2019 Volume 42 Issue 7 Pages 1112-1119
Agarwood is used to treat gastrointestinal diseases. Although our previous studies demonstrated that agarwood ethanol extract produced by the whole-tree agarwood-inducing technique (WTAAE) improves intestinal peristalsis, the intestinal protective effect of WTAAE remains unclear. This study aimed to evaluate the protective effect of WTAAE on the intestinal injury induced by fluorouracil (5-FU) and explore its potential mechanism. Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) mice were given agarwood ethanol extracts (AAEs) (details in materials part), including WTAAE (0.71, 1.42 and 2.84 g/kg), wild agarwood ethanol extract (WAAE) and burning-chisel-drilling agarwood ethanol extract (FBAAE) (2.84 g/kg). A colon injury model was induced by 5-FU. After 14 d of treatment, the histopathology and biochemical and molecular parameters were measured. Our results indicated that WTAAE enhanced the intestinal advancing rate and alleviated the severity of colon injury similar the WAAE and better than FBAAE. Simultaneously, WTAAE reduced the nitric oxide (NO) concentration and increased the glutathione (GSH) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) levels. WTAAE also reduced the levels of interleukin-17 (IL-17) and IL-33 and elevated the level of IL-10. Furthermore, WTAAE upregulated the mRNA expression of the nuclear factor-E2-related factor 2–antioxidant response element (Nrf2–ARE) pathway and downregulated the mRNA levels of the nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB) pathway. WTAAE had a mitigating effect on intestinal damage, suggesting that it could be used as an intestinal protective and adjuvant therapy drug for intestinal injury induced by chemical drugs.