The effect of gypenosides on cardiac function and expression of cytoskeletal genes of myocardium in diabetic cardiomyopathy rats

Am J Chin Med. 2009;37(6):1059-68. doi: 10.1142/S0192415X09007491.


The relationship between changes of cardiac function and the gene expressions of two major myocardial skeleton proteins, titin and nebulin, and the effect of gypenosides on these gene expressions in diabetic cardiomyopathy rat were explored in the present study. Forty Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into three groups: control group, diabetic cardiomyopathy group and gypenosides-treated diabetic cardiomyopathy group. The diabetic cardiomyopathy was induced in rats by injecting streptozotocin (STZ, 55 mg/kg) intraperitoneally. Seven weeks after the rats suffered from diabetes, the rats were treated with gypenosides 100 mg/kg per day orally for six weeks in gypenosides-treated group. In the meanwhile, the pure water was given to diabetic cardiomyopathy and the control groups. Subsequently, the cardiac functions, including left ventricular systolic pressure (LVSP), left ventricular end diastolic pressure (LVEDP), +/- dP/dt(max) and t-dP/d(max)t, as well as the mRNA content and proteins of titin and nebulin in myocardium were determined. The results indicated that (1) the diabetic cardiomyopathy rats had decreased LVSP and +/- dP/dt(max), increased LVEDP, and prolonged t-dP/dt(max) than normal rats; (2) LVSP and +/- dP/dt(max) in diabetic cardiomyopathy rats treated with gypenosides were significantly higher and LVEDP and t-dP/dt(max) were significantly lower than those without giving gypenosides; (3) the mRNA contents and proteins of titin and nebulin in diabetic cardiomyopathy rats were remarkably lower than those in the control rats and gypenosides had no effect on mRNA and protein expression levels of titin and nebulin in diabetic cardiomyopathy rats. We conclude that (1) the cardiac function as well as the mRNA expressions of titin and nebulin decreased in diabetic cardiomyopathy rats; (2) gypenosides secure cardiac muscles and their function from diabetic impairment and these beneficial effects of gypenosides are not by changing the expressions of titin and nebulin.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Cardiomyopathies / drug therapy*
  • Cardiomyopathies / metabolism
  • Cardiovascular Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cardiovascular Agents / therapeutic use
  • Connectin
  • Cytoskeleton / drug effects
  • Cytoskeleton / genetics*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / drug therapy*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / genetics
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / metabolism
  • Female
  • Gene Expression / drug effects*
  • Gynostemma / chemistry
  • Heart / drug effects
  • Male
  • Muscle Proteins / genetics
  • Muscle Proteins / metabolism
  • Myocardium / metabolism*
  • Phytotherapy
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Protein Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Random Allocation
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Cardiovascular Agents
  • Connectin
  • Muscle Proteins
  • Plant Extracts
  • RNA, Messenger
  • gypenoside
  • nebulin
  • Protein Kinases