, Volume 26, Issue 5, pp 395-399

Effect of chitosan feeding on intestinal bile acid metabolism in rats

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The effect of chitosan feeding (for 21 days) on intestinal bile acids was studied in male rats. Serum cholesterol levels in rats fed a commercial diet low in cholesterol were decreased by chitosan supplementation. Chitosan inhibited the transformation of cholesterol to coprostanol without causing a qualitative change in fecal excretion of these neutral sterols. Increased fiber consumption did not increase fecal excretion of bile acids, but caused a marked change in fecal bile acid composition. Litcholic acid increased sigificantly, deoxycholic acid increased to a leasser extent, whereas hyodeoxycholic acid and the 6β-isomer and 5-epimeric 3α-hydroxy-6-keto-cholanoic acid(s) decreased. The pH in the cecum and colon became elevated by chitosan feeding which affected the conversion of primary bile acids to secondary bile acids in the large intestine. In the cecum, chitosan feeding increased the concentration of α-,β-, and ω-muricholic acids, and lithocholic acid. However, the levels of hyodeoxycholic acid and its 6β-isomer, of monohydroxy-monoketo-cholanoic acids, and of 3α, 6ξ, 7ξ-trihydroxy-cholanoic acid decreased. The data suggest that chitosan feeding affects the metabolism of intestinal bile acids in rats.