The specific purpose of this study was to evaluate the significant effects of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) and N-3 fatty acids on chemically induced experimental colitis induced by 2,4,6-trinitrobenzene sulphonic acid (TNBS) in rats. Male Wistar rats were fed liquid diets enriched with N-6 fatty acid (control diets), N-3 fatty acid (MCT- diets), and N-3 fatty acid and MCT (MCT+ diets) for 2 weeks and then were given an intracolonic injection of TNBS. Serum and tissue samples were collected 5 days after ethanol or TNBS enema. The severity of colitis was evaluated pathologically, and tissue myeloperoxidase activity was measured in colonic tissues. Furthermore, protein levels for inflammatory cytokines and a chemokine were assessed by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in colonic tissues. Induction of proinflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β in the colon by TNBS enema was markedly attenuated by the MCT+ diet among the 3 diets studied. Furthermore, the induction of chemokines macrophage inflammatory protein-2 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 also was blunted significantly in animals fed the MCT+ diets. As a result, MPO activities in the colonic tissue also were blunted significantly in animals fed the MCT+ diets compared with those fed the control diets or the MCT- diets. Furthermore, the MCT+ diet improved chemically induced colitis significantly among the 3 diets studied. Diets enriched with both MCTs and N-3 fatty acids may be effective for the therapy of inflammatory bowel disease as antiinflammatory immunomodulating nutrients.
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