Anthocyanin-rich fractions from red raspberries attenuate inflammation in both RAW264.7 macrophages and a mouse model of colitis

Sci Rep. 2014 Aug 29;4:6234. doi: 10.1038/srep06234.


Edible berries have a broad spectrum of biomedical functions, including improving immune responses and reducing risk for chronic diseases. In this study, the anti-inflammatory activities of crude extracts (CEs), anthocyanin-rich fractions (ARFs), and des-anthocyanin fractions (DAFs) from seven berries were evaluated based on their inhibitory effects on nitric oxide (NO) production in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)/IFN-γ-activated RAW264.7 macrophages. ARFs from red raspberries (RR-ARFs) exhibited the highest efficiency in suppressing NO synthesis. The anti-inflammatory properties were also demonstrated by reducing the expression levels of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β) and IL-6 in RAW264.7 cells. The luciferase reporter assay demonstrated that the activities of NF-κB and AP-1 signaling pathways were significantly suppressed by RR-ARFs. Further studies showed that RR-ARFs decreased the phosphorylation of IKK, IκBα, p65 and JNK and the nuclear translocation of p65 in LPS/IFN-γ-stimulated RAW264.7 cells. In a mouse colitis model, dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced weight loss and histological damage were significantly ameliorated by RR-ARFs treatment. Taken together, our results indicate that RR-ARFs attenuate inflammation both in vitro and in vivo primarily by inhibiting the activation of NF-κB and MAPKs. The anti-inflammatory of RR-ARFs could be harnessed and applied in animal agriculture, drug and food industries.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anthocyanins / pharmacology*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Colitis / drug therapy
  • Colitis / immunology*
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / genetics
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / metabolism
  • Dextran Sulfate
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Gene Expression
  • Interferon-gamma / physiology
  • Interleukin-1beta / genetics
  • Interleukin-1beta / metabolism
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics
  • Interleukin-6 / metabolism
  • Lipopolysaccharides / pharmacology
  • MAP Kinase Kinase 4 / metabolism
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Morus / chemistry
  • Nitric Oxide / biosynthesis
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II / genetics
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II / metabolism
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Rubus / chemistry*


  • Anthocyanins
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • Interleukin-6
  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • Plant Extracts
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Interferon-gamma
  • Dextran Sulfate
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II
  • Nos2 protein, mouse
  • Ptgs2 protein, mouse
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • MAP Kinase Kinase 4