Ethyl acetate extracts of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) sprouts inhibit lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammation in vitro and in vivo
To analyze the immunomodulatory effect of pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC) on the endotoxin (LPS) stimulated inflammatory response, we measured the LPS-stimulated cytokine and NO production in murine peritoneal macrophages, J774A.1 cells and human whole blood in the presence of PDTC (60 microM). PDTC significantly inhibited the production of nitrite, IL-1beta and IL-6 in these cells. TNFalpha release was stimulated in murine cells, but suppressed in human whole blood. We further investigated the influence of PDTC on mortality and cytokine release in mouse endotoxin shock. PDTC was i.p. injected 30 min prior to the induction of endotoxin shock in female NMRI-mice and survival was significantly improved as compared to controls (48% vs 20%, n=25 per group). Plasma concentrations of TNFalpha were slightly augmented while IL-6 levels were decreased in PDTC-treated animals as compared to controls, however, without reaching significance. We conclude that PDTC is a potent immunomodulatory substance that modulates the inflammatory response in vitro and reduces mortality in mouse endotoxin shock. The pathophysiological mechanisms of the protective effect of PDTC in vivo, however, appears to be pluripotent, comprising both antioxidative properties and the inhibition of NF-kB.