained in mice recovering from a 2-day, hourly caerulein hyperstimulation model of experimental pancreatitis. For training data, a pathologist carefully outlined discrete regions of acinar and non-acinar tissue in 21 sections at various stages of pancreatic injury and recovery (termed the "ground truth"). After the expert defined the ground truth, the computer was able to develop a prediction rule that was then applied to a unique set of high-resolution images in order to validate the process. For baseline, non-injured pancreatic sections, the software demonstrated close agreement with the ground truth in identifying baseline acinar tissue area with only a difference of 1% ± 0.05% (p = 0.21). Within regions of injured tissue, the software reported a difference of 2.5% ± 0.04% in acinar area compared with the pathologist (p = 0.47). Surprisingly, on detailed morphological examination, the discrepancy was primarily because the software outlined acini and excluded inter-acinar and luminal white space with greater precision. The findings suggest that the software will be of great potential benefit to both clinicians and researchers in quantifying pancreatic acinar cell flux in the injured and recovering pancreas.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0110220

    View details for Web of Science ID 000343943500028

    View details for PubMedID 25343460

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4208778

  • The ryanodine receptor is expressed in human pancreatic acinar cells and contributes to acinar cell injury AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-GASTROINTESTINAL AND LIVER PHYSIOLOGY Lewarchik, C. M., Orabi, A. I., Jin, S., Wang, D., Muili, K. A., Shah, A. U., Eisses, J. F., Malik, A., Bottino, R., Jayaraman, T., Husain, S. Z. 2014; 307 (5): G574–G581


    Physiological calcium (Ca(2+)) signals within the pancreatic acinar cell regulate enzyme secretion, whereas aberrant Ca(2+) signals are associated with acinar cell injury. We have previously identified the ryanodine receptor (RyR), a Ca(2+) release channel on the endoplasmic reticulum, as a modulator of these pathological signals. In the present study, we establish that the RyR is expressed in human acinar cells and mediates acinar cell injury. We obtained pancreatic tissue from cadaveric donors and identified isoforms of RyR1 and RyR2 by qPCR. Immunofluorescence staining of the pancreas showed that the RyR is localized to the basal region of the acinar cell. Furthermore, the presence of RyR was confirmed from isolated human acinar cells by tritiated ryanodine binding. To determine whether the RyR is functionally active, mouse or human acinar cells were loaded with the high-affinity Ca(2+) dye (Fluo-4 AM) and stimulated with taurolithocholic acid 3-sulfate (TLCS) (500 μM) or carbachol (1 mM). Ryanodine (100 μM) pretreatment reduced the magnitude of the Ca(2+) signal and the area under the curve. To determine the effect of RyR blockade on injury, human acinar cells were stimulated with pathological stimuli, the bile acid TLCS (500 μM) or the muscarinic agonist carbachol (1 mM) in the presence or absence of the RyR inhibitor ryanodine. Ryanodine (100 μM) caused an 81% and 47% reduction in acinar cell injury, respectively, as measured by lactate dehydrogenase leakage (P < 0.05). Taken together, these data establish that the RyR is expressed in human acinar cells and that it modulates acinar Ca(2+) signals and cell injury.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpgi.00143.2014

    View details for Web of Science ID 000341094700008

    View details for PubMedID 25012845

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4154117

  • Design and Implementation of INSPPIRE JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Morinville, V. D., Lowe, M. E., Ahuja, M., Barth, B., Bellin, M. D., Davis, H., Durie, P. R., Finley, B., Fishman, D. S., Freedman, S. D., Gariepy, C. E., Giefer, M. J., Gonska, T., Heyman, M. B., Himes, R., Husain, S., Kumar, S., Ooi, C. Y., Pohl, J. F., Schwarzenberg, S., Troendle, D., Werlin, S. L., Wilschanski, M., Yen, E., Uc, A. 2014; 59 (3): 360–64


    Acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP) and chronic pancreatitis (CP) are rare and poorly understood diseases in children. Better understanding of these disorders can only be accomplished via a multicenter, structured, data collection approach.The International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a Cure (INSPPIRE) consortium was created to investigate the epidemiology, etiologies, pathogenesis, natural history, and outcomes of pediatric ARP and CP. Patient and physician questionnaires were developed to capture information on demographics, medical history, family and social history, medications, hospitalizations, risk factors, diagnostic evaluation, treatments, and outcome information. Information collected in paper questionnaires was then transferred into Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap), tabulated, and analyzed.The administrative structure of the INSPPIRE consortium was established, and National Institutes of Health funding was obtained. A total of 14 sites (10 in the United States, 2 in Canada, and 2 overseas) participated. Questionnaires were amended and updated as necessary, followed by changes made into the REDCap database. Between September 1, 2012 and August 31, 2013, a total of 194 children were enrolled into the study: 54% were girls, 82% were non-Hispanic, and 72% were whites.The INSPPIRE consortium demonstrates the feasibility of building a multicenter patient registry to study the rare pediatric diseases, ARP and CP. Analyses of collected data will provide a greater understanding of pediatric pancreatitis and create opportunities for therapeutic interventional studies that would not otherwise be possible without a multicenter approach.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000000417

