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J Nutr. 2012 Jun;142(6):1026-32. doi: 10.3945/jn.111.157263. Epub 2012 Apr 25.

Quercetin ameliorates cardiovascular, hepatic, and metabolic changes in diet-induced metabolic syndrome in rats.

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1
Department of Biological and Physical Sciences, University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.

Abstract

Metabolic syndrome is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). We investigated the responses to the flavonol, quercetin, in male Wistar rats (8-9 wk old) divided into 4 groups. Two groups were given either a corn starch-rich (C) or high-carbohydrate, high-fat (H) diet for 16 wk; the remaining 2 groups were given either a C or H diet for 8 wk followed by supplementation with 0.8 g/kg quercetin in the food for the following 8 wk (CQ and HQ, respectively). The H diet contained ~68% carbohydrates, mainly as fructose and sucrose, and ~24% fat from beef tallow; the C diet contained ~68% carbohydrates as polysaccharides and ~0.7% fat. Compared with the C rats, the H rats had greater body weight and abdominal obesity, dyslipidemia, higher systolic blood pressure, impaired glucose tolerance, cardiovascular remodeling, and NAFLD. The H rats had lower protein expressions of nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-related factor-2 (Nrf2), heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), and carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 (CPT1) with greater expression of NF-κB in both the heart and the liver and less expression of caspase-3 in the liver than in C rats. HQ rats had higher expression of Nrf2, HO-1, and CPT1 and lower expression of NF-κB than H rats in both the heart and the liver. HQ rats had less abdominal fat and lower systolic blood pressure along with attenuation of changes in structure and function of the heart and the liver compared with H rats, although body weight and dyslipidemia did not differ between the H and HQ rats. Thus, quercetin treatment attenuated most of the symptoms of metabolic syndrome, including abdominal obesity, cardiovascular remodeling, and NAFLD, with the most likely mechanisms being decreases in oxidative stress and inflammation.

PMID:
22535755
DOI:
10.3945/jn.111.157263
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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