The intestinal compensatory proliferative potential is a key influencing factor for susceptibility to radiation-induced intestinal injury. Studies indicated that the carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 (CPT1) mediated fatty acid β-oxidation (FAO) plays a crucial role in promoting the survival and proliferation of tumor cells. Here, we aimed to explore the effect of 60Co gamma rays on CPT1 mediated FAO in the radiation-induced intestinal injury models, and investigate the role of CPT1 mediated FAO in the survival and proliferation of intestinal cells after irradiation. We detected the changed of FAO in the plasma and small intestine of Sprague Dawley (SD) rats at 24 h after 60Co gamma irradiation (0, 5 and 10 Gy), using target metabolomics, qRT-PCR, immunohistochemistry (IHC), western blot (WB) and related enzymatic activity kits. We then analyzed the FAO changes in radiation-induced intestinal injury models regardless of ex vivo (mice enteroids), or in vitro (normal human intestinal epithelial cell lines, HIEC-6). HIEC-6 cells were transduced with lentivirus vector GV392 and treated with puromycin for obtaining CPT1 stable knockout cell lines, named CPT1 KO. CPT1 enzymatic activities of HIEC-6 cells and mice enteroids were also inhibited by pharmaceutical inhibitor ST1326 and Etomoxir (ETO), to study the function of CPT1 in the survival and proliferation of HIEC-6 cells after 60Co gamma irradiation. We found that CPT1 mediated FAO was altered in the small intestine of the SD rats after irradiation, especially, the expression level and enzymatic activity of CPT1 were significantly increased. Similarly, the expression levels of CPT1 were also remarkably enhanced in mice enteroids and HIEC-6 cells after irradiation. CPT1 inhibition decreased the proliferation of the HIEC-6 cells and mice enteroids after irradiation partially by reducing the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2) and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathways activation, CPT1 inhibition also reduced the proliferation of mice enteroids after irradiation partially by down-regulating the Wnt/β-catenin signaling activity. In conclusion, our study indicated that CPT1 plays a crucial role in promoting intestinal epithelial cell proliferation after irradiation.

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