    View details for Web of Science ID 000341080700023

    View details for PubMedID 24824361

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4141003

  • Low pH enhances connexin32 degradation in the pancreatic acinar cell AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-GASTROINTESTINAL AND LIVER PHYSIOLOGY Reed, A. M., Kolodecik, T., Husain, S. Z., Gorelick, F. S. 2014; 307 (1): G24–G32


    Decreased extracellular pH is observed in a number of clinical conditions and can sensitize to the development and worsen the severity of acute pancreatitis. Because intercellular communication through gap junctions is pH-sensitive and modulates pancreatitis responses, we evaluated the effects of low pH on gap junctions in the rat pancreatic acinar cell. Decreasing extracellular pH from 7.4 to 7.0 significantly inhibited gap junctional intracellular communication. Acidic pH also significantly reduced levels of connexin32, the predominant gap junction protein in acinar cells, and altered its localization. Increased degradation through the proteasomal, lysosomal, and autophagic pathways mediated the decrease in connexin32 under low-pH conditions. These findings provide the first evidence that low extracellular pH can regulate gap junctional intercellular communication by enhancing connexin degradation.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpgi.00010.2014

    View details for Web of Science ID 000338924600003

    View details for PubMedID 24812055

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4080162

  • A Non-Invasive Method of Quantifying Pancreatic Volume in Mice Using Micro-MRI PLOS ONE Paredes, J. L., Orabi, A. I., Ahmad, T., Benbourenane, I., Tobita, K., Tadros, S., Bae, K. T., Husain, S. Z. 2014; 9 (3): e92263


    In experimental models of pancreatic growth and recovery, changes in pancreatic size are assessed by euthanizing a large cohort of animals at varying time points and measuring organ mass. However, to ascertain this information in clinical practice, patients with pancreatic disorders routinely undergo non-invasive cross-sectional imaging of the pancreas using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT). The aim of the current study was to develop a thin-sliced, optimized sequence protocol using a high field MRI to accurately calculate pancreatic volumes in the most common experimental animal, the mouse. Using a 7 Telsa Bruker micro-MRI system, we performed abdominal imaging in whole-fixed mice in three standard planes: axial, sagittal, and coronal. The contour of the pancreas was traced using Vitrea software and then transformed into a 3-dimensional (3D) reconstruction, from which volumetric measurements were calculated. Images were optimized using heart perfusion-fixation, T1 sequence analysis, and 0.2 to 0.4 mm thick slices. As proof of principle, increases in pancreatic volume among mice of different ages correlated tightly with increasing body weight. In summary, this is the first study to measure pancreatic volumes in mice, using a high field 7 Tesla micro-MRI and a thin-sliced, optimized sequence protocol. We anticipate that micro-MRI will improve the ability to non-invasively quantify changes in pancreatic size and will dramatically reduce the number of animals required to serially assess pancreatic growth and recovery.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0092263

    View details for Web of Science ID 000333259900113

    View details for PubMedID 24642611

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3958493

  • New NASPGHAN Research Agenda to Target the Public JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Srinath, A., Rao, M., Husain, S. Z. 2014; 58 (2): 142–43

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0000000000000230

    View details for Web of Science ID 000335379300011

    View details for PubMedID 24458217

  • Total pancreatectomy and islet autotransplantation in chronic pancreatitis: Recommendations from PancreasFest PANCREATOLOGY Bellin, M. D., Freeman, M. L., Gelrud, A., Slivka, A., Clavel, A., Humar, A., Schwarzenberg, S. J., Lowe, M. E., Rickels, M. R., Whitcomb, D. C., Matthews, J. B., PancreasFest Recommendation Confer 2014; 14 (1): 27–35


