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Physiological Reports





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Funded in part by the VCU Libraries Open Access Publishing Fund.

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October 2019


Intestinal epithelial cell derived alkaline phosphatase (IAP) dephosphorylates/detoxifies bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in the gut lumen. We have earlier demonstrated that consumption of high‐fat high‐cholesterol containing western type‐diet (WD) significantly reduces IAP activity, increases intestinal permeability leading to increased plasma levels of LPS and glucose intolerance. Furthermore, oral supplementation with curcumin that increased IAP activity improved intestinal barrier function as well as glucose tolerance. To directly test the hypothesis that targeted increase in IAP would protect against WD‐induced metabolic consequences, we developed intestine‐specific IAP transgenic mice where expression of human chimeric IAP is under the control of intestine‐specific villin promoter. This chimeric human IAP contains domains from human IAP and human placental alkaline phosphatase, has a higher turnover number, narrower substrate specificity, and selectivity for bacterial LPS. Chimeric IAP was specifically and uniformly overexpressed in these IAP transgenic (IAPTg) mice along the entire length of the intestine. While IAP activity reduced from proximal P1 segment to distal P9 segment in wild‐type (WT) mice, this activity was maintained in the IAPTg mice. Dietary challenge with WD impaired glucose tolerance in WT mice and this intolerance was attenuated in IAPTg mice. Significant decrease in fecal zonulin, a marker for intestinal barrier dysfunction, in WD fed IAPTg mice and a corresponding decrease in translocation of orally administered nonabsorbable 4 kDa FITC dextran to plasma suggests that IAP overexpression improves intestinal barrier function. Thus, targeted increase in IAP activity represents a novel strategy to improve WD‐induced intestinal barrier dysfunction and glucose intolerance.


© 2018 The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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VCU Internal Medicine Publications