Cinnamicaldehyde regulates the expression of tight junction proteins and amino acid transporters in intestinal porcine epithelial cells Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND: Cinnamicaldehyde (CA) is a key flavor compound in cinnamon essential oil possessing various bioactivities. Tight junction (TJ) proteins are vital for the maintenance of intestinal epithelial barrier function, transport, absorption and utilization of dietary amino acids and other nutrients. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that CA may regulate the expression of TJ proteins and amino acid transporters in intestinal porcine epithelial cells (IPEC-1) isolated from neonatal pigs. RESULTS: Compared with the control, cells incubated with 25 μmol/L CA had increased transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER) and decreased paracellular intestinal permeability. The beneficial effect of CA on mucosal barrier function was associated with enhanced protein abundance for claudin-4, zonula occludens (ZO)-1, ZO-2, and ZO-3. Immunofluorescence staining showed that 25 μmol/L CA promoted the localization of claudin-1 and claudin-3 to the plasma membrane without affecting the localization of other TJ proteins, including claudin-4, occludin, ZO-1, ZO-2, and ZO-3, compared with the control cells. Moreover, protein abundances for rBAT, xCT and LAT2 in IPEC-1 cells were enhanced by 25 μmol/L CA, while that for EAAT3 was not affected. CONCLUSIONS: CA improves  intestinal mucosal barrier function by regulating the distribution of claudin-1 and claudin-3 in enterocytes, as well as enhancing protein abundance for amino acid transporters rBAT, xCT and LAT2 in enterocytes. Supplementation with CA may provide an effective nutritional strategy to improve intestinal integrity and amino acid transport and absorption in piglets.

altmetric score

  • 1

author list (cited authors)

  • Sun, K., Lei, Y., Wang, R., Wu, Z., & Wu, G.

citation count

  • 15
  • 18

publication date

  • December 2017