Effect of dietary ribonucleic acid on bacterial translocation and survival following blood transfusion and thermal injury

R. Gennari, J. W. Alexander, T. Eaves-Pyles, T. Coyne, A. Testori, J. G. Geraghty

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Ribonucleic acid (RNA) has been shown to have a key role in the maintenance of normal cellular function and host resistance to infection. The effect of experimental diets containing RNA on microbial translocation, killing of translocated bacteria and the survival rate of the host was studied in a burn animal model which included immunosuppression. Balb/c mice were fed for 10 days with an RNA supplemented diet (AIN/76A). Control groups were fed with two commercial diets: AIN-76A or Purina chow 5001 (chow). After 10 days of feeding, all animals received an allogenic transfusion. On day 15 the animals were gavaged with 1010 14C radiolabeled or unlabeled Escherichia coli, and given a 20% total body surface area (TBSA) burn injury. Animals gavaged with unlabeled bacteria were observed for survival (n = 60) and animals gavaged with labeled bacteria were sacrificed 4 h post-burn (n = 30) and the mesenteric lymph nodes, liver and spleen were harvested. Slightly less translocation was observed in the liver and spleen of animals fed on RNA diet. Bacterial counts were measured and the percentages of translocated organisms that survived in the tissues were calculated and showed no statistical differences between the three groups. Survival was 45% in RNA group versus 55% in the non-supplemented AIN-76A and 50% in the chow group. It is concluded that a diet enriched in RNA slightly affects bacterial translocation but does not affect survival after severe injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-249
Number of pages3
JournalClinical Nutrition
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Gastroenterology
  • Health Professions(all)
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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