    Total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation (TPIAT) is a surgical procedure used to treat severe complications of chronic pancreatitis or very high risk of pancreatic cancer while reducing the risk of severe diabetes mellitus. However, clear guidance on indications, contraindications, evaluation, timing, and follow-up are lacking.A working group reviewed the medical, psychological, and surgical options and supporting literature related to TPIAT for a consensus meeting during PancreasFest.Five major areas requiring clinical evaluation and management were addressed: These included: 1) indications for TPIAT; 2) contraindications for TPIAT; 3) optimal timing of the procedure; 4) need for a multi-disciplinary team and the roles of the members; 5) life-long management issues following TPIAP including diabetes monitoring and nutrition evaluation.TPIAT is an effective method of managing the disabling complications of chronic pancreatitis and risk of pancreatic cancer in very high risk patients. Careful evaluation and long-term management of candidate patients by qualified multidisciplinary teams is required. Multiple recommendations for further research were also identified.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.pan.2013.10.009

    View details for Web of Science ID 000332193800008

    View details for PubMedID 24555976

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4058640

  • Cluster of Differentiation 38 (CD38) Mediates Bile Acid-induced Acinar Cell Injury and Pancreatitis through Cyclic ADP-ribose and Intracellular Calcium Release JOURNAL OF BIOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY Orabi, A. I., Muili, K. A., Javed, T. A., Jin, S., Jayaraman, T., Lund, F. E., Husain, S. Z. 2013; 288 (38): 27128–37


    Aberrant Ca(2+) signals within pancreatic acinar cells are an early and critical feature in acute pancreatitis, yet it is unclear how these signals are generated. An important mediator of the aberrant Ca(2+) signals due to bile acid exposure is the intracellular Ca(2+) channel ryanodine receptor. One putative activator of the ryanodine receptor is the nucleotide second messenger cyclic ADP-ribose (cADPR), which is generated by an ectoenzyme ADP-ribosyl cyclase, CD38. In this study, we examined the role of CD38 and cADPR in acinar cell Ca(2+) signals and acinar injury due to bile acids using pharmacologic inhibitors of CD38 and cADPR as well as mice deficient in Cd38 (Cd38(-/-)). Cytosolic Ca(2+) signals were imaged using live time-lapse confocal microscopy in freshly isolated mouse acinar cells during perifusion with the bile acid taurolithocholic acid 3-sulfate (TLCS; 500 μM). To focus on intracellular Ca(2+) release and to specifically exclude Ca(2+) influx, cells were perifused in Ca(2+)-free medium. Cell injury was assessed by lactate dehydrogenase leakage and propidium iodide uptake. Pretreatment with either nicotinamide (20 mM) or the cADPR antagonist 8-Br-cADPR (30 μM) abrogated TLCS-induced Ca(2+) signals and cell injury. TLCS-induced Ca(2+) release and cell injury were reduced by 30 and 95%, respectively, in Cd38-deficient acinar cells compared with wild-type cells (p < 0.05). Cd38-deficient mice were protected against a model of bile acid infusion pancreatitis. In summary, these data indicate that CD38-cADPR mediates bile acid-induced pancreatitis and acinar cell injury through aberrant intracellular Ca(2+) signaling.

    View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M113.494534

    View details for Web of Science ID 000330597300012

    View details for PubMedID 23940051

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3779711

  • Pancreatic Acinar Cell Nuclear Factor kappa B Activation Because of Bile Acid Exposure Is Dependent on Calcineurin JOURNAL OF BIOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY Muili, K. A., Jin, S., Orabi, A. I., Eisses, J. F., Javed, T. A., Le, T., Bottino, R., Jayaraman, T., Husain, S. Z. 2013; 288 (29): 21065–73


    Biliary pancreatitis is the most common etiology of acute pancreatitis, accounting for 30-60% of cases. A dominant theory for the development of biliary pancreatitis is the reflux of bile into the pancreatic duct and subsequent exposure to pancreatic acinar cells. Bile acids are known to induce aberrant Ca(2+) signals in acinar cells as well as nuclear translocation of NF-κB. In this study, we examined the role of the downstream Ca(2+) target calcineurin on NF-κB translocation. Freshly isolated mouse acinar cells were infected for 24 h with an adenovirus expressing an NF-κB luciferase reporter. The bile acid taurolithocholic acid-3-sulfate caused NF-κB activation at concentrations (500 μm) that were associated with cell injury. We show that the NF-κB inhibitor Bay 11-7082 (1 μm) blocked translocation and injury. Pretreatment with the Ca(2+) chelator 1,2-bis(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid, the calcineurin inhibitors FK506 and cyclosporine A, or use of acinar cells from calcineurin Aβ-deficient mice each led to reduced NF-κB activation with taurolithocholic acid-3-sulfate. Importantly, these manipulations did not affect LPS-induced NF-κB activation. A critical upstream regulator of NF-κB activation is protein kinase C, which translocates to the membranes of various organelles in the active state. We demonstrate that pharmacologic and genetic inhibition of calcineurin blocks translocation of the PKC-δ isoform. In summary, bile-induced NF-κB activation and acinar cell injury are mediated by calcineurin, and a mechanism for this important early inflammatory response appears to be upstream at the level of PKC translocation.

