Lipid apheresis (extracorporeal lipoprotein elimination) is administered to patients with familial hypercholesterolemia who fail to respond to standard therapy. The nature of the treatment process raises the suspicion that it decreases not only cholesterol but also antioxidants. A group of 12 patients (average age 47±17 y, 4 homozygous and 8 heterozygous individuals) with familial hypercholesterolemia treated by LDL-apheresis or rheohaemapheresis for 3-12 y was included in the study. In addition to cholesterol and triacylglycerol levels, vitamin E and vitamin A and also other markers of antioxidant activity were investigated. Nevertheless, the most important determined parameter was the vitamin E/cholesterol ratio in serum and lipoproteins. The results indicate that both extracorporeal elimination methods are effective and suitable ways to treat severe familial hypercholesterolemia, as the LDL fraction of cholesterol decreased by approximately 77% and 66% following LDL-apheresis and rheohaemapheresis, respectively. In addition, the serum vitamin E decreased by 54% and 57% and the decrease of the serum vitamin A was approximately 20%. However, the main marker of antioxidant capacity, vitamin E/cholesterol ratio, in the serum, VLDL and LDL significantly increased. The increase of vitamin E levels in the erythrocyte membranes of 2% following LDL-apheresis and a significant increase of 4% following rheohaemapheresis were confirmed. The presented results indicate that LDL-apheresis and rheohaemapheresis can be considered to be safe procedures according to the antioxidant capacity of the serum, VLDL and LDL lipoprotein fractions and the erythrocyte membrane.
We examined how dietary supplementation of vitamin E protects against liver oxidative damage in rats with water-immersion restraint stress (WIRS). Before WIRS exposure, rats received a normal diet (ND) or vitamin E-supplemented diet (VESD) (500 IU α-tocopherol/kg diet) at a mean dose of 15 g/animal/d for 4 wk. The two diet groups had serum transaminases and lactate dehydrogenase activities and adrenocorticotropic hormone, corticosterone, and glucose levels to a similar extent. VESD-fed rats had higher liver α-tocopherol concentrations and lower liver ascorbic acid, total coenzyme Q9 (CoQ9), reduced CoQ9, reduced CoQ10, and lipid peroxide (LPO) concentrations than ND-fed rats. When the two diet groups were exposed to 6 h of WIRS, the serum liver cell damage index enzyme activities increased more greatly in ND-fed rats than in VESD-fed rats but the serum stress marker levels increased to a similar extent. The WIRS exposure caused no change in liver LPO concentration with the further increase in liver α-tocopherol concentration in VESD-fed rats but increased liver LPO concentration without changing liver α-tocopherol concentration in ND-fed rats. Upon the WIRS exposure, liver reduced glutathione concentration decreased with the further decrease in liver ascorbic acid concentration in VESD-fed rats and those concentrations decreased in ND-fed rats. The WIRS exposure recovered the decreased liver total CoQ9 and reduced CoQ9 concentrations in VESD-fed rats but decreased liver total CoQ9, reduced CoQ9, and reduced CoQ10 concentrations in ND-fed rats. These results indicate that dietary vitamin E supplementation protects against liver oxidative damage without affecting the stress response in rats with WIRS.
We demonstrated that the indicator amino acid oxidation (IAAO) method could be employed for the evaluation of quality of dietary protein by comparing the protein intakes required to meet metabolic demand in rats fed different proteins. The objective of this study was to validate a simple evaluation method for determining the quality of dietary protein using the IAAO technique. Male Sprague-Dawley rats (5-6 wk old) were fed meals composed of graded protein, using either casein, wheat gluten (WG), soy protein isolate (SPI), or egg white protein (EW), every 3 h from 09:00 to 18:00. Administration of L-[1-13C]phenylalanine was performed hourly from 15:00 to 18:00. The 13CO2 level in breath CO2 was measured at 18:30. The protein intake values required to meet the metabolic demand based on the breath 13CO2 data for the dietary casein, WG, SPI, and EW intake were 18.0, 22.2, 17.5, and 10.1 g/kg BW/d, respectively. The breath 13CO2 concentrations corresponding to the protein intake of 7.5 g/kg BW/d for casein, WG, SPI, and EW were 9.8, 10.9, 10.3, and 8.9 (‰)/100 g BW, respectively. A significant correlation was demonstrated between the protein intake required to meet the metabolic demands and the 13CO2 concentration in the breath for a protein intake of 7.5 g/kg BW/d (r=0.967; p<0.05). These results demonstrated that the protein intake required to meet metabolic demand could be estimated and that the quality of the dietary protein could be evaluated using the 13CO2 concentration in the breath with a protein intake of 7.5 g/kg BW/d.
