Oral glutathione supplementation drastically reduces Helicobacter-induced gastric pathologies.
Sci Rep. 2016 Feb 2 ;6:20169. Epub 2016 Feb 2. PMID: 26833404
Ellen De Bruyne
Helicobacter (H.) suis causes gastric pathologies in both pigs and humans. Very little is known on the metabolism of this bacterium and its impact on the host. In this study, we have revealed the importance of the glutamate-generating metabolism, as shown by a complete depletion of glutamine (Gln) in the medium during H. suis culture. Besides Gln, H. suis can also convert glutathione (GSH) to glutamate, and both reactions are catalyzed by the H. suisγ-glutamyltranspeptidase (GGT). Both for H. pylori and H. suis, it has been hypothesized that the degradation of Gln and GSH may lead to a deficiency for the host, possibly initiating or promoting several pathologies. Therefore the in vivo effect of oral supplementation with Gln and GSH was assessed. Oral supplementation with Gln was shown to temper H. suis induced gastritis and epithelial (hyper)proliferation in Mongolian gerbils. Astonishingly, supplementation of the feed with GSH, another GGT substrate, resulted in inflammation and epithelial proliferation levels returning to baseline levels of uninfected controls. This indicates that Gln and GSH supplementation may help reducing tissue damage caused by Helicobacter infection in both humans and pigs, highlighting their potential as a supportive therapy during and after Helicobacter eradication therapy.