    View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M113.471425

    View details for Web of Science ID 000322014400027

    View details for PubMedID 23744075

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3774373

  • Preparation of Pancreatic Acinar Cells for the Purpose of Calcium Imaging, Cell Injury Measurements, and Adenoviral Infection JOVE-JOURNAL OF VISUALIZED EXPERIMENTS Orabi, A. I., Muili, K. A., Wang, D., Jin, S., Perides, G., Husain, S. Z. 2013: e50391


    The pancreatic acinar cell is the main parenchymal cell of the exocrine pancreas and plays a primary role in the secretion of pancreatic enzymes into the pancreatic duct. It is also the site for the initiation of pancreatitis. Here we describe how acinar cells are isolated from whole pancreas tissue and intracellular calcium signals are measured. In addition, we describe the techniques of transfecting these cells with adenoviral constructs, and subsequently measuring the leakage of lactate dehydrogenase, a marker of cell injury, during conditions that induce acinar cell injury in vitro. These techniques provide a powerful tool to characterize acinar cell physiology and pathology.

    View details for DOI 10.3791/50391

    View details for Web of Science ID 000209227900013

    View details for PubMedID 23851390

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3731432

  • Detection, evaluation and treatment of diabetes mellitus in chronic pancreatitis:. Recommendations from PancreasFest 2012 PANCREATOLOGY Rickels, M. R., Bellin, M., Toledo, F. S., Robertson, R., Andersen, D. K., Chari, S. T., Brand, R., Frulloni, L., Anderson, M. A., Whitcomb, D. C., PancreasFest Recommendation Confer 2013; 13 (4): 336–42


    Diabetes and glucose intolerance are common complications of chronic pancreatitis, yet clinical guidance on their detection, classification, and management is lacking.A working group reviewed the medical problems, diagnostic methods, and treatment options for chronic pancreatitis-associated diabetes for a consensus meeting at PancreasFest 2012.Guidance Statement 1.1: Diabetes mellitus is common in chronic pancreatitis. While any patient with chronic pancreatitis should be monitored for development of diabetes, those with long-standing duration of disease, prior partial pancreatectomy, and early onset of calcific disease may be at higher risk. Those patients developing diabetes mellitus are likely to have co-existing pancreatic exocrine insufficiency. Guidance Statement 1.2: Diabetes occurring secondary to chronic pancreatitis should be recognized as pancreatogenic diabetes (type 3c diabetes). Guidance Statement 2.1: The initial evaluation should include fasting glucose and HbA1c. These tests should be repeated annually. Impairment in either fasting glucose or HbA1c requires further evaluation. Guidance Statement 2.2: Impairment in either fasting glucose or HbA1c should be further evaluated by a standard 75 g oral glucose tolerance test. Guidance Statement 2.3: An absent pancreatic polypeptide response to mixed-nutrient ingestion is a specific indicator of type 3c diabetes. Guidance Statement 2.4: Assessment of pancreatic endocrine reserve, and importantly that of functional beta-cell mass, should be performed as part of the evaluation and follow-up for total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation (TPIAT). Guidance Statement 3: Patients with pancreatic diabetes shall be treated with specifically tailored medical nutrition and pharmacologic therapies.Physicians should evaluate and treat glucose intolerance in patients with pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.pan.2013.05.002

    View details for Web of Science ID 000323464600003

    View details for PubMedID 23890130

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3830751

  • Src Dependent Pancreatic Acinar Injury Can Be Initiated Independent of an Increase in Cytosolic Calcium PLOS ONE Mishra, V., Cline, R., Noel, P., Karlsson, J., Baty, C. J., Orlichenko, L., Patel, K., Trivedi, R., Husain, S. Z., Acharya, C., Durgampudi, C., Stolz, D. B., Navina, S., Singh, V. P. 2013; 8 (6): e66471


