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ABSTRACT: The methanolic extract from the flower buds of Camellia sinensis cultivated in Fujian Province showed inhibitory effects on body weight gain and the weight of visceral fats in high-fat diet-fed mice and/or Tsumura Suzuki Obese Diabetic (TSOD) mice. A suppressive effect of the extract on food intake was suggested to contribute to the anti-obesity effect. The n-butanol (BuOH)-soluble fraction also reduced food intake in normal diet-fed mice. A principal constituent, chakasaponin II, inhibited gastric emptying (GE) as well as food intake. These inhibitory effects were partly reduced by pretreatment with a high dose of capsaicin. The n-BuOH-soluble fraction and chakasaponin II suppressed mRNA levels of neuropeptide Y (NPY), an important regulator of body weight through its effects on food intake and energy expenditure, in the hypothalamus. Furthermore, chakasaponin II enhanced the release of serotonin (5-HT) from the isolated ilea of mice in vitro. These findings suggested that the active saponins suppressed the appetite signals in the hypothalamus through stimulation of the capsaicin-sensitive sensory nerves, probably vagal afferent nerves, or enhancement of 5-HT release from the ilea, leading to reduced food intake and body weight gain.
Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry 08/2011; 19(20):6033-41. DOI:10.1016/j.bmc.2011.08.042 · 2.79 Impact Factor