A system was developed for the in vitro culture of human rectal mucosa. Its viability was proved by histological appearances and by metabolic studies. Biopsy samples were cultured in the presence of appropriate bacteria isolated from the faeces of patients with ulcerative colitis or with dysenteric illnesses. Attempts to show adhesion of bacteria to the mucosa or invasion of the cultured tissue failed. Problems with the use of this model are discussed.
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