Aim: To investigate the effects of hydrogen-rich water (HRW) treatment on prevention of ethanol (EtOH)-induced early fatty liver in mice.
Methods: In vitro reduction of hydrogen peroxide by HRW was determined with a chemiluminescence system. Female mice were randomly divided into five groups: control, EtOH, EtOH + silymarin, EtOH + HRW and EtOH + silymarin + HRW. Each group was fed a Lieber-DeCarli liquid diet containing EtOH or isocaloric maltose dextrin (control diet). Silymarin was used as a positive control to compare HRW efficacy against chronic EtOH-induced hepatotoxicity. HRW was freshly prepared and given at a dosage of 1.2 mL/mouse trice daily. Blood and liver tissue were collected after chronic-binge liquid-diet feeding for 12 wk.
Results: The in vitro study showed that HRW directly scavenged hydrogen peroxide. The in vivo study showed that HRW increased expression of acyl ghrelin, which was correlated with food intake. HRW treatment significantly reduced EtOH-induced increases in serum alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, triglycerol and total cholesterol levels, hepatic lipid accumulation and inflammatory cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) and interleukin (IL)-6. HRW attenuated malondialdehyde level, restored glutathione depletion and increased superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and catalase activities in the liver. Moreover, HRW reduced TNF-α and IL-6 levels but increased IL-10 and IL-22 levels.
Conclusion: HRW protects against chronic EtOH-induced liver injury, possibly by inducing acyl ghrelin to suppress the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-6 and induce IL-10 and IL-22, thus activating antioxidant enzymes against oxidative stress.
Keywords: Acyl ghrelin; Antioxidant; Chronic plus binge EtOH feeding; Female mice; Hydrogen; Protective cytokine.