Effects of triterpenoids in fatty products on liver condition of laboratory animals with acute toxic hepatitis


One of the principles of prevention and non-medicamentous treatment of liver diseases, including hepatitis of different etiology, is the normalization of the diet through the consumption of food with physiologically active ingredients, in particular betulin, which helps to eliminate the causes of metabolic and oxidative disorders within liver cells.

The aim of the research was to assess in vivo the influence of triterpene alcohol betulin extracted from Betula pendula Roth. birch bark in fat-containing products (for example mayonnaise) on the blood biochemical parameters and liver morphological structure of rats with initiated acute toxic hepatitis.

Material and methods. Hepatoprotective and antioxidant activities of betulin as part of mayonnaise samples has been investigated in vivo on the model of toxic hepatitis initiated by carbon tetrachloride in male Wistar rats weighing 210–265 g. The animals were divided into 4 groups of 10 animals each: CG-1 – intact, CG-2 and MG – with carbon tetrachloride initiated toxic hepatitis. rats of the main groups were orally administered mayonnaise once a day at a dosage of 1 ml for 21 days after the formation of the model pathology: OG-1 with the added betulin (1 mg per 1 kg of body weight), OG-2 without betulin. Disorders of metabolic and oxidative processes in liver cells of animals were evaluated by biochemical indicators of blood plasma: the level of glucose, albumin, total cholesterol, triglycerides and urea and the activity of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase and γ-glutamyltransferase. Oxidative stress in rats was estimated by the activity of catalase and superoxide dismutase in blood hemolysate (at a dilution of 1:200 and 1:10, respectively); the total prooxidant (in blood plasma) and total antioxidant (in blood hemolysate at a dilution of 1:10) activity were determined spectrophotometrically (colored complexes of TWIN-80 oxidation products with thiobarbituric acid). The morphological structure of rats’ liver was estimated by microscopy of prepared cuts of hepatic tissue.

Results. Based on biochemical parameters of rat blood plasma, it has been established that the administration of mayonnaise with betulin prevents the development of cytolic syndrome and suppresses the process of peroxidation by directly neutralizing free radicals. Aspartate aminotransferase and alkaline phosphatase activity in blood plasma of the experimental animals of the main group MG-1 reduced by 20.7 and 35.2% compared with indicators of the rats of the main group MG-2. Glucose concentration normalized to the level of the control group CG-1. The concentration of bilirubin and triglycerides decreased by 22.9 and by 48.1%, which indicates a significant reduction in the indicators of cholestatic syndrome in the group of animals OG-1 compared to OG-2. The total prooxidant activity and the concentration of thiobarbiturate-reactive products decreased compared to the CG-2 and MG-2 groups, which indicates the suppression of oxidative stress and, as a result, an improvement in liver conditions of animals with toxic hepatitis even when taking a fat-containing product. In liver histopeparates of animals receiving mayonnaise with betulin, necrobotic changes were less pronounced in comparison with the group MG-2. They were estimated at 1 point: small-drip dystrophy spots were found, haemorrhages in the interregional septum with inflammatory infiltration in the course of hemorrhages against the presence of necrosis hepatocytes with pronounced adipose dystrophy in the centres of the lobules, step necrosis with signs of replacing the damaged hepatocytes of the connective tissue, accompanied by centrolobular hemorrhages in MG-2 rats.

Conclusion. Introduced into the composition of mayonnaise betulin, reduces the development of cytolic syndrome in toxic hepatitis and suppresses the process of peroxidation, on the basis of which fat-containing foods with betulin can be recommended for clinical examination as specialized products in acute and chronic liver diseases, including complicated cholestasis.

Keywords:betulin; mayonnaise; toxic hepatitis; rats; blood chemistry; antioxidant activity; liver morphology

Funding. This work was supported by the project 075-00316-20-01 (FZMM-2020-0013, mnemocode 0611-2020-013) from the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation.

Conflict of interest. The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Contribution. The concept and design of the study – Averyanova E.V., Shkolnikova M.N.; data collection and processing – Mazko O.N.; statistical data processing – Chugunova O.V.; writing the text – Shkolnikova M.N., Averyanova E.V.; editing, approval of the final version of the article, responsibility for the integrity of all parts of the article – all authors.

For citation: Averyanova E.V., Shkolnikova M.N., Chugunova O.V., Mazko O.N. Effects of triterpenoids in fatty products on liver condition of laboratory animals with acute toxic hepatitis. Voprosy pitaniia [Problems of Nutrition]. 2023; 92 (4): 81–91. DOI: https://doi.org/10.33029/0042-8833-2023-92-4-81-91 (in Russian)


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Viktor A. Tutelyan
Full Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor, Scientific Director of the Federal Research Centre of Nutrition, Biotechnology and Food Safety (Moscow, Russia)

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