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J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2005 Sep 16;8(3):507-15.

Phytopreventative anti-hyperlipidemic effects of gynostemma pentaphyllum in rats.

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Herbal Medicines Research and Education Centre, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW, Australia.



Gynostemma pentaphyllum is widely used in traditional Chinese medicine. Preliminary studies indicate Gynostemma isolated triterpine glycosides lower cholesterol. Our studies examine anti-hyperlipidemic effects of gypenosides.


Gynostemma activity was examined in poloxamer P407 induced hyperlipidemia in rats.


1 g/kg P407 induced plasma triglyceride (25 fold), total cholesterol (6 fold), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) (7 fold), high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) (1.6 fold), and nitrite (8 fold). After acute (4 days) and chronic (12 days) oral administration the gypenoside extract (250 mg/kg) reduced triglyceride (53% and 85%, respectively) and total cholesterol levels (10% and 44%, respectively). No significant effects on LDL or HDL cholesterol were observed. The gypenosides reduced nitrite approximately 80%. Similar results were obtained with atorvastatin (75 mg/kg for 4 days); except that LDL cholesterol was reduced (17%) and HDL cholesterol increased. 50% of lipoprotein lipase (LPL) plasma activity was inhibited by approximately 20 microM P407. Gynostemma had no effect on LL, however, it reversed the P407 inhibition of LPL activity in a concentration-dependent manner, with a 2-fold increase at approximately 10 microg/ml.


These studies demonstrate efficacy of Gynostemma pentaphyllum in lowering triglyceride, cholesterol and nitrite in acute hyperlipidemia. The results suggest further investigations of Gynostemma gypenosides are warranted to examine the mechanisms of this activity.

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