    Several deleterious intra-acinar phenomena are simultaneously triggered on initiating acute pancreatitis. These culminate in acinar injury or inflammatory mediator generation in vitro and parenchymal damage in vivo. Supraphysiologic caerulein is one such initiator which simultaneously activates numerous signaling pathways including non-receptor tyrosine kinases such as of the Src family. It also causes a sustained increase in cytosolic calcium- a player thought to be crucial in regulating deleterious phenomena. We have shown Src to be involved in caerulein induced actin remodeling, and caerulein induced changes in the Golgi and post-Golgi trafficking to be involved in trypsinogen activation, which initiates acinar cell injury. However, it remains unclear whether an increase in cytosolic calcium is necessary to initiate acinar injury or if injury can be initiated at basal cytosolic calcium levels by an alternate pathway. To study the interplay between tyrosine kinase signaling and calcium, we treated mouse pancreatic acinar cells with the tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor pervanadate. We studied the effect of the clinically used Src inhibitor Dasatinib (BMS-354825) on pervanadate or caerulein induced changes in Src activation, trypsinogen activation, cell injury, upstream cytosolic calcium, actin and Golgi morphology. Pervanadate, like supraphysiologic caerulein, induced Src activation, redistribution of the F-actin from its normal location in the sub-apical area to the basolateral areas, and caused antegrade fragmentation of the Golgi. These changes, like those induced by supraphysiologic caerulein, were associated with trypsinogen activation and acinar injury, all of which were prevented by Dasatinib. Interestingly, however, pervanadate did not cause an increase in cytosolic calcium, and the caerulein induced increase in cytosolic calcium was not affected by Dasatinib. These findings suggest that intra-acinar deleterious phenomena may be initiated independent of an increase in cytosolic calcium. Other players resulting in acinar injury along with the Src family of tyrosine kinases remain to be explored.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0066471

    View details for Web of Science ID 000320576400114

    View details for PubMedID 23824669

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3688910

  • Acute Necrotizing Pancreatitis in Children JOURNAL OF PEDIATRICS Raizner, A., Phatak, U., Baker, K., Patel, M. G., Husain, S. Z., Pashankar, D. S. 2013; 162 (4): 788–92


    To describe the etiologic factors, course, and outcome of acute necrotizing pancreatitis in children.We performed a retrospective study of children with necrotizing pancreatitis diagnosed during the last 21 years at Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital. Computed tomography (CT) criteria were used to diagnose necrotizing pancreatitis and to assess severity index. Charts were reviewed to collect demographics, etiology, details of hospital stay, complications, and outcome.Seven children (mean age, 11.6 years; range, 4-17.8 years) had necrotizing pancreatitis. Etiologic factors were medications, diabetes, and gallstones. All had prolonged hospitalization (9-40 days; mean, 20 days) and 5 patients required admission to the pediatric intensive care unit. During the hospital stay, patients developed complications involving the respiratory, hematologic, renal, metabolic, and circulatory systems. All patients had aggressive supportive medical therapy, and none required surgery. There were no deaths attributable to pancreatitis. Late complications after hospital discharge occurred in 5 patients and included pseudocysts, transient hyperglycemia, diabetes, and pancreatic exocrine insufficiency. The CT severity index correlated with the risk of complications.A cute necrotizing pancreatitis has a variable etiology in children. CT scan is useful in the diagnosis and assessment of severity. Necrotizing pancreatitis in children is associated with severe acute and late complications and requires intensive medical therapy.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpeds.2012.09.037

    View details for Web of Science ID 000316728900031

    View details for PubMedID 23102790

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4370212

  • Bile Acids Induce Pancreatic Acinar Cell Injury and Pancreatitis by Activating Calcineurin JOURNAL OF BIOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY Muili, K. A., Wang, D., Orabi, A. I., Sarwar, S., Luo, Y., Javed, T. A., Eisses, J. F., Mahmood, S. M., Jin, S., Singh, V. P., Ananthanaravanan, M., Perides, G., Williams, J. A., Molkentin, J. D., Husain, S. Z. 2013; 288 (1): 570–80


