The association of serum vitamin D deficiency and metabolic risk factors in Chinese adults with prediabetes (PreDM) has not been investigated. The present study aimed to investigate the association of serum vitamin D deficiency and metabolic risk factors in Chinese adults with PreDM. In this cross-sectional study, we stratified 412 PreDM patients into vitamin D sufficient, vitamin D insufficient and vitamin D deficient subgroups. The physical examination data was collected. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 [25(OH)D3] were measured by high performance liquid chromatography. The prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency in PreDM patients were 30.58% and 26.70%, respectively. Compared with the vitamin D deficient group, the prevalence of metabolic syndrome, central obesity, hyperglycemia and hypertension were higher than those in the vitamin D insufficient or sufficient group (p<0.05). Moreover, the prevalence of dyslipidemia in the vitamin D deficient group was higher than those in the vitamin D sufficient group (p<0.05). We observed an inverse relationship between 25(OH)D3 levels and waist circumference, triglyceride, and serum uric acid (β=−0.315; β=−0.134; β=−0.239), a positive relationship between 25(OH)D3 levels and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (β=0.197) after adjusting for age, sex and body mass index. Vitamin D deficiency is very common among PreDM patients in China and this deficiency is related to metabolic risk factors.
The amino acid composition table (AACT) plays a pivotal role in examining the association between dietary amino acid intake and physical conditions. The updated version, AACT 2015, has been markedly expanded; however, most additions are not based on analytical values. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and the World Health Organization (WHO) recommend that protein contents be calculated as the sum of amino acid residues (PROTCAA). However, due to the lack of a validated AACT, protein content calculated as reference nitrogen multiplied by a nitrogen to protein conversion factor (PROTRN) is still commonly used. In this study, validity of the estimated dietary amino acid values via the AACT 2015 was examined by comparing differences between the estimated and analytical values, for 14 consecutive days’ meals provided in an elder care facility. There were no major differences between the analytical and estimated values over the 14 d; however, noticeable daily differences sometimes emerged. These results indicate that the AACT 2015 may contain accidental errors, but allows the estimation of habitual amino acid intake. In the near future, PROTCAA will become the international standard. It will be necessary to convert PROTRN values to PROTCAA to refer to past reports and data; we have determined a correction factor (0.896) for this conversion.
Mental stress is a known risk factor for disease. This study investigated changes in sensations of taste and pungency before and after mental stress. Thirty healthy male university students rested for 20 min, performed mental arithmetic tasks for 10 min, and then underwent measurement of changes in their taste and ability to discern pungency. Taste was measured with the “Taste Disk®,” and pungency was measured by a filter-paper disc method using capsaicin solution. Subjects were not told the order of the reagent solutions used. To quantify pain sensation, a weak current applied to the central inner forearm skin by a Pain Vision® quantitative pain sensation analyzer was gradually increased. The degree of stress was measured by portable electrocardiography (ECG). During mental stress, the cognitive threshold of salty taste, sweet taste, and bitterness was significantly decreased, whereas the sensations of pungency and forearm skin pain were increased and showed significant correlation. Based on sympathetic nerve activity analyzed with the ECG, the subjects were divided into the mental stress group and non-mental stress group. The mental stress group experienced an increase in the pungency threshold and sensation of forearm skin pain with significantly high correlations obtained, whereas no correlation was found between these factors in the non-mental stress group. Acute mental stress increased the sensitivity to taste but decreased the sensitivity to the sensation of pungency on the tongue and pain on the skin. Sympathetic activity activated by stress may affect taste and the sensation of pungency.
