Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a multifactorial disorder with an unknown aetiology. The aim of this study is to employ a murine model of IBD to identify pathways and genes, which may play a key role in the pathogenesis of IBD and could be important for discovery of new disease markers in human disease. Here, we have investigated severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice, which upon adoptive transfer with concanavalin A-activated CD4(+) T cells develop inflammation of the colon with predominance in rectum. Mice with increasing level of inflammation was studied. RNA from rectum of transplanted and non-transplanted SCID mice was investigated by a genome-wide gene expression analysis using the Affymetrix mouse expression array 430A (MOE430A) including 22,626 probe sets. A significant change in gene expression (P = 0.00001) is observed in 152 of the genes between the non-transplanted control mice and colitis mice, and among these genes there is an overrepresentation of genes involved in inflammatory processes. Some of the most significant genes showing higher expression encode S100A proteins and chemokines involved in trafficking of leucocytes in inflammatory areas. Classification by gene clustering based on the genes with the significantly altered gene expression corresponds to two different levels of inflammation as established by the histological scoring of the inflamed rectum. These data demonstrate that this SCID T-cell transfer model is a useful animal model for human IBD and can be used for suggesting candidate genes involved in the pathogenesis and for identifying new molecular markers of chronic inflammation in human IBD.