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Lactobacillus fermentum Zhao (LF-Zhao) on activated carbon-induced constipation in ICR mice. ICR mice were administered lactic acid bacteria by gavage for 9 d. Body weight, diet intake, drinking amount, stool status, gastrointestinal transit distance and stool time, in addition to motilin (MTL), gastrin (Gas), endothelin (ET), somatostatin (SS), acetylcholinesterase (AChE), substance P (SP) and vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) levels in serum were monitored to evaluate the preventive effects of LF-Zhao on constipation. Bisacodyl, a laxative drug, was used as a positive control. Times to the first black stool for normal (untreated), control (no lactic acid bacteria treatment but activated carbon treated), bisacodyl-treated and L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus (LB), LF-Zhao (L) (low concentration of 1×108 CFU/mL)- and LF-Zhao (H) (high concentration of 1×109 CFU/mL)-treated mice induced by activated carbon were 90, 218, 117, 180, 169 and 156 min, respectively. Following the consumption of LB, LF-Zhao (L) and LF-Zhao (H) or the oral administration of bisacodyl, the gastrointestinal transit distances were reduced by 55.2%, 61.3%, 70.6% and 94.6%, respectively. The serum levels of MTL, Gas, ET, AChE, SP and VIP were significantly increased and the serum levels of SS were reduced in the mice treated with LF-Zhao compared with those in the control mice (p<0.05). These results demonstrated that lactic acid bacteria demonstrate preventive effects on mouse constipation and that LF-Zhao alleviated constipation symptoms better than LB.
It is well known that imbalances in the dietary electrolytes are associated with a significantly higher incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD). On the other hand, a prolonged heart rate corrected-QT (QTc) interval is associated with an increased risk of cardiac autonomic nervous system dysfunction, the incidence of CVD and sudden cardiac death. This study was designed to clarify the association between the nutritional status and the QTc interval in elderly subjects. The subjects included 119 elderly subjects (46 males and 73 females, age; 72.9±4.8 y) without a history of CVD, who were taking cardioactive drugs. Resting 12-lead electrocardiography was performed, while the QTc interval was calculated according to Bazett’s formula. The nutritional status was assessed using a brief self-administered diet history questionnaire. The subjects were divided into three categories, which were defined as equally trisected distributions of the body mass index (BMI). The QTc interval was significantly longer in both the low and high BMI groups than in the moderate BMI group in both genders (p<0.05, respectively). A stepwise multiple regression analysis showed the QTc interval to be independently associated with the potassium intake in the low BMI group and the sodium intake in the high BMI group in both genders (p<0.05, respectively). These results suggest that the body mass, especially lean body mass and overweight, were associated with a prolonged QTc interval and dietary electrolytes in elderly subjects. Based on our results, we consider that it is necessary to perform dietary counseling, especially focusing on sodium and potassium intake, depending on the body mass.
Oral tolerance is a phenomenon of induction of systemic unresponsiveness to antigens ingested by the oral route and loss of immune response. Studies have shown the importance of vitamin A in oral tolerance in vitro but not in an in vivo experimental model. Therefore, we carried out experiments to determine how vitamin A deficiency affects tolerance induction and the ability of mesenteric lymph node (MLN) CD11c+ cells to induce regulatory T cells (Tregs). Immunological tolerance was induced by oral ovalbumin (OVA) administration in vitamin A-sufficient mice. OVA-specific antibody and cytokine production were significantly reduced. On the other hand, in vitamin A-deficient mice, both OVA-specific antibody and cytokine production were not suppressed by oral OVA administration. Regarding induction of Tregs, the conversion rate of Foxp3+ cells from naïve CD4+ cell by CD11c+ cells was decreased in vitamin A-deficient mice. Our study indicates that vitamin A deficiency causes the breakdown of oral tolerance in vivo.