    Biliary pancreatitis is the leading cause of acute pancreatitis in both children and adults. A proposed mechanism is the reflux of bile into the pancreatic duct. Bile acid exposure causes pancreatic acinar cell injury through a sustained rise in cytosolic Ca(2+). Thus, it would be clinically relevant to know the targets of this aberrant Ca(2+) signal. We hypothesized that the Ca(2+)-activated phosphatase calcineurin is such a Ca(2+) target. To examine calcineurin activation, we infected primary acinar cells from mice with an adenovirus expressing the promoter for a downstream calcineurin effector, nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFAT). The bile acid taurolithocholic acid-3-sulfate (TLCS) was primarily used to examine bile acid responses. TLCS caused calcineurin activation only at concentrations that cause acinar cell injury. The activation of calcineurin by TLCS was abolished by chelating intracellular Ca(2+). Pretreatment with 1,2-bis(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (acetoxymethyl ester) (BAPTA-AM) or the three specific calcineurin inhibitors FK506, cyclosporine A, or calcineurin inhibitory peptide prevented bile acid-induced acinar cell injury as measured by lactate dehydrogenase leakage and propidium iodide uptake. The calcineurin inhibitors reduced the intra-acinar activation of chymotrypsinogen within 30 min of TLCS administration, and they also prevented NF-κB activation. In vivo, mice that received FK506 or were deficient in the calcineurin isoform Aβ (CnAβ) subunit had reduced pancreatitis severity after infusion of TLCS or taurocholic acid into the pancreatic duct. In summary, we demonstrate that acinar cell calcineurin is activated in response to Ca(2+) generated by bile acid exposure, bile acid-induced pancreatic injury is dependent on calcineurin activation, and calcineurin inhibitors may provide an adjunctive therapy for biliary pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M112.428896

    View details for Web of Science ID 000313197200057

    View details for PubMedID 23148215

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3537054

  • IP3 Receptor Type 2 Deficiency Is Associated with a Secretory Defect in the Pancreatic Acinar Cell and an Accumulation of Zymogen Granules PLOS ONE Orabi, A. I., Luo, Y., Ahmad, M. U., Shah, A. U., Mannan, Z., Wang, D., Sarwar, S., Muili, K. A., Shugrue, C., Kolodecik, T. R., Singh, V. P., Lowe, M. E., Thrower, E., Chen, J., Husain, S. Z. 2012; 7 (11): e48465


    Acute pancreatitis is a painful, life-threatening disorder of the pancreas whose etiology is often multi-factorial. It is of great importance to understand the interplay between factors that predispose patients to develop the disease. One such factor is an excessive elevation in pancreatic acinar cell Ca(2+). These aberrant Ca(2+) elevations are triggered by release of Ca(2+) from apical Ca(2+) pools that are gated by the inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R) types 2 and 3. In this study, we examined the role of IP3R type 2 (IP3R2) using mice deficient in this Ca(2+) release channel (IP3R2(-/-)). Using live acinar cell Ca(2+) imaging we found that loss of IP3R2 reduced the amplitude of the apical Ca(2+) signal and caused a delay in its initiation. This was associated with a reduction in carbachol-stimulated amylase release and an accumulation of zymogen granules (ZGs). Specifically, there was a 2-fold increase in the number of ZGs (P<0.05) and an expansion of the ZG pool area within the cell. There was also a 1.6- and 2.6-fold increase in cellular amylase and trypsinogen, respectively. However, the mice did not have evidence of pancreatic injury at baseline, other than an elevated serum amylase level. Further, pancreatitis outcomes using a mild caerulein hyperstimulation model were similar between IP3R2(-/-) and wild type mice. In summary, IP3R2 modulates apical acinar cell Ca(2+) signals and pancreatic enzyme secretion. IP3R-deficient acinar cells accumulate ZGs, but the mice do not succumb to pancreatic damage or worse pancreatitis outcomes.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0048465

    View details for Web of Science ID 000311821000012

    View details for PubMedID 23185258

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3504040

  • Definitions of Pediatric Pancreatitis and Survey of Present Clinical Practices JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Morinville, V. D., Husain, S. Z., Bai, H., Barth, B., Alhosh, R., Dune, P. R., Freedman, S. D., Himes, R., Lowe, M. E., Pohl, J., Werlin, S., Wilschanski, M., Uc, A., INSPPIRE Grp 2012; 55 (3): 261–65


    There is limited literature on acute pancreatitis (AP), acute recurrent pancreatitis (ARP), and chronic pancreatitis (CP) in children. The International Study Group of Pediatric Pancreatitis: In Search for a Cure (INSPPIRE) consortium was formed to standardize definitions, develop diagnostic algorithms, investigate disease pathophysiology, and design prospective multicenter studies in pediatric pancreatitis.Subcommittees were formed to delineate definitions of pancreatitis, and a survey was conducted to analyze present practice.AP was defined as requiring 2 of the following: abdominal pain compatible with AP, serum amylase and/or lipase values ≥3 times upper limits of normal, and imaging findings of AP. ARP was defined as ≥2 distinct episodes of AP with intervening return to baseline. CP was diagnosed in the presence of typical abdominal pain plus characteristic imaging findings, or exocrine insufficiency plus imaging findings, or endocrine insufficiency plus imaging findings. We found that children with pancreatitis were primarily managed by pediatric gastroenterologists. Unless the etiology was known, initial investigations included serum liver enzymes, triglycerides, calcium, and abdominal ultrasound. Further investigations (usually for ARP and CP) included magnetic resonance or other imaging, sweat chloride, and genetic testing. Respondents' future goals for INSPPIRE included determining natural history of pancreatitis, developing algorithms to evaluate and manage pancreatitis, and validating diagnostic criteria.INSPPIRE represents the first initiative to create a multicenter approach to systematically characterize pancreatitis in children. Future aims include creation of patient database and biologic sample repository.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0b013e31824f1516

