Background: Hypovitaminosis D is associated with many features of the metabolic syndrome, including non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Vitamin D-enriched mushrooms extracts exert a synergistic anti-inflammatory effect. The aim of the present study is to determine the immunomodulatory effect of oral administration of vitamin D-enriched mushrooms extracts on high-fat diet (HFD) animal model of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
Methods: C57BL/6 mice on HFD were orally administered with vitamin D supplement, Lentinula edodes (LE) mushrooms extract, or vitamin D-enriched mushrooms extract for 25 weeks. Mice were studied for the effect of the treatment on the immune system, liver functions and histology, insulin resistance and lipid profile.
Results: Treatment with vitamin D-enriched LE extracts was associated with significant attenuation of the rate of total body fat accumulation, along with a decrease in hepatic fat content as measured by an EchoMRI. Significant alleviation of liver damage manifested by a marked decrease in ALT, and AST serum levels (from 900 and 1021 U/L in the control group to 313 and 340; 294 and 292; and 366 and 321 U/L for ALT and AST, in Vit D, LE and LE + Vit D treated groups, respectively). A corresponding effect on hepatocyte ballooning were also noted. A significant decrease in serum triglycerides (from 103 to 75, 69 and 72 mg/dL), total cholesterol (from 267 to 160, 157 and 184 mg/dL), and LDL cholesterol (from 193 mg/dL to 133, 115 and 124 mg/dL) along with an increase in the HDL/LDL ratio, and improved glucose levels were documented. These beneficial effects were associated with a systemic immunomodulatory effect associated with an increased CD4/CD8 lymphocyte ratio (from 1.38 in the control group to 1.69, 1.71 and 1.63), and a pro- to an anti-inflammatory cytokine shift.
Conclusions: Oral administration of vitamin-D enriched mushrooms extracts exerts an immune modulatory hepato-protective effect in NASH model.
Keywords: Lentinula edodes; NASH; Shiitake; Vitamin D.