Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry

Dietary Apostichopus japonicus enhances the respiratory and intestinal mucosal immunity in immunosuppressive mice.

PMID 25186733


Although Apostichopus japonicus is recognized as a food and drug resource with significant immunomodulatory activity, its role in regulating the mucosal immunity remains unclear. This study aimed to explore the effects of dietary A. japonicus on mucosal immunity with an immunosuppressive mouse model. The expression of lysozyme, secretory immunoglobulin A(sIgA), and immunoglobulin A(IgA) as well as polymeric immunoglobulin receptor(pIgR) in respiratory and intestine organs was investigated. The results showed that A. japonicus could improve both the systematic and mucosal immunity. The expression of lysozyme, sIgA, and IgA in the respiratory organ was increased more significantly. Consumption of A. japonicus with the dose of 512 mg kg(-1), which equals to (1)/2 sea cucumber per day for adults, showed better effects. This study elucidated positive effects of A. japonicus on mucosal immunity for the first time, suggesting that moderate consumption of A. japonicus is helpful in improving mucosal immunity and preventing exogenous infection.