Butyrate promotes the recovering of intestinal wound healing through its positive effect on the tight junctions

J Anim Sci. 2012 Dec:90 Suppl 4:266-8. doi: 10.2527/jas.50965.


Postweaning diarrhea is one of the most common causes of morbidity and mortality in weanling piglets. Feeding sodium butyrate to weanling piglets decreased the incidence of diarrhea, but the mechanism has not been fully elucidated. The present study was to evaluate the effect of sodium butyrate on diarrhea in relation to wound healing of intestinal barrier using IPEC-J2 cell model. Cultured cells were scratched to induce wound and then were treated with 4 mM sodium butyrate. The results showed that supplementation of the cells with sodium butyrate significantly promoted the process of wound healing, indicating the protective effects of butyrate on the intestinal mucosa. Butyrate treatment enhanced mRNA expression of the intestinal mucosal tight junction proteins occludin and zonula occluden protein-1 (P < 0.05), which suggested that the promotion of wound healing by butyrate is related to the maintenance of the function of the intestinal barrier. In addition, in the butyrate-treated group, intestinal total superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase (P < 0.05), two of the main antioxidant enzymes, as well as glutathione (P < 0.05), one of the nonenzymatic antioxidant components, were enhanced whereas the malondialdehyde level, a marker of free radical mediated lipid peroxidation injury, was decreased (P < 0.05) compared with the control group. Collectively, these results indicate that dietary sodium butyrate might, at least partly, play an important role in recovering the intestinal tight junctions having a positive effect on maintaining the gut integrity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Butyrates / pharmacology*
  • Cell Line
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Epithelial Cells / drug effects*
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Intestines / injuries*
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Swine*
  • Tight Junction Proteins / genetics
  • Tight Junction Proteins / metabolism
  • Tight Junctions / drug effects*
  • Wound Healing / drug effects*


  • Butyrates
  • Tight Junction Proteins