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Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2012 Jul 6;358(1):127-34. doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2012.03.013. Epub 2012 Mar 28.

Tangeretin stimulates glucose uptake via regulation of AMPK signaling pathways in C2C12 myotubes and improves glucose tolerance in high-fat diet-induced obese mice.

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Korea Food Research Institute, Republic of Korea.


Although the flavonoid tangeretin (5, 6, 7, 8, 4'-pentamethoxyflavone) is known to possess beneficial health effects, the anti-diabetic effects and the mechanism of action have not been elucidated. Treatment with 100 μM tangeretin significantly increased the uptake of 2-NBDG in C2C12 myotubes. We also found that AMPK and AS160 were markedly phosphorylated by tangeretin treatment. In addition, pretreatment with an AMPK inhibitor significantly abrogated tangeretin-stimulated AS160 phosphorylation, glucose uptake, and Glut4 translocation from the cytosol to the plasma membrane. Furthermore, disruption of AMPK using siRNA transfection prevented the glucose uptake stimulated by tangeretin. We also examined the anti-diabetic properties of tangeretin in mice on HFD. Administration of HFD plus 200 mg/kg of tangeretin significantly altered weight gain, glucose tolerance, total cholesterol levels, and the secretion of adipocytokines, such as adiponectin, leptin, resistin, IL-6, and MCP-1. Moreover, AMPK was activated by 200 mg/kg of tangeretin in mouse muscle tissue, as expected from the cell system. These results suggest that tangeretin exerts anti-diabetic effects in both cell culture and mouse models, and these effects are necessary for activating AMPK.

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