Grape Seed Procyanidins and Cholestyramine Differentially Alter Bile Acid and Cholesterol Homeostatic Gene Expression in Mouse Intestine and Liver
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Bile acid (BA) sequestrants, lipid-lowering agents, may be prescribed as a monotherapy or combination therapy to reduce the risk of coronary artery disease. Over 33% of adults in the United States use complementary and alternative medicine strategies, and we recently reported that grape seed procyanidin extract (GSPE) reduces enterohepatic BA recirculation as a means to reduce serum triglyceride (TG) levels. The current study was therefore designed to assess the effects on BA, cholesterol and TG homeostatic gene expression following co-administration with GSPE and the BA sequestrant, cholestyramine (CHY). Eight-week old male C57BL/6 mice were treated for 4 weeks with either a control or 2% CHY-supplemented diet, after which, they were administered vehicle or GSPE for 14 hours. Liver and intestines were harvested and gene expression was analyzed. BA, cholesterol, non-esterified fatty acid and TG levels were also analyzed in serum and feces. Results reveal that GSPE treatment alone, and co-administration with CHY, regulates BA, cholesterol and TG metabolism differently than CHY administration alone. Notably, GSPE decreased intestinal apical sodium-dependent bile acid transporter (Asbt) gene expression, while CHY significantly induced expression. Administration with GSPE or CHY robustly induced hepatic BA biosynthetic gene expression, especially cholesterol 7 alpha-hydroxylase (Cyp7a1), compared to control, while co-administration further enhanced expression. Treatment with CHY induced both intestinal and hepatic cholesterologenic gene expression, while co-administration with GSPE attenuated the CHY-induced increase in the liver but not intestine. CHY also induced hepatic lipogenic gene expression, which was attenuated by co-administration with GSPE. Consequently, a 25% decrease in serum TG levels was observed in the CHY+GSPE group, compared to the CHY group. Collectively, this study presents novel evidence demonstrating that GSPE provides additive and complementary efficacy as a lipid-lowering combination therapy in conjunction with CHY by attenuating hepatic cholesterol synthesis, enhancing BA biosynthesis and decreasing lipogenesis, which warrants further investigation.
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