Authors:M. Constantinovits, F. Sipos, B. Molnár, Zs Tulassay and Györgyi Műzes
Gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) is supposed to play an integral role in the organization of colonic repair mechanisms. Majority of the GALT is composed of isolated and aggregated lymphoid follicles distributed throughout the intestines. These lymphoid follicles, including Peyer’s patches of the small, and isolated lymphoid follicles (ILFs) of both the small and large intestines, are composed of a specialised follicle associated epithelium overlying a subepithelial dome containing numerous dendritic cells, macrophages, T and B cells. Within inflammatory conditions the number, the diameter and the density of ILFs are increasing. Follicles are involved not just in immune surveillance, but their presence is also indispensable for normal colonic mucosal regeneration. Regarding mucosal repair the relation of ILFs to bone marrow derived stem cells, follicular dendritic cells, subepithelial myofibroblasts and crypt formations, and the putative organizer role of ILFs have not been clarified yet.