A Natural History Study of the Immune Regulation of Idiopathic Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: Crohn's Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and Other Inflammatory Conditions of the Gut

  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Updated on 20 October 2022
platelet count
immunosuppressive agents
abdominal pain
inflammatory response
ulcerative colitis
inflammatory bowel disease
crohn's disease
intestinal diseases
Accepts healthy volunteers


This study will investigate in patients with Crohn s disease and ulcerative colitis how the body s immune system controls inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract (stomach and intestines)-specifically, how lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) function in inflammatory responses. This protocol does not involve any experimental treatments.

Patients between the ages of 0 and 75 years of age with Crohn s disease or ulcerative colitis or symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease may be eligible for this study. Screening tests may include the following: medical history and physical examination, routine blood tests, examination of stool specimens, X-rays such as barium enema or upper GI series, proctosigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, gastroduodenoscopy, and small bowel biopsy.

Participants will receive medical treatment according to the best generally accepted measures for treating Crohn s disease or ulcerative colitis. This may include anti-inflammatory drugs, immunosuppressive drugs, and antibiotics to treat infections. A surgical consultation may be recommended for patients whose disease does not respond to medical treatment. If surgery to remove intestinal tissue is recommended, a qualified gastrointestinal surgeon will perform the procedure.

In addition, participants may undergo the following procedures:

  • Blood drawing - No more than 450 milliliters (30 tablespoons, or 15 ounces) of blood will be taken from adults over a 6-week period. A maximum of 7 ml (1/2 tablespoon) of blood per kilogram (2.2. pounds) of body weight will be obtained from children within the same time period, with no more than 3 ml/kg taken at any one time.
  • Leukapheresis - This procedure is done to collect large quantities of white blood cells. Whole blood is collected through a needle in an arm vein, similar to donating blood. The blood is circulated through a machine that separates it into its components, and the white cells are removed. The rest of the blood is returned to the body, either through the same needle or through another needle in the other arm.
  • Intestinal biopsies - Intestinal tissue will be obtained during colonoscopy with intestinal biopsy in patients who require this procedure as part of their standard medical care. Patients are given a sedative to reduce anxiety, but are conscious during the procedure. A flexible tube is inserted into the rectum and large intestine, allowing the physician to see the intestinal mucosa. At various places, small pieces of tissue are plucked out.


This natural history protocol provides for the evaluation of patients with idiopathic inflammatory bowel diseases (ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, IBD associated with immunodeficiency and genetic diseases such as chronic granulomatous disease and Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome, and additional undefined inflammatory conditions of the gut) either on an inpatient or outpatient basis. The purpose of this protocol is to assess the extent and activity of the disease in such patients, conduct immunologic studies of lymphocyte and antigen-presenting cells derived from peripheral blood and tissues, administer and monitor treatments, and study the genetic risk factors for these diseases. This study will also be used to provide a mechanism for procurement of intestinal samples obtained at sites outside the NIH at the time of medically indicated surgical or endoscopic procedures from patients with IBD. In addition, it will allow for the procurement (send-in) of blood for both immunological studies as well as DNA preparation as more IBD susceptibility genes are discovered and we further our work on association of genetic polymorphisms/mutations with the phenotype and immune abnormalities observed in our IBD patients. This protocol will also allow for the procurement of blood and tissue samples from healthy volunteers (without IBD) here at the NIH to use as a control group in comparison to the immunologic and genetic data we obtain from the IBD patients that are enrolled. The immediate aims of these studies are to define the immunologic abnormalities present and to identify genetic susceptibility factors in patients with these diseases. The long-term goal of this protocol is to identify specific targets for development of novel therapeutics for inflammatory bowel diseases.

