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Keywords:

  • Lens culinaris agglutinin (LCA);
  • gluconeogenic enzymes;
  • gene expression;
  • mouse intestine;
  • Caco-2 cells

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Lectins are proteins that bind specifically to the carbohydrate moiety of glyco-conjugates. Japanese mistletoe lectin given intragastrically affected cytokine gene expression in the mouse intestine. This study examines the actions of Lens culinaris agglutinin (LCA) on the gene expression of gluconeogenic enzymes in the intestine.

RESULTS: The results of quantitative real-time reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction indicated that LCA caused an up-regulation of the gene expression of glucose-6-phosphatase (G6Pase) and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK). This change was correlated with an increase in the expression of two transcription factors, HNF1α and HNF4α. Experiments using human colonic cancer Caco-2 cells demonstrated that LCA up-regulated the gene expression of G6Pase and PEPCK whereas insulin had the opposite effect. In addition, the observed up-regulation of HNF4α gene expression in the duodenum raises the possibility that the lectin promotes the colorectal cancer.

CONCLUSION: Lentil beans should be cooked well to avoid unfavourable effects of LCA. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry