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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 342561, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/342561
Research Article

Extract of Wax Gourd Peel Prevents High-Fat Diet-Induced Hyperlipidemia in C57BL/6 Mice via the Inhibition of the PPAR Pathway

1School of Pharmacy, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai 201203, China
2College of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Southwest University, Chongqing 400716, China
3Key Laboratory of Horticulture Science for Southern Mountainous Regions, Ministry of Education, Chongqing 400715, China
4Institute of Digestive Disease, Longhua Hospital, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai 201203, China

Received 30 October 2012; Accepted 26 December 2012

Academic Editor: Ken Yasukawa

Copyright © 2013 Ming Gu et al. 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.

Abstract

Wax gourd is a popular vegetable in East Asia. In traditional Chinese medicine, wax gourd peel is used to prevent and treat metabolic diseases such as hyperlipidemia, hyperglycemia, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. However, there is no experimental evidence to support these applications. Here, we examined the effect of the extract of wax gourd peel (EWGP) on metabolic disorders in diet-induced C57BL/6 obese mice. In the preventive experiment, EWGP blocked body weight gain and lowered serum total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-c), liver TG and TC contents, and fasting blood glucose in mice fed with a high-fat diet. In the therapeutic study, we induced obesity in the mice and treated with EWGP for two weeks. We found that EWGP treatment reduced serum and liver triglyceride (TG) contents and fasting blood glucose and improved glucose tolerance in the mice. Reporter assay and gene expression analysis showed that EWGP could inhibit peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) transactivities and could decrease mRNA levels of PPARγ and its target genes. We also found that HMG-CoA reductase (HMGCR) was downregulated in the mouse liver by EWGP. Our data suggest that EWGP lowers hyperlipidemia of C57BL/6 mice induced by high-fat diet via the inhibition of PPARγ and HMGCR signaling.