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Phytother Res. 2012 Dec;26(12):1878-83. doi: 10.1002/ptr.4659. Epub 2012 Mar 17.

Lapacho tea (Tabebuia impetiginosa) extract inhibits pancreatic lipase and delays postprandial triglyceride increase in rats.

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Max Rubner-Institute, Federal Research Institute of Nutrition and Food, Department of Microbiology and Biotechnology, Kiel, Germany.


Earlier work in our laboratory indicated that ethanolic extracts of Tabebuia impetiginosa, Arctium lappa L., Calendula officinalis, Helianthus annuus, Linum usitatissimum and L. propolis, inhibit pancreatic lipase in vitro. In a follow-up study we assessed their effects on plasma triglycerides in rats fed on a fatty meal. Extracts, orlistat or only ethanol were given orally to the rats together with the test meal and the rate of increase of postprandial triglycerides was assessed over 4 h. Clearing of the triglycerides from the blood compartment was abolished by inhibiting lipoprotein lipase with Triton WR-1339. Our results showed that out of all the extracts, the bark of Tabebuia impetiginosa led to a significant delay in the postprandial increase of plasma triglycerides. However, lapachol, which is contained in the bark of Tabebuia impetiginosa and soluble in ethanol, had no lipase inhibitory effect in vitro and hence this substance did not seem to mediate the pertinent effect.

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