Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) relate to chronic inflammations in different parts of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract involving both ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn’s disease (CD). Ulcerative colitis begins in the rectum and extends continuously up the colon. Notably, CD may affect any area of the GIT, from the mouth to the anus. Various conditions may influence the genesis of the disease, such as genetics, environment, intestinal microbiota and the presence of agents of enteric infections. Experimental models are therefore suitably used to investigate the various etiological factors; similarly colitis can be induced by genetic modification, cell transfer, spontaneous inflammation and chemical agents. The objective of this chapter is to present current concept on animal models of inflammatory bowel diseases. These models are crucial for the understanding of inflammatory bowel diseases, development of alternative treatments and more effective therapeutic agents thus contributing to the control of the disease.
Part of the book: Experimental Animal Models of Human Diseases