Listeria monocytogenes causes listeriosis in humans, mainly through the consumption of ready-to-eat foods such as cheese. Immunocompromised persons, the elderly, and pregnant women and their fetuses or newborns are at the highest risk for the infection. We examined the effects of dietary milk-casein (MC) and soy-protein (SP), and their digested compounds tryptone (TP) and phytone peptone (PP), respectively, on L. monocytogenes invasion and infection in human enterocyte-like Caco-2 cells and A/J mice. Invasion into Caco-2 cells tended to be high with TP. In A/J mice orally infected with L. monocytogenes, viable numbers in the liver and spleen showed a tendency of decreasing with the 20% SP diet compared to the 20% MC diet. SP suppressed the inflammation marker tumour necrosis factor-α in spleen tissue. Furthermore, bacteria lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated nitric oxide (NO) secretion from murine macrophage RAW 264.7 cells was suppressed by PP more than TP. These results suggest that major dietary proteins might affect infection and inflammation by L. monocytogenes.
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