Ficus carica polysaccharide attenuates DSS-induced ulcerative colitis in C57BL/6 mice
The Ficus carica polysaccharide (FCPS) components from the common fig fruit have been demonstrated to exhibit antioxidant and immunity-enhancing activities. However, it is unclear whether it could prevent the ulcerative colitis development. Here, we reported that 5 weeks orally administrated FCPS (150-300 mg/kg bw) significantly prevented the DSS induced-colitis in C57BL/6J mice by improving the colon length and suppressing the infiltration of the inflammatory cells in the gut. FCPS treatment protected the goblet cells, elevated the expression of tight junction protein Claudin-1, and suppressed the formation of cytokines including TNF-α and IL-1β. The FCPS supplementation significantly reformed the gut microbiome by enhancing the abundance of S24-7, Bacteroides, and Coprococus, and suppressing the abundance of Escherichia and Clostridium in genus level. Consistently, the formation of the beneficial microbial metabolites, short chain fatty acids, especially the acetate and butyrate, were improved in the FCPS-treated colitis mice. The correlation analysis indicated that protective effects of FCPS on the ulcerative colitis might be highly correlated to the microbiota composition changes and the formation of SCFAs. In conclusion, these results indicated that FCPS supplementation could be a promising nutritional strategy for inflammatory bowel diseases and the gut microbes play essential roles in providing these beneficial effects.