Cinnamon extract and polyphenols affect the expression of tristetraprolin, insulin receptor, and glucose transporter 4 in mouse 3T3-L1 adipocytes

Arch Biochem Biophys. 2007 Mar 15;459(2):214-22. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2007 Jan 25.


Cinnamon improves glucose and lipid profiles of people with type 2 diabetes. Water-soluble cinnamon extract (CE) and HPLC-purified cinnamon polyphenols (CP) with doubly linked procyanidin type-A polymers display insulin-like activity. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of cinnamon on the protein and mRNA levels of insulin receptor (IR), glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4), and tristetraprolin (TTP/ZFP36) in mouse 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Immunoblotting showed that CP increased IRbeta levels and that both CE and CP increased GLUT4 and TTP levels in the adipocytes. Quantitative real-time PCR indicated that CE (100mug/ml) rapidly increased TTP mRNA levels by approximately 6-fold in the adipocytes. CE at higher concentrations decreased IRbeta protein and IR mRNA levels, and its effect on GLUT4 mRNA levels exhibited a biphasic pattern in the adipocytes. These results suggest that cinnamon exhibits the potential to increase the amount of proteins involved in insulin signaling, glucose transport, and anti-inflammatory/anti-angiogenesis response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • 3T3-L1 Cells
  • Adipocytes / drug effects
  • Adipocytes / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cinnamomum zeylanicum / chemistry*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Flavonoids / administration & dosage
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Gene Expression Regulation / physiology
  • Glucose Transporter Type 4 / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Phenols / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage*
  • Polyphenols
  • Receptor, Insulin / metabolism*
  • Tristetraprolin / metabolism*


  • Flavonoids
  • Glucose Transporter Type 4
  • Phenols
  • Plant Extracts
  • Polyphenols
  • Tristetraprolin
  • Zfp36 protein, mouse
  • Receptor, Insulin