Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is a devastating gastrointestinal disease of premature infants. Daikenchuto, a Japanese herbal drug, has several effects on the digestive system, so we investigated its preventive effects in a rat model of NEC.
NEC was induced in newborn rats via asphyxia (100% N2 for 90 s; every 4 h) + LPS (4 mg/kg/day [administered orally on days 0 and 1]). The effects of Daikenchuto were evaluated in four groups (control: 0 g/kg/day, I: 0.3 g/kg/day, II: 0.6 g/kg/day, and III: 1.0 g/kg/day). Daikenchuto was administered into the stomach through a microcatheter. The incidence and severity of NEC were pathologically assessed using the NEC grade in accordance with Dovorak’s previous report. Cell positivity for inflammatory cytokine (IL-6) was also evaluated.
Daikenchuto reduced the incidence of NEC in control, Groups I, II, and III to 68.7, 30.0, 30.7, and 13.3%, respectively. High-dose Daikenchuto significantly improved the incidence of NEC, and the rate of IL-6 positive cells in group III was significantly lower than in the control group (p = 0.04).
We evaluated the effect of Daikenchuto against NEC and found that it reduced the incidence rate of NEC due to a decrease in the IL-6 production.
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We thank Dr. Shun Onishi for his contribution and help with the experiment. We also thank Brian Quinn for his comments and help with the manuscript. This study was supported by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (Nos. 16K10094, 16K10095, 16K10434, and 16K10466).
Conflict of interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest in association with this study.
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Shinyama, S., Kaji, T., Mukai, M. et al. The novel preventive effect of Daikenchuto (TJ-100), a Japanese herbal drug, against neonatal necrotizing enterocolitis in rats. Pediatr Surg Int 33, 1109–1114 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00383-017-4145-9