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J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Apr 14;58(7):3984-91. doi: 10.1021/jf903230s.

Hepatic gene expression related to lower plasma cholesterol in hamsters fed high-fat diets supplemented with blueberry peels and peel extract.

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Processed Foods Research, Western Regional Research Center, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Albany, Calfifornia 94710, USA.


This study analyzed plasma lipid profiles, genes related to cholesterol and bile acid metabolism, and inflammation in liver as well as adipose tissue from Syrian Golden hamsters fed high-fat diets supplemented with blueberry (BB) pomace byproducts including 8% dried whole blueberry peels (BBPWHL), 2% dried extract of peels (BBPX; 95% ethanol extract), and 6% residue from extracted peel (BBPEXT) compared to a diet containing 5% (w/w) microcrystalline cellulose (control). All BB diets significantly lowered plasma very low density lipoprotein cholesterol and total cholesterol concentrations. Interestingly, BB diets increased fecal lipid excretion. Hepatic CYP7A1 expression was up-regulated by all BB diets, and the expression of CYP51 was up-regulated by BBPX and BBPEXT diets, suggesting that both bile acid and cholesterol synthesis were increased. No significant changes in adipocyte gene expression related to inflammatory markers were observed with any BB diet. These data suggest that hepatic modulation of bile acid and cholesterol synthesis primarily contributes to the cholesterol-lowering effect of BB pomace byproducts.

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