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Biol Pharm Bull. 2005 Sep;28(9):1717-21.

Liposomalization of lactoferrin enhanced it's anti-inflammatory effects via oral administration.

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R&D Center, Sunstar Inc., Osaka, Japan.


It is known that lactoferrin is one of the functional proteins contained in mammalian milk and that it plays an important role in the immune system. In this study, we prepared multi-lamellar liposomal bovine lactoferrin composed of egg yolk phosphatidylcholine and phytosterol for oral delivery, and examined any resulting anti-inflammatory effects. Oral pretreatment of liposomal lactoferrin exhibited more suppressive effects than did non-liposomal lactoferrin on CCl4-induced hepatic injury in rats as well as on lipopolysaccharide-induced TNF-alpha production from mouse peripheral blood mononuclear leukocytes. Further investigation revealed that the liposomalization did not exert influence on the absorbability of lactoferrin to the venous blood or lymph following an intraduodenal administration in rats. Furthermore, there was no significant difference exhibited between the antigenicity of liposomal and non-liposomal lactoferrin, which was measured using the passive cutaneous anaphylaxis reaction following oral sensitization to them in guinea pigs. These results suggest that liposomal lactoferrin might act more effectively than conventional lactoferrin in the intestinal site, which is regarded as an active site of orally administered lactoferrin, although the biological mechanism is not fully understood yet. Consequently we propose that liposomal lactoferrin could be a novel active constituent useful for preventive and therapeutic treatment of inflammatory diseases.

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