PURPOSE: To evaluate the structural alterations of the irradiated colonic wall in rats, verifying if L-glutamine supplementation is able to prevent them. METHODS: We used 30 male adult Wistar rats, divided into three groups: I - control, II - irradiated, and III - irradiated with L-glutamine supplementation during the 14 days of the study. Control group was maintained in laboratory standard conditions while groups II and three were submitted to abdominal radiation with an only dose of 1000 cGy in the 8th day of experimentation. All the animals were submitted to laparotomy in the 15th day for resection of the colonic segment for stereological analysis. RESULTS: Group II presented total volume of colonic wall significantly smaller than control group without altering the partial volumes of each layer. Compared to groups II and III, group III exhibited maintenance of total volume of colonic wall, nearing control group. Compared to control group, animals of group III exhibited maintenance of epithelial partial volume without altering significantly epithelial surface. CONCLUSION: It is suggested that L-glutamine supplementation can be of benefit in the irradiated colonic wall in rats.
L-glutamine; Abdominal radiation; Colonic wall; Colon; Mucosa