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The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine > Volume 33(4); 2012 > Article
The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine 2012;33(4): 438-447.
동과자 에탄올 추출물이 비알코올성 지방간 세포 모델에 미치는 효과
최준용1, 김소연1, 권민정2, 김균하2, 주명수2, 한창우1
1부산대학교 한의학전문대학원 내과학교실
2부산대학교 한의학전문대학원 응용의학부
Effects of Ethanol Extract of Benincasa Seeds on the Experimental Cellular Model of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Jun-young Choi1, So-yeon Kim1, Min-jung Kwun2, Kyun-ha Kim2, Myung-soo Joo2, Chang-woo Han1
1Dept. of Internal Medicine, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University
2Division of Applied Medicine, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University
Correspondence  Chang-woo Han ,Tel: 055-360-5957, Fax: 051-510-8420, Email: yeast10@hanmail.net
  Published online: December 30, 2012.
In this study, we investigated the effect and the underlying mechanism of ethanol extract of Benincasa seeds on a cellular model of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) established by treating HepG2 cells with palmitate.

Methods :
We evaluated ethanol extract of Benincasa seeds (EEBS) for its hepatic lipid-lowering potential in fatty acid overloaded HepG2 cells. After incubation in palmitate containing media with or without EEBS, intracellular neutral lipid accumulations were quantified by Nile red staining. We also investigated the effect of EEBS on lipogenesis and β-oxidation. LXRα-dependent SREBP-1c activation, expression of lipogenic genes, and expression of β-oxidation related genes were determined with or without pretreatment of EEBS.

EEBS significantly attenuated palmitate-induced intracellular neutral lipid accumulation in HepG2 cells. EEBS suppressed fatty acid synthesis by inhibiting LXRα-dependent SREBP-1c activation. EEBS also repressed SREBP-1c mediated induction of lipogenic genes, including ACC, FAS, and SCD-1. However, EEBS had no effect on β-oxidation related CPT-1 and PPARα gene expression.

Our results suggest that EEBS has an efficacy to decrease hepatic lipid accumulation, and this effect was mediated by inhibiting the LXRα-SREBP-1c pathway that leads to expression of lipogenic genes and hepatic steatosis. Therefore, the Benincasa seeds may have a potential clinical application for treatment of this chronic liver disease.
Key words: Benincasa seed, NAFLD, LXRα, SREBP-1c
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