Ginsenosides Rb1 and Rg1 suppress triglyceride accumulation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes and enhance beta-cell insulin secretion and viability in Min6 cells via PKA-dependent pathways

Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2008 Nov;72(11):2815-23. doi: 10.1271/bbb.80205. Epub 2008 Nov 7.


Ginseng root is known to induce anti-diabetic activity, but the key components involved are unknown. We investigated which major ginsenosides in ginseng enhanced glucose homeostasis by in vitro studies. Rb1 and Rg1 reduced the triglyceride accumulation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes by activating PKA with increased intracellular cAMP. However, the insulin-stimulated glucose uptake was enhanced by Rb1 and Rg1 via activation of phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase. Rb1 and Rg1 promoted glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and cell viability in Min6 cells through PKA which augmented IRS2 expression to enhance insulin/IGF-1 signaling. These results suggest that Rb1 and Rg1 improved glucose homeostasis through the activation of a PKA like glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3T3-L1 Cells
  • Adipocytes / drug effects*
  • Adipocytes / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cyclic AMP / metabolism
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Ginsenosides / pharmacology*
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Insulin / metabolism*
  • Insulin Secretion
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / metabolism
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / cytology
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / drug effects*
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects
  • Triglycerides / metabolism*


  • Ginsenosides
  • Insulin
  • Triglycerides
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • ginsenoside Rb1
  • Cyclic AMP
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • Glucose
  • ginsenoside Rg1