Elyanne M. Ratcliffe, MD, FRCPC

Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics


Investigations of normal and abnormal development of the extrinsic innervation of the gut


My research is focused on determining how, during ontogeny, vagal and sacral nerves find their targets in the bowel and on examining whether developmental abnormalities of this innervation contribute to the pathogenesis of disorders of gastrointestinal motility.

  • Hamilton Academic Health Sciences Organization (HAHSO); co-investigator Jan Huizinga
  • The Broad Medical Research Program at the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (BMRP-CCFA); co-investigator Alison Holloway
  1. Chen, JH, Parsons, SP, Shokrollahi, M, Wan, A, Vincent, AD, Yuan, Y et al.. Characterization of Simultaneous Pressure Waves as Biomarkers for Colonic Motility Assessed by High-Resolution Colonic Manometry. Front Physiol. 2018;9 :1248. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2018.01248. PubMed PMID:30294277 PubMed Central PMC6159752.
  2. Stearns, JC, Simioni, J, Gunn, E, McDonald, H, Holloway, AC, Thabane, L et al.. Intrapartum antibiotics for GBS prophylaxis alter colonization patterns in the early infant gut microbiome of low risk infants. Sci Rep. 2017;7 (1):16527. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-16606-9. PubMed PMID:29184093 PubMed Central PMC5705725.
  3. Simioni, J, Hutton, EK, Gunn, E, Holloway, AC, Stearns, JC, McDonald, H et al.. A comparison of intestinal microbiota in a population of low-risk infants exposed and not exposed to intrapartum antibiotics: The Baby & Microbiota of the Intestine cohort study protocol. BMC Pediatr. 2016;16 (1):183. doi: 10.1186/s12887-016-0724-5. PubMed PMID:27832763 PubMed Central PMC5103394.
  4. Hepworth, KL, Wang, XY, Huizinga, JD, Ratcliffe, EM. Vagal Fibers Form Associations With Interstitial Cells of Cajal During Fetal Development. Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2015;298 (10):1780-5. doi: 10.1002/ar.23192. PubMed PMID:26119528 .
  5. Gohir, W, Ratcliffe, EM, Sloboda, DM. Of the bugs that shape us: maternal obesity, the gut microbiome, and long-term disease risk. Pediatr. Res. 2015;77 (1-2):196-204. doi: 10.1038/pr.2014.169. PubMed PMID:25314580 .
  6. Collins, J, Borojevic, R, Verdu, EF, Huizinga, JD, Ratcliffe, EM. Intestinal microbiota influence the early postnatal development of the enteric nervous system. Neurogastroenterol. Motil. 2014;26 (1):98-107. doi: 10.1111/nmo.12236. PubMed PMID:24329946 .
  7. Ratcliffe, EM, Farrar, NR, Fox, EA. Development of the vagal innervation of the gut: steering the wandering nerve. Neurogastroenterol. Motil. 2011;23 (10):898-911. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2982.2011.01764.x. PubMed PMID:21851506 PubMed Central PMC3173572.
  8. Ratcliffe, EM, Fan, L, Mohammed, TJ, Anderson, M, Chalazonitis, A, Gershon, MD et al.. Enteric neurons synthesize netrins and are essential for the development of the vagal sensory innervation of the fetal gut. Dev Neurobiol. 2011;71 (5):362-73. doi: 10.1002/dneu.20869. PubMed PMID:21485011 PubMed Central PMC3160128.
  9. Ratcliffe, EM. Molecular development of the extrinsic sensory innervation of the gastrointestinal tract. Auton Neurosci. 2011;161 (1-2):1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.autneu.2010.11.003. PubMed PMID:21147045 PubMed Central PMC3790716.
  10. Ratcliffe, EM, D'Autréaux, F, Gershon, MD. Laminin terminates the Netrin/DCC mediated attraction of vagal sensory axons. Dev Neurobiol. 2008;68 (7):960-71. doi: 10.1002/dneu.20634. PubMed PMID:18418846 PubMed Central PMC2832326.
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