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J Agric Food Chem. 2008 May 28;56(10):3777-84. doi: 10.1021/jf072681o.

Specific immunomodulatory and secretory activities of stevioside and steviol in intestinal cells.

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  • 1Department of Physiology, Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, Bangkok 10400, Thailand.


Stevioside, isolated from Stevia rebaudiana, is a commercial sweetener. It was previously demonstrated that stevioside attenuates NF-kappaB-dependent TNF-alpha and IL-1beta synthesis in LPS-stimulated monocytes. The present study examined the effects of stevioside and its metabolite, steviol, on human colon carcinoma cell lines. High concentrations of stevioside (2-5 mM) and steviol (0.2-0.8 mM) decreased cell viability in T84, Caco-2, and HT29 cells. Stevioside (2 mM) potentiated TNF-alpha-mediated IL-8 release in T84 cells. However, steviol (0.01-0.2 mM) significantly suppressed TNF-alpha-induced IL-8 release in all three cell lines. In T84 cells, steviol attenuated TNF-alpha-stimulated IkappaB --> NF-kappaB signaling. Chloride transport was stimulated by steviol (0.1 mM) > stevioside (1 mM) at 30 min. Two biological effects of steviol in the colon are demonstrated for the first time: stimulation of Cl(-) secretion and attenuation of TNF-alpha-stimulated IL-8 production. The immunomodulatory effects of steviol appear to involve NF-kappaB signaling. In contrast, at nontoxic concentrations stevioside affects only Cl(-) secretion.

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