Hemorheology and Related Research Vol. 5, No. 1, pp.23-30, 2002

Original Article

Effects of glucosamine on neutrophil functions and blood fluidity.

Isao NAGAOKA1, Jian HUA1, Yuji KIKUCHI2 and Koji SAKAMOTO3

1Department of Biochemistry, Juntendo University, School of Medicine, 2Microchannel Array Technology Team, National Food Research Institute, 3Koyo Chemical Co., Ltd.

Abstract : Glucosamine, an amino monosaccharide occuring naturally in the connective and cartilage tissues contributes to maintain the strength, flexibility and elasticity of these tissues. In recent years, glucosamine has been widely used to treat osteoarthritis in humans. Neutrophils, which usually function as the primary defenders in acute bacterial infections, are also implicated in the destructive responses in inflammation. In this study, we evaluated the actions of glucosamine on neutrophil functions. Glucosamine suppressed superoxide anion generation by neutrophils, and inhibited phagocytosis of opsonized particles. Furthermore, glucosamine inhibited the release of granule enzyme from phagocytosing neutrophils, and repressed chemotaxis. In addition, glucosamine significantly inhibited the upregulation of adhesion activation. Moreover, glucosamine suppressed neutrophil adhesion and improved blood fluidity. Together, these observations likely suggest that glucosamine suppressed the neutrophil functions, thereby exhibiting anti-inflammatory and hemorheology-improving actions under the inflammatory and pathological conditions.