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Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Feb 15;302(4):E433-40. doi: 10.1152/ajpendo.00161.2011. Epub 2011 Nov 29.

Soymorphin-5, a soy-derived μ-opioid peptide, decreases glucose and triglyceride levels through activating adiponectin and PPARα systems in diabetic KKAy mice.

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Division of Food Science and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Gokasho Uji, Kyoto, Japan.


Soymorphin-5 (YPFVV) derived from soybean β-conglycinin β-subunit is a μ-opioid agonist peptide having anxiolytic-like activity. Here, we show that soymorphin-5 improves glucose and lipid metabolism after long-term oral administration to KKAy mice, a type 2 diabetes model animal. Soymorphin-5 inhibited hyperglycemia without an increase in plasma insulin levels in KKAy mice. Soymorphin-5 also decreased plasma and liver triglyceride (TG) levels and liver weight, suggesting that soymorphin-5 improved lipid metabolism. Soymorphin-5 increased plasma adiponectin concentration and liver mRNA expression of AdipoR2, a subtype of adiponectin receptor that is involved in stimulating the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)α pathway and fatty acid β-oxidation. The expressions of the mRNA of PPARα and its target genes acyl-CoA oxidase, carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 A, and uncoupling protein-2, in the liver were also increased after oral administration of soymorphin-5. Furthermore, des-Tyr-soymorphin-5 (PFVV) without μ-opioid and anxiolytic-like activities did not decrease blood glucose levels in KKAy mice. These results suggest that μ-opioid peptide soymorphin-5 improves glucose and lipid metabolism via activation of the adiponectin and PPARα system and subsequent increases of β-oxidation and energy expenditure in KKAy mice.

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