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Eur J Pharmacol. 2012 Feb 29;677(1-3):147-53. doi: 10.1016/j.ejphar.2011.12.034. Epub 2011 Dec 29.

Flavangenol (pine bark extract) and its major component procyanidin B1 enhance fatty acid oxidation in fat-loaded models.

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Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Musashino University, 1-1-20 Shinmachi Nishitokyo-shi, Tokyo 202-8585, Japan.


Flavangenol, one of several pine bark extract products, is expected to prevent metabolic diseases with its potent antioxidant effect, its anti-obesity effect and its improvement of insulin sensitivity. In this study, targeting the liver as one of the organs that plays an important role in energy metabolism, Flavangenol was investigated for its effect on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), its action mechanism and its active ingredients, using in vivo and in vitro experiment systems. Flavangenol suppressed intrahepatic fat accumulation in Western diet-loaded Tsumura Suzuki Obese Diabetes (TSOD) mice, which develop various metabolic diseases. In addition, Flavangenol significantly increased the mRNA expression levels of fatty acid oxidative enzymes (peroxisomal proliferator-activated receptor α, acyl-CoA oxidase, carnitine palmitoyltransferase). In order to investigate the direct effect of Flavangenol on the liver, an in vitro fatty liver model prepared by adding a free fatty acid to human liver cancer cells (HepG2 cells) was used. In this model, Flavangenol significantly suppressed intracellular fat accumulation. Procyanidin B1, one of the major components of Flavangenol, also suppressed fat accumulation and induced mRNA expression of the fatty acid oxidative enzymes. As mentioned above, Flavangenol showed a significant suppressive effect in the NAFLD model, and it was suggested that the molecular mechanism is induction of fatty acid oxidation, with the effect mainly attributed to procyanidin B1.

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