Gamma radiation changes the molecular structure and activity of proteins, which in turn changes their physiological effects. Sericin, one of the silk peptides, has beneficial effects to humans such as inducing apoptosis, acting as an anti-oxidant. The effects of gamma irradiation on the physiological activity of fibroin have been studied, but its effects on sericin alone have not yet been established. In this study, we assessed the effects of gamma irradiation on sericin (I-sericin) in regard to its inflammatory effects in vitro and in vivo. Our results showed that I-sericin (5 kGy) significantly increased nitric oxide production, proliferation of immune cells, and effectively attenuated lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammation. The mice were fed I-sericin for 4 weeks and treated with LPS; they exhibited significantly increased proliferation of lymphocytes, activation of NK cells and decreased secretion of inflammatory cytokines These results suggest gamma-irradiated I-sericin as a valuable functional food supplement by immune-enhancing and anti-inflammation effects.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Altman GH, Diaz F, Jakuba C, Calabro T, Horan RL, Chen J, Lu H, Richmond J, Kaplan DL. Silk-based biomaterials. Biomaterials. 24: 401-416 (2003)
Andrews JS, Berger AE, Ware CF. Characterization of the receptor for tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and lymphotoxin (LT) on human T lymphocytes. TNF and LT differ in their receptor binding properties and the induction of MHC class I proteins on a human CD4 + T cell hybridoma. J. Immunol. 144: 2582-2591 (1990)
Andrikopoulos S, Blair AR, Deluca N, Fam BC, Proietto J. Evaluating the glucose tolerance test in mice. Am. J. Physiol. Endocrinol. Metab. 295: E1323-1332 (2008)
Birk RW, Gratchev A, Hakiy N, Plitz O, Schiefzewski K, Guillot P, Orfanos CE, Goerdt S. Alternative activation of antigen-presenting cells: concepts and clinical relevance. Hautarzt. 52: 193-200 (2001)
Biron CA, Nguyen KB, Pien GC, Cousens LP, Salazar-Mather TP. Natural killer cells in antiviral defense: function and regulation by innate cytokines. Annu. Rev. Immunol. 17: 189-220 (1999)
Brandstetter S, Berthold C, Isnardy B, Solar S, Elmadfa I. Impact of gamma-irradiation on the antioxidative properties of sage, thyme, and oregano. Food Chem. Toxicol. 47: 2230-2235 (2009)
Chou ST, Peng HY, Hsu JC, Lin CC, Shih Y. Achillea millefolium L. essential oil inhibits LPS-induced oxidative stress and nitric oxide production in RAW 264.7 Macrophages. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 14: 12978-12993 (2013)
Dash R, Mandal M, Ghosh SK, Kundu SC. Silk sericin protein of tropical tasar silkworm inhibits UVB-induced apoptosis in human skin keratinocytes. Mol. Cell Biochem. 311: 111-119 (2008)
Davies KJ. Protein damage and degradation by oxygen radicals. I. general aspects. J. Biol. Chem. 262: 9895-9901 (1987)
Dogbevi MK, Vachon C, Lacroix M. Physicochemical and microbiological changes in irradiated fresh pork loins. Meat. Sci. 51: 349-354 (1999)
Fernandez NC, Treiner E, Vance RE, Jamieson AM, Lemieux S, Raulet DH. A subset of natural killer cells achieves self-tolerance without expressing inhibitory receptors specific for self-MHC molecules. Blood. 105: 4416-4423 (2005)
Frese-Schaper M, Keil A, Yagita H, Steiner SK, Falk W, Schmid RA, Frese S. Influence of natural killer cells and perforinmediated cytolysis on the development of chemically induced lung cancer in A/J mice. Cancer Immunol. Immun. 63: 571-580 (2014)
Han Y, Wu J, Liu T, Hu Y, Zheng Q, Wang B, Lin H, Li X. Separation, characterization and anticancer activities of a sulfated polysaccharide from Undaria pinnatifida. Int. J. Biol. Macromol. 83: 42-49 (2016)
Kang IS, Kim RI, Kim GS, Kim NR, Shin JY, Kim C. Effects of Agaricus blazei Murill water extract on immune response in BALB/c mice. J. Korean Soc. Food Sci. Nutr. 44: 1629-1636 (2015)
Kojthung A, Meesilpa P, Sudatis B, Treeratanapiboon L, Udomsangpetch R, Oonkhanond B. Effects of gamma radiation on biodegradation of Bombyx mori silk fibroin. Int. Biodeter. Biodegr. 62: 487-490 (2008)
Lafortune R, Caillet S, Lacroix M. Combined effects of coating, modified atmosphere packaging, and gamma irradiation on quality maintenance of ready-to-use carrots (Daucus carota). J. Food Protect. 68: 353-359 (2005)
