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Kombucha tea ameliorates experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis in mouse model of multiple sclerosis

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Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is a mouse model for multiple sclerosis (MS), in which an inflammatory demyelination and axonal damage occurs. Kombucha tea is a fermented beverage made from kombucha mushroom, brewed tea, and sugar. In recent years kombucha tea has attracted interest due to its pharmacological properties like antioxidant effects. The aim of the present research was to test the therapeutic effect of kombucha tea in EAE. We induced EAE model in 18 female C57BL/6 mice by inoculation of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein-35-55 (MOG35-55) in complete Freund’s adjuvant emulsion. Then, in order to ameliorate EAE symptoms, we used kombucha tea. During the course of study clinical evaluation was assessed, and on the day 21 post-immunization, for evaluation of nitric oxide (NO), total antioxidants capacity and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), blood samples were taken from the heart of mice. The mice were sacrificed and brains and cerebellums of mice were removed for histological analysis. Our findings demonstrated that kombucha tea had beneficial effects on EAE by lower incidence, attenuation in the severity, and also a delay in the onset of disease. Histological analysis showed that inflammatory criteria including the number of infiltrated immune cells and plaques as well as demyelination in kombucha tea dosed mice were significantly lower than the control group. Also, in comparison with control mice, the serum levels of NO and TNF-α in kombucha tea-treated mice were significantly decreased. Kombucha tea with its potential therapeutic effects and immunomodulatory properties might be proposed, after additional necessary tests and trials, for treatment of MS.
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Keywords: experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis; kombucha tea; multiple sclerosis; nitric oxide; tumor necrosis factor-alpha

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Imam Hassan Mojtaba Hospital, Alborz University of Medical Sciences, Karaj, Iran 2: Department of Cellular and Molecular Biology, Kish International Campus, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran 3: Department of Anatomy and Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Shahed University, Tehran, Iran 4: Department of Immunology, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

Publication date: November 2, 2015

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