Diarrhoea is a hallmark of intestinal inflammation. The mechanisms operating in acute inflammation of the intestine are well characterized and are related to regulatory changes induced by inflammatory mediators such as prostaglandins, cytokines or reactive oxygen species, along with leakage due to epithelial injury and changes in permeability. In chronic colitis, however, the mechanisms are less well known, but it is generally accepted that both secretory and absorptive processes are inhibited. These disturbances in ionic transport may be viewed as an adaptation to protracted inflammation of the intestine, since prolonged intense secretion may be physiologically unacceptable in the long term. Mechanistically, the changes in transport may be due to adjustments in the regulation of the different processes involved, to broader epithelial alterations or frank damage, or to modulation of the transportome in terms of expression. In the present review, we offer a summary of the existing evidence on the status of the transportome in chronic intestinal inflammation.

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