Fibroblast growth factor 19 (FGF19) and FGF21 are members of a subfamily of the FGFs called endocrine FGFs. FGF19 regulates the bile acid synthetic pathway. FGF19 expression is induced by farnesoid X receptor (FXR), a nuclear hormone receptor activated by bile acids in the small intestine. FGF21 plays an important role in lipolysis that occurs in white adipose tissue. FGF21 expression is stimulated by the nuclear fatty acid receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα) in the liver. FGF19 and FGF21 were recently identified as targets of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4), which is activated in response to endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. ATF4 is also activated by oxidative stress and amino acid deprivation. In this study, we investigated FGF19 and FGF21 expression in response to oxidative stress and amino acid deprivation. We found that FGF19 mRNA is induced by oxidative stress inducers in Caco-2 cells, which are derived from the human intestinal epithelium, and rat intestinal epithelial IEC6 cells. In contrast, ileal FGF15 expression, the rodent ortholog of human FGF19, is not increased by oxidative stress. No notable changes in expression of FGF15/19 took place under amino acid deprivation either in vitro or in vivo. In contrast, FGF21 expression is induced by oxidative stress and amino acid deprivation both in vitro and in vivo. These results indicate distinctive patterns of regulation of FGF19 expression by ER stress, and FGF21 expression by ER stress, oxidative stress, and amino acid deprivation through ATF4 activation.
Longitudinal beta-alanine (BA) supplementation can improve exercise performance in males through increases in carnosine; however, females experience greater relative increases in carnosine compared to males. This potentially allows females to benefit from acute BA doses; however, effects of an acute BA dose on performance in females remain unknown. The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate how an acute dose of 1.6 g BA affects anaerobic performance in female cyclists. Twelve females (age=26.6±1.3 y) volunteered to participate in this randomized, double-blind study. All participants completed two supplement trials: 1) Placebo=34 g dextrose and 2) BA=1.6 g BA + 34 g dextrose. Thirty-minutes after supplementation, participants performed three repeated Wingate cycling tests with 2 min of active rest after each. Fatigue index, mean power, and peak power were measured during each Wingate. Lactate, heart rate, and rating of perceived exertion (RPE) were measured at rest, immediately after each Wingate, and after each active rest period. RPE significantly decreased (p<0.001) immediately following Wingates 1 and 2 and after each 2-min rest period for the BA trials; however, no differences were observed immediately after Wingate 3 (p>0.05). No significant supplementation effect was observed for any performance or physiological variable (p>0.05 for all variables). Findings suggest that an acute dose of BA (1.6 g) decreases RPE during anaerobic power activities in trained female cyclists.
Stachys sieboldii (Labiatae; Chinese artichoke, a tuber), “chorogi” in Japanese, has been extensively used in folk medicine, and has a number of pharmacological properties, including antioxidative activity. However, few studies have examined the neuroprotective effects of S. sieboldii tuber extract (chorogi extract), and it remains unknown whether the extract can alleviate learning and memory dysfunction associated with vascular dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Therefore, in this study, we investigated the neuroprotective effects of chorogi extract, and examined its protection against learning and memory dysfunction using Ginkgo biloba leaf extract (ginkgo extract) as a positive control. Mice were subjected to bilateral carotid artery occlusion (BCAO) for 30 min. Oral administration of chorogi extract or ginkgo extract significantly reduced post-ischemic glucose intolerance on day 1 and neuronal damage including memory impairment on day 3 after BCAO, compared with the vehicle-treated group. Neither herbal medicine affected locomotor activity. Furthermore, neither significantly alleviated scopolamine-induced learning and memory impairment. In primary neurons, neuronal survival rate was significantly reduced by hydrogen peroxide treatment. This hydrogen peroxide-induced neurotoxicity was significantly suppressed by chorogi extract and ginkgo extract. Taken together, our findings suggest that chorogi extract as well as ginkgo extract can protect against learning and memory dysfunction associated with ischemic brain injury through an antioxidative mechanism.
In order to investigate the toxicity of rutin-rich dough from the Tartary buckwheat variety ‘Manten-Kirari,’ acute and subacute toxicity studies (10,000 and 5,000 mg/kg flour, respectively) were performed using rats. In the acute toxicity study, no toxic symptoms were observed and no rats died during the test. Body weight in the ‘Manten-Kirari’-treated group was not significantly different when compared with that of the control group. On pathologico-anatomic observation, no unusual symptoms were observed in the ‘Manten-Kirari’-treated group when compared with the control group. In the subacute toxicity study, no toxic symptoms were observed and no rats died during the test. Body weight and food intake in the ‘Manten-Kirari’-treated and common buckwheat groups were not significantly different when compared with the control group. However, some investigated properties, such as urine protein and serum albumin, were significantly different in the ‘Manten-Kirari’ and common buckwheat groups when compared with the control group. However, these changes were not caused by toxicity, but by transient changes. On pathologico-anatomic observation, some abnormalities were observed in the liver, kidneys, heart, lung, bronchi and pituitary gland in some rats. However, the incidental rates in the ’Manten-Kirari’ and common buckwheat groups did not differ when compared to controls. Therefore, these abnormalities may be caused by natural generation. Based on these results, we concluded that dough at a dose of 5,000 mg flour/kg is at a non effect level.
