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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 789067, 11 pages
Research Article

Effect of Gambisan on the Inhibition of Adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes

1Department of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, 1 Hoegi-dong, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 130-702, Republic of Korea
2Oriental Medicine Research Center for Bone and Joint Disease, East-West Bone and Joint Research Institute, Kyung Hee University, 149 Sangil-dong, Gangdong-gu, Seoul 134-727, Republic of Korea

Received 26 March 2013; Revised 10 June 2013; Accepted 12 June 2013

Academic Editor: Hyunsu Bae

Copyright © 2013 Jung Won Kang 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.


This study was conducted to explore the antiadipogenic effect and possible mechanism of Gambisan on 3T3-L1 cells. For quality control, Gambisan was standardized by HPLC and the standard compounds ephedrine, epigallocatechin-3-gallate, and caffeine were screened. Cultured 3T3-L1 cells that had been induced to differentiate were treated with various concentrations of Gambisan or its major component extracts (Ephedra intermedia Schrenk, Atractylodes lancea DC., and Thea sinensis L.) for 72 hours for MTT assay to determine cell viability or 10 days for LDH assay, triglyceride assay, DNA content measurement, Oil red O staining, RT-PCR, and western blot. Gambisan significantly inhibited adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 cells by reducing triglyceride contents and lipid accumulation in a dose-dependent manner without obvious cytotoxicity. Viability and DNA content in 3T3-L1 cells treated with Gambisan were significantly higher than cells treated with the major component extracts at every concentration. The anti-adipogenic effects of Gambisan appeared to be mediated by a significant downregulation of the expression of lipoprotein lipase mRNA and PPARγ, C/EBPα, and SREBP-1 protein apart from the expression of hormone-sensitive lipase. Gambisan could act as a possible therapeutic agent for obesity. However, further studies including in vivo assays and clinical trials are needed to confirm the efficacy, safety and mechanisms of the antiobesity effects of Gambisan.