Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 63, Issue 12, pp 3297–3304 | Cite as

Quercetin Attenuates Adhesion Molecule Expression in Intestinal Microvascular Endothelial Cells by Modulating Multiple Pathways

  • Yifei Bian
  • Ping Liu
  • Jia Zhong
  • Yusheng Hu
  • Shen Zhuang
  • Kai Fan
  • Zhongjie LiuEmail author
Original Article



In inflammatory bowel disease, activation of microvascular endothelial cells and adhesion of immune cells are required for the initiation and maintenance of inflammation. We evaluated the effects and mechanisms of quercetin, a flavone identified in a wide variety of dietary sources, in LPS-induced rat intestinal microvascular endothelial cells (RIMVECs).


RIMVECs were pretreated with quercetin of various concentrations (20, 40 and 80 μM) followed by LPS (10 μg/ml) stimulation. ELISA was used to examine protein levels of intercellular adhesion molecules-1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) in the supernatant. Protein levels of Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), nuclear transcription factor kappa B (NF-κB) p65, inhibitors of NF-κB (IκB-α), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) p38 and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) in cells were measured by Western blot.


Quercetin significantly suppressed protein levels of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 induced by LPS. Quercetin also inhibited TLR4 expression, NF-κB p65, ERK, JNK and STAT phosphorylation and decreased IκB-α degradation. Moreover, the MAPK p38 signal does not contribute to the anti-inflammatory effects on RIMVECs, although LPS significantly increases its phosphorylation.


These results indicate that quercetin may have an anti-inflammatory effect by inhibiting expression of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 in RIMVECs by suppressing TLR4, NF-κB, ERK, JNK and STAT but not the p38 signaling pathway.


Quercetin IBD Rat intestinal microvascular endothelial cells (RIMVECs) Adhesion molecules Signaling pathway 



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant no. 31472228).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yifei Bian
    • 1
  • Ping Liu
    • 1
  • Jia Zhong
    • 1
  • Yusheng Hu
    • 1
  • Shen Zhuang
    • 1
  • Kai Fan
    • 1
  • Zhongjie Liu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine, College of Veterinary MedicineChina Agricultural UniversityBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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