Alteration in propagating colonic contractions by dairy proteins in isolated rat large intestine

J. E. Dalziel, J. S. Peters, K. E. Dunstan, C. M. McKenzie, N. J. Spencer, N. W. Haggarty, N. C. Roy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Gastrointestinal conditions in which the transit of contents is altered may benefit from nutritional approaches to influencing health outcomes. Milk proteins modulate the transit of contents along different regions, suggesting that they have varying effects on neuromuscular function to alter gastrointestinal motility. We tested the hypothesis that bovine whey and casein milk protein hydrolysates could have direct modulatory effects on colonic motility patterns in isolated rat large intestine. Casein protein hydrolysate (CPH), whey protein concentrate (WPC), whey protein hydrolysate (WPH), and a milk protein hydrolysate (MPH; a hydrolyzed blend of 60% whey to 40% casein) were compared for their effects on spontaneous contractile waves. These contractions propagate along the length of the isolated intact large intestine (22 cm) between the proximal colon and rectum and were detected by measuring activity at 4 locations. Milk proteins were perfused through the tissue bath, and differences in contraction amplitude and frequency were quantified relative to pretreatment controls. Propagation frequency was decreased by CPH, increased by MPH, and unaffected by intact whey proteins. The reduced motility with CPH and increased motility with MPH indicate a direct action of these milk proteins on colon tissue and provide evidence for differential modulation by hydrolysate type. These findings mirror actions on lower gastrointestinal transit reported in vivo, with the exception of WPH, suggesting that other factors are required.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9598-9604
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019


  • casein
  • gastrointestinal
  • hydrolysate
  • whey


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