Gabrie ten Have, one of CTRAL research scientists, received an ESPEN Research Fellowship grant to study the effect of enteral nutritional intervention on glutathione metabolism during Pseudomonas aeruginosa sepsis.

The primary significance of this project is the development of a new approach to nutritional support in sepsis that will promote and preserve muscle mass and have no adverse physiological effects.

Sepsis is also characterized by severe redox imbalance. Glutathione (GSH) plays a major role in cellular defense against oxidative and nitrosative stress. In septic patients, the GSH pool is depleted in muscle. Despite the well-recognized importance of supporting organ and tissue metabolism in sepsis with appropriate nutrition, there is little agreement on the best approach, probably also because we lack information on the effect on nutrition on GSH metabolism.

This research investigates the hypothesis that if nutritional therapy during sepsis is able to improve function and metabolism, also GSH synthesis is stimulated by increased availability of precursors.

Further research was conducted to quantify the response of protein synthesis in the muscle, gut, and liver to specific formulations of amino acids designed to stimulate protein synthesis. This work was supported in part by National institute of General Medicinal Sciences Grant R-01 GM-084447.

This line of research now also assess muscle function and physical activity by targeted nutritional support during recovery from sepsis. This work is supported by the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command, through the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program under Award No. W81XWH2010259.Opinions, interpretations, conclusions and recommendations are those of the author and are not necessarily endorsed by the U.S. Army.