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Prev Nutr Food Sci. 2017 Dec;22(4):306-311. doi: 10.3746/pnf.2017.22.4.306. Epub 2017 Dec 31.

Inhibitory Effects of Butein on Adipogenesis through Upregulation of the Nrf2/HO-1 Pathway in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes.

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Brain Korea 21 Center for Bio-Resource Development, Division of Animal, Horticultural, and Food Sciences, Chungbuk National University, Chungbuk 28644, Korea.
School of Food Biotechnology and Nutrition, Kyungsung University, Busan 48434, Korea.


Butein is reported to have many biological effects, including anti-fibrogenic, anti-cancer, and anti-inflammatory activities. This study investigated the effects of butein on adipocyte differentiation and the Nrf2/heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) pathway's involvement in its anti adipogenic mechanism. Butein treatment reduced protein expression of key adipogenic transcription factors such as CCAAT-enhancer-binding protein α (C/EBPα) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ). At a concentration of 5, 10, and 25 μM butein, PPARγ was decreased by 78.8, 68.3, and 31.4% and C/EBPα by 87.3, 71.7, and 42.1%, respectively. Butein also increased Nrf2 and HO-1 protein expression in a dose-dependent manner. Treatment with zinc protoporphyrin, a specific HO-1 inhibitor, abolished the inhibitory effects of butein on adipogenic transcription factor protein expression. Therefore, butein inhibits adipogenesis, at least partially, through upregulation of the Nrf-2/HO-1 signaling pathway in 3T3-L1 adipocytes.


3T3-L1 cells; adipogenesis; butein; heme oxygenase; obesity

Conflict of interest statement

AUTHOR DISCLOSURE STATEMENT The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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