This study was conducted to investigate serum amino acids profile in dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis, and impacts of graded dose of arginine or glutamine supplementation on the colitis. Using DSS-induced colitis model, which is similar to human ulcerative colitis, we determined serum profile of amino acids at day 3, 7, 10 and 12 (5 days post DSS treatment). Meanwhile, effects of graded dose of arginine (0.4%, 0.8%, and 1.5%) or glutamine (0.5%, 1.0% and 2.0%) supplementation on clinical parameters, serum amino acids, colonic tight junction proteins, colonic anti-oxidative indicators [catalase, total superoxide dismutase (T-SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px)], colonic pro-inflammatory cytokines [interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β), IL-6, IL-17 and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α)] in DSS-induced colitis were fully analyzed at day 7 and 12. Additionally, the activation of signal transduction pathways, including nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB), mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK), phosphoinositide-3-kinases (PI3K)/PI3K-protein kinase B (Akt), and myosin light chain kinase (MLCK)-myosin light chain (MLC20), were analyzed using immunoblotting. Serum amino acids analysis showed that DSS treatment changed the serum contents of amino acids, such as Trp, Glu, and Gln (P<0.05). Dietary arginine or glutamine supplementation had significant (P<0.05) influence on the clinical and biochemical parameters (T-SOD, IL-17 and TNF-α) in colitis model. These results were associated with colonic NF-κB, PI3K-Akt and MLCK signaling pathways. In conclusion, arginine or glutamine could be a potential therapy for intestinal inflammatory diseases.