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Unveiling Colitis: A Journey through the Dextran Sodium Sulfate-induced Model.

Animal models of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are valuable tools for investigating the factors involved in IBD pathogenesis and evaluating new therapeutic options. The dextran sodium sulfate (DSS)-induced model of colitis is arguably the most widely used animal model for studying the pathogenesis of and potential treatments for ulcerative colitis (UC), which is a primary form of IBD. This model offers several advantages as a research tool: it is highly reproducible, relatively easy to generate and maintain, and mimics many critical features of human IBD. Recently, it has also been used to study the role of gut microbiota in the development and progression of IBD and to investigate the effects of other factors, such as diet and genetics, on colitis severity. However, although DSS-induced colitis is the most popular and flexible model for preclinical IBD research, it is not an exact replica of human colitis, and some results obtained from this model cannot be directly applied to humans. This review aims to comprehensively discuss different factors that may be involved in the pathogenesis of DSS-induced colitis and the issues that should be considered when using this model for translational purposes.

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