Marginal vitamin A and zinc (Zn) deficiency often co-exist in many populations. Vitamin A plays a trophic role in brain and is important for its development. We investigated effects of dietary supplementation of vitamin A on brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and nerve growth factor (NGF) production in mice depleted for vitamin A and Zn. After 3 months' feeding with a low vitamin A and Zn (LVA-LZ) diet, mice were divided into two groups and replenished with either normal or high vitamin A with low Zn diet for an additional 2 months. Levels of BDNF and NGF were measured from extracts of hippocampus, cortex and cerebellum at the end of the third and fifth months. The LVA-LZ group tended to show decreased amounts of the BDNF and NGF, while animals supplemented with high vitamin A along with Zn deficiency had high BDNF and NGF concentrations. From these results, we conclude that vitamin A may increase BDNF and NGF levels.
"Many studies have been published on the various effects of RA in the immune system. Some of them have tested feeding vitamin A as dietary supplement (Garcia et al., 2003; Felipe et al., 2005; Kheirvari et al., 2008) instead of intraperitoneal injection of RA (Bai et al., 2010) or intragastrical administration of retinol by gavage (Reifen, 2002). We have examined the effect of a vitamin A-supplemented diet in the model of colitis induced by DSS. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The intestinal mucosa is the major site of contact with antigens, and it houses the largest lymphoid tissue in the body. In physiological conditions, microbiota and dietary antigens are the natural sources of stimulation for the gut-associated lymphoid tissues (GALT) and for the immune system as a whole. Germ-free models have provided some insights on the immunological role of gut antigens. However, most of the GALT is not located in the large intestine, where gut microbiota is prominent. It is concentrated in the small intestine where protein absorption takes place. In this review, we will address the involvement of food components in the development and the function of the immune system. Studies in mice have already shown that dietary proteins are critical elements for the developmental shift of the immature neonatal immune profile into a fully developed immune system. The immunological effects of other food components (such as vitamins and lipids) will also be addressed. Most of the cells in the GALT are activated and local pro-inflammatory mediators are abundant. Regulatory elements are known to provide a delicate yet robust balance that maintains gut homeostasis. Usually antigenic contact in the gut induces two major immune responses, oral tolerance and production of secretory IgA. However, under pathological conditions mucosal homeostasis is disturbed resulting in inflammatory reactions such as food hypersensitivity. Food allergy development depends on many factors such as genetic predisposition, biochemical features of allergens, and a growing array of environmental elements. Neuroimmune interactions are also implicated in food allergy and they are examples of the high complexity of the phenomenon. Recent findings on the gut circuits triggered by food components will be reviewed to show that, far beyond their role as nutrients, they are critical players in the operation of the immune system in health and disease.
Frontiers in Immunology 05/2013; 4:102. DOI:10.3389/fimmu.2013.00102
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Zn deficiency is a common disease leading to memory impairment with increasing age. This study evaluated the protection effects of red mold rice (RMR) administration and Zn supplementation against memory and learning ability impairments from oxidative stress caused by Zn deficiency. Rats (4 weeks old) were induced to be Zn deficiency by a Zn-deficient diet for 12 weeks. After that, rats were administered Zn, 1xRMR, 5xRMR, and various dosages of RMR plus Zn, respectively. Decreases of antioxidant enzyme activities in the hippocampus and cortex were observed, and the levels of Ca, Fe, and Mg were increased in the hippocampus and cortex of Zn-deficient rats, leading to memory and learning ability injury. However, the administration of RMR (1- or 5-fold dosage) and with or without Zn significantly improved the antioxidase and neural activity to maintain cortex and hippocampus functions. This study demonstrates that RMR is a possible functional food for the prevention or cure of neural injury associated with Zn deficiency.
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 10/2009; 57(22):10600-7. DOI:10.1021/jf902046s · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The major Alzheimer's disease susceptibility genes (APOE, clusterin, complement receptor 1 (CR1) and phosphatidylinositol binding clathrin assembly protein, PICALM) can be implicated directly (APOE, CR1) or indirectly (clusterin and PICALM) in the herpes simplex life cycle. The virus binds to proteoliposomes containing APOE or APOA1 and also to CR1, and both clusterin and PICALM are related to a mannose-6-phosphate receptor used by the virus for cellular entry and intracellular transport. PICALM also binds to a nuclear exportin used by the virus for nuclear egress. Clusterin and complement receptor 1 are both related to the complement pathways and play a general role in pathogen defence. In addition, the amyloid precursor protein APP is involved in herpes viral transport and gamma-secretase cleaves a number of receptors used by the virus for cellular entry. APOE, APOA1 and clusterin, or alpha 2-macroglobulin, insulysin and caspase 3, which also bind to the virus, are involved in beta-amyloid clearance or degradation, as are the viral binding complement components, C3 and CR1. There are multiple ways in which the products of key susceptibility genes might be able to modify the viral life cycle and in turn the virus interacts with key proteins involved in APP and beta-amyloid processing. These interactions support a role for the herpes simplex virus in Alzheimer's disease pathology and suggest that antiviral agents or vaccination might be considered as viable therapeutic strategies in Alzheimer's disease.
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