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Effect of xanthan gum addition to the diet on the intestinal inflammatory process in Adult Wistar rats

Grant number: 18/16470-0
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: July 01, 2019 - June 30, 2021
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Nutrition
Principal Investigator:Claudia Maria da Penha Oller Do Nascimento
Grantee:Claudia Maria da Penha Oller Do Nascimento
Home Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Assoc. researchers: Daniela Caetano Gonçalves ; Lila Missae Oyama


Xanthan gum is commonly used for thickening, gelling and stabilizing substances, for example: to adjust the food consistency for patients with dysphagia ; for the production of gluten-free foods for patients with food restriction; to encapsulate probiotics etc. Patients with dysphagia must use the gum daily, in a chronic manner. Studies associate the inflammatory bowel process (necrotizing enterocolitis) in preterm infants with the use of xanthan gum, given that it affects neonates highly immunoreactive intestinal mucosa. It was suggested that in neonates xanthan gum could activate intestinal lymphocytes and macrophages, thus triggering the inflammatory cascade. We investigated the effect of the addition of xanthan gum to the diet of control rats inoculated with Walker 256 tumor cells. The results demonstrated that the addition of xanthan gum in the diet altered the cytokine content in some tissues, promoting a multisystemic proinflammatory effect. Several studies, using a model of mice with a high level of apoptosis in the intestinal epithelium, demonstrated that increased apoptosis contributes to inflammatory bowel processes and the development of chronic colitis due to excess of TNF, which induces apoptosis in epithelial cells. The death of the intestinal epithelial cells induces the breakdown of the intestinal barrier resulting in the translocation of bacteria to the subepithelial area and, consequently, inflammation of the intestinal mucosa. In inflammatory bowel disease there is increased permeability and changes in the expression of Tight Junctions proteins (TJs) characterized by the reduction of claudin-3, 4, 5, 8 and occludin levels, and increased levels of claudin-2, suggesting that such disorders are consequences of an exacerbated pro-inflammatory response with high levels of IFN-³ and TNF-±, capable of modulating the TJs. Longer permeability disorders involve modulation of TJ protein transcription, apoptosis of epithelial cells, and structural changes in the epithelium. The microbiome influence the metabolic pathways of the intestinal barrier. In studies using xanthan gum to encapsulate probiotics, it was concluded that xanthan gum may act negatively on the intestinal microbiota and may negate the positive effects of probiotic administration. Taking into consideration the aforementioned studies, it is of great importance to further investigate the effects of xanthan gum addition in the feeding and intestinal inflammatory processes. The proposal of this project is to analyze the effects of xanthan gum on the colon of adult of rats treated with different doses of xanthan gum. We intend to evaluate cytokines, necrotic, apoptotic and TJ factors through histological, immunohistochemical, ELISA and Multiplex analyzes, along with gut microbiota characterization. (AU)