Piperine lowers the serum concentrations of thyroid hormones, glucose and hepatic 5'D activity in adult male mice

Horm Metab Res. 2003 Sep;35(9):523-6. doi: 10.1055/s-2003-42652.


Piperine, the main alkaloid of Piper nigrum fruits, was evaluated for its thyroid hormone and glucose regulatory efficacy in adult male Swiss albino mice. Its daily oral administration (2.50 mg/kg) for 15 days lowered the serum levels of both the thyroid hormones, thyroxin (T (4)) and triiodothyronine (T (3)) as well as glucose concentrations with a concomitant decrease in hepatic 5'D enzyme and glucose-6-phospatase (G-6-Pase) activity. However, no significant alterations were observed in animals treated with 0.25 mg/kg of piperine in any of the activities studied except an inhibition in serum T (3) concentration. The decrease in T (4), T (3) concentrations and in G-6-Pase were comparable to that of a standard antithyroid drug, Proylthiouracil (PTU). The hepatic lipid-peroxidation (LPO) and the activity of endogenous antioxidants, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase (CAT) were not significantly altered in either of the doses. It appears that the action of P. nigrum on thyroid functions is mediated through its active alkaloid, piperine. We also suggest that a higher dose of piperine may inhibit thyroid function and serum glucose concentration in euthyroid individuals.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alkaloids / pharmacology*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Antithyroid Agents / pharmacology
  • Benzodioxoles
  • Blood Glucose / drug effects*
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Glucose-6-Phosphatase / drug effects
  • Iodide Peroxidase / drug effects
  • Iodide Peroxidase / metabolism*
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / enzymology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Piper nigrum
  • Piperidines / pharmacology*
  • Polyunsaturated Alkamides
  • Propylthiouracil / pharmacology
  • Thyroid Gland / drug effects
  • Thyroid Gland / metabolism
  • Thyroxine / blood*
  • Thyroxine / drug effects
  • Triiodothyronine / blood*
  • Triiodothyronine / drug effects


  • Alkaloids
  • Antithyroid Agents
  • Benzodioxoles
  • Blood Glucose
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Piperidines
  • Polyunsaturated Alkamides
  • Triiodothyronine
  • Propylthiouracil
  • Iodide Peroxidase
  • Glucose-6-Phosphatase
  • Thyroxine
  • piperine