The effects of two food materials, γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) produced by natural fermentation and Apocynum venetum leaf extract (AVLE), on the improvement of sleep were investigated in humans. The electroencephalogram (EEG) test revealed that oral administration of GABA (100 mg) and AVLE (50 mg) had beneficial effects on sleep. GABA shortened sleep latency by 5.3 min and AVLE increased non-rapid eye movement (REM) sleep time by 7.6%. Simultaneous intake of GABA and AVLE shortened sleep latency by 4.3 min and increased non-REM sleep time by 5.1%. The result of questionnaires showed that GABA and AVLE enabled subjects to realize the effects on sleep. These results mean that GABA can help people to fall asleep quickly, AVLE induces deep sleep, and they function complementarily with simultaneous intake. Since both GABA and AVLE are materials of foods and have been ingested for a long time, they can be regarded as safe and appropriate for daily intake in order to improve the quality of sleep.
Muscle atrophy is a complex process that occurs as a consequence of various stress events. Muscle atrophy-associated genes (atrogenes) such as atrogin-1/MAFbx and MuRF-1 are induced early in the atrophy process, and the increase in their expression precedes the loss of muscle weight. Although antioxidative nutrients suppress atrogene expression in skeletal muscle cells, the inhibitory effects of flavonoids on inflammation-induced atrogin-1/MAFbx expression have not been clarified. Here, we investigated the inhibitory effects of flavonoids on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced atrogin-1/MAFbx expression. We examined whether nine flavonoids belonging to six flavonoid categories inhibited atrogin-1/MAFbx expression in mouse C2C12 myotubes. Two major flavones, apigenin and luteolin, displayed potent inhibitory effects on atrogin-1/MAFbx expression. The pretreatment with apigenin and luteolin significantly prevented the decrease in C2C12 myotube diameter caused by LPS stimulation. Importantly, the pretreatment of LPS-stimulated myoblasts with these flavones significantly inhibited LPS-induced JNK phosphorylation in C2C12 myotubes, resulting in the significant suppression of atrogin-1/MAFbx promoter activity. These results suggest that apigenin and luteolin, prevent LPS-mediated atrogin-1/MAFbx expression through the inhibition of the JNK signaling pathway in C2C12 myotubes. Thus, these flavones, apigenin and luteolin, may be promising agents to prevent LPS-induced muscle atrophy.
We investigated the effects of dietary calcium (Ca) supplementation on bone metabolism, kidney mineral concentrations, and kidney function in rats fed a high-phosphorus (P) diet. Wistar strain rats were randomly divided into 4 dietary groups and fed their respective diets for 21 d: a diet containing 0.3% P and 0.5% Ca (C), a diet containing 1.5% P and 0.5% Ca (HP), a diet containing 0.3% P and 1.0% Ca (HCa), or a diet containing 1.5% P and 1.0% Ca (HPCa). Compared to the C group, the high-P diet increased serum parathyroid hormone concentration, markers of bone turnover, receptor activator of NF-κB ligand mRNA expression of the femur, kidney Ca and P concentrations, urinary N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase activity, and urinary β2-microglobulin excretion, and decreased bone mineral content and bone mineral density of the femur and tibia. Dietary Ca supplementation improved the parameters of bone metabolism and kidney function in rats fed the high-P diet, while there were no significant differences in kidney Ca or P concentrations between the HP and HPCa groups. These results suggest that dietary Ca supplementation prevented the bone loss and decline in kidney function induced by a high-P diet, whereas dietary Ca supplementation did not affect kidney mineral concentrations in rats fed the high-P diet.
Anti-androgens are regarded as potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of prostate cancer. We determined that an epimedium herb (EH) extract exhibited anti-androgenic activity in a luciferase assay using androgen receptor-positive prostate cancer LNCaP cells. Nine EH-derived flavonoids were examined. The results identified icarisid II as a very potent anti-androgenic EH-derived flavonoid. A quantitative RT-PCR analysis confirmed that the flavonol suppressed the expression of the androgen-responsive KLK3 gene.