Identification of the Catechin Uptake Transporter Responsible for Intestinal Absorption of Epigallocatechin Gallate in Mice

Sci Rep. 2019 Jul 29;9(1):11014. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-47214-4.


Many studies have shown that epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg) contribute to the health benefits of green tea, although its bioavailability is usually low. However, the mechanism underlying its intestinal absorption remains unclear. In human subjects, it has been reported that the bioavailability of EGCg increases after repeated oral catechin intake. We hypothesized that a certain uptake transporter was involved in this increase, and investigated a novel EGCg transporter. We first confirmed the increase in EGCg bioavailability in mice fed the catechin diet for two weeks. Then, in situ intestinal catechin infusion exhibited that the absorption of EGCg in the ileum was selectively increased in mice fed the catechin diet. A comprehensive analysis of plasma membrane proteins revealed 10 candidates for EGCg transporter, which were selectively increased in the ileum. EGCg uptake by a Xenopus laevis oocyte expressed with respective transporter revealed that oocytes microinjected with DTDST cRNA exhibited significantly higher EGCg uptake. Furthermore, uptake of EGCg by CHO-K1 cells stably expressing DTDST was significantly higher than that by mock cells, which was nullified by treating with a DTDST inhibitor. In conclusion, this study identified DTDST as a novel intestinal EGCg transporter that is upregulated after repeated oral catechin intake.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Antioxidants / metabolism
  • Antioxidants / pharmacokinetics*
  • Biological Availability
  • Biological Transport
  • Catechin / administration & dosage
  • Catechin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Catechin / metabolism*
  • Catechin / pharmacokinetics
  • Intestinal Absorption*
  • Male
  • Membrane Transport Proteins / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Tea / metabolism
  • Xenopus laevis


  • Antioxidants
  • Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Tea
  • Catechin
  • epigallocatechin gallate