This study investigated whether body fat percentage (BF%) in Japanese female university rhythmic gymnasts (RG) and non-athletes (control) was associated with the time-of-day of energy intake. A total of 57 females (RG group, n=34; control group, n=23) completed 24-h dietary recall surveys on 3 non-consecutive days. BF% was measured using a bioelectrical impedance analyzer after overnight fasting. Energy intake was stratified by time-of-day: morning (3:00 to 11:00), midday (11:00 to 17:00), evening (17:00 to 21:00), and nighttime (21:00 to 3:00). There was no significant difference between the groups in total energy intake, body weight, or body mass index. The RG group had significantly higher energy expenditure, a larger negative energy balance and lower BF% than the control group. The energy intake ratios (ER%) in the evening and at nighttime in the RG group were significantly lower and higher than in the control group, respectively. Total energy intake and energy balance did not show any significant association with BF% in either group. Multivariate linear regression with substitution model indicated that a substitution of ER% in the morning for ER% at nighttime was negatively associated with BF% after adjusting for confounding factors (β=−0.240; 95% confidence interval (CI): −0.455, −0.025) in the control group. In the RG group, a substitution of ER% in the evening for ER% at nighttime was negatively associated with BF% (β=−0.117; 95%CI: −0.214, −0.019). These results suggest that the timing of energy intake throughout the day is associated with BF% in Japanese university RG and non-athlete female students.
Care of the musculoskeletal system, including the muscles, joints, and bones, is important for a healthy life expectancy in today’s aging society. The aim of this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study was to investigate the effect of consumption of milk-fat globule membrane (MFGM) and glucosamine on joint function and physical performance. Participants were healthy Japanese men and women, aged 60-74 y, with a history of mild knee or low back pain at rest. They were randomized to receive tablets containing MFGM 1.0 g+glucosamine 1.5 g or placebo tablets for 8 wk. We assessed passive range of motion, active range of motion (self-reported VAS score), JKOM and JLEQ, and physical performance. Data were available for analysis for 25 participants in the active treatment group and 28 in the placebo group. The active group showed significant improvements in passive range of motion at the knee and active range of motion at both the knee and low back. The active group also showed significant improvements in some physical performance, including obstacle walking speed and speed of ascending stairs. The findings of this study suggest that consumption of a combination of MFGM and glucosamine may improve joint function and physical performance.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in animals. Collagen hydrolysate has been found to have multiple functions in the skin, bones, joints, muscles, and blood vessels. Recently, it has been reported that the low molecular weight fraction of collagen hydrolysate exhibited anxiolytic activity, suggesting that collagen peptides affect brain functions. In the present study, we found that oral administration of ginger-degraded collagen hydrolysate (GDCH) significantly decreased depression-like behavior in a forced swim test, suggesting that GDCH exhibited antidepressant activity in mice. The antidepressant activity of GDCH was abolished by pre-treatment with an antagonist of the dopamine receptor, but not treatment with a serotonin receptor antagonist. GDCH significantly increased gene expression of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) in the hippocampus, molecules that affect the differentiation and survival of neurons, relative to that in the control condition. Meanwhile, there were no changes in the gene expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, nerve growth factor, and neurotrophin-3, major factors related to depression-like behavior. We also found that GDCH exhibited antidepressant activity in corticosterone-administered mice in a model of stress. In addition, GDCH increased GDNF and CNTF expression in the stressed condition, suggesting that mechanisms of the antidepressant activity of GDCH were the same in unstressed and stressed conditions. These results imply that GDCH exhibits antidepressant activity in unstressed and stressed conditions in mice. The upregulation of neurotrophic genes in the hippocampus may contribute to the reduction of depression-like behavior via a dopamine signal pathway modulated by GDCH.
