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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2011, Article ID 248231, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ecam/nep004
Original Article

A Chinese Herbal Decoction, Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang, Prepared from Radix Astragali and Radix Angelicae sinensis, Ameliorates Insulin Resistance Induced by A High-Fructose Diet in Rats

1Department of Pharmacy, Tajen University, Yanpu Shiang, Ping Tung Shien, Taiwan
2Department of Internal Medicine, Pao Chien Hospital, Ping Tung City, ROC, Taiwan

Received 6 September 2008; Accepted 13 January 2009

Copyright © 2011 I-Min Liu 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

Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang (DBT), a Chinese medicinal decoction contains Radix Angelicae sinensis (Danggui) and Radix Astragali (Huangqi) at a ratio of 1 : 5, is used commonly for treating women's ailments. This study was conducted to explore the effects of this preparation on insulin resistance in rats fed with 6-week diet containing 60% fructose. Similar to the action of rosiglitazone (4 mg kg-1 per day by an oral administration), repeated oral administration of DBT (2.5 g kg-1 per day) for 14 days was found to significantly alleviate the hyperglycemia but made no influence on plasma lipid profiles nor weight gain in fructose chow-fed rats. Also, the higher degree of insulin resistance as measured by homeostasis model assessment of basal insulin resistance in fructose chow-fed rats was significantly decreased by repeated DBT treatment. DBT displays the characteristic of rosiglitazone by increasing the whole-body insulin sensitivity in fructose chow-fed rats after 2-week treatment, as evidenced by the marked elevation of composite whole-body insulin sensitivity index during the oral glucose tolerance test. DBT improves insulin sensitivity through increased post-receptor insulin signaling mediated by enhancements in insulin receptor substrate-1-associated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase step and glucose transporter subtype 4 translocation in soleus muscles of animals exhibiting insulin resistance. DBT is therefore proposed as potentially useful adjuvant therapy for patients with insulin resistance and/or the patients who wish to increase insulin sensitivity.