Dietary Supplementation with 23-Hydroxy Ursolic Acid Reduces the Severity and Incidence of Acute Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis (EAE) in a Murine Model of Multiple Sclerosis




Asmis, Reto
Medrano, Megan T.
Chase Huizar, Carol
Griffith, Wendell P.
Forsthuber, Thomas G.

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23-Hydroxy ursolic acid (23-OH UA) is a potent atheroprotective and anti-obesogenic phytochemical, with anti-inflammatory and inflammation-resolving properties. In this study, we examined whether dietary 23-OH UA protects mice against the acute onset and progression of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a mouse model of multiple sclerosis (MS). Female C57BL/6 mice were fed either a defined low-calorie maintenance diet (MD) or an MD supplemented with 0.2% wgt/wgt 23-OH UA for 5 weeks prior to actively inducing EAE and during the 30 days post-immunization. We observed no difference in the onset of EAE between the groups of mice, but ataxia and EAE disease severity were suppressed by 52% and 48%, respectively, and disease incidence was reduced by over 49% in mice that received 23-OH UA in their diet. Furthermore, disease-associated weight loss was strikingly ameliorated in 23-OH UA-fed mice. ELISPOT analysis showed no significant differences in frequencies of T cells producing IL-17 or IFN-γ between 23-OH UA-fed mice and control mice, suggesting that 23-OH UA does not appear to regulate peripheral T cell responses. In summary, our findings in EAE mice strongly suggest that dietary 23-OH UA may represent an effective oral adjunct therapy for the prevention and treatment of relapsing–remitting MS.




Nutrients 16 (3): 348 (2024)