Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Lipids Health Dis. 2012 Aug 6;11:98. doi: 10.1186/1476-511X-11-98.

Antihyperglycemic and hypolipidemic effects of α, β-amyrin, a triterpenoid mixture from Protium heptaphyllum in mice.

Author information

Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Federal University of Ceará, Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil.



Pentacyclic triterpenes in general exert beneficial effects in metabolic disorders. This study investigated the effects of α, β-amyrin, a pentacyclic triterpene mixture from the resin of Protium heptaphyllum on blood sugar level and lipid profile in normal and streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic mice, and in mice fed on a high-fat diet (HFD).


Mice treated with α, β-amyrin (10, 30 and 100 mg/kg, p.o.) or glibenclamide (10 mg/kg, p.o.) had significantly reduced STZ-induced increases in blood glucose (BG), total cholesterol (TC) and serum triglycerides (TGs). Unlike glibenclamide that showed significant reductions in BG, TC and TGs in normoglycemic mice, α, β-amyrin did not lower normal blood sugar levels but at 100 mg/kg, manifested a hypolipidemic effect. Also, α, β-amyrin effectively reduced the elevated plasma glucose levels during the oral glucose tolerance test. Moreover, the plasma insulin level and histopathological analysis of pancreas revealed the beneficial effect of α, β-amyrin in the preservation of beta cell integrity. In mice treated orally with α, β-amyrin (10, 30 and 100 mg/kg) or fenofibrate (200 mg/kg), the HFD-associated rise in serum TC and TGs were significantly less. The hypocholesterolemic effect of α, β-amyrin appeared more prominent at 100 mg/kg with significant decreases in VLDL and LDL cholesterol and an elevation of HDL cholesterol. Besides, the atherogenic index was significantly reduced by α, β-amyrin.


These findings reflect the potential antihyperglycemic and hypolipidemic effects of α, β-amyrin mixture and suggest that it could be a lead compound for drug development effective in diabetes and atherosclerosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for BioMed Central Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center