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Agrimonia procera exerts antimicrobial effects, modulates the expression of defensins and cytokines in colonocytes and increases the immune response in lipopolysaccharide-challenged piglets

Gräber, Tobias, Kluge, Holger, Granica, Sebastian, Horn, Gert, Kalbitz, Jutta, Brandsch, Corinna, Breitenstein, Antje, Brütting, Christine, Stangl, Gabriele I.
BMC veterinary research 2018 v.14 no.1 pp. 346
Agrimonia procera, Escherichia coli, Pediococcus pentosaceus, additives, animal husbandry, anti-inflammatory activity, antibiotic resistance, antibiotics, antimicrobial properties, antioxidant activity, bacteria, body temperature, chemokine CXCL1, colorectal neoplasms, gene expression, genes, growth performance, human cell lines, immune response, inflammation, interleukin-8, intestinal microorganisms, lipopolysaccharides, messenger RNA, neoplasm cells, piglets, public health, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, veterinary medicine
BACKGROUND: Because antibiotic use in livestock is assumed to contribute to the emerging public health crisis of antibiotic resistance, alternatives are required. Phytogenic additives are extensively studied due to their antibiotic properties. Components of Agrimonia species have been reported as candidate antimicrobials that possess antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties. We studied the impact of Agrimonia procera (AP) on the growth of selected strains of gut bacteria, the effect of AP on the mRNA abundance of genes involved in inflammation and bacterial defense in a colon carcinoma cell line, the effect of AP in piglets challenged with lipopolysaccharides, and the effect of AP on the growth performance of healthy piglets. RESULTS: The in vitro growth rate of different bacteria strains was negatively affected by AP, especially in Pediococcus pentosaceus and all tested E. coli strains. Stimulation of Caco-2 cells with TNFα resulted in elevated mRNA expression of CXCL1, IL-8 and GPX2. After pretreatment of cells with AP, stimulation of Caco-2 cells with TNFα still resulted in elevated mRNA expression of CXCL1 and IL-8 at all measured points in time. However, mRNA expression in AP-pretreated cells was lower after 6 h and 24 h. In addition, expression of DEFB1 and GPX2 was significantly elevated after TNFα stimulation. In vivo, application of lipopolysaccharides induced significantly increased animal body temperatures. Piglets pretreated with AP prior to lipopolysaccharide application showed a faster and larger increase in body temperature than controls. In addition, piglets pretreated with AP appeared to release more TNFα than controls. In healthy piglets, AP treatment had no impact on growth performance parameters. Fecal dry matter and total plasma antioxidant capacity tended to be higher in piglets treated with AP than in control piglets (P = 0.055 and P = 0.087, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: AP has antimicrobial effects in vitro and stimulated the expression of proinflammatory cytokines in Caco-2 cells. The additive had no effect on growth in healthy piglets but increased the immune response in LPS-treated animals. In addition, AP appeared to have antioxidative effects in vivo. Therefore, AP merits testing as a future alternative to antibiotics in animal husbandry.