Phosphatidylcholine (PC) is a major lipid of the gastrointestinal mucus layer. We recently showed that mucus from patients suffering from ulcerative colitis has low levels of PC. Clinical studies reveal that the therapeutic addition of PC to the colonic mucus using slow release preparations is beneficial.
Results:PC induces a prolonged inhibition of TNF-α-induced pro-inflammatory signalling. This inhibition may be caused by a shift of the TNF-α receptors at the surface to lipid rafts. Our results may offer a potential molecular explanation for the positive role of PC seen in clinical studies for the treatment of ulcerative colitis.
Treede, I Braun, A et al. TNF-alpha induced up-regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines is reduced by phosphatidylcholine in intestinal epithelial cells. BMC Gastroenterology 2009, 9:53 (13 July 2009) View Abstract View Full Paper