Condition Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Chrohn's Disease
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT00001184
SponsorNational Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Last Modified on20 October 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

Patients with a verifiable diagnosis of Crohn s disease, ulcerative colitis, or IBD known to be associated with a co-existing condition and which is supported by characteristic clinical features, radiographic or endoscopic findings, or consistent histopathologic mucosal
changes OR
Patients with clinical features consistent with an unclassified inflammatory bowel disease and histologic evidence of inflammation of the intestine OR
Patients with any clinical features consistent with inflammatory bowel disease (intestinal inflammation), including but not limited to abdominal pain, fistulae, weight loss, diarrhea, hematochezia or melena or suggestive extra-intestinal symptoms (pyoderma, erythema
Patients who have a defined genetic syndrome linked to inflammatory bowel disease risk with or without symptoms or findings consistent with IBD
All subjects to be enrolled will be between ages 0-75 (Participants coming to the NIH Clinical Center must meet age and weight requirements of the clinical center, but > 18 must years old for patients without IBD and may be as young as 0-2 years old for mail-in
To participate in the research biopsies during endoscopy, subjects must have the following lab values within two weeks of the procedure
nodosum, axial and articular arthralgias, uveitis, fatigue, fever), in which a
diagnosis has not been verified. OR
PT INR less than or equal to 1.3 or PTT prolonged by less than or equal to 3 seconds
Ability to consent to the protocol on their own
NIH employees and members of their immediate families may participate in this protocol. We
will follow the Guidelines for the Inclusion of Employees in NIH Research Studies and will
give each employee a copy of the NIH information sheet on Employee Research Participation
Hematocrit greater than or equal to 30%
Neither participation nor refusal to participate will have an effect, either
Platelet count greater than 100,000
Must be willing to undergo blood draw and/or upper endoscopy and colonoscopy with biopsy to obtain material for research purposes
beneficial or adverse, on the participant s employment or work situation
The NIH information sheet regarding NIH employee research participation will be
Must be greater than or equal to 18 years old
distributed to all potential subjects who are NIH employees
Must be willing to submit samples for storage
The employee subject s privacy and confidentiality will be preserved in accordance
with NIH Clinical Center and NIAID policies, which define the scope and limitations of
the protections
For NIH employee subjects, consent will be obtained by an individual independent of
the employee s team. Those in a supervisory position to any employee and co-workers of
the employee will not obtain consent. The protocol study staff will be trained
For NIH employees
annually on obtaining potentially sensitive and private information from co-workers or
subordinates. This training will be reinforced as needed, at weekly team meetings

Exclusion Criteria

Failure to meet the inclusion criteria
Any medical, psychiatric, or social conditions which, in the opinion of the
investigators, would make participation in this protocol not in the best interest of
the subject
History of inflammatory bowel disease
Acute systemic or intestinal infection requiring antibiotics
Any condition that, in the investigator s opinion, places the patient at undue risk by
participating in the study
Clear my responses

How to participate?

Step 1 Connect with a study center
What happens next?
  • You can expect the study team to contact you via email or phone in the next few days.
  • Sign up as volunteer  to help accelerate the development of new treatments and to get notified about similar trials.

You are contacting

Investigator Avatar

Primary Contact


Additional screening procedures may be conducted by the study team before you can be confirmed eligible to participate.

Learn more

If you are confirmed eligible after full screening, you will be required to understand and sign the informed consent if you decide to enroll in the study. Once enrolled you may be asked to make scheduled visits over a period of time.

Learn more

Complete your scheduled study participation activities and then you are done. You may receive summary of study results if provided by the sponsor.

Learn more

Similar trials to consider


Browse trials for

Not finding what you're looking for?

Every year hundreds of thousands of volunteers step forward to participate in research. Sign up as a volunteer and receive email notifications when clinical trials are posted in the medical category of interest to you.

Sign up as volunteer

user name

Added by • 



Reply by • Private

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur, adipisicing elit. Ipsa vel nobis alias. Quae eveniet velit voluptate quo doloribus maxime et dicta in sequi, corporis quod. Ea, dolor eius? Dolore, vel!

  The passcode will expire in None.

No annotations made yet

Add a private note
  • abc Select a piece of text from the left.
  • Add notes visible only to you.
  • Send it to people through a passcode protected link.
Add a private note