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We investigated the impact of rice prolamin extract (RPE) on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced nuclear factor (NF)-κB signalling in intestinal epithelial cells and macrophages, and determined the therapeutic efficacy of RPE in acute murine colitis. The effect of RPE on LPS-induced NF-κB signalling and proinflammatory gene expression was evaluated by reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction (RT–PCR), Western blotting, immunofluorescence and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA). The in-vivo efficacy of RPE was assessed in mice with 3% dextran sulphate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis. Apoptotic and cellular proliferative activities were evaluated by immunostaining with cleaved caspase-3 and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) antibodies. RPE inhibited LPS-induced expression of monocyte chemotactic protein (MCP)-1, interleukin (IL)-6 and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha and LPS-induced NF-κB signalling in intestinal epithelial cells and macrophages. RPE-fed, DSS-exposed mice showed less weight loss, longer colon length and lower histological score compared to control diet-fed, DSS-exposed mice. Immunostaining analysis revealed a significant decrease of cleaved caspase-3 positive cells in RPE-fed, DSS-exposed mice compared to DSS-exposed mice. Also, the number of PCNA-positive cells within intact colonic crypts decreased significantly in RPE-fed, DSS-exposed mice compared to control diet-fed, DSS-exposed mice. DSS-induced NF-κB signalling was inhibited by RPE. RPE ameliorates intestinal inflammation by inhibiting NF-κB activation and modulating intestinal apoptosis and cell proliferation in an acute murine colitis.