Anderson RC; MacGibbon AKH; Haggarty N; Armstrong KM; Roy NC. - - PLoS ONE 2018; 13 (1): e0190839.
Appropriate intestinal barrier maturation is essential for absorbing nutrients and preventing pathogens and toxins from entering the body. Compared to breast-fed infants, formula-fed infants are more susceptible to barrier dysfunction-associated illnesses. In infant formula dairy lipids are usually replaced with plant lipids. We hypothesised that dairy complex lipids improve in vitro intestinal epithelial barrier integrity. We tested milkfat high in conjugated linoleic acid, beta serum (SureStartLipid100), beta serum concentrate (BSC) and a ganglioside-rich fraction (G600). Using Caco-2 cells as a model of the human small intestinal epithelium, we analysed the effects of the ingredients on trans-epithelial electrical resistance (TEER), mannitol flux, and tight junction protein co-localisation. BSC induced a dose-dependent improvement in TEER across unchallenged cell layers, maintained the co-localisation of tight junction proteins in TNFalpha-challenged cells with increased permeability, and mitigated the TEER-reducing effects of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). G600 also increased TEER across healthy and LPS-challenged cells, but it did not alter the co-location of tight junction proteins in TNFalpha-challenged cells. SureStartLipid100 had similar TEER-increasing effects to BSC when added at twice the concentration (similar lipid concentration). Ultimately, this research aims to contribute to the development of infant formulas supplemented with dairy complex lipids that support infant intestinal barrier maturation.