Allicin, an antioxidant from garlic, is known to regulate intestinal contractions, but its effect on intestinal ion transport is unclear. The aim of this study was to examine the role of allicin in the regulation of electrogenic ion transport in rat intestine by measuring the transmural potential difference (ΔPD). Allicin induced significant positive ΔPD, when administered to the serosal side of the colonic mucosal-submucosal preparation. Allicin-induced colonic ΔPD was largely diminished by incubation in the chloride-free solution, although the transient peak of ΔPD after application of allicin remained. This transient peak of ΔPD was significantly diminished in both the chloride- and the bicarbonate-free incubation solution. Induction of ΔPD by allicin was greatly diminished by AP-18, an inhibitor of the transient receptor potential (TRP) cation channel subfamily A member 1, TRPA1. Both alliin and S-allylcysteine, the analogues of allicin, had no effect on ΔPD and did not affect allicin-induced ΔPD in the colon. These results suggest that allicin mainly evokes the electrogenic chloride secretion and only partially increases the electrogenic bicarbonate secretion via TRPA1.
Vegetables are rich sources of nutrients such as fiber, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Vegetables also contain various free-form amino acids, which improves their nutritional and palatable value. Cooking alters the content of free amino acids in vegetables, which affects their nutritional values. In this study, free amino acid levels were evaluated after cooking vegetables by different methods, boiling, roasting in an oven, and using a microwave. Results showed that many vegetables analyzed contain aspartate and glutamine abundantly. On the other hand, hydroxyproline, cysteine, ornithine and citrulline are the free amino acids existing at low or undetectable levels in all vegetables tested. The total free amino acid content in vegetables tended to decrease after boiling, and almost the same amount of free amino acids was obtained in the cooking liquid. Roasting of vegetables in an oven resulted in an increase in the content of specific amino acids, including γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Thus, it is important to choose the right cooking methods to prevent the loss of free amino acids. The results of the present study emphasize the changes in the contents of free amino acids during cooking with methods that are typically used on a daily basis. Our study on the dynamics of free amino acids caused by various cooking methods provides ample information for future nutritional studies.
The reoccurrence of androgen-dependent prostate cancer after anti-androgen therapy mainly depends on prostate cancer stem-like cells. To reduce the risk, it is important to delete the cancer stem-like cells. Furthermore, to induce differentiation of cancer stem-like cells is critical to abrogate stemness of the cells. Therefore, we tried to investigate a possibility on the establishment of a new effective therapy to eradicate the cancer stem-like cells via the induction of differentiation in this study. Prostate cancer stem-like cells from an androgen-dependent prostate cancer cell line (LNCaP cell) had severe resistance against an anti-androgen therapeutic agent. We selected Bowman-Birk inhibitor (BBI) from soybeans reported as a chemopreventive agent in prostate cancer to differentiate the caner stem-like cells and α-tocopheryl succinate (TOS) known as a mitocan to induce effectively cytotoxic effect against the cancer stem-like cells. In fact, only TOS treatment had cytotoxic effect against the cancer stem-like cells, but the addition of BBI treatment to the cells treated with TOS reinforced TOS-mediated cytotoxicity in the cancer stem-like cells. This reinforcement coincided with the combination-enhanced apoptosis in the stem-like cells. Also, we confirmed caspase9-caspase3 cascade mainly contributed to the enhancement of the cytotoxicity in the stem-like cells caused by the combination, indicating that the reinforcement of BBI on TOS-mediated apoptosis via mitochondria related to the enhancing cytotoxic effect of the combination on the prostate cancer stem-like cells. Overall, it seems that the combination is an effective new approach to reduce the reoccurrence of prostate cancer targeting prostate cancer stem cells.
We examined the effect of nobiletin (5,6,7,8,3′,4′-hexamethoxyflavone) on immune response in ovalbumin (OVA)-immunized mice. Treatment with nobiletin increased OVA-specific IL-4 and IL-10 production. In addition, mice that received nobiletin showed higher levels of OVA-specific IgE, IgG and IgG1 production than did control mice. The antibody response to the thymus-independent antigen 2,4,6-trinitrophenyl-Ficoll was not different in the control and nobiletin groups, suggesting that nobiletin does not directly stimulate antibody production. An in vitro study showed that treatment with nobiletin enhanced the ability of antigen presentation of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells. The in vivo and in vitro results indicate that nobiletin regulates immune function.