In previous studies, we could show that the B vitamin nicotinamide (NAM) enhanced antimicrobial activity of neutrophils. Here, we assessed the effects of NAM in two models of experimental colitis.Methods and Results:
Colitis was induced in C57BL/6 mice either by oral infection with Citrobacter rodentium or by DSS (dextran sodium sulphate) administration, and animals were systemically treated with NAM. Ex vivo bacterial clearance was assessed in murine and human whole blood, as well as isolated human neutrophils. In C. rodentium-induced colitis, NAM treatment resulted in markedly decreased systemic bacterial invasion, histological damage and increased fecal clearance of C. rodentium by up to 600-fold. In contrast, NAM had no effect when administered to neutrophil-depleted mice. Ex vivo stimulation of isolated human neutrophils, as well as murine and human whole blood with NAM led to increased clearance of C. rodentium and enhanced expression of antimicrobial peptides in neutrophils. Moreover, NAM treatment significantly ameliorated the course of DSS colitis, as assessed by body weight, histological damage and myeloperoxidase activity.Conclusion:
Pharmacological application of NAM mediates beneficial effects in bacterial and chemically induced colitis. Future studies are needed to explore the clinical potential of NAM in the context of intestinal bacterial infections and human inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).