Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) have been considered as desirable targets for curing metabolic diseases, even though their specific agonists have several side effects. In this study, we demonstrated a novel pharmacological property of methanol extract of Dendrobium moniliforme (DM) on metabolic disorders both in vitro and in vivo. DM extract and its ethyl acetate (EA) fraction selectively stimulated the transcriptional activity of PPARα and regulated expression of genes involved in lipid metabolism in HepG2 hepatocytes, which led to increased mitochondrial and/or peroxisomal fatty acid β-oxidation. Furthermore, the DM treatment significantly decreased body weight gain and feed efficiency in high-fat diet (HFD) mouse model, which were associated with a significant reduction of total cholesterol and free fatty acid levels in the serum. In addition, DM treatment significantly reduced serum levels of both alanine aminotransferase and aspartate aminotransferase compared to the HFD-induced obese mice. Altogether, our findings strongly suggest that DM and its EA fraction can improve glucose and lipid impairment in HFD mice model and might be considered as a therapeutic agent that is effective for improving glucose and lipid homeostasis without severe side effects.
Key words: Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPARα), Dendrobium moniliforme, obesity.
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