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Food Nutr Res. 2018 Aug 22;62. doi: 10.29219/fnr.v62.1473. eCollection 2018.

Mulberry leaf extract displays antidiabetic activity in db/db mice via Akt and AMP-activated protein kinase phosphorylation.

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Department of Biochemistry, Chonbuk National University Medical School, Jeonju, Jeonbuk, Republic of Korea.
Clinical Trial Center for Functional Foods, Chonbuk National University Hospital, Jeonju, Jeonbuk, Republic of Korea.
Department of Pharmacology, Chonbuk National University Medical School, Jeonju, Jeonbuk, Republic of Korea.



Augmenting glucose utilization in skeletal muscle via the phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase (PI3 kinase)/protein kinase B (Akt) pathway or the adenosine monophosphate (AMP)-activated protein kinase (AMPK) pathway is necessary to regulate hyperglycemia in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.


We investigated the effect of mulberry leaf extract (MLE) on glucose uptake in skeletal muscle cells and explored its in vivo antidiabetic potential.


Male db/db mice were treated with either MLE (50 mg/kg, 100 mg/kg, and 250 mg/kg) or metformin (100 mg/kg) for 8 weeks.


MLE treatment stimulated glucose uptake, driven by enhanced translocation of glucose transporter 4 to cell membranes in L6 myotubes. These effects of MLE were synergistic with those of insulin and were abolished in the presence of PI3K inhibitor or AMPK inhibitor. In db/db mice, supplementation with MLE decreased fasting blood glucose and insulin levels and enhanced insulin sensitivity, with increases of p-Akt and p-AMPK in skeletal muscle. Moreover, MLE improved blood lipid parameters and attenuated hepatic steatosis in diabetic db/db mice.


These findings suggest that MLE exerts antidiabetic activity through stimulating glucose disposal in skeletal muscle cells via the PI3K/Akt and AMPK pathways.


MLE can potentially improve hyperglycemia and hepatic steatosis in patients with type 2 diabetes.


glucose uptake; hypertriglyceridemia; insulin; muscle; steatosis

Conflict of interest statement

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare. The authors have not received any funding or benefits from industry to conduct this study.

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