Acute Effects of Epigallocatechin Gallate From Green Tea on Oxidation and Tissue Incorporation of Dietary Lipids in Mice Fed a High-Fat Diet

Int J Obes (Lond). 2012 May;36(5):735-43. doi: 10.1038/ijo.2011.136. Epub 2011 Jul 12.


Objective: To examine in mice the acute effects of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a green tea bioactive polyphenol on substrate metabolism with focus on the fate of dietary lipids.

Methods: Male C57BL/6 mice were fed high-fat diets supplemented with EGCG extracted from green tea (TEAVIGO, DSM Nutritional Products Ltd, Basel, Switzerland) at different dosages up to 1% (w/w). Effects of EGCG on body composition (quantitative magnetic resonance), food intake and digestibility, oxidation and incorporation of exogenous lipids (stable isotope techniques: (13)C-labeled palmitate and diet supplemented with corn oil as a natural source of (13)C-enriched lipids) as well as gene expression (quantitative real-time PCR) in liver and intestinal mucosa were investigated.

Results: Short-term supplementation (4-7 days) of dietary EGCG increased energy excretion, while food and energy intake were not affected. Fecal energy loss was accompanied by increased fat and nitrogen excretion. EGCG decreased post-prandial triglyceride and glycogen content in liver, increased oxidation of dietary lipids and decreased incorporation of dietary 13C-enriched lipids into fat tissues, liver and skeletal muscle. EGCG dose dependently reversed high-fat diet-induced effects on intestinal substrate transporters (CD36, FATP4 and SGLT1) and downregulated lipogenesis-related genes (ACC, FAS and SCD1) in liver in the post-prandial state.

Conclusions: Anti-obesity effects of EGCG can be explained by a decreased food digestibility affecting substrate metabolism of intestinal mucosa and liver, leading to increased post-prandial fat oxidation and reduced incorporation of dietary lipids into tissues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Body Composition / drug effects
  • Catechin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Catechin / pharmacology
  • Diet, High-Fat
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Eating
  • Intestinal Absorption / drug effects*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism*
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects*
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects*
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tea


  • Antioxidants
  • Tea
  • Catechin
  • epigallocatechin gallate