Absorption of dietary cholesterol oxidation products and their downstream metabolic effects are reduced by dietary apple polyphenols

Lipids. 2007 Mar;42(2):151-61. doi: 10.1007/s11745-006-3008-2. Epub 2007 Feb 10.


Exogenous and endogenous cholesterol oxidation products (COPs) perturb various metabolic processes, and thereby they may induce various homeostasis-related disorders. Here, we observed that procyanidin-rich dietary apple polyphenol (APP) from unripe apples alleviates the perturbation of lipid metabolism by decreasing the exogenous COP levels in rats. Dietary COPs may be the greatest source of COPs found in the human body. Rats (4 weeks of age) were fed AIN-purified diets containing 0.3% COPs supplemented with 0.5 or 2.5% APP for 3 weeks. Dietary APP alleviated the growth inhibition action of the exogenous COPs. The modulations of the liver lipid profile by COPs remained unchanged. However, serum total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglyceride levels increased following the intake of dietary APP. Further, dietary APP inhibited the increase in lipid peroxide levels in the liver and serum by COPs. The activity of hepatic Delta6 desaturase was lowered by dietary APP in a dose-dependent manner, although exogenous COPs generally increased the activity of this enzyme. In keeping with this observation, Delta6 desaturation indices in the phospholipids and cholesteryl esters of the liver and serum lipids were lower in the APP-fed groups than those in the control group. Dietary APP also promoted the excretion of exogenous COPs, cholesterol, and acidic steroids in feces. Therefore, the inhibition of intestinal absorption of COPs may partly contribute to the alleviation of the perturbation of lipid metabolism and lipid peroxidation levels. Thus, APP may be an important removal agent of exogenous toxic material such as COPs contained in processed or fast foods.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Cholesterol, Dietary / metabolism
  • Cholesterol, Dietary / pharmacokinetics*
  • Chromatography, Gas
  • Enzyme Activation / drug effects
  • Erythrocytes / metabolism
  • Feces / chemistry
  • Flavonoids / administration & dosage
  • Flavonoids / chemistry
  • Flavonoids / pharmacology*
  • Intestinal Absorption / drug effects
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects
  • Lipid Peroxides / metabolism
  • Lipids / blood
  • Malus / chemistry*
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Molecular Structure
  • Oxidation-Reduction / drug effects
  • Phenols / administration & dosage
  • Phenols / chemistry
  • Phenols / pharmacology*
  • Polyphenols
  • Prostaglandins / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Steroids / metabolism
  • Superoxide Dismutase / metabolism


  • Cholesterol, Dietary
  • Flavonoids
  • Lipid Peroxides
  • Lipids
  • Phenols
  • Polyphenols
  • Prostaglandins
  • Steroids
  • Superoxide Dismutase