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Journal of Diabetes Research
Volume 2016, Article ID 9737483, 14 pages
Review Article

Antidiabetic Effects of Resveratrol: The Way Forward in Its Clinical Utility

1Department of Biochemistry, Bowen University, Iwo, Nigeria
2Discipline of Biochemistry, School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Westville Campus, Private Bag X54001, University Road, Durban 4000, South Africa
3Nutrition and Chronic Disease Research Unit, Oxidative Stress Research Centre, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Health and Wellness Sciences, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Bellville, South Africa

Received 11 May 2016; Revised 15 August 2016; Accepted 26 October 2016

Academic Editor: Mark A. Yorek

Copyright © 2016 Omolola R. Oyenihi 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.


Despite recent advances in the understanding and management of diabetes mellitus, the prevalence of the disease is increasing unabatedly with resulting disabling and life-reducing consequences to the global human population. The limitations and side effects associated with current antidiabetic therapies have necessitated the search for novel therapeutic agents. Due to the multipathogenicity of diabetes mellitus, plant-derived compounds with proven multiple pharmacological actions have been postulated to “hold the key” in the search for an affordable, efficacious, and safer therapeutic agent in the treatment of the disease and associated complications. Resveratrol, a phytoalexin present in few plant species, has demonstrated beneficial antidiabetic effects in animals and humans through diverse mechanisms and multiple molecular targets. However, despite the enthusiasm and widespread successes achieved with the use of resveratrol in animal models of diabetes mellitus, there are extremely limited clinical data to confirm the antidiabetic qualities of resveratrol. This review presents an update on the mechanisms of action and protection of resveratrol in diabetes mellitus, highlights challenges in its clinical utility, and suggests the way forward in translating the promising preclinical data to a possible antidiabetic drug in the near future.