Beta-ecdysone prevents the metabolic syndrome in ovariectomized rats: effects on metabolic parameters
Ovariectomized (ovx) rats develop a metabolic syndrome which includes hypercholesterinemia, hypertriglyceridemia and an impaired oral glucose tolerance test. These impaired metabolic parameters are due to increased cytokine secretion by the increased number of adipocytes. Estradiol (E2) and beta-ecdysone (Ecd) are known to reduce visceral and subcutaneous fat loads and E2 normalizes the deranged metabolic parameters. Whether this can also be achieved by a treatment with Ecd was not studied hitherto. Ovx rats were orally treated with E2 (0.108mg/animal/day) or Ecd (18.56mg/animal/day) and following necropsy 4 weeks later serum cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides were determined. In addition an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) was performed. Serum cholesterol, HDL and LDL were reduced by E2 whereas triglycerides were increased. Ecd decreased cholesterol, LDL and also triglycerides but increased HDL. Clearance of glucose following an OGTT lasted longer in the ovx controls than in the E2 and Ecd treated animals. It is concluded that Ecd shares the positive effects of E2 on cholesterol and glucose clearance but prevents the adverse acting stimulation of triglycerides by E2. Hence, Ecd may be a novel non-estrogenic alternative for prevention and treatment of the metabolic syndrome.
Acknowledgement: This work was in part funded by VerdeVital GmbH