    View details for Web of Science ID 000308276900006

    View details for PubMedID 22357117

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3626452

  • The Association of Primary Hyperparathyroidism With Pancreatitis JOURNAL OF CLINICAL GASTROENTEROLOGY Bai, H. X., Giefer, M., Patel, M., Orabi, A. I., Husain, S. Z. 2012; 46 (8): 656–61


    The association between primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) and acute or chronic pancreatitis is controversial. For this reason, we conducted a review of the literature over the past 30 years to explore the relationship between these 2 disorders. Ten retrospective studies each with >50 patients diagnosed with PHPT were identified. With the notable exception of 2 studies, the rate of pancreatitis among patients with PHPT was higher than that reported in general among hospitalized patients without PHPT. A higher serum calcium level may contribute to pancreatitis in these cases, along with additional genetic or environmental insults. Hypercalcemia may predispose the pancreatic acinar cell to abnormal, sustained calcium levels, lead to premature pancreatic protease activation, and pancreatitis. Although there was only short-term follow-up, most reports cited that definitive treatment of PHPT by parathyroidectomy led to the resolution of pancreatitis attacks. The published cohorts of patients with PHPT and pancreatitis are subject to bias, because serum calcium screening was not universally performed among all control nonpancreatitis patients to evaluate for PHPT. However, the pooled clinical and experimental data suggest an association between PHPT and pancreatitis and implicate hypercalcemia. For clinicians, it is important to recognize pancreatitis in patients with PHPT and, conversely, to consider PHPT by checking serum calcium levels in patients, who present with an unexplained pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MCG.0b013e31825c446c

    View details for Web of Science ID 000307936900009

    View details for PubMedID 22874807

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4428665

  • Ryanodine receptors contribute to bile acid-induced pathological calcium signaling and pancreatitis in mice AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-GASTROINTESTINAL AND LIVER PHYSIOLOGY Husain, S. Z., Orabi, A. I., Muili, K. A., Luo, Y., Sarwar, S., Mahmood, S., Wang, D., Choo-Wing, R., Singh, V. P., Parness, J., Ananthanaravanan, M., Bhandari, V., Perides, G. 2012; 302 (12): G1423–G1433


    Biliary pancreatitis is the most common etiology for acute pancreatitis, yet its pathophysiological mechanism remains unclear. Ca(2+) signals generated within the pancreatic acinar cell initiate the early phase of pancreatitis, and bile acids can elicit anomalous acinar cell intracellular Ca(2+) release. We previously demonstrated that Ca(2+) released via the intracellular Ca(2+) channel, the ryanodine receptor (RyR), contributes to the aberrant Ca(2+) signal. In this study, we examined whether RyR inhibition protects against pathological Ca(2+) signals, acinar cell injury, and pancreatitis from bile acid exposure. The bile acid tauro-lithocholic acid-3-sulfate (TLCS) induced intracellular Ca(2+) oscillations at 50 μM and a peak-plateau signal at 500 μM, and only the latter induced acinar cell injury, as determined by lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) leakage. Pretreatment with the RyR inhibitors dantrolene or ryanodine converted the peak-plateau signal to a mostly oscillatory pattern (P < 0.05). They also reduced acinar cell LDH leakage, basolateral blebbing, and propidium iodide uptake (P < 0.05). In vivo, a single dose of dantrolene (5 mg/kg), given either 1 h before or 2 h after intraductal TLCS infusion, reduced the severity of pancreatitis down to the level of the control (P < 0.05). These results suggest that the severity of biliary pancreatitis may be ameliorated by the clinical use of RyR inhibitors.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpgi.00546.2011

    View details for Web of Science ID 000305398600008

    View details for PubMedID 22517774

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3774209

  • Pharmacological and genetic inhibition of calcineurin protects against carbachol-induced pathological zymogen activation and acinar cell injury AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-GASTROINTESTINAL AND LIVER PHYSIOLOGY Muili, K. A., Ahmad, M., Orabi, A. I., Mahmood, S. M., Shah, A. U., Molkentin, J. D., Husain, S. Z. 2012; 302 (8): G898–G905


