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Phytother Res. 2012 Apr;26(4):600-4. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3603. Epub 2011 Oct 4.

Wild Mediterranean dietary plants as inhibitors of pancreatic lipase.

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Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Calabria, Italy.


Lipids are essential compounds for all living organisms. Agents that inhibit fat digestion are of theoretical benefit in the treatment of obesity. A total of 18 species (21 hydroalcoholic extracts) of edible plants from Calabria region (Italy) were evaluated for their in vitro pancreatic lipase inhibitory activity. Lipase activity was measured by monitoring the hydrolysis of p-NPC, which releases the yellow chromogen, p-nitrophenol. The aqueous ethanol extracts of Portulaca oleracea (leaves) and Silene vulgaris (leaves) exhibited the strongest inhibitory effect on lipase. The amounts of total phenolics, measured by Folin-Ciocalteu method, varied widely in the different analysed extracts and ranged from 29 to 482 mg/g of extract. In this study, the findings do not show any relationship between lipase inhibitory activity and total phenolic content.

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