Objective: To study the effect of glutamine on intestinal barrier function by examining the changes of plasma D-lactic levels and diamine oxidase (DAO) levels in plasma and intestinal tissue after glutamine intervention in young rats with endotoxemia.
Methods: Eighty 18-day-old rats were randomly divided into endotoxemia and glutamine intervention groups (n=40 each). Endotoxemia was induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection. Plasma and small intestine homogenate were collected 1.5, 6, 24 and 72 hrs and 7 days after LPS injection. The glutamine intervention group was immediately administered with oral glutamine (2 g/kg) after LPS injection. Afterwards, glutamine was administered once daily. Plasma D-lactic and DAO levels and intestinal DAO levels were measured.
Results: Plasma DAO activity in the glutamine intervention group was significantly lower than that in the endotoxemia group 6 and 72 hrs after LPS injection (P<0.05). In contrast, the intestinal DAO activity in the glutamine intervention group was significantly higher than that in the endotoxemia group 6, 24 and 72 hrs and 7 days after LPS injection (P<0.05 or 0.01). Plasma D-lactic levels in the glutamine intervention group were significantly lower than those in the endotoxemia group 6, 24 and 72 hrs and 7 days after LPS injection (P<0.01).
Conclusions: Glutamine may reduce the permeability of intestinal mucosa, and thus provides protective effects on intestinal barrier function in rats with endotoxemia.