    Acute pancreatitis is a major health burden for which there are currently no targeted therapies. Premature activation of digestive proenzymes, or zymogens, within the pancreatic acinar cell is an early and critical event in this disease. A high-amplitude, sustained rise in acinar cell Ca(2+) is required for zymogen activation. We previously showed in a cholecystokinin-induced pancreatitis model that a potential target of this aberrant Ca(2+) signaling is the Ca(2+)-activated phosphatase calcineurin (Cn). However, in this study, we examined the role of Cn on both zymogen activation and injury, in the clinically relevant condition of neurogenic stimulation (by giving the acetylcholine analog carbachol) using three different Cn inhibitors or Cn-deficient acinar cells. In freshly isolated mouse acinar cells, pretreatment with FK506, calcineurin inhibitory peptide (CiP), or cyclosporine (CsA) blocked intra-acinar zymogen activation (n = 3; P < 0.05). The Cn inhibitors also reduced leakage of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) by 79%, 62%, and 63%, respectively (n = 3; P < 0.05). Of the various Cn isoforms, the β-isoform of the catalytic A subunit (CnAβ) was strongly expressed in mouse acinar cells. For this reason, we obtained acinar cells from CnAβ-deficient mice (CnAβ-/-) and observed an 84% and 50% reduction in trypsin and chymotrypsin activation, respectively, compared with wild-type controls (n = 3; P < 0.05). LDH release in the CnAβ-deficient cells was reduced by 50% (n = 2; P < 0.05). The CnAβ-deficient cells were also protected against zymogen activation and cell injury induced by the cholecystokinin analog caerulein. Importantly, amylase secretion was generally not affected by either the Cn inhibitors or Cn deficiency. These data provide both pharmacological and genetic evidence that implicates Cn in intra-acinar zymogen activation and cell injury during pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpgi.00545.2011

    View details for Web of Science ID 000302918300014

    View details for PubMedID 22323127

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3355562

  • What Have We Learned About Acute Pancreatitis in Children? JOURNAL OF PEDIATRIC GASTROENTEROLOGY AND NUTRITION Bai, H. X., Lowe, M. E., Husain, S. Z. 2011; 52 (3): 262–70


    Pediatric pancreatitis has received much attention during the past few years. Numerous reports have identified an increasing trend in the diagnosis of acute pancreatitis in children and key differences in disease presentation and management between infants and older children. The present review provides a brief, evidence-based focus on the latest progress in the clinical field. It also poses important questions for emerging multicenter registries to answer about the natural history and management of affected children with pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/MPG.0b013e3182061d75

    View details for Web of Science ID 000287477100003

    View details for PubMedID 21336157

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3626416

  • Dantrolene mitigates caerulein-induced pancreatitis in vivo in mice AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-GASTROINTESTINAL AND LIVER PHYSIOLOGY Orabi, A. I., Shah, A. U., Ahmad, M. U., Choo-Wing, R., Parness, J., Jain, D., Bhandari, V., Husain, S. Z. 2010; 299 (1): G196–G204


    Acute pancreatitis is a painful, inflammatory disorder for which adequate treatments are lacking. An early, critical step in its development is the aberrant signaling of Ca(2+) within the pancreatic acinar cell. This Ca(2+) release is modulated by the intracellular Ca(2+) channel the ryanodine receptor (RYR). We have previously shown that RYR inhibition reduces pathological intra-acinar protease activation, an early marker of pancreatitis. In this study, we examined whether pretreatment with the RYR inhibitor dantrolene attenuates the severity of caerulein-induced pancreatitis in mice. Immunofluorescent labeling for RYR from mouse pancreatic sections showed localization to the basolateral region of the acinar cell. After 1 h of caerulein hyperstimulation in vivo, dantrolene 1) reduced pancreatic trypsin activity by 59% (P < 0.05) and 2) mitigated early ultrastructural derangements within the acinar cell. Eight hours after pancreatitis induction, dantrolene reduced pancreatic trypsin activity and serum amylase by 61 and 32%, respectively (P < 0.05). At this later time point, overall histological severity of pancreatitis was reduced by 63% with dantrolene pretreatment (P < 0.05). TUNEL-positive cells were reduced by 58% (P < 0.05). These data suggest that the RYR plays an important role in mediating early acinar cell events during in vivo pancreatitis and contributes to disease severity. Blockade of Ca(2+) signals and particularly RYR-Ca(2+) may be useful as prophylactic treatment for this disease in high-risk settings for pancreatitis.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpgi.00498.2009

    View details for Web of Science ID 000278792600020

    View details for PubMedID 20448143

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2904115