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Molecules 2014, 19(11), 18493-18510; doi:10.3390/molecules191118493

Pterocarpan-Enriched Soy Leaf Extract Ameliorates Insulin Sensitivity and Pancreatic β-Cell Proliferation in Type 2 Diabetic Mice

Industrial Bio-materials Research Center, Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology (KRIBB), Daejeon 305-806, Korea
Department of Biomolecular Science, Korea University of Science and Technology, KRIBB, Daejeon 305-806, Korea
College of Pharmacy, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 305-764, Korea
Division of Applied Life Science, Gyeongsang National University, Jinju 660-701, Korea
Insect Biotech Co. Ltd., Daejeon 305-811, Korea
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 September 2014 / Revised: 4 November 2014 / Accepted: 7 November 2014 / Published: 13 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Natural Products)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4840 KB, uploaded 17 November 2014]   |  


In Korea, soy (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) leaves are eaten as a seasonal vegetable or pickled in soy sauce. Ethyl acetate extracts of soy leaves (EASL) are enriched in pterocarpans and have potent α-glucosidase inhibitory activity. This study investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the anti-diabetic effect of EASL in C57BL/6J mice with high-fat diet (HFD)-induced type 2 diabetes. Mice were randomly divided into normal diet (ND), HFD (60 kcal% fat diet), EASL (HFD with 0.56% (wt/wt) EASL), and Pinitol (HFD with 0.15% (wt/wt) pinitol) groups. Weight gain and abdominal fat accumulation were significantly suppressed by EASL. Levels of plasma glucose, HbA1c, and insulin in the EASL group were significantly lower than those of the HFD group, and the pancreatic islet of the EASL group had greater size than those of the HFD group. EASL group up-regulated neurogenin 3 (Ngn3), paired box 4 (Pax4), and v-maf musculoaponeurotic fibrosarcoma oncogene homolog A (MafA), which are markers of pancreatic cell development, as well as insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS1), IRS2, and glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4), which are related to insulin sensitivity. Furthermore, EASL suppressed genes involved in hepatic gluconeogenesis and steatosis. These results suggest that EASL improves plasma glucose and insulin levels in mice with HDF-induced type 2 diabetes by regulating β-cell proliferation and insulin sensitivity. View Full-Text
Keywords: Glycine max; insulin sensitivity; pancreas; pterocarpans; type 2 diabetes Glycine max; insulin sensitivity; pancreas; pterocarpans; type 2 diabetes

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kim, U.-H.; Yoon, J.-H.; Li, H.; Kang, J.-H.; Ji, H.-S.; Park, K.H.; Shin, D.-H.; Park, H.-Y.; Jeong, T.-S. Pterocarpan-Enriched Soy Leaf Extract Ameliorates Insulin Sensitivity and Pancreatic β-Cell Proliferation in Type 2 Diabetic Mice. Molecules 2014, 19, 18493-18510.

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