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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 164219, 8 pages
Research Article

Protection of Trigonelline on Experimental Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy

Base for Drug Clinical Trial, Xinqiao Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400037, China

Received 17 July 2012; Accepted 4 November 2012

Academic Editor: Bashar Saad

Copyright © 2012 Ji-Yin Zhou and Shi-Wen Zhou. 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.


The mechanisms leading to diabetic peripheral neuropathy are complex and there is no effective drug to treat it. As an active component of several traditional Chinese medicines, trigonelline has beneficial effects on diabetes with hyperlipidemia. The protective effects and the mechanism of trigonelline on diabetic peripheral neuropathy were evaluated in streptozotocin- and high-carbohydrate/high-fat diet-induced diabetic rats. Rats were divided into four groups at the end of week 2: control, diabetes, diabetes + trigonelline (40 mg/kg), and diabetes + sitagliptin (4 mg/kg). After 48-week treatment, technologies of nerve conduction, cold and hot immersion test, transmission electron microscopy, real-time PCR, and Western blotting were applied. Serum glucose, serum insulin, insulin sensitivity index, lipid parameters, body weight, sciatic nerve conduction velocity, nociception, glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor mRNA and protein, total and phosphorylated p38 mitogen-activated protein kinases protein expression, malonaldehyde content, and superoxide dismutase activity were altered in diabetic rats, and were near control levels treated with trigonelline. Slight micropathological changes existed in sciatic nerve of trigonelline-treated diabetic rats. These findings suggest that trigonelline has beneficial effects for diabetic peripheral neuropathy through glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor/p38 mitogen-activated protein kinases signaling pathway, nerve conduction velocity, antioxidant enzyme activity, improving micropathological changes of sciatic nerve and decreasing lipid peroxidation.