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Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2013 Nov;23(11):1107-14. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2012.11.009. Epub 2013 Feb 20.

Factors involved in rosuvastatin induction of insulin sensitization in rats fed a high fat diet.

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Department of Physiology, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Complutense, Avda. Complutense, s/n, Madrid 28040, Spain.



To investigate whether rosuvastatin can improve insulin sensitivity in overweight rats having a high fat diet (HFD). The potential mechanisms involved in this action were evaluated, including SIRT-1, other factors involved in glucose metabolism and stress signaling pathways.


Male Wistar rats (n = 30) were divided into three groups: (i) rats fed a standard diet (3.5% fat); (ii) rats fed a HFD (33.5% fat); and (iii) rats fed a HFD and treated with rosuvastatin (15 mg/kg/day). Evolution: 7 weeks. HFD rats showed increased body, epididymal and lumbar adipose tissue weights. Plasma levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, VLDL, glucose and insulin and leptin/adiponectin ratio were higher in HFD rats, and rosuvastatin treatment reduced them. SIRT-1, p53, PGC-1α, PPAR-γ and GLUT-4 protein levels in white adipose tissue (WAT) were lower, and JNK was higher in HFD rats compared to controls. Rosuvastatin treatment normalized expression of these mediators. Endothelium-dependent relaxation was reduced in mesenteric rings from HFD rats compared to controls and rosuvastatin enhanced it in HFD rats.


Rosuvastatin treatment reduced insulin resistance without affecting body weight or WAT loss in HFD rats. Reduction of leptin and JNK, and enhancement of SIRT-1, p53, PGC-1α, PPAR-γ and GLUT-4 expression in WAT could contribute to insulin sensitization. Normalization of SIRT-1 expression in WAT could be considered a key novel mechanism that aids in explaining the beneficial effects of rosuvastatin on the amelioration of glucose metabolism and the arrangement of multiple signaling pathways participating in insulin resistance in overweight HFD rats.


Adipose tissue; Insulin resistance; SIRT-1; Statin

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