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Food Funct. 2012 Jan;3(1):76-82. doi: 10.1039/c1fo10166h. Epub 2011 Oct 27.

(-)-Secoisolariciresinol attenuates high-fat diet-induced obesity in C57BL/6 mice.

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Faculty of Agriculture, Ehime University, 3-5-7 Tarumi, Matsuyama, Ehime 790-8566, Japan.


Flaxseed lignan, secoisolariciresinol has been reported to possess health benefits. We previously synthesized each stereoisomer of secoisolariciresinol and found that (-)-secoisolariciresinol reduces lipid accumulation and induces adiponectin production in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Here we show the effects of (-)-secoisolariciresinol on high-fat diet-induced obesity in C57BL/6 male mice. Oral administration of (-)-secoisolariciresinol for 28 consecutive days significantly suppressed the gain of body weight. Increased serum adiponectin level and decreased gene expression of fatty acid synthase and sterol regulatory element-binding protein-1c in liver, which are related to fatty acid synthesis, were observed in the mice orally administered with (-)-secoisolariciresinol. In addition, subcutaneous injection of (-)-secoisolariciresinol also significantly suppressed the gain of body weight. Serum leptin levels were significantly increased by treating with (-)-secoisolariciresinol or (-)-enterolactone. Subcutaneous injection of (-)-secoisolariciresinol, (-)-enterolactone, or (-)-enterodiol promoted gene expression of acyl-CoA oxidase, carnitine palmitoyl transferase-1, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α, which are related to β-oxidation. Overall results suggest that (-)-secoisolariciresinol exerts a suppressive effect on the gain of body weight of mice fed a high-fat diet by inducing gene expression of adiponectin, resulting in the altered expression of various genes related to the synthesis and β-oxidation of fatty acids.

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