Green tea polyphenol extract attenuates inflammation in interleukin-2-deficient mice, a model of autoimmunity

Gary W. Varilek, Fajun Yang, Eun Y. Lee, Willem J.S. DeVilliers, Jian Zhong, Helieh S. Oz, Kenloch F. Westberry, Craig J. McClain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

150 Scopus citations


Green tea polyphenols (GrTP) have been previously shown to decrease endotoxin-induced tumor necrosis factor-α production and lethality in mice. Our present studies demonstrate that GrTP inhibit inflammatory responses and may be useful in treating chronic inflammatory states, such as inflammatory bowel disease. In this preliminary study, we examined whether GrTP decrease disease activity in interleukin-2-deficient (IL-2-/- mice. Eight-week old IL-2-/- C57BL/6J mice who were fed nonpurified diet were randomly assigned to receive water with GrTP (5 g/L) or water alone (control) for up to 6 wk. After 1 wk, explant colon and lamina propria lymphocyte (LPL) cultures were established from a subgroup of mice and supernatants collected. Culture supernatants from GrTP-treated mice showed decreased spontaneous interferon-γ and tumor necrosis factor-α secretion compared with that of controls. At 6 wk, the GrTP group had less severe colitis as demonstrated by lower histologic scores and wet colon weights. This was associated with lower plasma levels of serum amyloid A, increased weight gain and improved hematocrits. These results show that GrTP attenuated inflammation in IL-2-/- mice and suggest a role for GrTP in treating chronic inflammatory diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2034-2039
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2001


  • Alternative medicine
  • Colitis
  • Green tea
  • Inflammation
  • Mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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