Lee SS, Lee EM, Hong SH, Yoo SH, Cho JY, Lee IC, Chung BY. Enhanced formation of quercetin by combined use of gamma ray and H2O2 from cyanidin-3-O-xylosylrutinoside. Radiat. Phys. Chem. 81: 1132-1135 (2012)
Lin WW, Karin M. A cytokine-mediated link between innate immunity, inflammation, and cancer. J. Clin. Invest. 117: 1175-1183 (2007)
MacMicking J, Xie QW, Nathan C. Nitric oxide and macrophage function. Annu. Rev. Immunol. 15: 323-350 (1997)
Medzhitov R. Recognition of microorganisms and activation of the immune response. Nature. 449: 819-826 (2007)
Minami M, Shimizu K, Okamoto Y, Folco E, Ilasaca ML, Feinberg MW, Aikawa M, Libby P. Prostaglandin E receptor type 4-associated protein interacts directly with NF-kappaB1 and attenuates macrophage activation. J. Biol. Chem. 283: 9692-9703 (2008)
Moller B, Villiger PM. Inhibition of IL-1, IL-6, and TNF-alpha in immune-mediated inflammatory diseases. Springer Semin. Immunopathol. 27: 391-408 (2006)
Mu MM, Chakravortty D, Sugiyama T, Koide N, Takahashi K, Mori I, Yoshida TY. The inhibitory action of quercetin on lipopolysaccharide-induced nitric oxide production in RAW 264.7 macrophage cells. J. Endotoxin Res. 7: 431-438 (2001)
Ortiz-Andrellucchi A, Sanchez-Villegas A, Rodriguez-Gallego C, Lemes A, Molero T, Soria A, Pena-Quintana L, Santana M, Ramirez O, Garcia J, Cabrera F, Cobo J, Serra-Majem L. Immunomodulatory effects of the intake of fermented milk with Lactobacillus casei DN114001 in lactating mothers and their children. Br. J. Nutr. 100: 834-845 (2008)
Pereira E, Antonio AL, Rafalski A, Barreira JCM, Barros L, Oliveira MBPP, Ferreira ICFR. Electron-beam irradiation as an alternative to preserve nutritional, chemical and antioxidant properties of dried plants during extended storage periods. LWT-Food Sci. Technol. 82: 386-395 (2017)
Roberts PB. Food irradiation is safe: Half a century of studies. Radiation Phys. Chem. 105: 78-82 (2014)
Ryu SP. Silkworm pupae powder ingestion increases fat metabolism in swim-trained rats. J. Exerc. Nutrition Biochem. 18: 141-149 (2014)
Ryu HS, Kim J, Kim HS. Enhancing effect of Sorghum bicolor L. Moench (Sorghum, su-su) extracts on mouse spleen and macrophage cell activation. J. Korean Soc. Food Sci. Nutr. 19: 176-182 (2006)
Seo MJ, Kang BW, Kim MJ, Lee HH, Seo KI, Kim KH, Jeong YK. The effect of cordycepin on the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines in mouse peritoneal macrophages. J. Korean Soc. Food Sci. Nutr. 46: 68-72 (2014)
Taylor A, Verhagen J, Blaser K, Akdis M, Akdis CA. Mechanisms of immune suppression by interleukin-10 and transforming growth factor-β: the role of T regulatory cells. Immunology. 117: 433-442 (2006)
Ungefroren H, Sebens S, Seidl D, Lehnert H, Hass R. Interaction of tumor cells with the microenvironment. Cell Commun. Signal. 9: 18 (2011)
Valdes-Diaz G, Rodriguez-Calvo S, Perez-Gramatges A, Rapado-Paneque M, Fernandez-Lima FA, Ponciano CR, da Silveira EF. Effects of gamma radiation on phase behaviour and critical micelle concentration of Triton X-100 aqueous solutions. J. Colloid Interf. Sci. 311: 253-261 (2007)
Verde SC, Trigo MJ, Sousa MB, Ferreira A, Ramos AC, Nunes I, Junqueira C, Melo R, Santos PM, Botelho ML. Effects of gamma radiation on raspberries: safety and quality issues. J. Toxicol. Env. Health A. 76: 291-303 (2013)
Vivier E, Tomasello E, Baratin M, Walzer T, Ugolini S. Functions of natural killer cells. Nat. Immunol. 9: 503-510 (2008)
Wang KS, Frank DA, Ritz J. Interleukin-2 enhances the response of natural killer cells to interleukin-12 through up-regulation of the interleukin-12 receptor and STAT4. Blood. 95: 3183-3190 (2000)
Zalys RS, Zagon I, H.Bonneau R, Lang CM, JMcLaughlin P. In vivo effects of chronic treatment with [Met5]-enkephalin on hematological values and natural killer cell activity in athymic mice. Life Sci. 66: 829-834 (2000)
This work was supported by a Grant from the National Research Foundation of Korea, funded by the Korean government (NRF- 2016M2A2A6A04913728).
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Song, IB., Han, HJ. & Kwon, J. Immune-enhancing effects of gamma-irradiated sericin. Food Sci Biotechnol 29, 969–976 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10068-020-00734-6
- Gamma irradiation
- Immune enhancement