One of the most significant developments in our approach to studying gastrointestinal motility over the past few years has been in the advent of genetic manipulation and the development of knockout animals. This means that it is possible to study motility patterns of specific regions of the gastrointestinal tract in which the development or synthesis of particular neurotransmitter substances or receptors has been prevented. The mouse has emerged as the model species for investigating the effects that genetic knockouts may have on gastrointestinal motility; therefore, an understanding of the mechanisms underlying the control of motility patterns of unaffected mice is crucial before we can apply this knowledge to knockout models. Major advances have been made in the past few years regarding the mechanisms underlying the generation of migrating motor complexes in the large bowel, particularly in the mouse colon.
- Circular smooth muscle
- Inhibitory junction potential
- Migrating motor complex