Clément L’Huillier, Marine Jarbeau, Najate Achamrah, Liliana Belmonte, Asma Amamou, Séverine Nobis, Alexis Goichon, Emmeline Salameh, Wafa Bahlouli, Jean-Luc do Rego, Pierre Déchelotte, Moïse Coëffier

Background: During activity-based anorexia (ABA) in mice, enhanced paracellular permeability and reduced protein synthesis have been shown in the colon while the gut–brain axis has received increasing attention in the regulation of intestinal and mood disorders that frequently occur during anorexia nervosa, a severe eating disorder for which there is no specific treatment. In the present study, we assessed the effects of oral glutamine (Gln) or branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) supplementation during ABA to target intestinal functions, body composition and feeding behavior. Methods: C57BL/6 male mice were randomized in Control (CTRL) and ABA groups. After ABA induction, mice received, or not, either 1% Gln or 2.5% BCAA (Leu, Ile, Val) for one week in drinking water. Results: Neither Gln nor BCAA supplementation affected body weight and body composition, while only Gln supplementation slightly increased food intake. ABA mice exhibited increased paracellular permeability and reduced protein synthesis in the colonic mucosa. Oral Gln restored colonic paracellular permeability and protein synthesis and increased the mucin-2 mRNA level, whereas BCAA did not affect colonic parameters. Conclusion: In conclusion, oral Gln specifically improves colonic response during ABA. These data should be further confirmed in AN patients.

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